Wednesday, December 30, 2009

I wasn't kidding about my car exploding...

Luckily we were less than an hour from home when disaster struck. My youngest daughter was driving the first leg of the journey, my oldest daughter was following with her family in her rig (though we had her daughter with us in my car.)
There was a rattly noise that turned into an ominous rattly noise, followed by a "boom!", followed by a huge cloud of smoke with us in the epicenter. (My older girl said it was like we just disappeared in a puff of smoke - like one of those James Bond cars.) We eased off the road, shut off the engine (which, against all odds, was still running) and got out to survey the damage.
Smoke was pouring out of the exhaust and the engine. There was an oil slick extending from the point of explosion to point of rest.
I opened the hood to take a look. Now, I don't know a lot about car engines, but I'm pretty sure that things shouldn't be so... well... juicy. And shrapnel is probably not good, either.

The top center of the photo above shows blown-out bits and chunks that are pretty certainly wrong.

Those are my girls, staring at the debris. I didn't get a picture of the smoke, unfortunately. (Blogger grabs camera, but not as a first thought...)
So we transferred some of the cargo and my granddaughter to her parents' car, and sent them on ahead. (I was supposed to be the leader of the caravan for this 7.5 hour trip. *sigh*) Meanwhile, Madman had arrived to rescue us, with the wrecker not too far behind him. While my car was being winched onto the wrecker, we loaded the rest of our gear into Madman's car, dashed home, crammed stuff into my younger daughter's car, and started out again.
Final verdict - I blew some sort of rod (He told me exactly what, but my brain didn't retain it. Sort of like me trying to get him to register spinning wheel drive ratios...) right through the engine.
My car, she is toast.
Good thing I had a great visit at my dad's.


Diane said...

Holy crap, that would have scared me. Is this an insurance-covered-type thing? Looks like somebody is going car shopping the first of the year. Too bad the cash for clunkers program is gone.

pacalaga said...


Wanderingcatstudio said...

WE had the same thing happen in the Spring. Thankfully I come from a family of car-people, so I knew what the noise was. We stopped and got it towed before the rod went through the engine (very lucky because it doesn't take long)

I have however had my rad explode on me, and it's just as messy (and smelly too - coolant smells horrible). I hope getting a new engine or new wheels goes smoothly

Anonymous said...

GM is selling Pontiacs and Saturns for half price -- just in time for you! I think it might be just until 12/31, so check it out.

Norma said...

Holy CRAP. I'm pretty unflappable, except when it comes to my car exploding. I would have been a hysterical mess, and I'm pretty sure that even me, the INVETERATE BLOGGER, would not think to grab the camera. Heh. Glad you got back home safe. XO

P.S. the Word Verification for this one is kiumbawa, which sort of reminds me of kumbaya, which always makes me sort of want to gag. Hee.

Cookie said...

Holly crap!

Thank goodness everyone was alright. Well, except for the car. /sigh

Happy New Year!

& Good luck car shopping!


Anna M said...

My dead battery not such a big deal now. Sorry!

Laurie said...

Yeesh. Glad there was backup. This just sounds.....expensive.

Bullwinkle said...

Your 2009 went out kicking and screaming, huh?

Sorry about the car problems (I wouldn't remember names of parts either.)

Hope 2010 is better in every way!