Well, it had to happen at some point, I was bound to run into a car problem and not have the hubby around to fix it. Up front, I hate mechanics. Maybe even more than dentists… they both tell lies… like “This won’t hurt…” and “You need new spark plugs, wires, headlight oil…” Blah blah, horsepucky that you as a woman won’t know I’m making up.
And I’m not bitter at all from past experiences…
Anyway, I digress, back on topic. Soooo my check engine light came on a few weeks ago (right after selling my other working car that I was holding onto for just in case). I needed the extra money because I’ve missed some work due to being down with the flu and bronchitis. So now I don’t have the money for a repair or for someone to inflate a bill for me, so I did what everyone else does. I put that problem on the back burner and hoped that sometime I’ll be able to get it fixed because until then I could drive my mom’s car. (By the way, I moved her in… she’s having some memory issues and I was worried about her.)
Anywho… on Wednesday, after stopping at the store after work. Mom’s car wouldn’t start. Which is just what I needed after a long day at work, there were some helpful Walmart shoppers that tried to help… but after banging on the bottom of the car with a 2×4 to no avail… and using a regular old wire they fished out of the back of their truck as a makeshift jumper cable they gave up.
Mom’s car gets towed to see what can be done for it, mine won’t start at all. Which is weird because it was working when I parked it. I figure it’s the battery from sitting and I plug it into a charger overnight. The next morning… still no go. So in a matter of maybe 3 weeks, I go from 3 working cars to 0. It’d be funny if this was a sitcom and someone else was dealing with it.
My brother came in from out of town and says I probably need a new battery. I don’t think so because I thought it was kind of new… but a battery is something I can afford. It’s worth a shot… Here’s where things get silly.
I run off to the Walmart with 0% confidence. But it’s a battery, there’s a little electronic deally-hopper that will tell me what battery to get and people there that can help me right? Wellllll not on sunday night about 8 or 9 pm.
Well, the deally-hopper asks me what year is my vehicle…. uh…. ermmmm I dunno? Great! There’s no way to find out without having to get someone to drive me home and let me check then come back. Soooo there’s a nice couple nearby and I ask them… “Do you know what year my car is?” They laugh, I laugh… but we look in the booklet hanging nearby and guess what? It doesn’t matter what year my car is… all of them take the same battery! WOOOHOOO!! I glare at the deally-hopper… why did it even bother asking if it wasn’t important?!! I look for the proper battery and most popular one… great! I have information and I’m ready to do this thing!
But uh no… they don’t have that battery…
Back to the book and another glare for the deally-hopper… Next battery on the list.
Uh no….. they don’t have it either and I’m thinking the last one is the cheapest and surely they don’t have it either.
What?!! They have it, and it’s cheap. Comes with a 1 yr warranty, I’m doing great!
Until I get home, I’ve never swapped a battery out before. I’m going to try it tho. I mean how hard is it? Match the red thingy to the red thingy and the black one to the black and I’m good right? My brother and son are going to help me, I’m kind of glad and kind of wanted to do it myself, but it’s good right?
I’ve got some kind of bolty thing that keeps the battery from knocking around and none of the wrenches I have fit the bolt. So I’m searching through all the wrenches and sockets I have and they are all one too big or one too small… no goldilocks wrench. Finally we find a solution. We get the thing off and discover my battery was from 2013… well past it’s prime as far as batteries go (or so I hear anyway).
So we finally get it all put back together and guess what? The car is working, the check engine light is off… but I suspect it will come back on and that it’s only off due to the internal reset of everything because of the disconnected battery. Someone told me it can reset a car’s computer and make the warning lights go off for a while.
Anyway, the car is doing okay, I now know how to swap out a battery. Not too bad, if you have the right tools. And mom’s car is fixed so I’m back to having a back up car in case things get stupid again. I’m not sure but I think hubby would be impressed that I did manage to get it done… even if I sort of Gumped my way through it.
Dumb luck is my friend! 🙂 And Thanks to my brother and his wife for helping out. Thanks to my friend Donna for taking me to the store to get enough groceries to last until I could get out to do some real shopping. She’s awesome. 🙂 I’m really lucky in some ways and face palmingly unlucking in others.
~Your Feeling somewhat accomplished