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Datsuncog's Heaps: 19/03/21 - Wake-Up Call; No Thanks...

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  • Datsuncog changed the title to Datsuncog's Heaps: 19/03/21 - Wake-Up Call; No Thanks...
6 hours ago, Tim_E said:

It's not just the interior lights...

Ask Wife's ex-Polo. 

One thing I'm waiting to happen is the Passat lights being left on. It turns out that, unlike sensible cars that cut the headlights when the keys are not in the ignition unless you set the indicator to leave a parking light on, the vagshite let you leave the lights on when you're away with the keys in hand. Fortunately they give you a chime when you open the driver's door, then cunningly engineer the door- open sensor to fail. 

My audi was setting its headlights on completely randomly. And the chime eventually stopped working. Last new battery lasted less than a year because of this

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That 3 am maniac scramble across the gravel (not grit, I are posh) to shut the Legacy’s alarm up, stark naked and bare footed. No, I don’t miss that at all.
But the damn alarm does have it’s own battery (which apparently dies when the car is 10 years oldish) so it does keep screaming after you’ve disconnected the acid-box. So you have to find where Subaru have hidden the sounder and cut  wires to the horn thing without frightening the alarm system into immobilising the car. Which of course I failed to do.
(The Subaru immobiliser is spectacularly useless as it only inhibits starter motor operation. Bump start and you are off). Modification to fit a starter button followed. It was quite some time before I put 2+2 together and blamed my immobiliser problems on muting the alarm.

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I did similar many years ago for a neighbor, his Mazda was kicking its alarm off and myself and Amy were watching the poor bloke struggling to kmow what to do... Several other neighbors came out too. 

She kicked me downstairs and sent me out with the socket set to disconnect the neutral and we could all go back to bed. If the siren didn't stop I'd have looked silly... 

But - the question in my mind wa since MrsDC found out the reasons for the lay-up for all those months was she sympathetic to you? Or do you have a balck eye from 'slipping with a ratchet' now? 

I need to re read it again later... 

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13 minutes ago, OM646 said:



"-And i will leave a light ooooooon"


Heh, I'm giving some thought to putting together a suitable playlist for this teachable moment...


But yeah. What a palaver, over something so bloody simple... but then, I'd like to think that turning a minor automotive fault into a full-blown Wagnerian drama (and this one might have featured a somewhat repetitive score but literally had an audience of thousands - however involuntarily) is kinda my superpower...

Hey, if I can't be competent, I can at least try to be vaguely amusing in my hopelessness.

Cheers for all the encouraging words kids, it really has been too long! Glad it all managed to raise a few smiles; that kinda makes it worthwhile (I think??)

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On 3/19/2021 at 6:47 PM, bunglebus said:

Ah don't you just love it when the penny drops that it was YOUR OWN STUPID FAULT the whole time? I feel your pain with the alarm fault, FIL's A-class got the right hump after the battery went flat, and with a new one fitted I had a christmas tree of warning lights, no central locking and a siren that would NOT shut up. After disconnecting the siren and removing the fuse for the indicators, it was about to go for scrap, but having driven it a few miles home, the warning lights went out and the central locking returned to normal function. I tentatively re-fitted the fuse and all was normal again. Still left the bloody siren disconnected though! I'm told there's a battery in the siren to thwart thieves who disconnect it, and if that fails the system has a strop - don't know if yours is the same but I'd look into it.

This is why I long for the days of my 1980s Fords with only about six wires in the entire car... (the downside being that various toerags would try to steal it about twice a week).

But yeah, complex electrics, sensors and alarms are one reason for my wariness of anything built post-1996; and I've read a few Subaru forum accounts of people having to chop the damn alarm system out just to get it going again.

Not only am I waaaaay too timid to start those sort of shenanigans, the underbonnet area is packed so tightly that I still don't even know what the engine block looks like in the car; there's just ducts and vessels and pipes crammed in everywhere.

Right now, my stupidly optimistic view is that the alarm seems to be working ok, and it wasn't too bad before (compared to the experiences of other Subaru owners) so I might just trust to luck (ha!) - and keep a pair of Crocs handy by the front door...

On 3/19/2021 at 6:51 PM, Tim_E said:

Same as above. Took me all afternoon what with kids and wife and whatnot. Worth it, what a fantastic post.

But hey, I bet it felt good at the end. 

