With no garage and living in a cold climate I am reduced to small repairs and upgrades that don’t require me to be outside for very long. When I woke up this morning it was 14F and by the time of this writing it has achieved 27F for the day. Anything that is plastic or rubber tends to break easily and I really don’t want to deal with that kind of agony right now.

What I am left with is finding anything metal that needs upgrading or repair no matter how small or insignificant it may appear. Replacing missing bolts and screws is always helpful but today I’m going for something that is mostly overlooked in most vehicles, the ground straps.

Despite vehicles being mostly metal, not all of that metal is connected directly to itself. There are a lot of places where metal parts are spaced apart with fabric gaskets, plastic shims, and rubber mounts to provide protections from heat, cold, vibration, and various fluids. Although there is wiring to operate the various electrical devices on the vehicle, the metal of the body and the engine are used as the main ground and if one piece is not properly grounded, the vehicle can exhibit a variety of odd behaviors while operating.

In my case there are a few straps at various locations in the car that make sure everything is properly grounded to the body, the engine, and most importantly the battery. There is at least one inside the car’s cabin but I shouldn’t have to worry about it as it is out of the elements but the ones in the engine compartment appear to need some TLC. In the image above you can see the greenish strand leading from the manifold to the frame and although it looks pretty it’s not very helpful.

So, today I’m going to warm up the engine and get some oil on those bolts so I can remove that ground strap and replace it with a new one that is plated as to prevent future corrosion. After that I know there is another one I need to look at as well. Just another thing to do as I continue to tinker until spring affords me the ability to conduct another major upgrade.

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