Surfing through the Resource Center’s Beginner’s Corner can teach one a lot of things. Whether you’re looking for information on buying your first Mustang or some basics on some automotive terminology, the Beginner’s Corner is the perfect place for you. With buying guides and informational articles, you really can’t go wrong with the Beginner’s Corner hosted right here on CJ’s. When you’re ready to take the plunge on that new part for your Mustang, don’t hesitate to surf our site for the right part to throw on your build!
All Beginner's Corner
There are a lot of warning lights on your dashboard, it can be hard to know what all of them mean. Find out what each car light symbol means in our guide so you know what to do next.
Properly maintaining your engine will help it run longer and prevent potential engine damage. Engine maintenance includes things like checking your cooling system, changing the oil, and inspecting for leaks. These are some of the most important things you can do to protect your engine.
Cold air intakes are able to improve power and performance by pulling colder air into the engine. This allows for more oxygen-rich airflow that improves engine efficiency. In addition to being easy to install, most cold air intakes won’t negatively impact your warranty. This makes them a very desirable modification.
In automatic transmission cars, the neutral safety switch prevents the car from starting in any gear other than park or neutral. This important safety feature has been around for a long time. Though the neutral safety switch is an important safety feature, it can be annoying if it starts to go bad. There are some easy ways to see if your neutral safety switch needs to be replaced.
Many modern cars use a MacPherson strut suspension system. Though this design was first implemented in the 1950s, it's still in use today. This is partially due to its simple and effective design, which is easy to work on and modify.
At some point, everyone damages their car’s paint. Whether it’s an errant rock or a rogue shopping cart, it’s likely you’ll end up with a scratch that needs touch-up paint eventually. Here’s everything to know about selecting and applying touch-up paint. While touch-up paint may never look perfect, with a little extra effort it can look great.
You’ll need a car jack if you want to do underbody vehicle maintenance or change a flat tire. Although most cars come with a scissor jack, there are several types of jacks available. Some jacks are better suited for garage use, while others have a more portable design.
Whether you’ve just bought your first Chevy C10 or have been a proud owner for decades, there are plenty of ways to get involved in a C10 community. Social media and forums are a great way to get involved from the comfort of your home. C10 clubs, events, and shows allow you to meet other classic truck enthusiasts from your local community.
A restomod build is the best of both worlds. It combines the classic styling of an old-school vehicle with modern automotive technology. Popular restomod ideas include disc brake conversions, suspension system upgrades, and switching to electronic fuel injection.
Start your journey into the Mustang enthusiast community. From online groups and social media to car shows and racing events, there’s something for every owner.
On slippery roads, traction control can help you avoid a nasty accident. But if you’re interested in drag racing, drifting, or off-roading, you may need to disable traction control. Understanding how traction control works can help you determine when you should and shouldn’t have it on.
Though many enthusiasts claim to love the sound of turbo flutter, compressor surge isn’t good for your car. Thankfully, there are multiple ways of preserving your turbocharger while keeping your turbo sounds in place.
The Jeep Wrangler is an SUV full of little surprises. One of these hidden features are the drain plugs located underneath the Wrangler's carpet. Even though everyone knows how drain plugs work, they can prove to be a useful part of your vehicle to understand.
The three angles that matter for proper wheel adjustment are caster, camber, and toe. Whether you're planning to lower your Mustang or just want to make sure you'll have enough traction to get around a tight curve, you may need to adjust your caster and camber angles. The most common way to get the adjustability you'll need is a set of caster camber plates.
A steering stabilizer isn't the be all end all solution to your suspension problems, but it is a great way to make your vehicle handle better. If you experience frequent bump steer from a lift kit or oversized tires, then a steering stabilizer might be for you.
Fender flares are a great way to accesorize your truck or SUV's appearance. While they are an important part of your vehicle's styling, they serve some functional purposes as well.
Transmissions and transaxles both transmit power from your engine to your wheels. Transmissions are usually found in RWD vehicles, while transaxles are used in FWD cars. A transaxle is a combination of a transmission, axle, and differential.
Your Wrangler's spare tire carrier will need an upgrade once you start running larger wheels and tires. There are plenty of options available that can allow you to carry massive spare tires with you wherever you go.
A snatch block is an important part of any off-roader's recovery tool kit. They help your winch perform better and under more circumstances. If you ever run the risk of getting stranded in your 4x4 vehicle of choice, then be sure to carry a snatch block with you.
