The car was dying and it only had a little less than 150,000 miles on it. The 2006 Honda Civic Hybrid was a bad choice in a commuting vehicle as the battery was undersized and wore out rapidly. The car had 60,000 miles and a dead hybrid battery when I purchased it. My junk-yard battery had 3,000 miles on it and three years after I had replaced it, the replacement was as dead as the original had been.
So, after six years of commuting, I was in the market for my third vehicle. The first two had been junkers (the first more so than the Honda) and I had decided that my third would last longer (it has, as it is still going over 5 years and 145,000 miles later). When you spend that much time every day in your car, you want it to be something that isn't a pain to drive.
But that Civic was not yet done with me. The tires on the vehicle were still the originals, which was part of why I didn't want to keep the car. Not only did it need a new battery, it needed new tires and several other large ticket items that were now more costly than the car itself was worth. With a week still to go before my new car would arrive, the first of the tires shredded itself during my drive home.
Never before had I been driving a vehicle when a tire went out, especially not doing 70mph. Too often I had heard horror stories of cars careening out of control, slamming into surrounding traffic, but that wasn't my experience at all. The car was humming louder and louder as the tire disintegrated on the rim. As I pulled to the side of the highway, still 25 miles from home, I realized that a change to the 'donut' spare was in my future, while semi-trucks would speed beside me.
I got it done and made it home with the car. I ended up purchasing a used tire for just under $100 that got me through that last week until the new car arrived. Not how I would have wanted for my time with the car to end, but it did give me a good story before it was towed away.
Subscribe to Ted Hardy
Get the latest posts delivered right to your inbox