Alfa Adventures

We are going to call this an Italian adventure in Germany on the way to France. We set off to Metz about 2 hours later than we though but we got going at a really good pace, at least initially so we were not worried. We knew that there would be some traffic just outside  Hockenheim because the moment we put in our destination into the car navigation the  traffic report advisory was going off like crazy. We came to a screeching halt as expected just outside Hockenheim and got stuck in  a 5km traffic jam, it was hot, AC going full blast and we were moving at a snail’s pace – it took about 35 min to get through the traffic which is essentially about 4 or 5 large highways crossing, merging and splitting. Then the road opened up so we booted.  About 15 min into the drive the car jerked!  Suddenly there is no drive, limited breaks and steering and the dashboard is lit up like a christmas tree with CHECK YOUR ENGINE flossing in the middle of the display.  We were going quite slow in the right late so I managed to simply coast to a rest stop which just happened to be there.  As we were entering the rest stop I pressed the START ENGINE button – nothing.  The dashboard again  lit up like a christmas tree and we are going nowhere fast.  We stopped – I took the keys out to reset everything pressed the Start Engine button again and still nothing – just check your engine warning.  We are stuck – in the middle of nowhere – again!.  This being a temperamental Italian car we reset everything – repeated the Start Engine sequence to no avail.  We popped the hood, checked the oil, topped it up a bit, the cooling fluid was very low so we topped that up as well.  By now about 20 min of head scratching has gone by.  I got back in the car, pressed the Start Engine and it did start this time – but the check engine warning were still on, but at least we could crawl to the nearest town which is  about 25 min away.  Not being sure if we should drive or not, we called our mechanic in Nuremberg to see if he would have an idea as to what may be an issue – figure out what to do, how to get towed and what our next option should be.  His guess was that we simply overheated!  I think because our cooling fluid was at a minimum and our oil was not at 100% the car went into safe mode – it turned off the engine mid run so it would not overheat and burnout.  By now about 50 min has gone by.  His first suggestion was overheating.  He suggested we turn off AC, and everything else we don’t need and crawl back to the nearest town to get this checked out.    We start the car, it’s all good – perfect intact, no warning lights, no beeps no fuss.  It appears that the car  simply had not enough time to cool off after the initial run, then the traffic and more fast driving simply send it over the edge.  Luckily, it all went away when the car had a bit of time to chill. Happily we set off for Metz – once again, hopefully it will all be good from here on.





2 Responses to “Alfa Adventures”

  1. | June 30, 2014 at 12:11 am #

    Another valuable lesson you learned!

  2. | June 30, 2014 at 10:47 am #

    Yeah there are a few lessons here, but I don’t like learning them on like this. Oh well, we made it there and back that is all that matters.

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