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Engine coolant drama

The truck has been in the shop all week and I’ve realized it’s a great way to save money and diet. All of a sudden, shopping and cheeseburgers are not convienient. Lots of bike riding in the meantime. This morning I feasted at Taco Shack and loaded my backpack full of groceries from Randalls. This afternoon I went for a cooker ride around the neighborhood. My weight is varying wildly, which I blame on the heat.

Things aren’t looking well for the truck. They still haven’t found the leak, but discovered cylinders on the same side of my busted O2 sensor is running hotter than the other. The concern now is that the initial lifter rattling is a sign that the engine has a sludge problem, due to coolant seeping in somewhere. Even if the leak is fixed, is it too late? We don’t know yet how bad it is, nor if it is recoverable.

I haven’t been able to decide what I want to do with it. I got a couple of quotes on new & used engines. A crate engine+install is around $4200, whereas a used engine with 41k miles is $2900 installed. I keep coming up with different numbers for replacing heads, could be anywhere from $1000 to $3000. At that point it’s worth the extra grand to put a new engine in.

Alternatively, I could just put that money toward buying a new one. I really, really do not want another truck payment. 2009 Silverados are $32k, wtf? 2007-2008s are still in the mid-$20s. I’ve pondered buying a 4WD Z71 if I did get another, since I’ve been in a few spots where that’d be handy. Ironically, I found a 2006 Z71 at a Mercedes/Lexus/Maserati dealer in Dallas that was a trade-in.

Right now I’m leaning toward a new engine, just to get it over with. If the shop comes back and says they can make it go away with a $1k head gasket replacement, that works for me!

I’m anti-vehicle this week. The bicycle is doing very well at getting me around. Unfortunately it takes careful effort to go someplace without being a sweaty, smelly mess. I have a horrible craving for a bacon cheeseburger at Roaring Fork or Trudy’s.

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