BY TOM AND RAY MAGLIOZZI Modified: September 14, 2012 at 12:10 pm •  Published: September 14, 2012

TOM: If they had found the leak then, they could have fixed it and probably prevented the engine from overheating again and cracking its head or block (which, we assume, is why you now need a new engine). Even if it was a blown head gasket, and it had cost you $1,000 to fix back then, it would seem like a bargain now, right?

RAY: And the third guilty party here is you. Junior very nearly fried your engine, and then you gave him the keys again so he could finish the job. But we can't blame you for having a soft spot for the little leadfoot.

TOM: So, now what to do? If the car is otherwise in good shape, your best bet probably is getting a used engine from a junkyard.

RAY: Your mechanic can look for one for you and install it. That could eat up most or all of that $3,000 you mention. But if you can still afford it when you're done, buy Junior a $50 bicycle and tell him that's his new ride until he turns 30. Good luck, Evelyn.

If it ain't broke, you won't have to fix it! Order Tom and Ray's pamphlet "Ten Ways You May Be Ruining Your Car Without Even Knowing It!" Send $4.75 (check or money order) to Ruin, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475.

Get more Click and Clack in their new book, "Ask Click and Clack: Answers from Car Talk." Got a question about cars? Write to Click and Clack in care of this newspaper, or email them by visiting the Car Talk website at

(c) 2012 by Tom and Ray Magliozzi and Doug Berman

Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.