Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Confession is good for the soul... right?

Well, here goes nothing.  Apparently I am a little daft when it comes to the dashboard lights on the new van.  My daughter would say, I am not the brightest bulb in the string.  (or on the dashboard in this case!)Sigh, it would appear to be true.

Here is the story.
Monday night I was out, and a light came on in the van. One that I had seen but not recalled what it was. I decided that I would deal with it in the morning, in the day light. After all, nothing was blinking or beeping - both sure signs in this van that something is seriously wrong.  We had dealt with that problem the day before, thankfully it was just hungry, and some70$ later worth of fuel the blinking and beeping stopped. 

No the new light looked like this....

Well, on the dash board the image is much smaller and the bottom of the image does not look like tire treads or I might have clued in.  (Or MAYBE if I had already filled the prescription for my BIFOCALS, another story for another time, I would have noticed... made the connection! I mean Duh. right?) Thankfully the manual that comes with the van is so easy to read, understand, even if you have to go from page 263 to 2 other pages just to find the picture.  Really, I do know that correct tire pressure will provide the optimal performance of your vehicle, just show me the pictures.  Once again.. Duh.  But what is the optimal tire pressure?  I have to read 2 more pages to learn that there is a sticker on the "b" frame of the driver's side.  What the heck...What "b"frame? driver's side I know, but "b" frame????    Oh, you mean the sticker that is just above the door latch.. Why not just say the sticker inside the door frame.  Again, if I had above mentioned Bifocals, I would have had much more success reading said sticker. Once my eyes adjusted, I figured it out.  Pictures and all.

I have now figured out that the tire pressure is off.. here is where the truly bright light bulb moment comes..... We all know that there are multiple lights on a dashboard, and for the most part they only light up when there is a problem, or when you first start the engine. Please keep that in mind as you continue to read.

In my mind, if the van is so smart that it can tell you when your tire pressure is low, then it should be able to tell you which tire is low right?  So in my not so bright moment.. I think.. oh, o.k.  low tire pressure, front drivers side tire - as the light looked like it was for that side (think stove lights... 4 lights, 4 burners, 4 locations connected), truly it makes sense in my brain.  Now I'm not totally useless, I do know how to put air in a tire, heck if needed I even know how to change a tire - not that I enjoy it, but I know how to do it and have had some practice.  

Off to the gas station I go...  I pull out the tire gauge, test the pressure of the tire, yup it is low, only at 30 psi, needs to be 36psi... so I add air.  Good to go....
Into the car, start the van and drive off.  Then a few minutes later the light comes on again.  I think great, I picked up a nail or something so it is a slow leak and I will have to return to fill it more often, I can handle that... And I did, and the process repeated it's self. (same tire, different gas stations, thankfully!)  So I go home and tell Royd of my adventures.  His response.. um, Di, it is the rear driver's side tire that has the slow leak.  Seriously? 
Questions that came up,
When you went and put air in the front - did you think to check the pressure in the other tires? (um no - remember bright bulb right!)
How did you think that it was the front tire? (I explained the light theory.. it was all he could do not to erupt in gales of laughter!) 
I then told him that I did add exactly 36psi to the front tire.  Which he went out and checked.. yup you sure did, however it only needs to be 35 psi (apparently that is "standard" for most tires... whatever!) I know I know all above questions make total sense, well except to me at the moment who truly thought I was dealing with the issue at hand, trying to save my dear hubby from having to do so. Oh well, we (ehem.. I NOW KNOW) the issue is with the rear tire, and I should check all tires.  However the front tire, which was low,  is now filled to exactly 36 psi, which is what I read on the side panel sticker, honest that 5 really does look like a did I mention that I need bifocals?

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