My car engine was making an odd noise. It is noisy tappets, I convinced myself. Modern tappets automatically adjust themselves. But if they get quite worn, they can no longer do so. The noise was only when I started the car and it would quickly disappear.
R advises to always turn the car radio up if you hear strange noises. I followed his advice in so far as it was only clattering when I started the car. On the off chance that Mutton Chopped Mutant is still around, I expect he could guess where this is going.
The last trip my car made was to Pakenham a week before christmas and the car then sat idle for two weeks.
Sadly I had to work today and R did not, so a car change over in our carpark was necessary. What a racket my car made when I started it. It sounds like it has no oil in the motor.
Modern cars are so good that you don't really need to check the oil between services, but I suspected my engine oil was low. Why did I not think of this earlier when I started to hear clatter? I checked and poured three litres of oil into it as there was not any oil registering on the dipstick. My car does not noticeably burn oil and the engine doesn't leak. Where has the oil gone? Well, with any car the oil slowly burns away in very small quantities. I guess the long freeway trip to Pakenham burnt off some oil, water and muck.
I was surprised how long the engine took to settle down once it had its fill of oil. I thought it would be instantaneous. It now sounds very sweet.
But again, why did it run out of oil? I am sure it was only mid last year when the head gasket blew and it was replenished with new oil after its repair.
Open drawer of filing cabinet and go to Andrew's car file. Head gasket repair and replenished with oil, July 2009. I can recall writing about it at the time. You can check back. I don't have the energy.
So, it is eighteen months since my car was serviced. Seems like just yesterday. I'll book it in tomorrow while R is home on holidays and I can steal his to go to work.
I was discussing someone at work today with workmates. He left about five year ago, I suggested. No, I was firmly told. Ten years ago. Golly gosh, before I know it, it will be 2011. As you get older, time seems to compress itself.
Later note: I don't think double overhead camshaft engines have tappets. They certainly don't have push rods.