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First Report From Our Mechanic


I’ve received a preliminary report from our mechanic about our car. Our problem could be an oil pump screen that is being obstructed (less than $100 fix) all the way to our engine being shot (mega $$).

After discussing it with him, he is going to check out the screen and then if that’s not it he’ll work his way up from there. In about an hour or so I should know the result of him checking out the screen.

Thinking good thoughts…thinking good thoughts…

UPDATE 5:12 p.m.: My mechanic cleaned out the screen and is finishing up putting everything back together. My husband went to go get the car, so we’ll see if that will buy us some more time. I’ll give a more thorough update shortly and explain what that means, as well as ask for your advise.


  • Reply Jeremy |

    Good luck! I had my own vehicle scare today. Leaving for work this morning I noticed the transmission wasn’t shifting properly. It was shifting hard and occasionally slipping. The whole way to work I was envisioning a tranny rebuild…

    But before making any calls I took it out for another test drive at lunch and it was driving perfectly normal again. Still need to keep an eye on it now, but I hope it was just a glitch and isn’t anything major, the car is far too new (but just out of warranty).

    Hopefully you have some car luck today as well.

  • Reply MVP |

    Yay, always nice to get pleasant surprises. We had one this winter when our hot water heater stopped making hot water – on a Friday, of course. I had visions of having to clean out our emergency fund AND go the entire weekend taking cold showers. My husband, having no clue what could be the problem, took a chance and replaced a $20 part from Home Depot (the element) and voila, hot water! Thank goodness for small blessings. I’ve found not using credit cards as a backup has actually made us much more resourceful.

  • Reply Chris |

    A good mechanic should be able to drop the pan and valve cover and tell you whether your engine is shot. Unless your vehicle was behaving strangely (lack of power, knocking sounds, rough idle, etc) and it was low on oil, it is probably okay. From what I read in your original post about your car, the oil light just came on with no other symptoms.

    An oil warning indicates a loss in oil pressure. A failing oil pump, clogged screen (if you start the car up again and your pressure is fine, then in a little bit the warning light comes on again, that would indicate a clogged screen), are good places to look. It could also be a bad sensor, a leak, or a stuck pressure valve.

    If the pump had stopped working, which means you had no oil circulating in your engine, there could be engine damage. A quick check of the oil filter after it had been running will tell you if this is the case, the oil filter drains without circulation; if the filter is hot and full of oil, the pump is at least doing some work.

    Jeremy, read your manual and check your transmission fluid level (some have specific ways of checking it correctly, such as running the engine with the tranny in neutral). Low fluid can cause it to shift erratically and its not something people often check.

  • Reply Sarah |

    I don’t think they do it on purpose, but I hate Hate HATE calls like that from mechanics. They tell you nothing of value and cause a lot of anxiety (in me, anyway). Thinking good thoughts for you!

  • Reply Jim |

    I had an issue with an AC unit last year and it is very expensive just to get people to come out and look at those things. The unit would turn on but the fan was not turning, so the thing was not doing anything. I opened up the side panel to it (probably not supposed to do that) and discovered the capacitor was shot. The AC repair people charge about $100 for this stupid little part, but I found an electronics supply store selling it for $3 and replaced it myself. I was glad a costly service call was avoided.

    I hope the problem with your car is minor. If the engine is shot it might be better to find a cheap car than to repair it. I’m sure you’ll be able to work your way through it.

So, what do you think ?