The Park Mgr, George, looks at my car that died pulling in…
(He’s a GM Certified Technician, but is on disability so can’t physically work on the car himself.)
He tells me there’s a real good mechanic in the park named Jim, and he’ll have him come over…
Tuesday morning Jim and George check things out, and determine that the power steering pump is bad.
So Jim starts taking it all apart.
When he gets to the pulley for the power steering pump – it comes off in his hand!
The shaft between the pulley and the pump has snapped in half.
While removing the pump to replace it, he sees the water pump is leaking; the impeller inside has disintegrated and water is leaking out the plug.
So he orders both pumps (from Advanced Auto), and they tell him they should both be in the next day…
Wednesday he calls Advanced Auto: the water pump is in but the power steering pump won’t be in until Thursday.
(The pump comes in late Thursday, but it’s too late to work on the car.)
Friday afternoon Jim starts replacing parts.
(The Water Pump and P/S Pump have “1999” stamped on them – originals!)
Some of the bolts have rounded off heads, so he has to run up the road to get new ones.
(They have American threads but Metric heads – Why!?)
Jim gets everything back together, fires it up – it’s perfect!
I take it down to the grocery store and gas station, and all is good!
Saturday morning I head up to Comcast to turn in my old equipment from the house.
I miss Comcast’s driveway, so I pull a u-turn at the next one.
*The power steering quits again!*
I call Jim and he drives up to take a look: the power steering fluid is full – but there are holes in *both* radiator hoses. Antifreeze is spraying all over the engine compartment, top to bottom – including on the Serpentine Belt!
(Causing the P/S pulley to slip)
I call AAA to have it towed back to the Park. They tow for free for the first 5 miles, but it’s $5/mile after that.
As it’s 15 miles back to the Park.. $50.00…
Once we get back Jim orders the two radiator hoses.
They have the bottom one but they have to order the top one.
The top hose shows up Sunday; Jim replaces both, fills the radiator with water for testing, fires the car up – but when he turns the steering wheel, fluid starts leaking out the front of the power steering housing.
It’s a bad (replacement) power steering pump!
We call Advanced Auto to report it – and they tell us this is the 3rd one in the past 2 months.
(No QC on refurbs!? No “advanced warning”!? WTF!?)
And who’s going to pay the Labor on replacing *another* pump!?
(That’s right – ME!)
Advanced Auto says they take “No Responsibility for Defects on Refurbished Parts”.
(That’s some Bullshit!)
Anyway, they order another P/S pump and Jim goes to pick it up Monday afternoon.
*It’s the wrong pump!*
Jim rips them a new one, and they offer a brand new (right) one in exchange.
It’s scheduled to be here Wednesday.
Wednesday, the new pump arrives as promised.
(It’s Jim’s wife’s birthday, but he’s spending it trying to get my car back together – again!)
I really feel bad for the guy: he’s supposed to be retired – even though he’s a lot younger than me…
I have my car back!
And so far everything is *finally* looking perfect!
(The Test will be tomorrow when I run up to Wally World.)
Jim advises I only drive “locally” for a bit so he can check things out every day – and NOT to call him if anything goes wrong tonight!
It’s his wife’s Birthday!
I’m invited, and am heading out shortly – I have a few Stories to tell to my New Neighbors!
“Life Is Good” – eventually…