Monday, January 21, 2013

Sometimes you just have to give in.....

I have aluminum wheels on my car. It came that way. I did not special order them. Most women don't pay much attention to wheels and tires....we look at the style of the car and if it's comfortable and you can reach the pedals. There are more than a few cars in which I cannot reach at 4'11; there are also a few vehicles that are a challenge for me to get into because they are too high. I take a stool with me when I get into my friend's pricey SUV.

Anyway, I bought my car new and for the first few years I didn't have any problems with the tires. Then I started getting slow leaks. I would take the vehicle in and have it checked and the tires were always ok and it was diagnosed as a "rim leak". They would reseal the tire and I was good to go for a year or more. The older the car got, the more frequent the rim leaks. I have excellent tires. My car has 52,000 actual miles on it and it makes my hair stand on end every time I see a tire low. This winter so far has been awful. I have had probably 10 low tires (needed air desperately) since Thanksgiving. Everyone (mostly males) were telling me it was the aluminum rims. They are supposed to be stylish and classy but when they get older, the tires don't seal as well as the aluminum oxidizes and it's very VERY expensive to have this fixed. I've been told the extreme heat and cold we have here doesn't help matters any either. So, last week after having TWO flat tires on the passenger side....that's BOTH tires going flat 3 days apart I got fed up to the max.  I had a friend of mine get me 4 steel rims that came off of a junked car like mine and OF COURSE they could not be the same size as the aluminum rims so I could use my good tires. I guess steel rims are not made for my car in that size.  I also had to get a set of used tires that he says are good enough for a few months until I can find a deal on another set of new ones.

After he changed out the tires, my car looked horrible. I didn't realize what a good looking set of shoes (tires) did for a vehicle. So he got me some nice hub caps....they are very pretty BUT they are plastic!!!!! When did this happen?  I thought hubcaps were made of metal!  My friend laughed at me and said it's been like that for a long time now.  Good grief!  Have I EVER been under a rock!  Plastic. How can they possibly hold up?  They were $11 apiece.....I should have known.  lol

I now have a set of 16" aluminum wheels with good tires for sale. Personally, I think you'd have to be nuts to want them. Never again will I ever get aluminum wheels on any vehicle.

My year is starting out really great but at least it wasn't too costly to remedy far.  Hope all is well with all of you. Right now it's five outside with a windchill of 11 below. It's going to be bitterly cold like this all week long. Reliable transportation is essential in this kind of weather, that's for sure.

Hope this bitter cold doesn't crack my plastic hubcaps.  I'm amazed that engines are still made of metal.


Peruby said...

OMG! We are going through the same thing with my daughter's car!

Did you have a portable pump of some sort? We are so tired of it all!

I forogt that we don't have to buy new wheels. I am going to check around at the junk yards.

Linda@VS said...

You aren't the only one who didn't know about plastic hubcaps and wheel covers. My daughter's car was stolen years ago. When it was recovered, we found that two of the molded plastic lug nuts had been broken off. Not one, mind you, but two. Guess they didn't figure out the problem on the first one.

Golden To Silver Val said...

Peruby: Yes they had a portable air compressor where I work and maintenance would air up my tires. They were sure getting sick of doing it though. Other times I would "limp" up to the gas station a mile away and put air in. It's been a learning experience. I wish you and your daughter luck....but steel rims is the only way to go as far as I'm concerned. My friend was able to find me 4 steel rims with pretty good tires for $140.

Coffeypot said...

That isn't so bad. Only the bottom part is flat.

forsythia said...

I'm terribly afraid that your last sentence will give the car manufacturers a new idea. :-)

lotta joy said...

You poor woman. And I'm about to give you more news. When's the last time you saw a 'metal' engine block? Are you familiar with the word Aluminum and plastic? Metal bumpers? ha. Plastic too.

Leann said...

I'm sorry to hear you've had such a time with the tires and such. That's when it's handy to have a guy around to take care of it for ya :-)

Stay in, be warm, and enjoy a good book.

blessed be