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Learning To Do Basic Car Things (This Is Diy Cheap As It Gets)

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So I've got my Mazda 626 1998 2.0L Diesel GF off my brother. Well, it is a rust bucket indeed and it has many problems (like it starts with a screwdriver and has no working locks).
I'll be posting in this thread things I work on in my Mazda.

Bare with my shaky hands and bad quality of work, I'm trying to learn off this car by trying to fix it.

This will also be really DIY, as I'm using mostly material that is found in my garage or scavenged off junk yards and trash bins.

The things I plan to fix (some are already done and I'll post it)

1) This exhaust pipe thing that shoots out oil:


img-382222-2-8de863b96bbc9999075b74991b5img-382222-3-bac6111710cb337ff2fff941eba2) Rusty fenders

20140705_150543.jpg3) Car shaking when braking

4) A moderate audio system.

5) A car horn

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The things I already did:
Fixed the leaking pipe to some extent (would need advice on it)


Added blue LED lighting under the pedals and passenger area (they turn on once the stereo is turning on)


Rear door speakers and a subwoofer (using an old PC subwoofer's motherboard)



Car horn has been added, 

One of the fenders is painted


Would love to know if someone knows where to get a cheap or free door lock (driver's side) because my key doesn't spin and a ignition lock too, this is what I need exactly:


Any advice or ideas would be appreciated.
90% of the stuff so far I've used was either found in my scrap pile or scavenged off people.

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Wow a GF diesel MTX.  Definitely don't see that everyday.  That's a rare car you have.  I imagine you could use the lock cylinders from any junkyard GF.  Great job on the body work.

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These cars are pretty common in my area. I'd like to mod it to have some street cred, but I have a bunch of tehnical problems before I can add anything to it.

The body work was pretty easy considering it was my first time. The thing is, if you come real close you can see the difference in the paint. I bought a cheap green spraycan. But i plan on fixing the paint once i get the car running smoothly.

People been telling me my brake disks are in bad condition hence why my car shakes/bumps when braking at higher speeds. But could it be the missing bolts missing on each left wheel?

It also has a hard shift (you can get a workout for yor arms from just shiftig gears) and it gets worse if you spend an hour in a parking lot practicing your parking skills. Any idea what could fix that problem? People told me the clutch is worn out. This car has around 236k km on it. But I've seen some mazdas with 300k+ and they run fine.

Any advice what else i could add to this project as I learn along?

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This will also be really DIY, as I'm using mostly material that is found in my garage or scavenged off junk yards and trash bins.


Word for word, that's literally all I've been doing for 6 years. This method will make you an expert on your own vehicle.



As far as advice, I can't chime in on this gen or engine. But I can say, the duct tape pipe is a great short-term fix, but heat and temperature change makes duct tape forget what it's supposed to do.


Do your best to source a new pipe or maybe find something that does the same job, even a silly aftermarket chrome whatever with a silicon coupler. Vacuum/boost leaks are no bueno.

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The hose where the oil is coming out of looks like a rubber hose.  Am I correct?  If it's rubber then there isn't supposed to be oil of that much quantity going through a rubber hose.  It will eventually eat away at the rubber and that could be the actual cause of the hole in the first place.  Usually PCV valves are attached to large rubber hoses so might want to figure out why your PCV valve is spitting out so much oil.  I'm just trying to be helpful here I have no clue about the diesel engine.  If it's a rubber hose then replacing it will just have the same thing happen in the future.  Fix the cause not the symptom.


The green is a good temporary solution but it's very obvious (to me) that it's a rattle can job.  Nothing wrong with that but temporary has a habit of becoming permanent.  Don't let it go too long and forget about getting a clear coat on it or a body shop respray/feather and clear coat.  Otherwise that entire arch will eventually start rusting through.


Yes a missing lug nut can definitely be the source of your uneven braking.  If it's been like that for a long time then it's probably warped the rotor and the rotor will need to be lathed to fix it (or get new rotors) and replace that missing lug nut pronto.  Is it just a missing lug nut or is there a problem with the stud?  Hard to see but I think the stud is missing.  That means you'll need to put in a new wheel stud.  Missing stud isn't a big deal.  They can be replaced individually.  Recommend you have a shop do it but it is something you can tackle if you want to do it yourself.  Yeah a missing stud will warp a rotor due to uneven pad wear until eventually you feel pulsation in the brakes.  I think the missing wheel stud is utimately the culprit and because it's gone unattended for so long has warped the rotors.  Probably looking at a rotor repair/replace and possibly new pads.  Depends on the thickness of the rotors and pads or shoes.


Being a part of a 626 community is awesome isn't it?  You'll learn more about your 626 than you ever wanted to know.  Welcome aboard. :)

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It depends on the shaking. If it is consistent at any speed and gets worse at higher speed, I'd wager an issue with a wheel or something similar. If it only occurs when braking, it is most likely the rotors.

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MAJOR UPDATE!! Done alot of things on my car.

While driving around 20km/h I was braking and my brake pedal fell through and I heard metal parts falling on the asphalt. Guess what happened? Brake pads fell off. I was lucky that I was driving slow enough, else I could've crashed. So after losing my brakes I finally took it upon myself to check the brake system, which has been bothering me for a while. 

This is what I bought


Yes, new brake rotors, apparently the knocking during braking was the brake rotors after all.

Don't the new ones look sexy?

So after buying new parts it was about time to start fixing all the problems I had planned to fix.


Taking apart the brake assembly



And this was the problem with my wheels acting all up.



So after I changed my brake rotors and brake pads, I had yet another problem to solve : The suspension.My shocks were leaked and well.. It was like riding a rollercoaster on bumpy roads.

Buying new shocks was very expensive so I tried my luck on the junkyard. And I got lucky, bought 2 rear shock absorbers with springs from a '95 626, of course they had rust on top where the bolts go into the chassis, so I had to spend more money (note: them things costed more than the shock absorbers). I had no time to take pictures, sadly. It was the most difficult job I've yet done on my Mazda. But here's a picture of the somewhat finished product.


After riding like a boss for 2 days the car broke down again. Major rust problem, I don't know the exact name to this part, basically, it had to be changed.

This is the part after it was removed (it's cut up because it was difficult to get out due to all the rust).


Bought a used one from a '00 Mazda 626, the mountings were slightly different but it did the job. I also painted it BLAACK


Regarding the leaking oil hose thing, this is how it looked like

Had that fixed, just zip tied a rubber hose on top of that and it seems to work (more on this will be uploaded soon).

Since it started snowing I had to get new wheels, and it was a bargain I must say.

Got the wheels and tyres for real cheap!

I also changed the filters and engine oil on the car. Also had the heater fixed as it worked on only 1 setting and made the car cigarette lighter work. Sadly, didn't have time to take pictures as most of the work was done either outside or in a cold garage at -15Celcius.

More updates coming soon

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