Thursday, December 14, 2006

This is a lesson not to use the heart in car buying

Well, my car obviously knows* that I am planning to sell it, and is playing up while it can. It had its MoT test last week, failed on a couple of things, which were put right, and re-tested to the Ministry's satisfaction. I drove it back from the garage without any problems and hadn't used it again until yesterday evening. Our group at work had our Christmas meal last night at East in Peterborough, so I decided to drive.

The car started up fine (thanks to Bob for the tip about depressing the clutch when starting up, which is prolonging the battery life nicely), but while I was reversing out of the drive, I noticed the engine was running somewhat raggedly. Ah, I thought, it's low on fuel - I had better fill up on my way into town. So I did, but the engine still seemed to be playing up, and the car was jerking a little when travelling at any steady speed. So I left the car in a nearby car park, walked to the barge, and spent the next four hours or so very enjoyably: the food in East, which is mostly Thai, was very good, and we had crackers, so everyone was wearing paper crowns and groaning at the lack of humour in the mottoes.

I returned to the car not long after eleven, and the damned thing would not start. The battery was live and well, and the starter motor was sounding healthy: unfortunately, the engine just wasn't catching. I sighed in resignation and called the RAC. Every penny I spend on my subscription is worth it. They sent out a local contractor, who arrived only twenty minutes after I'd called for assistance, and then spent the next hour and a half trying to find out what the problem was. To cut a long story short, the car was towed home and me with it at half-past one, the problem still not fixed.

Anyway, the car is now at its spiritual home, the local MG garage, and hopefully they will find out what is wrong. I suppose it's too much to hope that it won't cost an arm and a leg to fix. I've already been there and done that with my old car.

So here's the moral of the story: Buy a reliable car. Don't let your heart rule your head when shopping for motor vehicles. I really should have spent the extra and bought a Honda instead.

* I know cars are not sentient, but sometimes it's as if they are, the wasters.


At Sat Dec 16, 08:13:00 am, Blogger Who is this Dave? said...

I'm still toying with buying a sports car. But not an MG, obviously.

At Mon Dec 18, 08:54:00 pm, Blogger Tamburlaine said...

If you like tinkering with cars, the MG is actually a good choice, as it doesn't have one of those complicated engine management system things that cost a fortune to fix if they go wrong, and are beyond the scope of any interested amateur.

It would have been a better choice if I'd been able to keep it in a garage, or driven it more often. It is fun to drive, though.


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