Sunday, February 01, 2009

C'mon baby hold together

There have been a few instances lately where my car, Stella, has not exactly driven trouble-free.  The worst was when she went into "Limp Home" mode while I was trying to give Steph a ride to the airport.  Turns out it was just a completely drained battery that was not even accepting a charge from the alternator anymore.  Easily fixed, but catastrophic in its impact.

Other minor hiccups have been popping up - some brake squeal, some indications the belts need to be adjusted or replaced, a telltale shimmy crying for a tire alignment.  My favorite, though, was just today while out running errands.  Everything was fine, but the gas gauge didn't register at all.  I knew the tank was at least one quarter full, and there was no indication of any kind of leak.  Must be the gauge.

Now, how many times has a mechanical device or electronic doodad failed you, and you couldn't help but knock on it a few times hoping it would kick back in?  Has that ever worked?  But you try anyway.  As I did this morning - and it springs right back to life, one quarter tank.  I'm not sure if I should worry, or just enjoy being Han Solo to my car's Millennium Falcon, Fonzie to it's jukebox at Arnold's.

Really, besides the battery fiasco, there have been no major issues with Stella.  But I've had her for 10 years now, and she's a 1996 model.  I have to admit I'm thinking of finding something a bit more current.  Too bad those affordable, practical electric cars aren't around yet.


Smack it said...

Hitting the non-functioning device is a time-honored tradition. ("Stpuid TV! Be more funny!")

Besides which, for my cars it works all the time for me. Although it should be noted that it is not something I do to fix a "problem" as much as it is a technique I employ every day just to get some things to "function."

In both cars, too. The 9000 dash needs a good smack to get certain instrument illumination bulbs to come on at night, while the 99 needs to be slammed in just the right place with a lot of force in order to get the engine temperature gauge to come to life.

Zinazinabobina said...

I believe the term is "percussive maintenance".