Well, where is the time going? It's hot! It's already July!
Back on the 28th of June, the outside temperature was 106 degrees. Yes! That's what the overhead console displayed. Normally, the van's air conditioner blows ice-cold air. Sweating and drinking plenty of water, obviously, the 2006 Chrysler Town & Country van wasn't blowing and providing the comfortable air that we are accustomed to. It's not necessary to have air conditioning to travel from one point to another. That's true! Air conditioning is a luxury. In this Texas heat, it becomes a necessity.
Naturally, the air conditioning issue started the gears in my brain to turn. This caused me to think about the number of vehicles that we have in our immediate family. There are four families. Each family has one to four vehicles. Counting the vehicles in my head, we have nine total. That means we have 36 wheels and counting. Counting? Yes, have an eye out for a car for my granddaughters.
With so many vehicles, the odds are that something will go wrong. Murphy's Law! Besides the air conditioning in our van, my grandson had a problem with his car on the 25th of June. Our initial thoughts were the ignition system. Realizing that the car was way over overdue for spark plugs, my first thoughts were the distributor and plugs. Of course in August of last year, when the timing belt was changed, the mechanic should have changed the spark plugs. The spark plugs weren't changed. Ugh!
Since the car did not start, the tow truck had to deliver the Honda to our trusted mechanic. That was on Monday the 28th of June. By Wednesday the 30th, there was a diagnosis. Three words you don't want to hear. "Needs head gasket."
If that wasn't bad enough, the trusted mechanic informed my grandson that they didn't do a head gasket replacement. What? Texting my grandson that they did head gasket work before. He texted back, "Things change."
Furthermore, there may be other issues that came to my attention. Shared them with my grandson. Therefore, he asked the mechanic whether the engine was worthless.
The mechanic replied, "I wouldn't be surprised if the engine is gone."
When a car won't start, it could be a head gasket or a cracked head. To determine if the engine is cracked, you have to take off the head gasket. As you know, you need three things to start a vehicle. You need fuel, compression, and spark.
According to the car guys, when compression is low, they recommend replacing the head gasket. While the head is off the gasket, the engine should be inspected for missing pieces or cracks. Furthermore, valves should be checked to make sure they are properly operating.
If an engine is required, there are several options. With each option, there are pros and cons. If you want to know the pros and cons, there is an informative article online that can be found here.
Interestingly, the engine could be refurbished. That option surprised me. Another option is to rebuild the engine which is different than refurbishing. While the other options are purchasing a remanufactured engine or having the vehicle's engine remanufactured and the last option is purchasing a used engine with low mileage.
During the 2020 Pandemic, our neighbor chose to buy a low-mileage engine for their 2009 Honda. Which was the right choice for them, the Honda is still going.
As for how we will proceed, not sure. No decision has been made. Having all the documentation for the 1994 Honda Civic, we know the car's history. That is important to me. (In 2016, my former car was gifted to my grandson.)
In case you didn't know, the 1992-1995 cars were the best and that's when Honda's Civic received its reliable reputation.
Until recently, we had two vehicles. Besides the 1996 Chrysler Town & Country van, there was the 1997 Ford Ranger that had a manual transmission. A year and a half ago, the truck was offered to my friend's grandson. At that time, the truck wasn't accepted.
Unfortunately, his ride was recently totaled and he needed wheels. Because the truck hadn't been driven on a regular basis, minor repairs had to be made along with the air conditioning service. For under $600, we had the truck ready for him. Now, he has wheels that will keep him going places.
After a year's search, in 2019 a Toyota was found at the right price. Purchasing the Toyota for my other grandson, this gave him wheels. Remember 36 wheels and counting? Yep, there is a search in progress. This time a search for an older pre-owned vehicle for my granddaughters' that will allow them to go places too.
Writer's notes: Thank you for reading my wheels story. Wheels keep us going places.
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
About the Creator
Barbara J Iversen, also known as Babs Iverson, lives in Texas and loves her grandkids to the moon and back. After writing one story, she found that writing has many benefits especially during a pandemic and a Texas-size Arctic Blast.
Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!
Heartfelt and relatable
The story invoked strong personal emotions
Easy to read and follow
Well-structured & engaging content
Original narrative & well developed characters
Expert insights and opinions
Arguments were carefully researched and presented
Niche topic & fresh perspectives
On-point and relevant
Writing reflected the title & theme