A while back I bought a ‘97 Catera for my wife. I got a good deal on it because it had a noisy timing belt tensioner or pulley, needed control arm bushings, and a few other odds and ends.

Over the past few months I installed a pair of new control arms, a pair of hood struts, a new battery and most recently purchased the timing belt kit and a water pump.

I hadn’t started the car since we bought it out of fear that the timing belt would let go... but like an idiot, I fired it up the other day to move it. It ran for a moment, but as soon as I put it in reverse it stalled and I haven’t been able to restart it since. I’m not sure what the issue is, but I’m pretty terrified that it may have jumped timing, rendering the engine garbage.

Had a mobile mechanic scheduled to come out yesterday to do the timing belt service. Emailed him around 730am to see what time he would be over, he replied around 9am saying that he just needed to finish up another job and would call me when he was on his way. I then sat here with my thumb up my ass all day long until he finally emailed me again, at 930PM, with the simple message “Can I come tomorrow?”

So I ignored him and shot an email to a competing mobile mechanic asking about their availability.


With my luck it’ll take another week and another couple hundred bucks just to find out the engine ate itself after all... because thats just my luck.

Sometimes I think that I should have scrapped all of my cars and bought a bus pass.