Friday, December 28, 2007

The Saga Continues Anew

I thought that the latest chapter in the Kevmobile saga was coming to a close, but evidently not.

When I picked it up from the mechanic's place, the catalytic converter had been replaced and the exhaust problem solved. But his test drive hadn't taken it up to freeway speeds, and that was where the problem reemerged; I was back to being totally overheated by the time I was five miles out. (It turned out that the radiator had been nearly drained of fluids in my short drive, and it took three Big Gulp-sized soft drink cups of water to refill it.)

Once I did that, it made it back to the mechanic's with no issues, save one--during the one time when I had to get on the freeway because the service road ended, it overheated again at high speeds. It appears that it could be something as mild as a worn-out hose, all the way up to a blown head gasket. We'll find out in the morning after he gets to dig into it some more.

But in the meantime, not wanting (or prepared) to be stuck again, I bit the bullet and re-rented the car (yes, the exact same one) and came back home tonight. Because of the rental place's hours, it will probably be at least Monday before I can get it back. In the meantime, since this Kevmobile saga seems to be eating my life, blog-wise, I'll intersperse all the other things I'd like to blog about in between the various updates.

Two more things:

1) It certainly seems like we're near the end of the line for Kevmobile 1.2. Any suggestions for a replacement (knowing that I'm not going to be spending top dollar and will be looking for something both cheap and reilable)?

2) For those of you in the Metroplex: Since I'll be using the iPod adapter thingy for the next several days, what is the best frequency to tune it to in this area? I have a few that have worked OK, but I'm sure there are better ones.


deadcarchugging said...

You seem to have issues (past and present) with cars. Do you usually get new or used ones? My suggestions---cheap and reliable don't always belong in the same sentence!!!! A prime example is the Kia----cheap but certainly not a reliable car. This is a perfect time of year to get a car; dealerships need to get rid of their inventory. Also Kelly Blue book website is a great place to not only find out exactly what your current car is worth, but also what a car of your choosing should cost you!!!! If you buy used...make sure a warranty comes with it! Whether it's a low mileage demo, a program car (low mileage used as a rental). Mitsubishi has a great warranty and some of the American manufactures have now realized that they need to be competitive with the foreign market. Doing prelim research and then price checking @ dealerships on line will cut your driving time in half. Also check the websites of manufacturers; they may offer deals that are not publicized but will give you extra bargaining power at the dealership. Finally, although it's a the game. Walk out if you don't get what you want! I guarantee they'll call you with a better offer within a couple hours! But don't delay...your window of great opportunity is slim.
And to answer you future question, yes I have contacts in the car industry and no, I'm sorry I can't get you a'll have to do that on your own just like the rest of us!!!!! Good luck and good shopping!

Kev said...

DCC, thanks for the comments. Actually, I usually don't usually have that many issues with cars, but when I have 'em, they tend to be spectacularly weird breakdowns in remote locations.

In the past, I'd usually gotten cars new (as graduation presents for each of my college degrees), and the very first one was a two-year-old hand-me-down from my dad. I only bought this car used because my old one (on which I'd hung 338,000 miles) got knocked off the road at inspection time by the stricter emissions standards that took place here in Texas in '02. I only had ten days to get a replacement car, and I didn't have a lot of savings at the time, so I went the used route.

And really, until this year (when I had three major breakdowns), this car had served me pretty well, usually not having a problem more than once a year.

Thanks for the heads-up on the Kia, since that was one my dad had specifically mentioned in terms of being cheap and having a ten-year warranty. That certainly sounded enticing, but if it really is as unreliable as you've said, then it kind of negates the extended warranty if it's always going to be in the shop. (I teach at a minimum of three locations a day, so I'd be renting cars left and right if that were the case.)

Anyway, thanks for the tips. I certainly plan to do a lot of Internet research before I even set foot in a dealership (as I did with this car when I bought it). My heart still wants a "gently used" RSX (such a shame that they stopped making them), but it's possible that practicality will have to win out this time around.

Gary P. said...

Can't help you on the car thing. We bought a new Honda Odyssey on Labor Day, but that's probably a little more car than you're looking for. :)

I'll be interested to see what freqs work best here too as I joined the ranks of iPod owners on Tuesday, with my Wifey surprising me with a 16 GB iPod touch. Got about 1 GB loaded up so far of the entire Tower of Power discography, a few Maynard titles, and the CD's of a crazy funny funky band out of Nashville I recently discovered called Here Come the Mummies. Check 'em out!

Kev said...

That's cool, Gary; you're gonna love it. (Kris got one too, BTW.) I've found that 89.1 works pretty well in the Metroplex so far, with only a little static on short, random occasions. It's hard to find a totally clear frequency out here because there are so many stations so close together.

Eric Grubbs said...

I recommend a Camry and 88.1 as a frequency. Of course, as you head north on 35E to Denton, you'll have to change the frequency. :-)

Kev said...

I don't know if I could drive a Camry or not, Eric. (Is that what you drive? We've never gone to anything in the same car, so my memory fails me on that subject at the moment.) To me, the Camry seems to have this soccer-mom vibe to it (although my 19-year-old Webmaster drives one), and the ones I get stuck behind on a regular basis appear to be incapable of going over 50 miles an hour.

BTW, I've caught you on the air a bit more than usual this week because of the greater lengths of my trips. If nobody else did, I got what you meant when you referred to I-30 and Forest Park as your old stomping grounds. (And I'm sorry you had to work this week while Ernie and Jay have the week off.)