Try Again.

So on Monday I dropped our Jeep Wrangler off at the local Jeep dealer to have some work done. It needed an oil change and the tires needed to be rotated, plus there was some hesitation/jumping around if you stepped on the gas too hard. It was obvious that either the spark plugs and/or the plug wires needed to be changed. The check engine light came on during one of the jumps.

$2300 and two days later, the Jeep was declared fixed and it could be picked up. The requested maintenance was completed, the check engine light was out, the spark plugs and wires were changed and a few other goodies added to the bill: it needed tie rods, brakes and a complete transmission flush.


This evening, 39 miles after picking up the Jeep yesterday, the ABS warning light and the anti-skid symbol lit up the dash light a Christmas tree. On cue, one of the brakes started making a scraping noise.

I swore. I got angry. We dropped the Jeep off at the dealership without an appointment and I filled out an “early bird” form that simply said: “$2300 in service on Tuesday, 39 miles later, the ABS light is on and the brakes are making a scraping noise intermittently. FIX IT.” I authorized ZERO dollars in repairs without a phone call.

Anyone want to guess how much the dealership is going to fleece us for this next round of repairs. My guess is zero, because the contact information for the Jeep is Earl, and he puts up with nothing.

It’s one of the reasons that I love him so much.

It’s rare that the Jeep can get fixed in one pass, it usually takes two visits to the dealership to get it fixed properly. I don’t know why I’m surprised. Last autumn it was backfiring, again due to bad spark plug wires, and they told me it was because the oil pan was loose. The problem is, when the check engine light comes on, the other garage we use wouldn’t touch the Jeep until the dealership looked at it first.

Tonight’s little disappointment got me thinking about our previous vehicles. The only vehicles that we’ve had issues like this with are when we bought an American vehicle. The Hyundai and the Acura rarely had any trouble. The first Jeep would be fine for a couple of years and like our current Jeep, would require a hefty investment every couple of years.

I am hopeful that the brakes will be fixed properly this time and that the Jeep will last us for a few more years. I like it and I’m enjoying not having a car payment.

Let’s hope there’s no screaming tomorrow.