Thursday, February 25, 2010

Tank 224 on 2/24!

Went to the Wawa in Central Park on my way home last night and the pump
stopped after 11.414 gallons. I had gone 432.2 miles, so my alleged
fuel economy was 37.87 miles per gallon, the highest since November 12
of last year.

In my experience the gas pumps are likely set differently, so this great
mileage number may be negated to a fair degree if I refuel at another
"more genrous" pump next time-- as that would make the mileage
calculations indicate a lower fuel economy because it'd push in more gas
than the Wawa one.

Since my lasr refueling, I replaced one brake light and both headlight
bulbs. The one brake light because just the one had burned out
(although the other one had also burned out a few months ago), and both
headlight bulbs because they say that headlights fade over time and I
didn't want one headlight to look a lot brighter than the other to
oncoming traffic.

But I may have messed up the light bulb alignment as I put in the two
new headlight bulbs, because from the driver's seat it looks like the
driver's side lamp is aiming a bit higher than I remember it.

Also I replaced the windshield wipers on the corolla and minivan as
well.

MY 2005 COROLLA CE AND 2008 SIENNA SE HAVE NEVER BEEN RECALLED DUE TO
BRAKE, GAS PEDAL, FLOOR MAT, OR ANY OTHER ISSUE. JUST FOR THE RECORD,
ALTHOUGH I WOULD HAVE PREFERRED TO HAVE BOUGHT AMERICAN-BRANDED CARS,
THESE TOYOTAS HAVE NOT CAUSED TOO MUCH PROBLEMS FOR US.

EXCEPT FOR THE DEALERSHIPS WHEN WE GO THERE FOR WARRANTY WORK. THE
DEALERSHIP SERVICE DEPARTMENTS HAVE BEEN MUCH LESS THAN DECENT.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Tank 223 - 17 February 2K10

Fifteen days later, I added more gas to the mighty (and not recalled for
steering, brakes, or gas pedal issues) Corolla. The great snowstorms
canceled work for several days, so my days between tanks average has
increased to 11.2 days for the year.

The Corolla was called into around-town duty for three days as I took
two of the kids on a road trip to New York last weekend, so my fuel
economy was not that great - 34.77 mpg after putting in 11.198 gallons
for 389.3 miles traveled.

I am pretty close to hitting 86,000 miles with this car. It has taken
over five years. Only another 100,000 miles and I will have gone as far
as light can go in just one second!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Tank 222 - 2 February 2K10

This morning I refueled at one of the two Wawas near my house. The
mighty (and not recalled due to gas pedals or floormats) corolla had
gone 415.9 miles and I put in 11.398 gallons of gas, making for an
average fuel economy of 36.49 mpg.

Part of me wants to put more gas in this afternoon at the other Wawa
near my house just to see if anything different happens. Like in the
Groundhog Day movie. But I probably won't do that because it'll mess up
my "days between tanks" statistic.

One other thing I have been thinking about recently is the other cars
around me in traffic. I see a lot of expensive luxury and/or "sports"
cars around me on the highway and in town. Certainly these cars are
sold at a premium price because of the "extra comfort" and/or "extra
performance" attributes.

I can't say much about "extra comfort," because so far the mighty
corolla has been adequate for my needs. Perhaps as I get even older
I'll feel that my seats need heat and air conditioning, or that I'll
need a voice-activated phone or navigation system (doubtful). So
premium pricing for additional comforts perhaps can be argued as
worthwhile.

But paying extra for a car that can speed up faster or go around corners
faster is looking more and more like a waste of good money. Why?
Because most of the time when you are driving around, you are not on an
empty road and you can't drive with a lead foot or zip around turns with
careless abandon. Most of the time, your acceleration and top speed is
determined by the cars in front of you and around you.

What good is it to have a car that can get to 60 miles per hour faster
than most other cars, if most of the time you are stuck behind those
very same cars that can't speed up as fast? I think that would be
really annoying. Even in my car I could speed up fast enough to hit the
cars in front of me at a stoplight, and the mighty corolla isn't truly
known for its acceleration prowess.

Seeing those Mustangs and Camaros and Acuras on the highway, locked
between all sorts of average cars with people who don't really care to
accelerate with impunity, it's just sad. These "performance cars" are
corralled and hampered by all these inadequate impedances all around
them, preventing them from achieving the dream of amazing, blazing speed
that is promised in the TV advertisements.

It would make me weep if it didn't make me laugh so much.