Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Car Breakdown

On my way home from work, up the steep hill from the Kirkstall Valley, I suddenly hear a rattling noise from the engine compartment of the Citroen Xantia. I stop, open the hood, and see that the auxilliary belt seems to be shredded. Unfortunately I do not have any tools to remove the parts from the belt, which seem to create the noise when the engine us running, as they beat against the walls in the motor compartment. I call the emergency service AA, who after about 30 min arrive at the scene. The guy removes the debris, then we try again to run the vehicle. Works ok for 200 m, but then the noise starts again. He suggests to cut the belt and drive home without it; since all the garage shops are closed now, we cannot go to any, and he would come next day to pick up the car and bring it to a garage.

So I drive slowly, as the engine still works. But I do not have power steering anymore, as the powersteering pump is now disabled. So steering is a bit harder than usual. And - I realise that I also do not much braking power! Now this seems to be a bit dangerous... driving downhill, without much brake force. The AA van drives behind me, ready to help when necessary. Also the generator is of course disabled, I am only running on battery. Judiciously I press the brake pedal when approaching a roundabout; works fine. Then up the next hill, at home.

From my neighbor Clive I get a recommendation for a nearby shop.

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