Sunday, May 18, 2008

Shut Up and Drive

I knew my car was overdue for a safety inspection. I also knew that whatever noise was coming from the passenger side wasn't normal and I would need to get it checked out. So, reluctantly, I made an appointment at the VW dealership for a safety inspection and a diagnostic on the noise. (I know that taking a car that is not under warranty to the dealership can be an expensive thing, but I had a coupon for a free inspection and I wasn't going to have any work actually done. I thought.) I convinced The Universe to come with me, since he knows more about cars than I do, and he's not someone you want to mess with, should they try to convince me unnecessary work was necessary. Still, I was expecting something like this:
Last night, as I was driving home, I noticed my passenger side headlight was out. No problem, as I happened to have a spare bulb and I'd already replaced the one on the driver's side. I was about to fix that when The Universe arrived at my house this morning. We worked on it together, and jumped into our cars to caravan to the shop.

Then my car wouldn't start. Wouldn't even turn over. The Universe jumped it, but it wouldn't stay on. When we did get it running, it idled really low. After toying with it for a while, I finally called my insurance to get a tow truck. They arrived much faster than we expected, which was great, and it was nice that I already had an appointment somewhere, and that The Universe was with me to help out. We authorized the diagnosis and then headed off to continue with our day. (By our day, I mean me tagging along with everything The Universe had planned. My day was pretty much shot by this point, and it was only noon.)

Then, I started getting phone calls. A few of them, actually. They replaced the battery and then found multiple other reasons why the car wouldn't start, and at least one thing they have to fix before it will pass safety.

The cost is significant. Suffice it to say that I'm now going to get some second opinions before I authorize any work, and possibly consider just trading in my current car for something newer and won't just randomly fall apart. I am not pleased.

Silver lining - The Universe is letting me borrow his car, at least until Monday. Also, this didn't happen next week, which is the week I'm planning on joining the annual pilgrimage to the Outer Banks.

My car could have died in a fiery explosion. I could have been stranded, alone, in the middle of nowhere. It could always be worse. But having expensive car repairs on the horizon is not a good thing.

1 comment:

Heidi said...

Oh geez. I was telling my dad about your car woes, and he said "a Passat? I'm surprised it didn't happen sooner." :( Still, I'm glad you're getting it checked out because that noise worried me a bit. I really hope things work out because car problems are NO fun.