So the other day, I realized that my right front tire sounded like it was replaced by a Mickey Thompson Super Swamper (a LOT of road noise), so I took it to the same mechanic that burned down my truck 1.5 years ago to figure out what’s wrong. That’s where the lid to the Pandora’s Box swung wide open.

First off, let me head off a question that probably 99% of you are either thinking or actually saying out loud in disgust, which is “Why the hell is Pat taking his Cadillac to the same shop that absolutely destroyed his last vehicle?! Is he smoking crack?!” My recreational smoking habits are none of your concern, especially if they’re cheap. But really, I primarily take my vehicles there because, while they really did fuck up my beloved old F-150 royally, they ended up doing right by me. Everyone screws the pooch sometimes, and it’s inevitable. We worked out a settlement that I found quite reasonable, and they went above and beyond what they were legally liable for. That means a lot to me. Plus, what are the odds that they’d burn my second vehicle to the ground, too?


Back to Friday morning. An off-the-cuff diagnosis of the problem was a bad ball bearing. Upon further inspection, that was confirmed. When they did a quick once over on my CTS, they also noticed that I have a bad valve cover that was “hemorrhaging oil” (while I don’t doubt that I have an oil leak, I suspect that this was a bit of an exaggeration) and that I had THREE bad Tire Pressure sensors. This last one wasn’t a surprise. I priced out the sensors and the labor to fix them a few months ago, because the TPMS warning light came on constantly. After getting the quotes, I decided that the warning light actually accentuated the dashboard nicely and was pretty, so I didn’t want to pay the amount I was told by several shops for it to go away. But now, I might have to pony up some serious cash to fix my Red American Lux Chariot.

Or do I?

Enter in that 2 year/24k mile, bumper-to-bumper (Doug’s favorite kind) warranty that I shelled out $2,500 for when I bought this whip. After the official diagnosis was made, the mechanic called up the warranty company to find out what parts and how much labor they’ll cover. An hour later, the mechanic calls to tell me what’s up. My butthole puckers. My wallet quivers. As I ask for the news, I simultaneously knock on wood, cross my fingers, throw salt over my shoulder, and kick a black cat across the office just in case it decided to walk in front of me. And...

It’s all covered. Every bit of it, save for the $100 deductible. The suckers great people at the extended warranty company, a kind of company that most of us would consider liars and cheats, came through and will honor every bit of what they’re supposed to honor. I’m not sure why I’m completely surprised by this, maybe it’s my natural suspicion of people that I don’t know, but it looks like, as of right now, that I’ll be getting my car back in the Saturday morn, good as new-ish.

A report will be made sometime tomorrow afternoon on the final tally, and we’ll see how much I “saved” by getting the warranty. Given that I had to get the water pump replaced last year to the tune of $1,200 (all covered by the warranty), I might actually be pulling ahead in this crazy money game.

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