I ran into a tag today, and I wonder if it is an attempt to set some sort of tagging standard (because I had not seen any other one like it after trying several manufacturers). Should it be kept and expanded, or eliminated?

  • 1
    You should always list the marque and year in the question, but as tags I feel they're too specific, at least given the current size of the site.
    – Ben Brocka
    Jun 4, 2012 at 14:34
  • @BenBrocka, I don't think they work at any size: this sort of tag is exclusionary rather than inclusionary. It makes it very hard to search.
    – Bob Cross Mod
    Jun 4, 2012 at 15:19
  • @BobCross true, the more general model tag should help too, but in larger forums it can be helpful to split into exactly the specific model...which the issue pertains to that model only. Which is why I think tags work better; it's only split that fine if you need it that fine, otherwise you have a generic fallback that's still relevant
    – Ben Brocka
    Jun 4, 2012 at 15:31
  • @BenBrocka, I'll put my answer in an answer.
    – Bob Cross Mod
    Jun 4, 2012 at 18:34

4 Answers 4


In my opinion they are extraneous. While tags debated at Tags for specific models of cars? can be helpful, especially using umbrella synonyms, something like “1987 Ford” does not mean much. There are tons of different models of different cars, pick-ups, and lorries, from different continents that would have little in common aside from blue oval on the grille.


I'm in favor of breaking out all the useful information into tags. For instance, I'll break out and in my questions. There's a problem when we start including years as tags, though: I happen to know that the USA WRX was largely identical for 2002 and 2003, with significant changes in 2004. However, if I was searching for an answer to an issue on a 2003 (e.g., foglights), I would miss the 2002-relevant information if I just went with tags. I definitely wouldn't want information on the 2004 foglights.

Fundamentally, I think that the combined tags tend to make the site harder to navigate rather than easier. A partition of tags into wrx-2002, wrx-2003, and wrx-2004 would make it harder to quickly scan the superset and find something most relevant to my issue (click this tag, then click that tag, etc).

Instead, if we can provide the key distinguishing features as tags and let the search engine parse out the rest for us.

  • Could there be a tag for each update in body style? e.g. Mazda 3's had the same body style from 2004 to 2009. Don't know how to format the tag, but could that be useful?
    – tarheel
    Jun 26, 2012 at 15:01
  • @tarheel, that's not a bad idea but I would tend to go with something more like an engine or chassis code. That would tend to naturally include a swath of model years. So a subaru, wrx, EJ20 would include all the 2.0 liter turbo WRX models
    – Bob Cross Mod
    Jun 27, 2012 at 16:44
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    While that makes perfect sense when it comes to the more knowledgeable crowd, would that be helpful to someone less familiar with motor vehicles? I personally don't know the engine or chassis code for my car (despite the fact that I probably should). Also, honest question here, which method of grouping would make more sense for peripheral parts? In other words, do all Subaru/WRX/EJ20's use the same speakers? windows? batteries? etc.
    – tarheel
    Jun 27, 2012 at 19:18
  • @tarheel, no, if you came in with zero knowledge, the EJ20 code wouldn't help you on the way in the door. However, you might find out which code applied from the answer that turned up in your search. That's the whole idea behind inclusive tags: you won't miss any information because of the tagging.
    – Bob Cross Mod
    Jun 27, 2012 at 22:57

The tag sounds like belongs to me. After much frustration trying to look for information related to a 1987 Ford F150 pickup truck rough idle and ending up getting either Google results about 1992 Ford Escort idle problems or 1987 Chevy Cavalier idle adjustment specs, or just random noise in all of the forums, I've often thought of how nice it would be to be able to limit searches to specific makes/models only and then filter out all of the noise.

Or vice versa, wouldn't it be nice to search for Ford idle problems and open up the search to all Fords.

The problem we face here is that we're limited to 5 tags, so I thought that and would perhaps be more helpful if combined. However, the problem with combining them is that it makes it hard to look for just information on Ford, since the Ford and 1987 are bound together and cannot be searched for separately.

I think a great feature request for Mechanics would be a sub-tag feature. For instance, if I select "Ford" as a tag, I should be able to also tag with a Model and year so that people who want to search just "Ford" can do so, while people wanting to search "Ford - 1987 - F150" can also do the same.

This Make-Model-Year combination could be considered one of the 5 tags, with the requirement that you select a Make (or all) and a Model (or all) before specifying a year (which you could also mark as "all").

I am not 100% sure what the answer is to the tagging situation, and if anyone wants to kill my tag I won't hold it against you. ;) Also, if you're going to kill that tag, also be on the lookout for .

While I think expanded tagging could be helpful, based on the inconsistencies in my tag naming schema, it's quite evident that the current tagging mechanism isn't robust enough to tag individual makes, models, and years.

As an aside, the forum noise problem is something I talk about here in this chat transcript. I wanted to discuss before posting on meta. Let me know what you think.

  • One can just search two tags together such as [ford] [f150] seat track, and like combinations. And, similarly, tag the same way. Though I understand concern about five tag limitation.
    – theUg
    Jun 5, 2012 at 4:33
  • @theUg - The limitation is the main problem. Not everyone will use [ford] and [f150] in their question if they think other tags will be more useful. With that said, we tend to have less noise so far than all of the forums on Google, so maybe this isn't needed. Of course, we're also still small...
    – jmort253
    Jun 5, 2012 at 5:04

Some questions really could be specific to a particular year of a given make/model. If not, though, I don't think they should be tagged marque-year.

How about platform tags? I don't think they're an alternative by themselves, but maybe along with the much maligned year tag, together or separate?

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