Kristen Hall-Geisler

Kristen Hall-Geisler

Contributing Writer

Kristen Hall-Geisler is a freelance writer and book editor living in Oregon. As an automotive journalist since 2006, she's honed her research and interviewing skills with HowStuffWorks, The New York Times, TechCrunch, Popular Science, US News & World Report and more. She loves falling down the rabbit hole of research and emerging with a book or article that others find useful and — she hopes — entertaining while still being based on solid sources. She is the author of the historical novel "Skull and Sidecar" as well as the nonfiction books "Take the Wheel: A Woman’s Guide to Buying a Car Her Own Damn Self" and "Lightning in a Throttle: Three Early Electric Vehicle Victories."

Recent Contributions

When people talk about race cars or high-performance cars, turbochargers usually come up, too. That's because turbochargers can boost a car's horsepower significantly without much effort.

By Karim Nice & Kristen Hall-Geisler

If you're looking for a new car or truck, there's a chance you're considering a hybrid. Before you sign any paperwork, take a look at why you may not want to.

By Patrick E. George & Kristen Hall-Geisler

When your car overheats, the best thing you can do is head to a garage for coolant. But in a pinch, you can add coolant yourself, if you're careful. We'll tell you how.

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

Advertisement

Vehicle fires account for nearly one of every eight fires reported. But cars don't just burst into flames like we see in the movies. So how do they catch fire?

By Kristen Hall-Geisler & Cherise Threewitt

Anyone with a manual transmission knows that a clutch connects and disconnects the engine and transmission. But did you know that automatics have clutches, too? Read on to discover how a clutch car works!

By Karim Nice, Charles W. Bryant & Kristen Hall-Geisler

Anyone who's been to the ocean has probably seen the foamy white stuff that clings to the sand after a wave breaks and recedes, but what the heck causes that bubbly foam and is it dangerous?

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

Hand warmers work through simple chemistry. A massively sped-up version of oxidation (the chemical reaction that makes rust) is to thank.

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

Advertisement

A multiplication table is an easy-to-use grid of numbers that can help you learn to multiply quickly by using the chart and, eventually, your memory.

By Kristen Hall-Geisler & Austin Henderson

Americans generate more than 200 million tons of trash each year. Want to put some of it to work? Try composting. It creates a natural fertilizer and can save valuable space in that landfill.

By Craig Freudenrich, Ph.D. & Kristen Hall-Geisler

Your dog barking at the mailman? Loud. But he's got nothing on these seven. They're some of the loudest animals on the planet, and they're probably not the ones you'd expect.

By Kristen Hall-Geisler & Yara Simón

It isn't magic but instead science that causes the bottled water to completely freeze — and some pretty simple science at that. So, how long does it take water to freeze?

By Kristen Hall-Geisler & Austin Henderson

Advertisement

Black ice is hazardous. Even worse, it's nearly invisible on the road surface. Learn more about black ice at HowStuffWorks.

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

Putting sugar in someone's gas tank has long been rumored to ruin someone's car. But does it really work?

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

Nikola Tesla was a pretty cool guy. Companies and rock bands have been named for him, and he pops up in Hollywood movies regularly. Not bad for one of history's greatest inventors. But what did he do to earn his fame? Here are some of Tesla's standout inventions.

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

If a device has a motor, engine or spring, it probably has gears! But what do gears do, exactly, and how do they do it?

By Karim Nice & Kristen Hall-Geisler

Advertisement

You've heard this bit of hair care advice before, but is it true?

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

Diatomic elements are molecules composed of only two atoms, every time, always. There are only seven of them on the entire periodic table.

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

Venomous and poisonous mean very different things and are often used incorrectly. We'll clear up the confusion.

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

There are no books at this library; instead you check out people. Why? To talk to them and help shatter the stereotypes that divide us.

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

Advertisement

Surely you've heard the phrase before. You've probably used it. But where did it come from and what is the meaning behind it?

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

"Then" and "than" have confused some people for ever — probably because they sound alike. However, there's an easy way to know which word to use.

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

This quirky behavior known as 'making biscuits' is common in domestic cats. But why do cats knead and what are they saying when they're mixing dough?

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

You know the story behind the martini: James Bond always orders his "shaken, not stirred." But what's the story behind the classic glass it's always served in?

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

Advertisement

Spring is around the corner and you know what that means! It's time for spring cleaning.

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

Liquor and liqueur are spelled so similarly, it's easy to confuse them for being the same. But they're not. So how are they different?

By Kristen Hall-Geisler