brittadotcom (brittadotcom) wrote,

Bad Carma

I've been so busy I hadn't vented about the BRIATA's 3-week mission to pass smog, which included soaking the entire emissions system in pieces over a weekend to get the check engine light to stop coming on. Since it's over finally successfully, no reason to go any more into that, even though it was a hassle at the time. Other than that, my 120K mile maintenance & checkup was fine, with a clean bill of health for my 9-year old baby. My 94 Honda Civic is my boring practical car that's always there when I need it, but not driven much, and only 83K miles on it. What are the odds of having problems with BOTH cars the same day?!?

Yesterday, I left for work much earlier than usual in hopes of having plenty of time before we started giving our training at 9:30am. The BRIATA started up with no problems, but pretty soon the battery light came on, which I have never seen before, and the battery was replaced less than 3 years ago as a precaution. Once I got on the freeway, my radio abruptly shut down, then my airbag light started flashing randomly, and pressing on the gas felt like it didn't want to shift - electronically-controlled transmission. I decided I should turn around & take my Honda to work, and the next exit was the 85N onramp, but I only made it just barely onto 85N before my car just gave up entirely, with just enough momentum to pull over to the shoulder. I couldn't restart it or anything! The hazard lights feebly kept blinking at least. I called AAA, then called my car dealer since I figured it was quite suspicious they had just given my car a clean bill of health & now this happened so soon! I let my boss & co-workers know I was stuck & apologized I wouldn't be there on time. Thankfully AAA was there in 15 minutes, towed me to the dealer, who gave me a ride to my house, so I was on the road in the Honda almost exactly 1 hour after my car died! Thank goodness I wasn't farther in the middle of nowhere on 280 or all the way to work, since AAA will only tow me 5 miles. I made it to work just as they were paging to my first slide, so at least that was good timing. Turns out the 9-year-old 120K mile alternator gave up the ghost, which allowed the battery to drain to nothing. At least the battery was under warranty so that was free, but there goes another $600. I asked if they tested the alternator last month, which they did and it was fine, but now it definitely wasn't - something like 14V last time & now 0.03 *shrug*. Supposedly alternators usually last 85K-150K miles, so since it's 9 years old maybe it was just bad luck now.

Since I was in training all afternoon so couldn't get out early enough to pick up the BRIATA, I went to happy hour in Mountain View with a couple friends. I had been thirsty all afternoon so had been guzzling water, but not until I got to the pub did it feel like I was coming down with a cold - blech! I guzzled more water while we chatted, then when I left, it was raining, and I tried a new way home, but in the rain & dark, I didn't know how sharp a turn it was, so I skidded, slamming my driver front tire into the curb! Thankfully it was just me, but now the poor reliable Honda has such a horrible wobble that I can barely hold onto the steering wheel at 40 mph, let alone 50mph! I honestly was about ready to cry by then. I had to stop myself & be thankful that the Honda was there when I really needed it that morning, that now that the Honda isn't safe, the BRIATA is fixed, plus that I have the money to pay to fix both cars. Since the Honda wouldn't safely make it all the way to work this morning, I went to pick up the BRIATA before work, and now I have a Monday appointment at a friend-recommended mechanic for the Honda, hoping with all my might that it really is just the tire alignment!

TGIF indeed, but it'd definitely be better if I didn't have this stupid cold…blech! Hope everyone else is having a good Friday!
Tags: briata, cars

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