Saturday, January 08, 2011
Virtue pays off
I could be taking this weekend off and playing board games up in Manchester. On the other hand I have a lot of work to do so I decided not to go. Even this morning I wasn't sure I had made the right choice. Tet also decided to stay home and get things done. It turns out this was the right answer. We decided to brave Costco for cat food and new phones and took the van. It is easier to load than the car. On the way there the battery light came on. Yes we could believe the alternator was on it's way out and decided that actually before I started out on the longer tours it would be good to have a new one, and a fan belt. As we left Costco there was a rattle and a couple of clonks. Not good noises. No sign of anything obvious though. We thought a bit and pulled over again. Could the nut holding the pulley on the alternator have fallen off? If it had how much damage could that pulley do when it came off? Yes and surprisingly little it already had. We were about to drive the last couple of miles home when the penny really dropped with me (what can I say I was feeling ill it's why I wasn't driving). The heater is usually good but was cold, no functional fan belt doesn't just mean no electricity it means no cooling. We got the engine off just as it overheated. As we had chosen our spot to pull over we could wait safely for a recovery vehicle. However, if we had gone to Stabcon this would have happened on the motorway. We wouldn't have had the chance to pull over and think to not only would we have broken down, on a motorway we would probably have done a lot more damage too. I'm really glad I decided to work today, even though I lost more of the day than I had planned.