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loufib

Cashew Lou's Yukon Annex

I've got Pop-Pop in the attic.

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Lemon
loufib
cashewlou
Sixth time's a charm? Seventh? Fiftieth? Four hundredth?

I am taking my car back in for the sixth time for the very same problem it has had for over three months now. I paid $3900 for it in March of 2005, and after this current visit to the mechanic (for a transmission overhaul, and I have every confidence this problem will just keep costing me and costing me), with repairs I will have paid $6100 for it. And up and up and up.

I have no option but to try to get it fixed--something I have been trying to do since mid-January. In Texas, your car has to be inspected once a year; my inspection is to be completed by the end of this month. But a car with a "check engine" light on cannot be allowed to pass inspection; I was told this directly by the Texas Department of Transportation. My car's "check engine" light has been on continuously; nothing any mechanic can do will make it turn off--so it cannot pass inspection. And the car is not shifting correctly, either. Still.

Buying another used car is pretty much out of the question now; I don't have the resources to do that. So I have to keep pouring buckets of money into a lemon with a gear-shifting problem that clearly cannot be fixed, or take the bus for the rest of my stay in Austin. I say my "stay" here because when my living arrangements change in less than a year, there is no way in hell I can remain in Austin, with housing costs what they are in this area compared to what I make--in combination with the crippling credit card bills I will now be paying until I am at least 50.

Whee.

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Hehe well the *easy" way to fix the check engine light problem is to cut the wire that leads to the light. Granted that won't fix the problem... but it might let you pass the inspection.


--Rey

PS. yes I'm a mechanic, but no I don't do that IRL.... really... I don't

A) I have no idea where that wire would be.

B) They hook the car up to a diagnostic computer, so whatever code that would be making the light come on would be discovered, anyway.

Hmm. My little bro is a mechanic. ( Who actually does state inspections. Whee! ) Can't promise anything, but I could let him take a look at it, if you'd like. He's got an big-fancy-acronym auto-computer scanner-thingamajig that should tell what's wrong with it.

If he can't find out what's wrong with it, at the very least, it won't cost you an arm and a leg. *shrugs* He works fairly cheaply to boot, especially compared to the shops.

Drop me an email. ( kaanah (at) gmail )

A) How old is your car? Older than 96? B) No. Repair. On. Any. Car. Should. Cost. $6100. Unless. You. Have. A. Mercedes. C) If it's just your check engine light you're worried about, and you need to pass emissions, slip the emissions guy a $50, tell him 'I NEED to pass emissions', and you can pass emissions. If you were in my state, I could get you to 'pass' emissions without a problem -- we have what sounds like the same standards as Texas. Most check engine lights are 'lean bank 1', which just means your car is running a bit lean. There are a thousand different causes of it, but you need a good tech to figure it out. But with some cars, your check engine light comes on even if your fuel door is ajar. Get the codes read.

The codes have been read, repeatedly--and my mechanic has been working with mechanics at several dealerships, too. They can't seem to root out the problem. I will be taking it back to the shop after work today; they are going to do their damnedest to figure out what is going on yet again.

About the "check engine" light thing: I am now being told you will only fail your inspection if the check engine code or codes that come up are directly related to emissions--which mine aren't. My mechanic has told me the inspector can call him directly if they are concerned about the light being on.

And the repairs aren't $6100; if that were the case, I would just put a railroad spike through my head--after driving the car into a lake--and be done with it. The total cost of the car with repairs reaches $6100--I guess I just threw that amount up there for drama. o(:oP

And finally, it is a 2000 Hyundai Elantra--which, until this episode, has run wonderfully.

Do you have any idea what the exact trouble code is? The system on these cars (OBD II) can be finicky and it'll turn on a check engine light for any reason.

I don't know the exact number code or anything, but it has been pointing out a problem with the transmission control module (TCM)--which has been replaced. So it goes back into the shop today for a likely transmission overhaul.

Lou, I know this is a really dumb question, but please make sure that the transmission shop is using the correct transmission oil. Your Elantra uses special automatic transmission fluid that is currently available ONLY from Hyundai. It does NOT use regular Dexron/Mercon fluid like everyone else. They are NOT interchangable. That could easily be the cause of your incorrect shifting problems and hence, be giving your TCM trouble.

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