Rust in Piece

It appears that the last straw has been added to the problems with our still-beloved 1994 Buick Century station wagon.

Although the car is now 11 years old, we were hoping to get another year or two out of it. Instead, the past two repairs have included one big electrical system problem ($300+), a leaky oil seal ($650+), and a blown head gasket ($1,000+).

Today the car was hesitating, so Nichelle took it in to a mechanic. He found the transmission fluid was 2 quarts down, and that there was rust on the transmission fluid dipstick. This appears to be caused by contamination between the transmission cooling system and the engine cooling system. Eventually, this kind of corrosion wipes out the transmission, but he thought it could last up to a year, if we watch the fluid levels. It would cost about $2,000 to actually fix the problem. He added the transmission fluid, and gave the car a test drive.

Nichelle started up the street, and within sight of the mechanic's place, the car died completely. A police officer pushed it with his car into a McDonald’s parking lot.

At any rate, it looks like we’ll need to get a new[er] car, which we need to see if we can actualy afford. This eliminates, at least temporarily, our ability to go anywhere together. Thankfully, lots of people from church live near us, and will help out.

Time to start praying about this latest issue, and the obvious anxiety it brings!

One Reply to “Rust in Piece”

  1. Well, after getting advice from my sister Cindy, my Mom, and our mechanic, we are going to scrap the vehicle (keeping the CD/MP3 player that we gave Nichelle for Mother’s Day). It is simply getting too worn to keep putting this kind of money into it.
    I wish we hadn’t just spent $2,000 getting the engine working perfectly. Ultimately, it was the cooling system that did in the transmission.
    So, we’ve gone over our budget carefully, and there is room for a small car payment, if we watch everything else. It will put us closer to “the edge” than I am comfortable with, but not over the edge.
    ::: sigh :::

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