I’ve been up to no good

1573214063-funny-cat-repair-car-engine1Sometimes I feel like the absolute worst project person ever.  So many things need to get done, things that I’ve committed to, and yet, shit happens.  And it happens a lot.

For instance, right now I’m doing a contract for a real estate guy.  This is a square-one type of arrangement where I’m building his entire brand from scratch.  I’m plugging away at it, learning new things, refreshing my memory on old things.  I make serious progress on a daily basis, and then…

The Car Repair Demon ate my entire yesterday. I did a Seafoam tune up Tuesday night.  We drove out near Rendon so that we’d have plenty of time to blow the carbon out of the engine on the way back.  Then I took the negative contact off the battery to reset the computer and drove for a few blocks.  The Check Engine light came back on, and I popped out to the AutoZone to talk to Pretend Kevin about the problem.  (He’s called “Pretend Kevin” because I have no idea what his name actually is, but he just looks like a Kevin, you know?)  Everything was working great, no problems, just had that damn light on.

Wednesday morning.  My husband gets me up abruptly, telling me that I have to take him to work because the car won’t start. This is a big deal, as I’m pretty sure he’d rather have his toenails pulled out with red-hot pliers than ride in my car.  The CV axles need to be replaced, which happens this weekend.  There’s no AC, that might happen eventually.  Also, and I may or may not have run the front driver bumper into a pylon gently… about four years ago.

(She looks like hell, but she runs, and she gets great gas mileage.)

So, I take Darling Beloved to work (am I the only one that doesn’t use that phrase ironically?), and immediately head straight to the internet.  Noise description checks out, consistent with a bad battery, but the all the lights come on just fine… eh.  Upon reflecting on it, the negative contact did look like hell…  The contacts got the soda pop treatment to get rid of the hefty corrosion and then I give Hubby’s car a jump.  It fires right up.  I turn it off, wait for a half a minute, and try again – nope, back to that sickly machine gun sound, and this time, there’s a little puff of steam.

Huh.

I dragged Miles out to rev the car for me to see where the steam came from, and it’s the negative contact.  Of course it is.

I ran up to AutoZone again and take the battery.  Hmmm… 89% charge, so not too bad.  We talk about the battery cable replacement, pick out what we think is the right one, and the guy (not Pretend Kevin) checks the battery again.

The battery now has an 84% charge. It’s been about a minute.

Okay, cool, time for a new battery, and no charge because it’s still under warranty.  Perfect!

I get home and disassemble the battery cable.  Now, that’s a little weird… The one I bought has only one main cable and then one teeeeeny tiny little ground wire.  There’s no way I could splice it (the gauge is way too big on the cables I’ve got).  I go back up to the AutoZone, now miffed that the Not-Pretend-Kevin didn’t even ask me which car needed the cable.  The manager helped me that time.  We figured out how to attach a smaller normal battery cable to the contact bolt.

I got the cables replaced, the battery back in, and she started perfectly.  The goddamned check engine light is still on.

For the record, we’ve consistently gotten the P0037 code, for the Bank 1, Sensor 2 heated oxygen sensor.  I have replaced it twice now – once with a universal, once with an OEM.  I’ve also replaced all the spark plugs, done the tune up, and changed the oil.  And, no, I’m not taking her to another goddamned mechanic unless they can tell me a better idea up front.  My previous favorite people decided to start charging way too much for simple repairs.

And that’s why I didn’t finish doing the MailChimp automation yesterday.

It’s similar things to this that also explain why I’m behind on “Lost Ground”, “Long As There Are Violets”, and “the Kind Invasion”.  I swear to you, though, I have no forgotten.  I think when the kids start school next week, getting caught up will finally be a thing.

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