Car Repair

A Breath of Fresh Air

As the owner of a 1999 Porsche Boxster, I was horrified this weekend to be the first of 4 owners to realize that this car has a cabin air filter. Once I determined that the part was replaceable and not an alien lifeform taking hold in a hidden corner of my car, a replacement was procured. It’ll save me about 15 pounds next track day.


Car Repair Hardwood Floor Kitchen Remodel

Weekend Update

Well, I haven’t been blogging in a while, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been getting anything done. Quite the contrary.

This weekend I had a great time with some fraternity brothers in the mountains, so I didn’t get a lot done on the house. However, it was a much needed break, because…

The subfloor had to be replaced. That was a crap job. About 20% of the particle board was absolute trash. In the worst spots, I was able to remove the majority of the subfloor with just the shop vac. What garbage. So, most of last week was spent replacing all of the subfloor, and most days I worked until past midnight. There wasn’t much room for blogging, as I was dead tired. However, last night, I finished replacing all of the subfloor with new 3/4 inch OSB. I learned a few things about subflooring, though. It’s very easy to do a crappy job, but it’s quite difficult to get everything right. And I know it’s just subflooring, but like the idiots that built this house, they saw the concrete they were pouring as “just the foundation” and now I’m having to repair it, too. So, I did a quality job and the floor is absolutely rock solid. No creaks, no squeeks, no mushy spots on the floor. That’s what you should expect with new subflooring that was screwed (and not nailed) into the floor joists. For those wondering (probably nobody), I used 7 pounds of screws. I also installed a 6 mil moisture barrier under the subflooring instead of 15 pound roofing paper. I’ve got Rosin Paper for the actual hardwood.

I’ve got some pictures of the job in progress, but since these pictures were taken, all of the subfloor has been put down.

I installed the floor jacks a few days ago and have already lifted the floor about a quarter of an inch. The kitchen door latched for the first time since we moved in!

I also fixed my air conditioner in preparation for the big weekend in the mountains. I’ve got a Delphi compressor that blows in the high 40’s on hot days. Comparing my car’s outdoor thermometer to the barista thermometer I Shanghai’d for my A/C vent, when I’m crusing at a decent speed I can get near a 50 degree drop. That’s just amazing to me.

I just finshed cleaning out all of the cabinets on the refridgerator/stove side of the wall. I can’t decide if I will rip them down next or clean out the other cabinets, but I am excited about ripping out my POS vent hood. I can’t wait to tear that thing up and I may take a few extra minutes to wail on it with my Engineer’s Hammer (An Engineer’s Hammer is what Lowe’s calles a 4 pound sledge. I had to buy it and I’ve used it many times.) Trash day’s tomorrow!

But for now, I’m going to take a bit of a break. It has been a very hard, absolutely draining day. We hope that Jay is in peace, and all of our love is with Susan, Virginia, and Elizabeth.

Car Repair

I can’t feel my face!

I picked up my new Delphi A/C Compressor from Napa today (for my car) and I fixed my wife’s A/C. I froze my face off driving her car around town after work today, and that’s a good thing.

Car Repair

Four Seasons… you sneaky bastards

Since Napa generally sells better quality than AutoZone and Advance Auto Parts, I bought my new compressor from them. I opened up the literature and realized that it looked awfully familiar. A quick Googling generated my answer: Four Seasons is a division of Standard Motor Products… the parent company of Factory Air. Oh you asses.

I’ve got a Delphi on order. It will be here today.

Car Repair

Screw You, Factory Air

Oh Factory Air, how doth thee suck? Let me count the ways.

What a shit company. Did I say that already? I was trying to replace my A/C clutch. It’s not that easy, but it’s not rocket surgery. Here’s how it is supposed to work:

Step 1: Remove captive nut
Step 2: Remove retaining ring
Step 3: Remove clutch engagement mechanism
Step 4: Remove another retaining ring
Step 5: Remove other half of clutch

Here’s what happened:
Step 1: Remove captive nut
Step 2: What? There’s no retaining ring? Where… how… why… uh? huh? How is that attached? What do I………. oh… THEY WELDED THE DAMN CLUTCH TO THE AIR COMPRESSOR.

Guess what? I got off half of the clutch, so I’m to the original Step 5, believe it or not. But here’s a funny story: I checked the charge on my A/C system and saw that it was low. It shouldn’t be low, since I charged it 12 months ago, but it is. I have looked for the damn leak for months and could not find it… until today. After I got the damn clutch off, I noticed there was a nice ring of almost glowing goo inside the clutch compartment. The front seal of the air compressor has apparantly blown (this compresor is only 15 months old!!!) and the clutch dust and bright green glowing PAG oil has mixed with the clutch dust and hidden the leak from sight, until today. Maybe the thermal shock of welding a clutch to an impeller shaft created a warped shaft right at the front main seal? Maybe the additional weight of a non-perfect weld job moved the center of gravity off the axis of the impeller shaft, thus creating a small vibration that opened the seal from the shaft. Or maybe the act of using hundreds of amps of electricity to melt two metals together was enough to melt the fragile plastic seal.

So here’s my delema: I’ve got a $114 clutch that I can install tomorrow, or I can return the clutch and chuck that piece of shit in the trash and get a $300 compressor from Delphi. I’m leading Delphi. Not that anyone comments here, but if you’ve got two pennies worth of a thought, I’d like to read it.

So Screw You, Factory Air. You have ruined my day. It’s 9:20, I’m dirty, I have a headache, I’m tired, I’ve run around town looking for solutions to your crappy design, and I am not getting much accomplished in my kitchen today, because of you. And I went to the dentist today.