Minor Stuff · Uncategorized

Total Eclipse of the Car

     My car is very very sad. Ok, I’m very sad, and I’m projecting the emotion onto my car, which is sick. The car, not my emotion-projection. Anyway, a year and a half of terrible misfiring whenever I accelerate from a stop, the Mitsubishi dealer finally figured out what was wrong with my car. Or at least they think so. To help you understand, this is all I know:

October, 1997: Car bought new by original owners. (5-year warranty)
June, 2000: Car bought by us at Mitsubishi dealership (32,000 miles on it, purchase an extra 3-year warranty)
October, 2003: The last remaining warranty expires.
November, 2003: Problem causes spark plugs to fail the first time; on the way home from Champaign on I-57, I get an engine-light while going 65ish. Pull over, dad picks me up with a tow dolly, we tow it to the dealer. Dealer says “Plugs are shot, and we need to replace the ignition coil.” Over $400.
April, 2004: Engine light returns while I’m in Champaign. Dad switches cars with me, tows Eclipse back to Mitsubishi dealer at home. Dealer says, “Plugs are shot, wires are shot, we need to fix the timing.” Under $100.
June, 2004: Engine light returns, reset it at AutoZone.
July, 2004: Engine light returns. Dealer says, “Plugs are shot, wires are arcing. It’s because of your remote start on your car alarm.” Take it to Action Audio, who installed car alarm. Action Audio says, “It’s not our fault. *calls Mitsubishi dealer* Dealer says it’s not our fault either.” Under $50.
-Engine light on continuously, car at 61,000 miles-
April, 2005: Took car into dealership. Dealer says, “It’s not anything electrical. We’ve checked the EGR Valve, Coil, Plugs, Oxygen Sensor, vacuum, and Computer, and they’re all working fine. The car is running rich. The next step is to replace the valves on the engine, and that’ll be $2,200.”

     So, if you count up all the times the dealer or my dad replaced the spark plugs in the past year and a half, you’d get 7. And one set is supposed to last for 30,000 miles.
     Now I am torn between driving the car I love and causing a serious accident as a result of being unable to accelerate… between fixing it and selling it ($4,500?)… between driving one of my parents cars (which I hate) and buying my own car (which I am no longer sure about).
     Do I even want a CRV anymore? I know I can’t afford one outright yet. I could put a decent down payment on one, but I don’t want to have car payments. I did everything I could to be able to afford a car without payments. Should I get the boring, slow Civic? My car isn’t in *that* bad of shape… 🙁

Feeling: Blue and sick to my stomach (Wendy’s?)
Listening to: Kelly Clarkson – The Trouble with Love Is