Another kick in the nuts! What do I have to do to get a break?

Escape Down! multiple problems with wifey's car

Three weeks ago I wrote about how the increased cost of living is crippling, financially and mentally. Yesterday, another blow came in the form of my wife’s car, which we bought used just four years ago, suffering, what I suspect to be a bad radiator leak after her radiator fan exploded all of the sudden.

I was getting ready for bed when my daughter comes in and says something is wrong with momma’s car. So I rush out to the car to see plastic pieces all over the floor in a significant puddle of fluid. Initially, my thought was that after a recent oil change, the shop that did it didn’t tighten down the drain plug enough and that the plastic pieces were unrelated, maybe it was something my wife had run over backing out.

Looking under the car, it was clear that the fluid was leaking from the front of the car, in front of the engine, and there was a horrible grinding sound. My wife popped the hood of the car, and the first thing I noticed is how hot it was under the hood, after just 2 – 3 minutes of running, then I notice fluid spray over the front of the engine. I thought that maybe there was an issue with the air conditioning system, so I had my wife turn off the A/C, but that did not stop the terrible grinding sound or the fluid leaking.

Eventually, the grinding sound stopped, and the engine ticked over nicely, but after another couple of minutes, while I was inspecting the engine bay with a flashlight, the grinding sound started up again, and I see fluid spray into the engine bay, which caused significant smoke to billow from under the hood.

This is in addition to a secondary issue of the ABS and traction control lights turning on and off, staying on longer each drive, but that did not affect the brakes, and ABS seemed to be working fine. But, as we will have to have the car diagnosed for the suspected radiator issue, let’s have that issue looked into too.

It’s going to cost $220 just to get the problem diagnosed at Rusty Eck Ford in Wichita, I went ahead and made an appointment to get the car in for service, but that won’t be until July 12, 2022, just under two weeks away, leaving my wife driving my car as I work from home. This frankly makes me nervous as my wife has been in 4 wrecks in the past five years, one of which was in my car the last time she drove it, none of these wrecks were her fault, but she does seem to be a magnet for Wichita’s bad drivers.

We’re already in a bad financial situation, and it’s going to get worse, my wife needs her own car, so fixing it is the only option with the current insane car prices, 20-year-old cars are going for $15-20,000. The cost of the fix will have to go on credit cards, causing further financial hardship for my family. I’m at the point of thinking, let’s spend the last $9 in my bank account on lottery tickets and pray my numbers come up!

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