Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Woman Worries Baseball Ruined Cruise Control

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Woman Worries Baseball Ruined Cruise Control

Article excerpt

Dear Tom and Ray: Did I kill our cruise control by listening to baseball? Driving in the mountains, we listen to the San Francisco Giants' home station on the car radio. In our 1993 stick-shift Honda Accord with 203,000 miles, the game reception is bad in the mountains. But I realized that if I put a foot on the brake pedal just slightly, the reception clears up! Touching the brake pedal also turns on the brake lights and disconnects the cruise control (if it is on). Now the cruise control has died. (1) Was it old age, or did my riding the brakes just slightly kill it? (2) What can we do under the hood to improve reception so we don't miss the games? (3) How does triggering the brake lights (or hitting the cruise- control switch) improve reception? -- Connie

Ray: Great questions, Connie. You would think that two guys who have been on the radio for 30-odd years would have a clue how it works.

Tom: But you would be wrong.

Ray: Generally speaking, AM radio reception often is disturbed by a type of interference called RFI -- radio frequency interference. …

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