You mentioned my Passat trouble. Talk about pity party,  I think I just basically shat my knickers and ran around screaming 'don't panic' and 'we're doomed' and such, until my friend plugged his proper machine in and we discovered that it was what I had suspected all along and it was literally just a broken wire rather than a broken sensor.

But when it's your work car and it just decides to break the moment you get it then, well screaming chickens, it's stressful. 

But nice one, plus eleventy for the comedy post, the actual gremlin trouble you had and the fix. Simple though it was. Sometimes the simple ones are the best in the end. 

Oh, it felt good alright (so far)!

I'd begun writing an update around mid-February, and it was all very much "waaaah, my car's broke" - so yeah, it was good to have a resolution (provisionally, at least) to the whole sorry saga, to give more of the old narrative arc.

Glad the Passat of many shiters is continuing to perform; what turned out to be a broken wire (from a brand new reel of Halfords' finest, no less) sent me potty years ago trying to trace a fault.

But it's certainly satisfying to finally resolve an issue, even if the cause of the fault turned out to be 'the nut behind the wheel'...

On 3/19/2021 at 6:52 PM, 320touring said:

Old cars and cold nights do not good bedfellows make. Mainly as the cold befuddles the brain of the owner.

Glad the resolution was simple, though arduous to effect.

There's a reason NONE of the 6.5 cars in fleet here have their interior lights set to anything but off 

No, there wasn't much in the way of critical thinking skills happening beyond "MAKE BAD NOISE STOP"... but, y'know, lesson learned (for a while, anyway).

On 3/19/2021 at 6:58 PM, SiC said:

This is why on every car I can, I disconnect the alarm or at the very least the alarm siren. Renaults are much easier than Porsches! The Porsche siren is disconnected so should stay quiet, but the German overloads realised this and it uses the horns as a backup if it can't see the siren. Alternatively disconnecting the interior sensors, or the magic combination to disable them is a compromise that usually fixes them. Hopefully now I've said that, no one really knows where I live 🤣

Does the Forester have the little keypad where you can reprogram the cars systems like the alarm?

It does have a little keypad, but unfortunately there seems to be no way to turn off the alarm with it - you can do a few temporary things like disabling the internal motion sensors, but they reset once the car's opened again.

There does seem to be a valet mode on some Subarus which effectively turns the alarm off - but not on mine, more's the pity.

Given that I very nearly rendered my car scrap by turning on the courtesy light, I think I might stay away from the wiring for now!

On 3/19/2021 at 7:33 PM, Dave_Q said:

Great update, I personally find it quite satisfying to discover that it was just me being a clot rather than the car being broken in some unsolvable way.

RE: 2019 moped musings, if you passed your test before sometime in 2001 and have category AM on your licence you can ride a 50 with no CBT or L plates and even carry a pillion. 

I mean you can't carry a pillion on that thing but anyway.

A CBT is probably still a worthwhile investment even if you don't actually need one, £100 or so they are but an actually useful day spent getting you up to semi-independent wobbling status.

Excellent, cheers for that!

I've done diddly squat with the little Honda since buying a battery for it in late 2019 - it's currently buried under a load of garden tools, but I do still hope to get it running in the not-too-distant future. And CBT does sound useful, particularly for someone as handless as I am...

On 3/19/2021 at 7:38 PM, dave j said:

A brilliantly written update! Don't leave it so long next time, even if it's a boring update your words will make it far more interesting than I could! 

Heh, cheers dude! I certainly can't compete on a technical level with many luminaries here, nor match the many shite tales of adventure and derring-do (well, not these days) - but hey, if I can raise a smile, and provide a bit of a distraction, then it's all good... will try to muster a few more updates in a more timely manner!

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11 hours ago, beko1987 said:

But - the question in my mind wa since MrsDC found out the reasons for the lay-up for all those months was she sympathetic to you? Or do you have a black eye from 'slipping with a ratchet' now? 

No, she was surprisingly chilled about it all - and was probably just pleased that the damn thing's running again, and not the latest 'car down the side of the house' - for as long as she's known me, I've generally had one or more defunct vehicles lowering the tone of the neighborhood, slowly turning green and blocking the bin route...

That said, yesterday morning she went out in the Forester for the first time this year - and on return, informed me that the driver's side electric window ain't working...

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10 hours ago, Faker said:

Jeezuz I miss your rants DC

There's been conspicuously fewer of them since I stopped driving Renaults, hasn't there?!

