Wednesday, February 24, 2010

My car broke its finger

A while back, as I climbed into my Toyota Camry,* I heard something snap.

I looked down and pieces of the light switch on the left side of the steering column had broken. I think I either hit it with the telephone book that I was holding (I had just pulled my mail from the box and was heading back up our long driveway) or it caught in my coat.

I called it a broken finger. Poor car!

In any event, this was a major problem because I could not turn on the headlights. That meant no driving on rainy days or in the dark.

The car was long out of warranty. I stood in the driveway wondering what I should do. It was about 2:30 p.m. on a Thursday and my husband was at work. He's the go-to guy for automotive repair.

I went home and called the automotive place we dealt with. Dave said to bring it right over and he'd take a look at it.

My hope was that perhaps he could tape the parts back together so that the headlights burned all the time, but he could not. In fact, trying to make the headlights turn on by replacing the switch resulted in lights flashing and an electric shock to the fingers. Yowza!

So Dave ordered a whole new light switch assembly.

Four days later, I dropped off the car. In about six hours, I picked it back up again.

My car had a new finger, and I was out about $400.

And I still don't know how I broke the darned switch.

* My Camry is not involved in recent recalls. It is too old.


  1. Jiminny...$400 bucks for that?! It's like paying $200 for a new remote keyless entry thingy.

  2. We have a '99 Camry and it is too old and not involved in the recall as far as I know. I think if it was going to go speeding down the freeway in it's best effort to kill us it would have done so by now anyway.


  3. There's a thought-proviking article on the media's "War with Toyota" here:

    Meanwhile I still drive my nice little, low carbon emitting Yaris with confidence.

  4. Sorry to hear about your trouble with your Toyota. Who knew little parts could cost so much. I'm glad you were able to get it fixed though.


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