76,800 new tire

day before yesterday i was getting in my car to drive back from CO to vegas and got a low air light ... i picked up a rider from downtown, filled the tire and then proceeded to have a 700 mile drive where sometimes the tire would be losing air and sometimes it wouldn't ... this included me having to do such pleasant things as yanking my spare from beneath the car (in a parking lot full of melting snow) and prep it in case it needed to be used.

but it didn't.

i got to las vegas and everything was fine.

fine, that is, until i had a flat tire greet me in the morning.

turned out i'd picked up a screw in denver and it had apparently been doing its version of the macarena on the drive here.

this means replacing the tire i had replaced only 6000 miles ago.  couldn't make it to the new year without one last bite in the pocket book, apparently.

$132.  including a $15 coupon i had from goodyear's email list.


74,800 air filter and make-up filter

this is supposed to be part of my 75,000 mile service, but the parts cost me 13 bucks and is so fast that i just did it in the parking lot of the auto parts store on my way home.  i'm guessing there's no way a dealer would do this for < $50.


74,765 mile service (& fourth service contract work?)

may well take the continual car to CO for xmas and wanted to get the oil changed beforehand.  but that's not all i'm needing...

my washers have quit working (or more precisely, i hear the motor, but nothing sprays to the windshield) and, a couple nights ago, a valet was bringing my car out and i noticed the belly pan flapping on the passenger side.

and as i was driving home from my last oil change, the check engine light came on.

after three days in the shop, i get my car back, but here's what's weird ... i pay $100 deductible and $138 on top.  but when i look at the receipts, i can't tell what the deductible is paying against and what it's not.  it looks as though i'm paying a deductible and for all service?  i talked to my service advisor for quite awhile about it, but it becomes ever-more-clear that he doesn't really know what's going on.

this isn't the first time i've been given receipts different than what i've paid, nor the second.  i'm not exactly sure what to do here because if i call back, they'll probably end up connecting me with the same service advisor and it's clear that either:

* he doesn't know what's going on and is snowing me.


* he can't explain it to me in a way i can understand.

the timing on this is a little bad because i was going to write a glowing letter to mr. marchionne about prestige ... this to be the ying to my chapman-is-fraudulent yang letter ...

... but i can't do that yet.

$205 in SCR ($105 for rental car, $100 saved from service i've been told about, but hold no receipt for.)


my free rental car

while the continual car is getting its 75K oil change.


74,700 new brake light bulb

passenger side brake light burned out (but not the tail light ... noticed it when the valet returned my car the other day).  it's an interesting fix because the entire taillight cover is actually held in place by a single screw.  the swap is remarkably easy -- especially when compared to the hondas i've had.

first bulb of any kind to go.



quote of the moment

"Fiat now owns more than 50 percent of Chrysler, with the rest owned by the retiree healthcare trust affiliated with the United Auto Workers union. It is possible that Chrysler will have an initial public stock offering in 2013, Marchionne said, as the UAW seeks to cash out or reduce its shareholdings."

-- reuters US


72,190 mile service & third service contract work

with the write-up from my brake guys in hand, i went to prestige chrysler for an oil change and asked them to look at the rack & pinion sensor and control arms.

i got my service contract rental and waited a day to hear the news ... and big news it was ... they replaced the rack and pinion gear and both control arms ... this is big work that requires a lot of labor, and would be a significant cost ... if not for, that's right, my service contract!

i ended up with the car for four days (that's $140 right there), and roughly speaking, all this under-car work should be about $1500 ...

but with my service contract?  a mere $100 deductible ... and i'd already paid for the oil change before.

this means i have now officially saved over $1000 by buying my service contract.

AND the car needed alignment after all the work, BUT i have lifetime alignment at the local goodyear place...so i took it in there for a grand total of $0.

never has anyone felt happier when leaving a dealership after major service ...

... and all i have now is the rest of my life to rack up more.

{radioactive dave, anne and instigator: remind me next time i see you and i'll tell you a continual car story you'll get a kick out of ... i'm not writing it down here.}


death of a continual car?

TJ public's 'blog is no longer up.  i can only guess this means he either got rid of the car, or just didn't feel like paying his domain renewal fee.

sad.  i can always use a brother in arms.


PT cruiser

(not mine)
las vegas, NV


the continual car in great basin national park

although this is shot in NV, nearly everything in the distance is UT.



