Just a couple of things

Has your dishwasher stopped doing a good job? The repairman that came out and did a recall told me a couple of things to do. First, in order to do a good job, it takes hot water in the first cycle. Most people have turned off the heating element to save energy and that just makes the first run almost cold. When you want hot water in your sink, how long does it take to get the hot water from your heater to the sink. That is the same source as the water going into the dishwasher. Probably darn near cold in the time it takes to run a couple of gallons of water into the dishwasher. On your next load, try running the hot water in the sink just before you turn the dishwasher on. Then, on your next trip to the Grocery store get a bottle of white vinegar. If you use the Apple Cider vinegar, your whole house will smell like pickles. Pour that in the dishwasher and see if that doesn't clean out the built up lime in the pump and motor. Third, switch you brand of dish washing detergent every once in a while to see if there is too much of the old brand built up inside. Most of us use way too much. End of lecture.

There seems to be a lot of Car Stories by the gentlemen I read. Let me remind you that I too lived through the era where we got 10 MPG and Gas was cheap. My worst car was without a doubt a 1971 Vega. It was less that three days old when I got stopped at the Petrified Forest Exit on I-40 by a cop that wondered what the hell it was driving by at 74 MPH. The Dealer in Kansas City was FELD Chevrolet and he put his name in metal letters on the trunk deck. The cop said he had never see a FELD and wondered if it was one of those imports. He did give me a warning ticket so it didn't cost me anything to assuage his curiosity. That dam little car blew a motor at 12025 miles and thank god the Factory replaced it. The thermostat gasket went and when it overheated, the whole block slumped. At 50,000 miles I looked like a county truck spraying for Mosquitoes and they replaced it again for little, At about 95,000 miles it just died ugly and no amount of new motor could make up for the things that had rusted off. For 1971-75 that little car was my travel to KU and then to work car. Once a week (generally Saturday, I drove it in the garage and had to tighten down all the bolts on the carburetor or it would leak gas all over the engine) I tried everything I knew to get the screws tight even locktight and nothing but regular maintenance worked. For some reason the Vega had itty bitty wheel bearings and if you didn't re grease them about every 15,000 miles they would burn up and eat either the brake drum or the spindle. One time it did both. Oh well, the crowning insult to the whole thing it was the ugliest car I ever owned.



  1. Hey! I feel smart! I already knew both of those about the dishwasher. Vinegar ROCKS. It's great in the wash, too, if there are towels holding onto icky smells. I pour a cup or so in with them and put it on the soak cycle before washing them. Works like a charm.

  2. Great tips about the dishwasher, I think ours is having the death rattle right now. I bought a used 72 Vega for a drive to work car.
    Like you, replaced the engine once, when she blew again, had the junk yard put the hook on it!
    You get what you pay for was true with a Vega.

  3. MUD, I always run the extra heater on the dishwasher, but now that you mention it, I'm not sure the element is working. I've got a continuity meter (we're old appliance repair folks in my clan), so I'll test it tomorrow.

    My dishwasher is a long way from the water heater, so I always run the faucet until hot. But, this time of year the water gets cold quickly in the pipes. So, if my heating element is shot, that could be part of the problem.

    I run citric acid through it a couple of times a year, but had not thought about vinegar. I'm gonna give that a shot, too.

    My wife's first car was...drumroll...a '71 Vega. Her Daddy sold Chevrolets for about 40 years, and it was one taken in on trade. As I recall, it had aluminum heads (I'm pretty sure). I know that it crapped out at about 40,000 miles not long after we married. Heads got "twisted," as Father-in-law called it.

    He had the dealership he worked for all those years work on it, and if I remember right it lasted another 10,000 miles or so.

    It was a piece of crap.

    Later, Andy