Learn how transverse and longitudinal engines differ, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of each layout.
If you plan on flat towing your Jeep Gladiator or Wrangler, then check out this guide on what steps you must take to properly tow your Jeep along with you.
There are several symptoms that can let you know that your catalytic converter is having problems. If you’re driving with a bad cat, here are some ways to tell and what you can do to address the problem.
Find out which rear gear ratio is best for your Mustang using the Engine RPM Calculator right here in the CJ’s Resource Center. Whether you’re looking for new rear gears that will provide better gas mileage or quicker acceleration, this Engine RPM Calculator will help you maximize efficiency and acceleration to make sure you get the right rear gears the first time!
Learn all about the experience of the one-day racing school program hosted by the talented instructors at Ford Performance Racing School. Climb behind the wheel of a track-modified 2015 Mustang GT and learn the proper technique of conquering the racing line and carving corners on track!
Purchasing a new set of tires can be exciting but have you considered how different size tires could impact your vehicle? CJ's tire conversion calculator can help you identify the differences between your current tire set up and your new tires to see how the new tires may affect your speedometer.
Many of the causes of an ABS light appearing are easy to fix at home and can be checked in very little time. Unfortunately, some of the other causes can be significantly more involved. Regardless, you’ll feel better once you discover the source of the problem.
Camshafts and crankshafts are two important components of an internal combustion engine that require a connection in order to work. Though they control different parts of the combustion process, each relies on the other in order to keep turning.
Downpipes are an important part of a turbocharged vehicle's exhaust system Aftermarket downpipes can improve performance, but may or may not be legal in your state. There are a lot of different options for downpipes, and here's what you should know about each of them, including legality and safety.
The valve body is an essential piece of an automatic transmission, responsible for selecting the correct gear. Unfortunately, when it stops working, it can cause some pretty interesting problems. Here’s how the valve body works, and how to tell if yours is working correctly.
Engine braking spares your brake pads, improves your fuel economy, and makes you a better, safer driver. This is a driving technique everyone should learn. Here’s your guide to how, and when, to engine brake.
If you’re considering upgrading your rubber brake hoses to stainless steel ones, there are a few things you should know about the strengths and weaknesses of both materials. Braided stainless steel brake hoses can be a great upgrade for off-roaders and drivers who like a firmer pedal feel.
At some point in the life of a car, the clutch will accumulate so much wear and tear that it will need to be replaced. The symptoms of a clutch that is nearing the end of its life expectancy are easy to identify if you know what you’re looking for. Here's how to tell what may be wrong and also how to extend the life of your clutch.
OHV and OHC engines, sometimes referred to as pushrod and modular engines, respectively, have several critical differences that give each unique pros and cons. Understanding the shortcomings and advantages of each can help you understand your own engine, or help you decide which engine is right for your next project car.
The simple design of a throttle body spacer coupled with the promise of big performance boosts makes this tiny mod seem almost too good to be true. Here’s how throttle body spacers work, and which cars are likely to see the biggest gains.
Some of the symptoms of a bad wheel bearing include unusual noises and loose handling. Checking your wheel bearings at home can help eliminate other possible causes so that you know exactly what’s causing your car’s problems. Here are some of the ways to check, and what you should know about your car’s wheel bearings.
Though many wait till the ideal RPM range to shift, there are benefits to shifting early. By calculating your throws in advance, you can make meaningful shifts that leave you free to accelerate when it’s beneficial.
A snorkel is not just for braving deep waters in your Jeep. While they do help keep your engine dry, they can improve your driving experience in other dimensions as well.
Spark plugs provide the ignition that keeps an internal combustion engine functioning. Knowing when and how to change your spark plugs is an important step in keeping your engine running well.
Though people love the screaming roar of the GT350's flat-plane engine, the GT500's more traditional cross-plane crank motor is more powerful. Is one really better than the other? Learn about how these two configurations stack up in this helpful guide.
Leaf spring shackles connect leaf springs to a vehicle’s frame. The shackles allow the leaf springs to change in length as they compress and tighten. Although they are a small part, they are essential to leaf spring suspension systems. Installing a longer leaf spring shackle will add ride height and improve performance.
Short throw shifters are one of the easiest upgrades you can make to your Mustang, and can greatly improve the shifting experience for shift stick enthusiasts. We discuss the pros and cons of short throw shifters as well as the steps to follow to install your new shifter.
