Sunday, July 11, 2010

Vehicular Woes

We have been having lots of issues with Michael's Toyota lately.  The check engine light  keeps coming on at the oddest times and then goes off mysteriously on its own.  It gets pretty frustrating and I'm not too keen on getting stuck somewhere alongside the road, especially in triple digit heat!

So I was rummaging around online the other day and was referred to a really neat site that has a little bit of everything for those of us dealing with car repair questions.  It's called  I spent quite a bit of time on the site looking up things about my truck as well as Michael's hoopty ride.  It's a great site for those of us who aren't mechanically inclined - male or female/Mr. or Mrs. MoonCat....

Thanks to Repairpal's directory, I found several local repair shops that are included in their system.  It's nice that they're rated/reviewed and you can narrow it down to ones who specialize in your vehicle.  I've found a mechanic that I think will be able to fix our little issue.

They also have a great way to find out a ballpark figure of what you should be paying for repairs instead of what you might be getting charged.  If you use their price estimator you can be armed with that information before you talk to a shop.

For more information about this free service, check out our new friends at*This post is 100% my own opinion and words based on my personal experience with their site.


  1. Hope there is nothing wrong with your car.... my Toyota's engine light is on most of the time too. But several repair guys told me that as long as the car is running okay not to worry about it.????
    Been on quite a while now.... so who knows....?


  2. Sheila,

    We've been driving it with the light on for ages too. We've had the guys tell us the exact same and to just keep driving as well.

    The big problem we're facing right now is getting it smogged again. Here in WONDERFUL (sorry for the dripping sarcasm) California, if it doesn't pass smog, it doesn't go on the road.

    The last "mechanic" we had work on it told us that it'd be several hundred $$ to get the light to go off so it would smog. That is what they were basing the test on - the stupid little light. Not the fact that it's emissions were high or low. Lovely huh?

    Anyway, from what I'm gathering the light has something to do with the emission system. It could be as easy a fix as tightening your gas cap I'm told! Of course, it didn't fix ours :) Good luck on yours too and have a great rest of the day!

  3. cool. I will be sure to check that out. Despite selling cars, I have no idea how to fix them and generally throw myself on the mercy of the mechanics. That is a great new resource I'm going to have to try out!

  4. I can imagine! I used to be able to putz around & usually fix my old '66 Mustang, but these newer vehicles are beyond a lot of mechanics these days. Thanks for stopping in!

  5. The light is a reminder the car needs servicing and, if serviced by a Toyota dealership, they will turn the light off when service is completed. I'm not sure a non-Toyota dealership can turn the light off and it's such a bother, having it on all the time. We live more than 100 miles from the dealership where we bought the car and I've been riding around with the service light on for months, if not years. We get the oil changed every 3,000 miles so know the car is in good shape. We have a great garage and the fellows treat us wonderfully well; have even caught things we didn't know were wrong and, quite possibly, saved us from disaster. I take them homemade shortbread every so often so they remember me well -smile-.

  6. Hi Sandra,

    I would think your mechanic would do just about anything for your shortbread!

    We've had the dang thing into the Toyota dealer and they wanted to charge us a fortune because they said all sorts of seemingly unrelated parts would have to be replaced in order to fix the light and smog issue. It also gets an oil change regularly so it is just the light that seems to be the problem..

    The salesman-ish mechanic told me that it is a domino effect when it comes to things like this and the cost of owning a vehicle. I told him my policy on "things like this" is "no thank you" and left.

    This new mechanic & shop look pretty promising and reasonable so we're going to give it a shot and see what happens. :)

  7. Thanks for the info. Cars just make me furious these days!

  8. Nancy, I know what you mean. I used to take the carb and other parts "apart" on my '66 Mustang. Those were the good old days! I had to get the manual out on my big truck just to figure out how to check the oil - very sad... :)


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