I asked my friend Chris, “Are you a man who could look at a puddle under my car and tell me if it’s oil or transmission fluid?” He said yes, and said it was oil. But the display drew the attention of other men hanging around Hueco Tanks headquarters, and I got several confirmations. Oil. Brown. Transmission fluid = red. The trooper is leaking a little oil when it’s running, and for a second or two after it’s turned off. I’m almost due for a change anyway, so I went to some off-brand of Jiffy Lube on Geronimo. When I came back for it, the guy at McOilChangemart said something like this:
“I have to decline to service your vehicle. It’s leaking so much oil all over the place, it is a liability for me to service your vehicle. Please take your vehicle somewhere else to be serviced.”
“Wha? I know it has a little leak, but why can’t you change it?”
“Ma’am, your car is leaking oil everywhere and it is dangerous. I cannot be responsible for working on this vehicle. Maybe Firestone will service it.”
“But whaaa? If it’s dangerous then they probably shouldn’t right?
“Ma’am, I cannot service this vehicle.”
“Can I just top it the oil off myself? I mean can the leak just be fixed by a mechanic?”
“Ma’am, to fix an engine like that will be several grand, and with that milage (211,000 ftw thank you very much) and running it with full oil it will probably blow up.”
“Oh Jesus just go away.”
So I got back in the apparently exploding Trooper and drove to Hill Brothers Auto, over by Fort Bliss, which came highly recommended to me by Ranger Jane. “I was driving an 88 Buick, and they completely understood me.” She told me. “They won’t do things that don’t matter”. When I finally found Hill’s (thanks lilyguide!) I went into the office, and it smelled just like Yost. I told Dave Hill what they oil change man had said. “Where the heck were you? WalMart?”
“Basically yeah, I was at WalMart. Is my car going to blow up?”
“No those guys are grease monkeys. Your blah blah blah is just blah blah blahd, I seen it a million times, they have to refuse to work on them because they’ll make a huge mess. You’re fine it’ll take 5 minutes. But I can’t possibly do it now, so come back on Saturday.”
“He said I’m leaking all over the place. But I only see a little oil on the driveway.”
“A little oil can look like a lot on the pavement. Let’s take a quick look.”
So we go out and he checks the oil stick. “Honey, you aren’t even at the low line. And this oil looks great, are you sure he didn’t sneak an oil change in there anyway?” Then he told me my engine was a Chevy, same as on the Trailblazers of the same era. “Izuzu and Chevy got in bed together for a while. These are great engines, come back on Saturday.”
So, HA. The Trooper is NOT about to blow up. This story was funnier in my mind.