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Lousy Luck

A couple of weeks ago, I bought a tank of gas, and shortly after, my check engine light came on. I called the Toyota Dealer to make an appointment to bring it in, as it is very much so under warranty. However, the service guy told me that it may be that I didn't have the gas cap on tight and that if I brought it in and it was the gas cap it would cost me $800 for that diagnosis, as it was my fault and not covered by the warranty. What?? $800?? but whatever, if it was the gas cap, then I'm all for trying that and not dealing with bringing it in. And he told me it may take several trips for it to reset itself... OK. give it a week of driving.

So a few times later the MAINT REQD light comes on. Chad reads in the manual that it means the oil needs to be changed. I was a bit curious to know how it figured my oil needed to be changed, because it didn't. So then I just thought it was related to the check engine light.

Which brings me to this morning! I'm driving into work and I know I don't have much gas, but the gas light isn't on, so I know it's enough to get me to work, at least. Well on my way, it comes on. So I stop at the truck stop by work to fuel up. I fill my car and was only slightly annoyed when the Pay at the Pump told me to go inside for a receipt. But then I was very annoyed, when my car didn't start again!!! It turned over, but didn't start. So I pull out my cell phone to call Chad to see if he has the roadside assistance number, because I hadn't put it in my purse yet. (New service our insurance JUST started offering!) Low and behold, my cell phone doesn't work! I can't dial a number, and I can't access my phone book. So now I'm sitting in my car at a gas pump, my car won't start and my cell phone won't work (even when I turn it on and off!) So I head into the truck stop, luckily it's a truck stop and there are phones, but no phone book!! I sit down at one, and call Chad. He doesn't answer, because he doesn't recognize the number. I then call the number on my insurance card to get the roadside assistance number and call them. Again he tells me to check the gas cap. So I go back out and check it. It's on tight. Car still doesn't start.

I come back. I then pull out my calling card (which apparently I keep for occasions like this) but it has ZERO minutes on it! So I reload my card, which takes 10 minutes and meanwhile a trucker is talking to me about what's wrong with my car... I'm not really caring. I get more minutes on my card and then call my mom, because I need to find out the phone number for work, so I can call my boss, because now I'm also late for work. So after flubbering to my mom and explaining what I need, she finds the number for me. I call my boss, who is very understanding. I then call the Roadside Assistance back and they call a tow truck for me, but it'll be about 45 min to an hour. And I don't have a phone number to give them, because mine doesn't work! Although right after I get off the phone, mine makes a weird beep and starts working again, and I have a message from Chad.

I go back out to my car, and sit and wait. I decide to read the manuel while I'm waiting, because I have nothing else to do. That's when I find out that there is a mechanism that needs to be reset when the oil needs to be changed. It then triggers the MAINT REQD light after 4500 miles. And eventually, will lock your car from being started! I have never heard of this. And apparently Sears did not do this when I took it in last time. SOOOO I reset this oil changer tracker thing, and shazam, my car starts!

Now I have to go back inside, because my phone still doesn't work and cancel the tow truck. While I'm on hold, my trucker friend asks me what it was, and tells me that these new cars are too fancy, and that's why he sticks with the older cars.

So I made it to work about an hour and a half late. Not a good start to my day!!! AND I still need to figure out what is up with my check engine light. The guys at work suggested having Chad call or take it in, because it shouldn't cost that much, and think that maybe a guy would get better service! AND I still don't know what was up with my phone.