With any luck things'll maybe start to shift for the better in the next month or two - and perhaps a socially distanced outdoor meet-up for the Norn Iron Shiter Contingent might be on the cards come the summer?

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There's been conspicuously fewer of them since I stopped driving Renaults, hasn't there?!
With any luck things'll maybe start to shift for the better in the next month or two - and perhaps a socially distanced outdoor meet-up for the Norn Iron Shiter Contingent might be on the cards come the summer?
I'd be up for that, but haz zero interesting old heaps anymore

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk

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So yesterday I had a bit of a poke, in a fairly non-committal way, at the stuck driver's side electric window.

Yes, I have confirmed that it does not go down on command. The others are just dandy, but not the driver's one. I sort of tapped at it a bit in a hopeful way, in case it was just a little bit sticky from lack of use, but not a lot happened.

You know what that means, don't you? I'm going to have to call in the big guns, and get a screwdriver out.

I know. 

Obviously the driver's window gets about 400x the use of the others, so it's not really a surprise that it's the one playing up. I'm hoping, in my customary idiot-optimist manner, that it's something easy like a dirty contact - and easing the switch out for a bit of a scrub might fix it. If that doesn't work, I'll swap the driver's and passenger switches over and try to work out if it's the switch or the motor that's causing the bother.

This is a salutory reminder of why I prefer keep-fit windows; sure, they can have their moments but by and large I can trace and fix mechanical faults rather better than electronic witchery...

I also noticed, upon MrsDC's triumphant return from dropping off a work laptop on Friday, that the rear numberplate was looking a tad on the piss.


Must be one of the sticky fixer pads giving way, thinks I.

Not a bother; I've a few spares in the shed so that's a quick win. After all, this week has proven me a MOTORING GOD, so nothing now is too technical for my prowess.


And then I twigged that this plate is affixed with screws, not stickies.


Oooh, lumme.

Yeah, that's not ideal. 

I should probably cut that out, grind it all back to bare metal, weld in a flitch plate fitted with a captive nut, then Vactan the lot front and back and repaint.

But, as I don't have a welder, or indeed a fucking clue about welding, I'll probably try and plug the hole with some mashed potato and an old sock, and then act surprised when it doesn't hold.

Fortunately, around this point MrsDC required my help to replant a hosta in the back garden; an apparently simple task which quickly turned into an epic struggle to remove a limestone boulder the same approximate size and weight of the Forester; so by the time that was dug out (5ft crowbar FTW), it had got dark and we were both half-killed and looking like the subjects of a particularly depressing Wilfred Owen poem.

Stay tuned for more fun, kids - I haven't even mentioned the Yaris yet...

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In somewhere non-structural like that, could you cut the grot away with a grinder then use some of the epoxy body adhesive glue that I think @lisbon_road used to great effect on his Astra? I think its like using araldite basically? If you cut a square of fridge or something, about 5mm oversize and 'stepped' the edges slightly, and pushed it through from behind, or even just glued it flat over the top - since its behind the numberplate no-one need ever know.

Might be easier/quicker/cheaper/shitter than a proper* repair?

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1 hour ago, They_all_do_that_sir said:

I'd be up for that, but haz zero interesting old heaps anymore

Good stuff!

And never worry about a lack of interesting heaps - seemingly, if I stand next to something for ten minutes it'll develop all manner of interesting* quirks and traits...

Genuinely though, it's been a bizarre twelvemonth and the thought of standing a suitable distance apart in the Castle carpark and chatting shit about cars for an hour, with maybe the option of some pizza from that wee trailer parked in front of what used to be The Swift, is almost too thrilling to contemplate!

I'd noticed your S60 had departed during one of our nocturnal rambles around the North Road area - but fear not, the one thing I've learned from Disney movies, is that shite is something you have in your heart, it doesn't have to be on your driveway (okay, so maybe I'm extrapolating wildly here).

Hope the Ionic is proving a decent steer, regardless!

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Hi it is me the glue man (according to Stanky).  If that hole is just an isolated bit of rust, glue would be excellent.  I got disillusioned with the proper stuff and would advocate araldite.  If you can access the back, glue a square on.  Ideally find something with a captive nut on it already.  Glue is awesome for preventing future rust.  Also you could use something like zintec without risk of death due to welding fumes.

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Subaru leccy window switches do seem to go occasionally, as do the motors; the motors are vexatious due to the frameless glass, dismantling and subsequent reassembly leads to wailing and gnashing of teeth. Does it try to move at all, or is it resolutely non-clicky?

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