As the title says, cars are black holes on land.  Money just disappears when it comes in contact with a car, especially an older car.  Case in point – I took my car to a local garage to get a full service done on it.  They called me back later that day and said they were still finding problems, and hadn’t actually serviced the car yet.  In total, there were 17 defects found on my 1996 car:

  1. Front wipers smear screen. I’ve fixed this with new wipers, and I tell you now, Peugeot 406s have some of the most cuss-awkward wiper fittings I’ve had the displeasure of meeting.
  2. N/S plate light inoperative. I’ve fixed this as well. Bulb didn’t want to come out at first, but a bit of judicious wiggling and it came.
  3. N/S/F flasher white. I can possibly fix this, but it means delving into the engine compartment, so I’ll ask them to fix it if it’ll cause problems with the MOT in May.
  4. N/S/F washer jet partially blocked. That’s been like that for ages – at least a year. Keep meaning to take a needle to it.
  5. Power steering fluid leak from resevoir. That’s bad.
  6. Cambelt replacement. Few thousand miles left before this is required at least.
  7. N/S + O/S front tyres low on outer edge. Supposedly indicative of soft tyres, but I keep mine at pressure.
  8. N/S w/cyl leaking. Brakes, ’nuff said.
  9. Rear brake shoes required. Brakes again.
  10. O/S/R brake shoe adjuster incomplete. And again.
  11. Wiring fault on immobiliser. Couldn’t start the car the other night because of this.
  12. Front brake disks corroded on inner surface. Pads and disks required. Brakes yet again.
  13. O/S anti-roll bar drop link noisy.
  14. N/S anti-roll bar drop link slight play
  15. Power steering ram leaking. Bad.
  16. Engine oil leak possible rear main. Could be bad.
  17. N/S drive shaft seal leaking. No idea if this is bad or not.

Grand total to fix all of that?  £1000.  The car is worth about £500 part-exchange.  I’ve sorted 2 of the defects out, but brakes and power steering are beyond my meagre skills.  The cambelt, anti-roll bars and a few other items aren’t too critical yet, so I should be able to get the bill down a bit – it’s cheaper than trying to find a new old car.

Of course, I just bought a bike on Saturday, so I’m fairly sure a posting in the future is going to be ‘Bicycles are black holes on land’.

Cars are black holes on land
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