Dec 10, 2009

woe is me

Posted by Mary |

File this under Life Is Never Easy.

I returned to Fairbanks and to a car with a dead headlight. That wasn't a problem, as I simply bought a new bulb. However, while under the hood to replace the bulb, I accidentally knocked the tiny little wire spring that holds the bulb in place down into the engine compartment where I could not see it or reach it. I called a few salvage yards, but nobody had anything close to my car for parts. (Side note: Really? No newer Subarus in Fairbanks? Very odd.) I gave up and decided I would pay full price to get the part straight from Subaru.

Did you know that Subaru doesn't sell that wire spring? Nope, you've got to buy the entire headlight assembly, to the tune of about $200. All this for, essentially, a bent paperclip. And because of the way the headlight is seated in its socket, the standby solution of duct tape won't work.

Balls to that. I turned up the heat in my garage and got to work systematically removing items from my engine compartment until I could reach my arm in far enough to root around. Lo and behold, I got the spring back out. After putting the new bulb in and putting everything back together, the car started up just fine.

Except. There's always an except.

Except my autostart no longer seems to work. At first I assumed it was the remote battery, as my 2-way remote eats lithium batteries like nobody's business. But the one-way remote isn't working either. So I tried re-syncing the autostart and the remotes. Nope. This isn't the first time I've disconnected the battery. (Last winter I kept the battery inside by the woodstove for several days while waiting for my car to thaw enough to start. It was a long streak of -40 weather.)

So the plan is to take my car to the shop on Friday to have them see if something got knocked loose. I plan to root around under the hood a little more after work and see if I can find the issue and fix it myself. For now, I'll have to manually start it and use my keys to lock and unlock. Just like a commoner would. I miss my autostart already...


Anonymous said...

That's the price one pays for living in the lap of luxury.

aksnocat said...

One idea to check: All (or every one I've seen) autostarts have a switch under the hood that cuts out the ability to use the auto start if the hood is up. They're usually along the side of the hood and when the hood is down, the hood pushes the switch closed, allowing power to be delivered to the circuit that powers the autostart control box. Is it possible in your digging in the engine compartment that you've either tweaked that switch or pulled the wires off of it?

Just a thought.