Monday, April 18, 2011

The handyman gets befuddled...

I am NOT a mechanic; however my dad did raise me to have some knowledge about vehicles and how to make sure that I wouldn't get stranded or let the car blow up! Lessons like, how to jump start a car, how to change the oil, change the alternator, change the plugs and wires, and put on a spare tire. Those are some of the basics that I learned while under his tutelage.

Fast forward to this weekend. We (the whole family...Farm Chick, me, and all the cowboys) were a bit late going to take care of my grandmother for a while (she's needing 24 hour care these days). On our way there, a tire went completely flat while going 65 mph on the highway. CRAP! So I pulled over to the side of the road (it was a two lane road, so we didn't have the benefit of everyone coming on our side being able to just move over to the other lane...there might be someone coming). I hop out and realize I haven't changed a tire in this car yet.

Most of the time when I see a flat coming I'm able to air it up enough to get to the tire shop and just have it fixed, however this tire was a goner and I was going to have to put a spare on it to get to town. On this model of minivan the spare is between the passenger and driver seats under the car. You have to twist a nut in the floorboard just between the seats...(very weird placement), then you're supposed to be able to get the tire out and jack the car up and put the new tire on. However much to my chagrin, this tire would NOT come lose. Of course, the tire that was flat was the right front tire, that coupled with the placement of the spare made it nearly impossible to get ANY access to it! YOU'VE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!!!

I have quite a few ME friends(mechanical engineer), this message is for you: "Don't be this stupid with things you do and make the end user so frustrated!"

In the end we had to call the tire shop and have them come get my tire off, go get a used tire, and come back and put that one on.  (all while we were on the side of the road) Then Farm Chick and I had to go back to our house, switch out all the car seats into the other car. She left in a hurry to relieve the grandma watcher and I headed to the shop so they could put a new tire on it. Instead of costing me $10, it cost me $135...that really stinks!

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