68,909 new front brakes

after the brake notification from my last service, i did some poking around, and for the first time since moving to vegas i'm suffering a penalty of living in a small town.

unfortunately brake masters and midas are my two best options for lifetime brakes.  the problem with both of these places is they'll charge you for labor on the jobs.  if i lived in a place with a firestone, or a precision auto that offered lifetime brakes, i wouldn't have to pay for the labor.

after a false start the day before, i went to the brake masters on S eastern.

the bad news was that -according to them at least- not only were the front brake pads worn, the rotors too had gone ... so those had to be replaced as well.

that's the bad news.  the good news is the backs still have 50%.

i asked a myriad of questions and learned a couple of good tidbits.  one was going 70K miles before needing new brakes is very unusual ("you must be an incredibly cautious driver").

bigger was a non-chrysler set of eyes looked at the car ... they saw the rack and pinion sensor leaking and the control arm bushing cracking ... those don't have to be reported back to chrysler immediately, so that'll be the topic of my next oil change.

they also saw the rear shocks leaking.  that isn't covered by the lifetime service contract ... i'll have to be looking into that as well.

$317 (includes the $25 discount from my entertainment book)


[68,500] windshield star repaired

first class auto glass fixed my second windshield break (unfortunately i forgot to take before/after shots).  good service, but the repair looks a bit globby afterward.

insurance companies are moving away from waiving this deductible ... fortunately mine hasn't yet.



68,233 mile service & second service contract work

i could actually stand to go another 1000 miles before i did an oil change, but the air conditioner has quit working, again.  i'm looking at taking a run back to the bay area next week, and i may or may not take my car ... if i do, having AC would be nice, so i might as well get it fixed now ... and as long as i'm there, get an oil change as well (with a coupon that included an air filter).

the dye job from last time came through and exposed a leak in the AC discharge line (don't ask me, i don't know either).

if i didn't have my max care service contract, this repair would have been $485 ... but due to my wrap, it was only a C-note to me.

one thing they did claim was worn brake pads and rotors on the front.  i drive a car very light on the brakes, but the vehicle's pushing 70K and its heavy, so anything's possible.  unfortunately the brake pads aren't covered by the service contract and chrysler doesn't guarantee their pads for life (some others do) -- i'll be digging into that over the next several weeks.

$20 standard service
$100 service contract deductible
$455 in SCR (includes $70 of rental car)


another (not-quite-bad) break

gotta (another) star in my windshield driving back from CO.  need to have it taken care of before my next big run.

67,500 miles


66,277 service

had a website coupon for a $20 air filter and oil change, but when i go into prestige chrysler the "how's-it-goin'-dude?" service rep says "we can sell you four oil changes for $66."

considering that i want/need all my service done you don't have to ask me twice for that deal.

the only downside is i won't be getting my air filter now ... but the last one was less than 10,000 miles ago ... need to look at the owner's manual and see when the next one is due.

prestige chrysler.  $66

trivium of the moment

roughly 800K cars are stolen in the US every year.

source: CNBC


lying chrysler

so a tweet shows up from chrysler saying ...

I find it ironic that Detroit is known as the #motorcity and yet no one here knows how to fucking drive.

... immediately the company backpedals by saying ...

Our apologies - our account was compromised earlier today. We are taking steps to resolve it.

... but that turns out to be a lie.  the account wasn't compromised -- they paid some numbskull PR agency, who in turn put some idiot in charge of the chrysler twitter account.

i hate hate the fact that no one, nor any corporation, in america can take responsibility for their own actions.


what chrysler should have said as a follow-up was, "sorry for the comment, but we can't be responsible for the way people in detroit," and then refer all future questions to their latest spokesperson, eminem.

how much you wanna bet the true culprit of this fiasco is a 20-something white guy?


3/17 addendum

i win.  the culprit is Scott Bartosiewicz.  28.

yes, he was TXTing while driving and he wants to sue tweetdeck because, come on, it's not really his fault.


Fw: Your invitation for Free Oil for Life from Boardwalk

got this email from my favorite chrysler dealer 
(they lost their accreditation ffrom chrysler).  
if i was still living in the bay area i'd look into it, 
but i'll bet that the filter and service costs would 
end up being more than the mopar coupon rates.

my apologies for their formatting from my email 
account ... i don't feel like mucking with it to make 
it right relative to my template ... all the salient 
information is readable, this just looks bad ... 
(i took out the formatting and corny animation).


As a valued Boardwalk Auto Center 
customer, you are invited to participate 
in our Oil For Life* program.
Here's how it works: Never pay for 

conventional oil, just labor and filter. 
Your vehicle, if qualified*, will receive Oil 
For Life*, so long as you continue to own it.

Come in for a FREE* inspection to see if your 

vehicle qualifies*.