Sagging Headliner in an Aston Martin DB9

Difficult to ignore

It all started on hot sunny California summer day when I got into my DB9 after work.  Open the beautiful swan wing door, slide butt into supple sculpted leather seat, and then WTF?!  Why is there fabric on my head?   As you can see in my happy owner photo here my headliner sagged and was draping across my head.  Crap – something else to fix and I am not an upholsterer.

You can’t ignore this problem and it needs immediate attention else it will drive you completely insane as it flaps in the wind with the windows open, or just lays on you and your passengers head when you sit in the car. Continue reading “Sagging Headliner in an Aston Martin DB9”

Dealing with a Cracked Windshield in your Aston Martin DB9

Clack! Awww,  for fucks sake….

That’s exactly what the sounds were inside the cabin when a rock popped up behind a big rig on a local Interstate and bounced off my Aston Martin DB9 windshield.  At first while still driving I didn’t see any chips or cracks, but when I got home to check it out more closely the hit had been near the upper right edge in the black area.  It had already spidered out and a 7 inch split was winding its way out into the passenger area.  About the only good news (being a relative term) was that another inch to the left and it would have chipped/dented the A pillar, a substantially more difficult (and costly) proposition to fix. Continue reading “Dealing with a Cracked Windshield in your Aston Martin DB9”

Installing the PCV Valve Vacuum Assembly Harness in an Aston Martin DB9

If you’ve been replacing your PCV Valves on your Aston Martin DB9 to cure an oil build up problem in your intake manifolds (check out my other articles on this) it’s likely you’ve had your PCV Valve Vacuum Harness Assembly removed and in this article I will explain how to properly reinstall it. Continue reading “Installing the PCV Valve Vacuum Assembly Harness in an Aston Martin DB9”

How to Replace the PCV Valves in an Aston Martin DB9

In previous articles I’ve described how engine oil can build up in your intake manifolds of your Aston Martin DB9 due to malfunctioning PCV valves (made by Ford of course) and how the PCV system is supposed to work.  In another article, I have covered what parts you would need to order to deal with this, and it included two (2) options; Option 1 is the lowest cost and just swaps the PCV valves themselves, and; Option 2 is my recommended option that swaps the Vacuum Harness Assembly, which happens to also contain the PCV valves.   This article will cover both options. Continue reading “How to Replace the PCV Valves in an Aston Martin DB9”

Removing the PCV Valve Assembly Harness from an Aston Martin DB9

Oil build up in the intake manifold

I’ve already explained why you might need to change the Positive Crankcase Ventilation (PCV) Valves in an Aston Martin DB9 in a previous article (usually because engine oil is showing up in your intake manifolds), and what parts you might need (check out this article).  In this article I will explain the process of how to remove the existing PCV Valves along with their harness assemblies. Continue reading “Removing the PCV Valve Assembly Harness from an Aston Martin DB9”

Parts Needed to Change the PCV Valves on an Aston Martin DB9

If your DB9 needs it’s Positive Crankcase Ventilation (PCV) Valves replaced due to oil buildup in the Intake Manifolds (see my full article on this) then you need to track down the right parts to get it serviced – and that’s what this article is all about.

My enthusiasm for the task led me into trouble (and I can save you from the same mistake if you read through this article).  I wasn’t sure what parts a dealer would normally replace to deal with the oil build up, so I asked the parts manager Rob Sims at HMV England whom I was dealing with.   He promptly sent me the parts diagram, and a list of bits he said they typically serviced.  What I failed to consider was ‘context’, the dealer may be rebuilding an engine and PCV system outside the car, and I was just a newbie trying to do this under the hood on a weekend. Continue reading “Parts Needed to Change the PCV Valves on an Aston Martin DB9”

The Positive Crankcase Ventilation (PCV) System in an Aston Martin DB9 – and what Sucks about it!

This is a weak spot in the DB9 engine.  If you’ve ever removed your throttle body and found a puddle of engine oil laying in the intake manifold chamber, the PCV system is to blame.   In this article I am going to give a short background of the ‘what’s going wrong’, and then in the next articles I will lay out which parts you need and how to replace them. Continue reading “The Positive Crankcase Ventilation (PCV) System in an Aston Martin DB9 – and what Sucks about it!”

The True Costs of Owning an Aston Martin DB9

The notion of owning an Aston Martin DB9 is tempting.  The allure of the curves, the power, the feel.  You become infected wondering what would it be like.   I’m a life long car guy and I’ve reached 50 years old and can finally indulge a bit. [Insert mid-life crisis jokes here – but I love my Sweetie of 27 years and still have all my hair – life is good]  I can’t afford to go drop $250K on a new DB11, but I can generally afford a new luxury or sports car.  I’d been carefully watching the used market prices on early DB9 models dropping for a few years until I finally succumbed back in 2013.

If you have or are about to take the plunge,  you will (or should) inevitably be thinking:

 Can I afford this car after I purchased it?

That’s a good question to ask before you commit, particularly if you stretch to just barely manage the purchase.  Is it myth or truth that it takes a fortune to run a car like this?   After living with mine for three years now, I can share the naked truth with you. Continue reading “The True Costs of Owning an Aston Martin DB9”

Changing the Battery in an Aston Martin DB9

Eventually you have to service the battery in your DB9.  They just don’t last forever – and the typical lifespan of a traditional flooded lead acid battery (like the ones originally fitted) is about 5 years.  The good news is that when the time comes to replace your battery you’ll be well equipped to know how and avoid a potentially costly trip to the dealership.

Parts Required

bosch-49-850bagm-batteryIf you are wondering about what battery to get I’ve already completed a detailed article you should check out – Replacement Battery Options for an Aston Martin DB9.   You’ll see how I gravitated to purchasing a Bosch 49-850BAGM Absorbed Glass Matt (AGM) battery.   Now I’ll share the details of how to install it. Continue reading “Changing the Battery in an Aston Martin DB9”

Replacement Battery Options for an Aston Martin DB9

Helpful Neighbor Rob

My baby left me stranded.  I use my DB9 as my daily driver, and I was out on an errand run – ATM then Dry Cleaning then Lunch – all close together.   After the dry cleaning stop I went to start her, and rather than the glorious roar to life, all I got was “Ruh – ruh – click”.  Crap – stranded in the local strip mall parking lot amongst all the Fords and Toyotas – all that start.  My pride was suffering.  Dead Battery.  Fortunately my neighbor Rob and his Subaru came to the rescue and gave me a boost.

Of course, there are a myriad of reasons for a dead battery – leaving the lights on, failing alternator, etc.  Mine was simpler.  Batteries don’t last forever.  A typical lead acid battery (like those originally fitted to a DB9) have a life span of about 5 years under normal regular use.   I had no idea if the battery fitted to my car was the original (since I am not the first owner and have little service history), but as I discovered it was the original, and that meant it was 11 years old!  Wow!   California living.

There had been precursors to the event that I can recognize now looking back on the few weeks preceding this: Continue reading “Replacement Battery Options for an Aston Martin DB9”