Of Autos and A/Cs…


Hello, Friends…

Well, it has been about 3 weeks since I’ve written to you. Wow…what an experience (or should I say experiences) I have had! First it was with my car, then with my home a/c. Living in hot, humid Houston as I do, having a well-running a/c is not just a luxury…it’s a downright necessity!

The car experience is first. Have you ever gone out to get into your car to go somewhere and, just like that, the car wouldn’t start? I guess it really wasn’t that sudden, though. About 3 days prior to that time, whenever I would start my car, it acted a little bit sluggish, like it wasn’t sure whether it wanted to start or not. Do you know what I mean? I had “that feeling” that I needed to take it in and let my car mechanic check it out, but did I do that? No…I thought to myself, “I’ll wait and do it tomorrow.” Just a word of friendly advice to you all…whenever you get “that feeling”, obey it, right then. The shop was still open, but I didn’t take it in and the next day when I tried to start the car, it wouldn’t start. You know what it was? Dead battery? You’re absolutely right. I called my brother who is amazingly talented in many various ways. He came over, took the battery out, took the battery and me to the auto parts store, got a new battery, brought us home, installed the new battery and it started right up. Yea!!! He then advised,  just to be on the safe side, that I take the car to my mechanic and have them check it over to make sure that the system in the car that makes the battery work (I can’t remember what it’s called) was working properly.

When I took the car in, a day or two later, my car guy came out to the waiting room to talk to me. He asked me if my car drove “that rough” all the time. I guess I’m so used to the way it drives that I hadn’t really given it much thought. He wanted me to have the car checked out a little more thoroughly, but he and his other guys were so busy that he didn’t have time to do it right then. During the next couple of days, I tried to take it back to them and they were just too busy. I tried to take it to another place and they required an appointment to admit the car for repairs. I finally looked on my neighborhood community’s online bulletin board and found an auto repair place right down the road that stayed open late and was open until 1:00p.m. on Saturdays. I called and talked to an amazing guy named Jimmy who said that I could bring my car in right then. It was late Thursday afternoon and I needed my car before Sunday. I took it in, the mechanics assessed the problem, worked on it all day Friday and Saturday morning. They had it ready for me by 11:00a.m. on Saturday. (Do you know that the problem turned out to be? The engine mounts had given out and needed to be replaced…all 4 of them!) I think I’ve found my new mechanics!  The car is running great! Yea!!!

The next “mountain that I got to climb” was the home a/c.  I noticed, not long after the car incident, that the a/c blower was blowing air, but it wasn’t cold. In fact, the temperature inside the house was climbing up to around 80°… not acceptable in Houston during a heat wave and drought.  I am very thankful that I have an amazing neighbor across the street who allowed me to come spend the night in her nice cool house. I called my air conditioner man and described the problem. He came over the next day and performed some tests on the outside unit. He unscrewed the “lid” of the unit, removed it and examined the compressor. He was amazed to discover that something had caused a “mini-explosion” inside the compressor and it had stopped working. This was actually a great safety feature. It prevented a fire from starting! My a/c guy was able to cool the inside of the unit off and started the compressor up again. This way, I was able to have a cool house temporarily, but he gave me the not-so-good news that I would have to have a new a/c unit.

He and his partner were able to find the kind of a/c unit that I needed, purchase it, bring it to my house and install it the next day! You would think that my problem would now be solved…right? Not quite.  The a/c worked wonderfully for 24 hours, then stopped cooling. Here we go again. I called my a/c guy to let him know what was going on.  He came back out to the house, checked the new unit, went inside and checked in the attic, then checked upstairs where my “control room” is located, and finally found the problem. My primary and secondary lines were stopped up and needed to be cleaned out. He proceeded to go outside to get equipment from his truck. He then came back inside and, armed with his container of compressed air, went upstairs to the “control room” and went to work. He blew out the lines as I watched from the driveway outside. All of a sudden, as I watched the “drain pipe”, out spewed dirty, rusty water. It literally blew out! Ewwwww!!! He must have kept blowing the air through the pipe for about 5-10 minutes and soon, the water that was coming out from the pipe began running clear.  He said that I should “keep an eye” on the inside air temperature, and he recommended that I get a whole new “face lift” in the control room.  I am hoping that I can wait on that particular job for a while.

I’ve noticed during the past 2 days that the thermostat seems to be going crazy. If I turn the temperature down to 69° then the thermostat doesn’t know when to stop going down and it has gone down to as low as 64 before I had to turn it up a notch, to 70. Then, it doesn’t know when to stop going up, and was headed back up to 80. I just kept turning the thermostat up and down and up and down…from 69 to 70 to 69 to 70… Finally, late yesterday afternoon, I noticed that the thermostat seemed to finally “figure out what it was supposed to do” and is now leveling off…knowing when to shut off and when to come back on. Thank you, God!!!

I will continue to keep an eye on it, and see if it will get me through the rest of the summer and into autumn. I also plan on getting a couple of other opinions to see if I really need that major job done in the “control room”

Well, that does it for this drama. Thanks for listening (or rather, reading) while I shared this with you.  See you next time…

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