How to use Search. (tutorial)

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Supramania Contributor
Feb 26, 2006
Search is very simple, but some people don't know how to use it or pretend like they don't, so now there's no reason for you not to use Search.

The Search button is VERY useful here. You can find a lot of information by using it instead of browsing through pages. If you want to find it, look towards the red circle in this image I've provided:


By clicking on that search, you can type in whatever you want into that search box and get a lot of information. To make finding the information you want easier, click on "Advanced Search" which is in blue text.

Once you have that open, the following screen will appear:


Type the most relevant text into the "Key Word(s)" box. Choose if you want the search engine to look at "Entire Posts", or just for the Key Word(s) in the Topic Title with "Titles Only".

If you're looking for information from a certain member you believe to be knowledgeable, then in the box to the right of "Key Word(s)" type in the user name of the user you want to see information from. By picking "Find Posts by User" you will look throughout that user's whole posting history for the information, while if you choose "Find Threads Started by User" you will only look in the topic titles of that user's posting history.

If you believe that one of our specific sections will have the information you're looking for, then look towards the right where it says "Search in Forum(s)". The default is "Search Open Forums", which means search every single section of this site for the Key Word(s). When saying that you are "Also search in child forums", it refers to the sub-forums that you can go to if you click on the original section. Usually you should leave this on.

Most of the other search boxes under the "Key Word(s)" section are pretty obvious. You can specify the number of a replies the thread should have had (whether you want it to be a thread with a thorough long debate/discussion or a short thread), you can specify the date the posts were made and whether you want to view posts newer or older than that certain time. Also, you can sort the results in a vast amount of ways. Finally, you can decide whether you want to display the results as Threads/Topics, or Posts.

After you finally go through the above, you will see a page like this. I typed in "Intake" without touching any of the options discussed above, and this is what I got:


Now you can click on any of these topics, and the depending on what you put, the word "intake" will be highlighted in red, because that is what you searched for.

Good luck using the search engine. If you use it well, you won't make people angry :)

Here are a list of short/common words that you might not be able to search for:


Active Member
Mar 30, 2005
Once you've got the basics out of the way, you may want to learn some advanced search techniques.

You can search for 3 letter (or shorter) words, but there is a trick to it. 99 times out 100, when you need a 3 letter word, you want something else with it. For example oil. I doubt you just want to search for oil. Oil is such a common word that you'd get thousands of posts if you just searched for it. You usually want something specific. Oil filter. Oil pump. Oil pan. Oil pressure sensor.


"oil pressure sensor"

Returns 193 results...

Beyond that, you can do some VERY advanced searching here. You can use the keywords AND, NOT and OR.

If you really want to get fancy, you can use the following:

+ (plus) - Indicates that a term is REQUIRED to be present in each returned post.

- (minus) - Indicates that the term must NOT be present in each post returned. Only acts to exclude rows which are matched by other search terms. Used by itself, the minus operator will return an empty set.

(no operator) - If no operator is specified, the term is optional. Its presence, however, will give that post a higher relevancy in the search results.

< (less than) and > (greater than) - Used to increase or decrease the relevancy ranking of a term. > increases the value of that term and < decreases that value.\

( ) (parentheses) - Parentheses are used to group subexpressions, and can be nested.

~ (tilde) - Similar to the minus operator, the tilde causes the presence of a term to decrease the relevancy of a returned row, but does not exclude that row from the results.\

* (asterisk) - The asterisk is a wildcard operator - it must be appended to a word, instead of preceding it, and will match any term which begins with that sequence of characters.

&#8220; &#8221; (quotation characters) - Quotations will require the enclosed phrase to be matched exactly as typed

This is more search power than you are EVER going to find at another car forum. But you have to use your brain a bit to use it.

You'll find that this search engine will let you find just about anything you want to know in a few minutes.
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