Saturday, January 26, 2013

Just when I thought I conquered it.....

it put its thumb to its nose and wiggled its fingers at me. I'm speaking about my tires of course.

We have suffered some of the coldest weather in this last week since Hector was a pup. Saying "bitter" just doesn't do it justice. I'd like to use that for an excuse of why it happened but, sadly, it only added to the inconvenience of it all.

Since I don't work every day and therefore don't leave the house every day.....I've been starting my car every day like a good female is supposed to do.(how many times do men yell at us for not doing something like well as not checking the oil)  I didn't want to have to contend with a dead battery on top of having the flat tires. So every day I went out and started the car and let it run for about 15 minutes or so. Did I every walk around the vehicle to check on my tires you say?  Why yes....yes I did. I did it for two days and then told myself I was being silly and stopped doing it.

Friday morning I had to be at work earlier than usual as my co-worker wasn't going to be there and I had to run the office. I went out to start my car about 10 minutes before it was time to leave and it started right up. I was so proud!!  The temperature outside was a little above zero....single digit above.  When it was time to leave I started to back out and the car was hard to move......VERY hard to move.  I gave it a little more gas than I usually do and it finally started backing out of the garage. It was obvious that something was terribly wrong.  I got out of the car, walked around to the passenger side and my front tire was so flat it wasn't even funny. The rear tire was also low on that side. No way of driving ANYWHERE on these. I called the maintenance man at work because the automatic switchboard still had the phones going to the recorded greeting. He said he would call the guy who helped me a few days ago and let him know. (he works part-time for the same place I do)

He did come through and helped me out.....even came and picked me up and took me to work. I know he felt terrible about it as he had assured me that he felt the tires were ok. I had to spring for a set of new tires, which he took care of for me by putting on a spare and driving it to the tire place and waiting for it. I gave him my credit card. It didn't help that we had a snowstorm that day and traffic was nearly at a standstill.

I am hoping this is the end of least as far as tires are concerned. My bit of advice is....never get TIRES from a junkyard. Even if they look good, they probably are not as they had the guy who helped me fooled.

All in all I was exactly an hour late for work. I know my boss wasn't very happy with me but I did so much work for him that day that I believe I made up for it.

At least we're having a heat wave right's 24.

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.