We've lived in Utah, Nebraska, upper Michigan and now we've settled in Colorado...at least for now! Marley is 10, Isi is 6 and Enzo is 4.

Life is great!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The Curse of the Black Pearl: Part I

Yea, we're pirate fans.
Not the actual pirates that steal, pillage, take hostages, and murder.
The Disney pirates!
Thus, our car's name is The Black Pearl.
(Pearly black 2001 Honda Accord EX with a V6 engine.)

We love her!

We take good care of her.

She loves us.
She takes good care of us.

But, the past couple of months she has been cursed. 

Started with the engine light.
 Remember that story?
It was a long story.
Recap: our engine light came on while we were heading out of town for the weekend.
While out of town we got swindled by a mechanic who charged us big bucks just for a diagnostic.
Which, by the way, we have learned since, you can do yourself for FREE at most auto parts stores.
(We know! We've done it SEVERAL times since!)
 He said we'd be fine to drive it back to the U.P. but we should get it fixed or our car would start stalling.

When we returned home, Nathan looked the diagnostic code up online.
He found it was an emission clog.
He also did some research and found it would probably be over $400 to get it fixed by a mechanic.

We decided to purchase the manual for The Black Pearl and Nathan found lots of tutorials online on how to fix the problem.
 He felt that he could probably fix it.

He still has a full time job so it was a semi-slow process with lots of trouble shooting.
We ordered parts in phases.
The cheaper ones first, of course...maybe they would be the fix!
 Then the more expensive one.

 And all the while, lots of cleaning.

Lots of resetting the fuse to get the engine light off...only to have it pop back on.
That was always how we knew she wasn't fixed yet.

Thankfully we could still drive her.
Each time we would run a diagnostic to make sure it was still the same problem.

Each time Nathan took the car apart to clean, he would go further and further through the system.
One day, Nathan was tinkering and recleaning and taking apart and putting back together when he found THE CLOG.
It was so obvious and he was relieved and convinced she was fixed!

She was.

But then we started smelling gasoline fumes. Very subtle at first. Only I could smell it.
Then one day, Nathan came home after using the car and said, yes, we have a fume problem.

He did some research online to get an idea of what to look for and what might be the problem.
Then studied the parts manual.
Then took it all apart again.
He found a broken fuel injector.

We decided we couldn't drive her like that.

She was malodorous and in my condition those fumes were bad news.

Nathan ordered more parts.

We waited.

Our good friend was kind enough to come and get us for church.

The part came!

Nathan fixed it!
(but only after breaking TWO 3/8 to 1/4 socket adapters :-(
Ours and our neighbors. Ooops!
 don't worry we are going to replace it.)

But, our car was fixed!

For good this time!

No more problems!

Except then the battery was dead.

We have known since last summer that our battery was on its last leg.
It would die if Marley and I had the car off and the radio on, after only about 10 minutes.
Or it would just die if we didn't drive it often enough.

So, our kind neighbor gave us a jump.
(The last of probably at least three or four.)
I drove it around a little bit to charge the battery and then stopped at the local store to pick up a few things. (tortillas, cheese, sour cream...for burrrrrrritos!)
We hadn't been to the store in almost three weeks.

When I came out of the store, the car started!

Two days later (last Friday) Marley and I had big plans:
Go to the SOO!
The Dollar Store
The bank
The Library!
Pick up Dad!
Go grocery shopping!

Battery was dead, again.
Big snow storm.

Becky cried like the hormonal crazy woman that she IS!
 Stay tuned PART II on Thursday.
Don't worry it gets better.

NOTE: None of these pictures are mine...just googled images.
EXCEPT the first one.
That REALLY is THE Black Pearl with last winters salt ravages all over her...which is pretty much exactly what she looks like right now.


Julie J. said...

Isn't it kinda cold in the U.P. to be wearing your bikini? Seriously though, I think it is high time you posted a baby bump picture.

Kathy said...

hahahaha - giant prego belly in bikini - Julie's comment! Oh my

Good luck with all of that. I'm so glad after all that work it is going to work!

Hey, I saw your town on the Today show weather portion last week and then while I was looking at one of the blogs you look at I saw that someone from your town (you I am sure) had visited the blog before me. I feel so close to you. :-)

The Wells said...

Cars are a necessary evil!

Shauna Klippel said...

Becky- I cannot stop looking at that picture of the prego lady!!!!!! That's crazy!

Onto the black pearl. I can totally see how you would cry I would have too without being pregnant, I might add. Cars are a bit evil and necessary, for most of us. I remember when Kirk and I were a one car family, long ago-it was great, unless a glitch happened.

I'm with Julie, I'd love to see how you're looking. Are you due soon? Do you have names? So fun! Very excited for you. Take care,