Paddle shifters promise to turn an automatic transmission into the perfect blend of manual control and automatic ease. Knowing what paddle shifters are and when and how to use them can improve your driving experience substantially.
Choosing the right fuel for your car means understanding the different types of gasoline that are available. There's a lot more to gasoline than premium vs regular. Here's all the information on fuel you'll want to know before your next fill up at the station.
SOHC and DOHC, which stand for single overhead cam and double overhead cam respectively are the two camshaft layouts you're most likely to find on modern engines. There are still engines that use the OHV, or overhead valve, camshaft layout as well.
Every engine has a max RPM and when a car pushes the redline it can cause serious mechanical problems. Find out what causes over-revving, how it can affect a car’s engine, and what you can do to prevent it.
Overdrive gears are great for highway cruising, but there are times when you want to turn it off. Learn about overdrive and how it affects your transmission.
Enjoyed by some and reviled by others, Ford’s Hill Start Assist is a relatively recent technology that can give drivers an extra bit of help after being stopped on a hill. Used in both automatic and manual transmission cars, the technology is much more noticeable on the latter and is a topic of controversy for Mustangs and ST hatchbacks alike.
Upgrading your headlights not only looks great; it also makes your nighttime driving considerably safer. LED and HID headlights both offer increased brightness, but they differ in many ways and are best suited to different driving scenarios. We’ll discuss both so you can decide which is right for you.
Made iconic by cars like the Ford Mustang, window louvers offer some moderate benefits to passengers. More importantly, they make a big statement in terms of style.
The purpose of neutral gear is clear in cars with a manual transmission, but if you drive an automatic you might wonder why you have a neutral gear and when you should be using it. We explain why automatic cars still need a neutral gear and when you need to put your car in neutral.
Tire pressure fluctuates naturally throughout the year, but your car’s ideal doesn’t. Keeping your tires at a good tire pressure can improve your safety and fuel efficiency. Know how to use a tire gauge and what low tire pressure and high tire pressure mean for you.
Car batteries may seem to die at random, but they're actually predictable if you know the causes of batteries dying. These are the five most frequent causes of dying car batteries and what you can do about each one. If you’ve ever heard the taunting click of a car battery that keeps dying and asked yourself why you’re not alone.
Selecting the right wheels for your car can have a positive impact on handling, fuel economy, and appearance. From durable steel wheels to high performing alloys and carbon fiber, this is how each of these wheel types compares.
Understanding when and how to adjust the gear ratio of your Jeep Wrangler JK can help you to enjoy the full capabilities of your vehicle. We explain what regearing is, how to read a gear ratio, and how to determine what gear you’ll need based on where you want to take your Jeep.
Adding an air ride suspension to your Mustang can allow you to lower, or slam, your car without creating a bumpy ride. Find out more about the pros and cons of air ride suspension as well as how these suspensions work and how to install them.
One of the decisions that you may have to make when buying a truck is between having single rear wheels or dual rear wheels. While the difference between the two is partly intuitive, the addition of another wheel can change your trucking experience. Here we’ve broken down the potential issues and benefits of both SRW and DRW vehicle to help aid your decision.
Rear spoilers, wings, chin spoilers, and splitters all promise to boost the performance of your Mustang. Though the boosts to appearance are obvious, many car owners have questions about the actual physics of how spoilers work. We explain how these modifications differ in how they work to change the aerodynamics of your car, and what you can actually expect from them.
If you’ve ever driven behind a Jeep before, then odds are that you’ve seen the cryptic phrase: “It’s a Jeep Thing, You Wouldn’t Understand." This saying functions like a secret handshake amongst Jeep owners and espouses the core tenants of Jeep ownership.
The merits and disadvantages of RWD and FWD are numerous, so deciding between the two could seem difficult. However, there are several important differences between the two, that when chosen correctly, can improve your driving experience. This guide will help outline the best uses for a RWD and FWD to help you pick a drivetrain best suited for your needs.
With winter on the way, it's important that your Jeep is prepared for tough conditions. If your region experiences sub-freezing temperatures, snow, and ice, check out our guide for some simple ways to ready your Wrangler.
Finding the best off-road tires can be challenging. Depending on what tires you have equipped on your rig, they can make a huge impact on ride quality and off-road performance. Whether you are a serious rock crawler, casual trailblazer, or love off-roading in the snow, tires are going to be one of the most important aspects of your entire build. There are plenty of options to choose from when it comes to equipping your rig with the proper tires.
