This was a power day for me. I had to make up for lost time around home. That’s the trouble with going to the cottage every weekend. Not much gets done around home. So today, right after I wrote my Christmas Gifts For Cottagers post I went to work.
I cut the grass and raked up the grass and leaves that were down, drained and put away the garden hose, trimmed the hedge, pruned the lilac trees and filled a hole in the backyard dug by some creature I don’t even like to think about…
Then it was off to Canadian Tire, the original do-it-yourself store, where I got some motor oil, oil filter, some glass cleaner, Rust Check, spark plugs, and a new air filter for my 1998 Chevrolet Tracker….all to the tune of $116.00
Then back home to get at what my wife describes as an “environmental disaster waiting to happen” Cleaning the interior of the car and changing the oil….
I started by cleaning the windows of the little Tracker, then the interior got a face lift, even Armor All on the dash, which they say is a no-no but I like to live on the edge sometimes. There is no end to the stuff that you find when you clean a car interior. I found 37 cents, countless empty Red Bull cans, two Tim Hortons cups, several plastic bags, half a dozen Tim Horton Cup covers, two pens, an old transister radio that was no good when it was new, a 1995 L.L. Bean Fly Fishing catalog, (no kidding) two old Consumer Reports magazines, about a year’s worth of my daughter’s university paper, (she’s the features editor) two half full bottles of windshield anti-freeze, a picture of me from about 4 years ago, and a pair of needle nose pliars I have been looking for for months….the rest I didn’t even look at, I just threw it out….
Once the interior was all refreshed, it was time to get underneath the car and drain the oil and replace the filter….did you know that oil is hot when it comes out of a car that has just been running….yup…hot…While the oil drained, I took the air filter apart and replaced it with the new one, then while I was at it, I pulled the throttle body apart and cleaned that up with some, you guessed it, ‘throttle body cleaner’ I have found that my Chev runs a lot better if I do that periodically, and I have gotten pretty good at it by now.
I put the oil drain plug back in, stuck on a new oil filter and filled her up with fresh 5W30 good old top of the line Canadian Tire Motor Oil, Supreme I think it was called.
Trackers are like a lot of small cars these days, there is a lot of stuff crammed under that little hood, and it is quite a job to get the stuff out of the way to replace the plugs. I have gotten in trouble on several occasions changing plugs, one time resulting in a need to replace the spark plug wires, my fault….so when I encountered trouble getting the second plug out, and it is one of the easier ones, I decided maybe the old Tracker didn’t need new plugs after all and decided to put that off until another time.
I got her all back together, took it for a spin around the block and then, satisfied that it seemed to be working good, decided I had time for one more job. I had purchased a spray can of ‘rubberized rocker panel paint’ Something I had been planning to do for months, ever since I had a bunch of body work done on the 4X4. So, armed with masking tape, I taped off what I wanted to paint, and went at it. I can honestly say, it is the first time I think I have spray painted anything that it came out looking OK. I can live with it….
With that all done, and while the paint dried, I grabbed the hedge trimmer again, and went back at trimming stuff up until I cut the extension cord with the trimmer…makes a neat puff of smoke…so…had to cut a piece out of the extension cord and rejoin it. No big deal, it’s my Dad’s extension cord…he will never notice the black electrical tape on the orange cord.
So….I am done. Oh yeah, I gotta go, I have to wipe up some oil in the driveway before the Environment inspectors get here….my wife is busy now trying to get the oil out of the carpet….
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