Car Doctor: Why does my interior light come on when I hit the brakes?

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Indy Lifestyle Online

Q. My mid 1990s BMW 3 series seems to lack power under all motoring conditions. Accelerating hard only seems to make the engine stutter, but slowing down it picks up again more smoothly.
Jim O'Brien, Halifax

A. Most mechanics might diagnose a failed Lambda sensor or catalytic converter. If your fuel consumption was heavier than normal this would point to those failures. You need to visit a specialist with diagnostic tools. We've been told the replacement sensor should be the genuine article by Bosch which will last longer than a cheaper replacement.

Q. When I put the brakes on in my car the interior light comes on - bizarre, especially at night. Any ideas?
June Flitcroft, Bristol

A. Is your car old and just a little bit rusty? If so it is more than likely to be an earthing fault. Also read your owner's manual because there could be a light-control module which is faulty and should only cost a small amount to replace.

Q. The key fob for my car operates the alarm and shuts the electric windows, but only the front ones. However, I can operate each window from inside the car. What's the problem?
Harry Adams, Tonbridge

A. The problem is most likely to be that the key fob does not shut all the windows. The rear ones are probably on a different circuit. I'm sure the person who sold you the car said that it did the four window trick, but in reality it is only going to be the fronts.

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