It can be tough to figure out where to get started when you want to get into off-roading. This guide covers the basics, explaining how to find a community, prepare your 4x4, and find great trails.
Both present in internal combustion engines, carburetors and fuel injection systems accomplish similar tasks. However, when comparing carburetors vs fuel injection, it is important to note the two function differently. Carburetors may be a thing of the past, but many people still prefer the more traditional method of powering an engine. In comparison, fuel injection is a newer technology, one that eventually replaced carburetors and made them obsolete in modern vehicles.
Most people have a clear preference when it comes to diesel vs gas, but what are the advantages of diesel engines? Why might someone want to opt for a diesel engine rather than the more traditional gasoline motor? There are many benefits of diesel, however, there are always negatives to offset the positives. Although diesel is more efficient and can provide more torque, diesel cars or trucks can be more expensive to buy as well as to refill at the gas station.
Although vehicles have used drum brakes since the early 20th century, they still remain relevant today. Since the 1970s, disc brakes have slowly taken the place of the drum brake. Even though disc brakes offer better performance, there are still reasons why drum brakes are used in modern vehicles.
Shopping for new wheels and tires for your Jeep is an exciting process, but there’s also a lot of technical information that you’re going to need before making a decision. Finding out the proper specifications is key to making sure all your aftermarket parts fit cohesively with no issues. Jeep bolt patterns, wheel size, backspace, and offset are critical in determining the correctly sized wheels you will need for your rig.
While the Ford F-150 EcoBoost is a pretty great truck to begin with, adding aftermarket F150 mods and upgrades is a great way to both customize the look of your truck while optimizing performance. From installing an aftermarket cat-back exhaust to a cold air intake, there are plenty of modifications you can make to your F-150. Whether you want to enhance off-roading performance or simply look mean on the streets, these top five F150 mods can do just that!
If you’re looking into lifting your truck or Jeep Wrangler, then you’re probably wondering what the difference is between a leveling kit and a lift kit. While a leveling kit only lifts the front part of a vehicle, a lift kit will raise up both the front and rear of the vehicle several inches, depending on the type of lift kit. Leveling kits in comparison to lift kits only provide just a few inches of lift, mainly to correct any height imbalances between the front and rear of your vehicle.
While the first Jeep Wrangler model was released for the 1987 model year, the first Jeep Wrangler Unlimited model wasn’t released until 20 years later in 2007 with the debut of the JK Wrangler generation. Although the two models are very similar, the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited is the four-door model of the Jeep Wrangler, which only has two doors. Many of the same features can be found in both the Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited but check out this article from CJ’s for a detailed comparison!
Thinking about getting a Jeep Wrangler but not sure which transmission is right for you? Should you get a manual Jeep Wrangler or an automatic Wrangler? Depending on how you use your Jeep Wrangler, a manual transmission might suit you better than an automatic. However, if you drive your Jeep on a daily basis, you may want to opt for an automatic transmission. Here is a breakdown of each Jeep Wrangler transmission to help you decide!
What is the difference between a Jeep JK Wrangler and a Jeep TJ Wrangler, and furthermore, what do those letters even mean? Since the inception of the original Jeep Wrangler in 1986, there have been several variations of the well-loved off-roading vehicle. From the first-generation YJ Wrangler to the fourth-generation JL Wrangler, here is a breakdown of every Jeep Wrangler model to date!
If you are looking to buy a Jeep Wrangler in the near future, there may be one question you keep asking yourself: Hardtop or soft top? While it may seem like a simple question, there are pros and cons to each. While Wrangler hardtops provide more protection, soft tops are easier to remove and less expensive to replace. However, no matter what Wrangler top you choose, you’re sure to have a blast driving your Jeep on and off the trail!
In 2015, the Mustang celebrated its 50th anniversary with the release of the 2015 Ford Mustang. This CJ's resource has all of the info from the release of the 2015 Mustang that you're looking for. Info includes MSRP, MPGs, interior and technology upgrades.
Whether you in the market for a new car or looking to trade in your older car for something faster or more powerful, finding a quality car dealership can feel like a daunting task. Selecting a trustworthy car dealership is now easier thanks to this guide which will arm you with the information you need to be confident you’re making the best choice for yourself and your new car.
Interested in reviewing the specs for the 2014 Ford Fiesta? This CJ's article has all of the information you're looking for. Here you'll find the stats on the MSRP, MPG's, technology and the different model options available.
