Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Check Engine Light

December 10, 2014

Hmmm.....the bump in the road, the ouch that hurts my wallet, the moment you realize you bought a used Lemon.  This past week the Check engine light went on in our 'new to Me' used 2005 VW Passat Wagon 1.8 turbo silver bullet with 143,000 miles on it.

I went a few days with the light on for I found out it could be the gas cap was not secured tightly enough.  Good conclusion since I had just filled it up with gas the day before the 'check engine light' appeared.    I mean, the car ran no different from the moment I drove it off the used car lot to when the light went gas cap is what I went with.  

But after a few days - the light stayed on.   Hmmm.....I brought it then to Auto Zone, for they can diagnose your car engine light for FREE.  Yes a FREE service and they were so amazingly pleasant.
The code came up P0304.  Sounds like an ok series of digits.  This means Cylinder 4 is not firing correctly.   Ok, what do I do with that bit of info.   I know how to change spark plugs and wires (yep, I can do that ladies!!!  My dad and a car guy I dated in college taught me a lot!  Who wants to be a damsel in distress on the side of the road waiting for someone to save her........not me.  My dad also taught me how to drive stick shift just so I could get out of any situation I needed to in an emergency!  Thanks Dad)

Ok... I digress, back to the car.  The next day I pulled the front end into the garage and open the hood. I see 1.8 Turbo staring me in the face....and I see a place for spark plugs but not really any wiring I would be familiar with.  I know it's been awhile since college and being hands on with a car engine - but have things under the hood changed that much??  I turned away and tucked my pride back in, took a deep breath and called the local VW dealership asking if they could check out the car.  We drove it up there first thing and they came back with the same diagnostic of the cylinder.

Then I ask how grand.  Does not look so bad when you type it out in letters but when you type it out with digits....$1,000.00 .....OUCH.  Especially when you are trying so hard to save for an amazing sailing experience with your family in Less than a years time!  This money could go towards the homeschooling books for the boys, toward the monthly satellite connection bill, toward food, toward the water maker, toward anything that means connecting with my family and NOT A USED CAR!

OK, deep breath, money is money.  Keep my heart open and realize this is a bump in the road, an obstacle we must jump over, a rise we must climb to see the beautiful landscape.  
And to remember look beyond the obstacle when your Dream is Bigger than the resistance!  


End note:  We had the shop fix the leaking gaskets, spark plugs and coils (there weren't any wires, so I am not crazy!!)  and we picked it up tonight.  I have to say, it does run smoother and it is so nice to drive without the Check Engine Light on!!