So this past weekend we drove to the Club Regionals tournament in Corvallis, Oregon. We didn’t do all that well, but that’s not what this post is about. This post is about my faithful 2002 Honda Civic EX four door manual transmission.
This car survived my college years driving to and from numerous tournaments in Georgia and the Carolinas. It also survived our 3-day cross-country trip from Virginia to California with us, two cats, and a trunk full of books and computer equipment. It has most recently survived getting it’s passenger-side doors severely dented by another car whose driver probably needed glasses or a brain or something. We have yet to get that fixed, as the doors still open and close fine and are still water-tight, not that it rains much anyway. Oh, and the car just hit 65,000 miles. yes, we took it in for the 60,000 mile inspection.
Getting back to my tale, we were rather far along on our trip to Corvallis, somewhere in northern California or perhaps southern Oregon, when we noticed a rather disturbing grinding/scraping noise coming from somewhere near the front of the car whenever the brakes were used. Thankfully there was little traffic and the trip was almost entirely interstate driving. However, by the time we reached our hotel the scraping noise was quite pronounced and even carried on for a bit after the brakes were released.
We queried our mechanically-minded teammates and they figured it was the brake pads, and possibly also the rotors depending on how bad it was. So we called an auto shop to see what the turn-around would be to get it fixed. They seemed to think it would be pretty straightforward, so in the morning before our Sunday games I dropped the car off. They called about an hour later to say it was indeed just the brake pads, with no real damage to the rotors, but they also added that the alignment was pretty bad and the tires were completely bald, down to the secondary rubber on two of them. I knew the alignment had been off for a while, and the car was still on its first set of tires, so I agreed to them going ahead and fixing the alignment as well, and replacing the tires.
Dave pointed out that the tire price was probably a bit of a rip-off, but we picked the car up after our games were done with no hassle at all, and now it’s (hopefully) as good as new. We had a pleasant and uneventful ride home, and are only out $500 for the entire car-fix ordeal, when I was really afraid it’d be a lot worse. Plus we weren’t inconvenienced at all as the car place was only a mile from the fields where we were playing. All in all I’m pleased to say that the crisis was averted and the car is doing quite well.