Exit 277

I should begin my blog with a disclaimer, I am not a car person. I change the oil when it is recommended, I put gas in it and if it starts I drive. The following saga is an overview of my experience.

A little over two weeks ago, the oil light flashed on my car dash while my new driver was at the wheel. . Nothing big, no oil light that won’t go off, but a blip. Which I interpreted “hey you need oil, it’s getting low” , which I stored in my brain as take it in tomorrow.

Tomorrow was too late. I jumped in my car and drove to work ( I work an hour away) and all was well. It was on the way home in a torrential downpour that the real fun started. I was cruising along I-80 enjoying the storm when I felt “it” , that is the only way I can explain, I knew something was terribly wrong. I pulled over to get out of the line of traffic and coasted on the shoulder praying I could get to the exit. Then the car stopped, I looked up through the rainy windshield and saw “exit 277”. Which might as well said “exit 277, nothing for 2 miles and even that isn’t much.”

So of course I tried to restart it, thinking I could limp on down the shoulder to a gas station. No dice. I called in the troops, disrupting a dinner at my daughter’s house and a Shakespeare play rehearsal for my guy. Rescue was on the way.

As I sat in my useless car, I listened to a podcast.. (hey there is nothing wrong with the battery) and watched the storm, fearing every vehicle that was speeding by me at what seemed to be the speed of sound. I turned on my blinkers so they could see me in the rain and waited.

My rescue team arrived about 35 minutes later, it was pouring rain. We poured oil in and tried to start it..nothing. We called 3-5 towing agencies and received nothing but bad news . “you are not in our area”, “two or three days”, ” not in this weather” etc. So then I called the State Police asking if I could leave it overnight on the shoulder, he said “yes”, so we did.

Tow #1, I called a tow company who said they could tow it in the morning. I am a novice so I picked a garage that I had been to a few weeks earlier, I could not call and confirm that was a good choice, I just did it. It was not. Once it was towed, they informed me they did not have the time to look it over. Pay the cashier $85.00

Tow #2, Called a different company talked with them a bit and had it towed for their diagnosis. 3 days later they called, you need a new motor, $8600. No thanks. Pay the cashier $331.00

So I began my research and due diligence into what had actually happened, as no one has given me a straight answer yet. Could be something with the oil, might be the timing belt jumped, etc. Turns out the manufacturer recommends that you may change your oil less frequently sometimes ( depending on miles) once a year. Not true. I have changed mine at least 3 times in the last year as I have a long commute. Still didn’t save me.

http://www.kisouman.com/normal_maintenance_schedule-753.html https://oil-change.info/kia-soul-engine-oil-capacity/ https://www.teamguntherkia.com/blog/how-often-should-you-change-the-oil-in-a-kia-vehicle/

So I phoned one more mechanic for information on the possibility of engine replacement as I still owe on this vehicle, it’s s 2015. He took time helping me understand and giving me every option possible. The short version is this.. no rebuilt engines are available from his suppliers, even if they were estimate is around $6K, if you order one from KIA is can take 6-12 months to arrive ( and anytime during that they could cancel the shipment…oops sorry!) or buy a motor outright with no warranty and it could be installed for around $4.5K. None of these were appealing to my wallet and needs.

My secondary approach is to reach out to KIA directly and ask them to assist. I followed the oil change guidelines and the experts I have talked to in the last month have agreed, this should not have happened. my car should have been good for at least 100K more miles.

Currently, my car sits waiting for one more tow. Pay the cashier $85. roughly $500 to figure out it can’t be fixed. Sad.

After the last tow, I will then clean it out and sadly bid it adieu. I loved that little car, my hightop tennis shoe. But I won’t buy another Soul.

Until next time,