atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#1250: Car woes

Ford can't bring that 68 MPG Fiesta to the US; it costs too much. They say they'd have to charge $25,000 for it. Crud.

* * *

The Escort turned out to need a new alternator. Big surprise--115,000 miles, the occasional bit of abuse will take their toll--but I couldn't drive the Jeep since its plates are expired (ARRRRGH!!!) so I had to take the van.

After pumping up the RR tire and such, I happily drove over to Advance Auto, and I was almost there, except--wait a minute, what's that noise from the engine? Is that--oh FUCK there's NO FUCKING OIL PRESSURE--it's valvetrain noise, not rod bearing noise, so at least the bottom end is getting oil pressure; there just isn't enough oil to pressurize the valvetrain, and I think I can get to the auto parts store as long as I don't floor it or do anything else stupid....

Alternator: $155. With four quarts of oil and tax, $181. *sigh* With the ticket and all, this has been an expensive weekend....

The van took all four quarts to bring it up to "full". The dipstick was dry. Note to self: when starting a vehicle which has sat for several months, check the oil....

The oil pressure stayed at 0 just long enough to make me fear an oil pump failure; then it shot up to "normal" and the valves stopped making their abnormal noise. (That "your hydraulic lifters have collapsed due to oil starvation" noise. If you've ever heard it, you will recognize it instantly.)

So I drove myself home without further incident, and installed the new alternator; and the Escort's battery light went off when I started it, as it should. Score one for me.

But cripes, it sure cost enough....

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