atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#4988: 31,000 ain't as bad, but it's due

Today it occurred to me to wonder when was the last time I'd changed the Jeep's air filter? I could not recall having done it since I got the truck in 2008; that would mean it's been in there for 50,000 miles, now--but having a gander at the service log just now, I found that it was replaced at about 99,000. Since the Jeep now has 130,000 and change on it, that's 31,000 miles, and that air filter is due for a change.

Still trying to figure out how much of my precipitous drop to 18 MPG is heavy right foot syndrome, and how much is something else. The most recent figures run about that--17.9 and change--and today's result isn't any better.

That offends me. My 1975 Chevy Impala, curb weight 4,500 lbs, three-speed transmission, 307 V8 with a two-barrel carb--that car got about 20 MPG on the highway as recently as 1990. The Jeep weighs less, has a smaller engine (which is fuel injected to boot), and an overdrive transmission. Why am I only getting 18 MPG?

The thing I worry the most about is engine wearing out, because that's an awfully expensive fix. The logical thing to do is to run a pressure test on the cooling system to see if exhaust is leaking into it; if it is, that would explain some things, and the first attempt at fixing it would mean a head gasket and a weekend's worth of effort. And while I was replacing the head gasket I could get a gander at the pistons and cylinders and see what kind of shape they're in.

Of course the truck is using coolant, which is consistent with either a cracked head or a messed up head gasket. One's much cheaper to fix than the other. Fixing one also fixes the other. *sigh*

The Elio is supposed to be available about this time next year. I need to save my pennies. Meanwhile, changing the air filter probably won't get me back more than 1 or 2 MPG, but I'll take it. Even if gas is $1.89 a gallon right now.

* * *

Obama probably thinks global warming will lead to thicker ice formation, like in that movie about global warming causing an ice age because pre-law students aiming for Harvard don't need to master things like the Laws of Thermodynamics.

* * *

Even Obama doesn't care about black kids being killed by gangs in Chicago but he'll interrupt this week's golf game to talk about some nutjob holing up in an abortion clinic.

"Obama's sons are always ignored when they do things like this, aren't they?" Denninger concludes. Oh yeah.

* * *

If you can mine it, you can keep it! US passed a law which makes it economically possible to make money mining asteroids. This way the US government can't seize your payload of rare earths after you've just gotten back from the asteroid belt.

Win for progress on the commercialization of space!

* * *

After about 8:30 tonight call volume went just about dead--so dead that there were a couple times my computer auto-locked itself and I had to log back in. I handled three, maybe four calls in my last two hours at work, and one was about half an hour.

Fortunately, the TVs in the call center were playing a movie I didn't hate watching, so I was able to watch it while waiting for my phone to ring. Today was a pretty fair dinkum day, all told.

Tomorrow's another one!

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