The mushy pedal

So, here is a thing that happened! Actually a whole mess of things have happened, but this one is comparatively small and standalone and maybe if I write about it I will both () be able to nostalgize about it in later years, and () get incentivizated to post more stuff here about the more complex other things, too.

This was the thing: the little yellow wrench turned on on the dashboard of the little red car, and the place where the mileage and stuff usually is said “A 1 15% oil life” or something instead (until you pushed the “sel/reset” button), and so we had to take the little red car to the dealer to get the wrench turned off.

That was Not A Problem, since we have the big old car also, so M and I drove the cars to the dealer night before last, and dropped off the little red one and drove home in the big old one, and yesterday morning I went to Grand Jury in the big old one, and afterward drove toward home to work from home and wait for the little red one to be done.

Then, the specific thing was that, on that drive home in the big old car, I stepped on the brakes to slow down because there was this construction and there was a lady holding up a “SLOW” sign.

And when I stepped on the brake pedal it sort of mushed down all the way to the floor, and the car hardly slowed down at all.

Which is unusual!

My conscious brain sort of ran around in circles screaming, but fortunately my tolerant and resourceful subconscious pumped on the pedal and steered over to the nice grassy slightly sloping shoulder, and when the car was nearly stopped applied the hand-brake and turned on the Emergency Flashers, and that worked fine.

My conscious brain having calmed down by that time, I calculated that the dealer for the big old car was only like two or three completely level blocks away, so I put the car into low gear, pumped on the brake pedal a few more times, and carefully drove there with the flashers still flashing merrily.

And once there a few phone calls established that the little red car was in fact already done, and the people at that dealer were happy to drive me down the road to the other dealer (really two parts of the same dealer, you know), and I drove the little red car home.

So that is what happened! My brakes failed, and I survived! Exciting!

The main morals being (1) always drive as though your brakes might fail, because they might, and (2) when the repair place up in Maine says that oh by the way the brake line on this is pretty corroded and it’s fine for now but you should have it looked at soon after you get home again, you should remember that they said that, and you should probably do it.

Next time! :)

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One Comment to “The mushy pedal”

  1. Yes, I’ve had that happen, too. Only it happened to me, as a teenager, one night as I was pulling into the family driveway, right behinds my dad’s new car. OHOH! . Whew! The gasket on the piston in the master cylinder had failed in my case.

    Still, that’s nothing compared to what happened to my brother one day. We had borrowed dad’s 5 ton dump truck, and had it loaded with 7 tons of gravel (Ok, so what’s a 2 ton overload among friends?). On the way down to the farm to dump the gravel, the brake-line blew out, killing the brakes entirely. Know how much fun it is to be speeding down a steep hill, in a overloaded dump truck, with no brakes? ;-) I do!

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