Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Odds and Ends of an Automobile Nature

Car Repair
More work on my car. Well actually this is finishing up what was started last month. In June, I took the car in for the air conditioning to be looked at. The fan would blow but no cold air would come out.

Of course they found other things wrong with the car. It is not actually too surprising considering it is a 2003. And most of the time it just sits outside the front of my house. However, I would say being a home owner you really need to have a car.

Back to the air conditioning. In June, they refilled the tank with Freon or whatever gas is used. In order to see if there is a leak in the system, they put a dye in with the gas. Now it can take a little while for the gas to leak out. I was supposed to bring the car back in two weeks. That would have been the exact time that I was in Missouri. That didn’t work. Finally got around to it this week. The system did indeed have a leak and around $300 later it is all fixed. I’m crossing my fingers that nothing else happens to the car.

Gas prices
All sorts of interesting things on the drive up to the dealership. One was noticing gas prices. It seemed to me that gas prices were cheaper in the District then they were in Maryland.

I also noticed this on the drive up. On each side of the road was a gas station. The one station regular was $3.89. The station on the other side of the street it was $3.79. Now under normal circumstances this isn’t all that unusual. I’ve seen in many places were one station has one price and the one across the street of the next block has a completely different price.

What makes this strange is that both stations were Exxon stations. How is there a difference of ten cents with stations from the same company? And speaking of Exxon on the drive back from the dealership last night I saw another Exxon station where regular was $4.04. How the hell does that happen?

Most of the time I like my GPS but every once in a while you have to wonder. I was driving home from the car dealership last night. I decided I wanted to stop at a grocery store on the way home. I had my trusty GPS with me. I found shopping and looked up stores. I found a Giant Foods very close by. I had the GPS figure out how to get there. I followed the directions it gave me and did not end up even close to the store.

I tired again and essentially the same thing happened. I then noticed a side entrance to a shopping center where the Giant actually was. The GPS was completely unaware that this entrance was even there.

Once done with my shopping, I tried to get back on the road to take me home. That was a great deal of fun too. GPS wasn’t all that much help. The signs put up by the state of Maryland didn’t help either. I eventually went back to the Giant and drove through the parking lot until I came upon the main entrance into the shopping center. It just so happened to be off the road to get home. Go figure.

Left Hand Turns
Yesterday I’m taking my car to get worked on. I want to drop it off at the dealership right when the service department opens which is 7am. It is way up in Rockville. Maybe 45 minutes from my house. I leave a little before 6:15. The roads are pretty empty at that time in the morning. And I suppose I’m going against traffic. I weave my way through the upper parts of DC. I get on to Rockville Pike. I have a straight shot now to the dealership.

Along the way I had this happen to me not once but twice. The first time it happened this way. I’m moving along fairly well. I’m thinking I shouldn’t have any problems getting there on time. I’m in the left hand lane. The car in front of me slowly comes to a complete stop. I’m trying to figure out what’s going on. Then comes a turn signal. The car had come to complete stop and then the person decides to turn on their signal. Of course this was one of the few times there was actually traffic and I couldn’t move into the right hand lane and get around this person.

I’d like to say I’m surprised at this but not really.

What is surprising is that something very similar happens a few minutes later. This time I’m at a light. There is a car in front of me. Again I’m in the left hand lane. The light changes. The car in front of me doesn’t move. I wait a few moments and they still haven’t moved. I honk my horn. And right after that magically the car in front puts on their turn signal. This time there is no traffic in the right hand lane and I move around this person. Did they forget they were turning left? Or are they such jerks they can’t be bothered with putting on their turn signal.

This end my odd and ends of getting my car’s air conditioning looked at.

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