The State of the Car!

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I’ve never been a car person. I really don’t care a whole lot about cars. All I want is a car to get me from Point A to Point B in a reliable fashion; a car that I can depend on; that will start in the winter and that is easy to handle.


I had that. I had a wonderful 2010 Rav4 but it died on Dec. 7th when someone who was on drugs or some other substance and should not have been driving, totalled my vehicle. You can read about that in an earlier post:

Since then my days have been consumed by car stuff. First of all, it was the whole nuisance of renting a car, waiting for Autopac to decide what they were doing with my vehicle (23 days to decide to write it off). Then it was the problem of buying a car. In 3 days. Because that’s how long Autopac gives you the rental vehicle for after they decide to write it off.

I bought another Rav4. I loved my first one and thought I was doing the right thing. I wasn’t. It was a terrible decision. I should have spent more time deciding and researching it. But I didn’t. I am at heart a trusting person and I trusted the people who I bought the car from: Birchwood GMC.  Not a small corner car place. But I was wrong.

You see, the car came from Virginia Beach in the States. More on that later.

I started having trouble with the car almost as soon as I got it. About a week after driving it, 3 lights went on on the dashboard. This was the first time I took it in for service and it turned out it was a faulty sensor. But that was simple.

Then on the weekend the brake lights started to go on all by themselves. On and off, sometimes for hours at a time. On Monday morning I went back to the dealership to get the faulty sensor replaced and told them about my new problem. The mechanic thought it was a faulty brake switch and had to order a new one. I drove around with my flashers on for the next 4 days until they got a new switch in.

On Thursday, they put in the new switch and I thought my problems were over. I got home around 5:00. Around 6:00, my neighbour came knocking on my door. The brake lights had gone back on. They stayed on for about an hour and then went off for another hour. The next time, they went on for only half an hour.

Needless to say, I was back for service the next day (today). The mechanic followed the wires in the car and got to something called a relay switch. Apparently, there are about 35 of them in the electrical components of a car. This relay switch was full of water. This relay is found under the dash more than half way up the side of a car. There is no way this switch could have water in it, if it were not submerged in water. There is no way this relay could get water in it from the normal washing of the vehicle or rain. The only way it could have gotten water in it, would be if the vehicle had been in a flood.


These are images that I found of Virginia Beach.

21 22 images45

The car came from Virginia Beach. Virginia Beach was hit by Hurricane Sandy. My car was there when the hurricane hit. There was water in a very unlikely place in my car. It doesn’t take much to deduct that my car was flooded. And cleaned up. But whoever cleaned it up, missed some of the relay switches.

I wonder what else has water in it. There are another 35 relay switches. The mechanic did not check them all.

It really is “buyer beware” when buying a car. I learned that lesson the hard way. Just because someone is a reputable dealer does not mean that you can trust what you buy from them. Wouldn’t you think that a buyer who goes down to the US to buy vehicles for a major dealership would be aware of areas where there had been flooding and avoid buying cars that came from flooded areas?

I want my money back on this car. I want satisfaction from this dealership. How do you think I’ll do on this? Have you had any similar experiences?

I did learn my lesson. Do not buy American cars. Do not rush into buying a car. Do not trust that the history you are given on a car is accurate. Check things out. Buyer Beware!

So the state of the car? It remains in total upheaval! It is not reliable. It is not safe. There is no telling what else is damaged in the vehicle. I don’t trust this car.

Stay tuned for updates on this story.

One thought on “The State of the Car!

  1. Pingback: All’s Well that ends Well! | CM Photography Blog

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