Looking for stats on the 2015 Ford Focus? Then check out this CJ's resource article which has all of the specs you're looking for such as MSRP, mpg info, engine, interior and more.
Sometimes the budget doesn’t allow for a brand new set of wheels. Especially when some of the newer model Mustangs have wheel options for at least a couple grand. At that point, you’re looking at a serious investment for your Mustang. Sometimes it just isn’t in the budget to purchase a brand new set of wheels, so you begin checking forums and social media for used Mustang wheels. Let CJ’s help you with the process of finding the right set of wheels for your Mustang without breaking the bank.
Whether you've moved to a new town or just purchased your first car, finding a reliable auto service center can feel like an impossible task. Finding a trustworthy auto service center can be simplified by following this easy guide that will tell you what to look for and what questions to ask, giving you the confidence to make the best decision for you and your car.
Finding the perfect 1965-1973 Mustang can be extremely difficult. You need to know what you’re looking for, but also what’s out there. Once you’ve narrowed down your year range, options, and acceptable conditions, you’ll have a variety of places to look, each with its own pros and cons. Here are all the things you should look for in your first classic Mustang.
In most classic muscle cars, the general look that everyone longs for is a staggered wheel setup and a raked look with the rear being slightly higher off the ground than the front. However, for functional reasons, today’s Mustangs typically come with a square fitment wheel meaning that the wheel is the same size on all four corners of the car.
To those looking to make a trip to the dragstrip for the first time, it can be a daunting occasion. From the sidelines it may seem easy, but once you pull up to the burnout box, the adrenaline rush can take over and confuse your concentration. Let Bill & the crew at CJ’s show you a few tips and tricks to overcoming the anxiety that could come with your first trip to the dragstrip.
Although the Mustang gets a reputation for being a bad car to have through the winter, we couldn’t disagree more. With a little prep, it can be the most wonderful time of the year—even for Mustang enthusiasts. Whether you're storing your Mustang for warmer days or preparing to drive through the thick of it, we've got tips to help you through the cold months ahead.
Understanding the concept of wheel offset and backspacing can be confusing for someone who may be just starting to look for an aftermarket set of wheels and tires. Each Mustang generation has a particular set of offset and backspacing numbers that work best with the fitment around that car’s suspension wheel-well.
What Mustang owner doesn’t like doing burnouts? Exactly, everyone loves burnouts! It’s a pastime that dates back to the '60s where the American muscle car first originated. The ideology behind a burnout hasn’t changed, but the technology has drastically. Starting in 2015, the Ford Mustang GT came with line lock standard, right from the factory! Being the first production car to include line lock, a lot of people and potential consumers have questions about its proper use, application and how it works exactly.
The general design cues of the S550 Mustang remain unchanged, but laws and federal restrictions require Ford to meet different standards between the US and European countries, hence the reasoning for some differences among the two versions of the S550.
For those of you out there who may be just getting into the Mustang scene or want to learn a bit more on engine power and how it can be measured, then you’re at the right place! On a very basic level, a dynamometer or dyno is a machine that is used to measure power output from the engine of a vehicle.
Whether it’s your 1st Mustang or your 50th, sometimes it can be tough to decide between a Mustang fastback or coupe and a convertible for your next pony. Each has its advantages and disadvantages. For example, if you enjoy maximum handling capability, you just can’t beat the structural integrity that comes with a hardtop. On the other hand, if you enjoy beachside cruises or early morning drives on your favorite backroad, a convertible may be better for you.
Whether it’s a weekend cruiser and easy daily driving that you’re after, or an all-around driver's car that is a blast to drive on the twisties, there really isn’t a right answer when it comes to choosing the right transmission for your Mustang. It comes down to personal preference and lifestyle.
Torque measures an engine's capacity to do work, while horsepower measures how fast the engine can do it. Learn about the differences between torque and horsepower, how they’re measured, and which modifications can increase your engine’s power.
An ever-common issue with any automotive enthusiast is using your camera to take a photo of your vehicle. It sounds simple, but more times than not, it just doesn’t look the same through the lens of a camera as it does with your eyes. This can be attributed to multiple factors including but not limited to the type of camera, setting or location, lighting, and focal point.
As much as we love installing cold air intakes, tunes, exhaust headers, and other go-fast parts, it’s just as important to make sure your car is operating at prime efficiency. Maintenance is important for safety, but also your Mustang will perform better and be more powerful if all of its parts are in optimal shape.