how NOT to save money…

This is one way NOT to save money.

About a month ago, my son and I went shopping in Des Moines.   On the way home, and running on “LOW FUEL” light on, we pull into the last gas station before we left town.  I went in to pay as he was pumping gas.  Being frugal that I am, I always tell the kids to pump “the cheapest gas there is”.  (Meaning do NOT fill it up with Premium)  !!!!!!  sounds easy enough huh???   Glenns pickup usually takes about $60 to fill, but this time Maison did it for about $18.    So low in gas, the low fuel light was on, and he topped it off.  hmmmmmm….. something is NOT right with this total.

This is the exact gas pump that was in his 14 year old hand.


can you READ ?????!!!!!!!!

“Stop.  Not gasoline” yep, that is what it said.  About 3/4 the way through , he must have remembered his reading skills and came running in stating  “Mom, I think I am pumping the wrong gas”.  I dismissed him as I was visiting with someone and just said ” oh, it will be fine”

It was for about 3 miles, til the “check engine” light came on.   But who REALLY pays attention to those anyway???   I just kind of ignored it, and did so for about the last month.  I even had my husband concvinced there was nothing to it.  Run the E85 out, fill it up with regular and it will all be fine.

Fast forward to this weekend.  It is NOT fine.  The “check engine” light started FLASHING  with my husband driving it !!!!  yikes.   He found the nearest Ford dealership as he was going out of town.  Long story short.  The truck now needs a complete fuel flush, new fuel filter, new spark plugs, coils, etc etc etc…….to the tune of $600  !!!!!!!!!!!!     Nice huh??  a month before Christmas?   Good thing we saved the $40 on the initial fill up a month ago.   The service manager even said something similiar to “I have NEVER seen a fuel pump that looked this bad!!!”

SO…. when your “check engine” light comes on???  it might be for a reason.  We have argued for a month that this DOES mean something….but in my denial technique, I figured if we ignored it long enough, it might go away.

It did not.

I think it will be a LONG while til I (and my son) live this one down.

But I was able to give my “gift” for the weekend.   A $600 gift mind you.   Grrrrrrr



20 Responses to “how NOT to save money…”

  1. Lana Schippers Says:

    What is this gas for? Why is at the same pump as everything else….I mean I am pretty sure kids and adults alike have done this Kelli! Sorry….that stinks….

    • simplyaltered Says:

      it is for “fuel flexible” automobiles (so I am now told) I have no idea what that means, other than Glenns Ford F150 is NOT one. …and it is clearly stated this is NOT GAS, but honestly, who looks at that?? most of the time it is some stupid advertisement on the handle for a car wash or a 99 cent Slurpee !!! geez!!!

  2. kathy ferris Says:

    AWWWWWWW! This is one holiday story that you’ll be telling for a long time. I’m so sorry this happened, and especially just before Christmas.

    • simplyaltered Says:

      yeah, maybe we will laugh about it eventually. Putting things into perspective, no one was hurt by it, and no vehicle was wrecked or anything…..with our teenage drivers, that is ONE thing to be thankful for huh???

  3. LaVonne Bloem Says:

    Hummm, this is one time when ignoring it, did NOT make it go away. I thought you had this problem taken care of along time ago!!! I thought you drained the E85 out of it weeks ago, and put in new. Bummer for you.

    • simplyaltered Says:

      well we did not drain it out as they would have seemed completley wasteful!!! :O heck, I was gonna get use out of it and USE IT UP !!! :O (and we were told to do that , sort of)
      Yep, this sucks. I guess it could have completely blown up the motor huh??? with the luck we have been having, I am surprised it didn’t.

  4. kim aka machita Says:

    oh man… i am sorry for you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and just before Christmas 😦

  5. LisaW Says:

    It didn’t say E85 on the pump, just the handle??? It is suppose to be advertised both ways.

    • simplyaltered Says:

      oh yeah, it was written EVERYWHERE, it is just that being right on the handle SHOULD have been enough, wouldn’t ya think????? {sigh}

  6. jeanne overton Says:

    something like that haooened to us back in 1991 . i told larry that the brakes were maing lots of noise. well after a while they quit making noise. BECAUSE THERE WERE NO BRAKES!!!! we were in des moines on s.e.14th street coming down a hill and THERE WERE NO BRAKES!!!! well there went the money for the new appliance that we were on our way to buy for our new house. kelli is there a way of making the print on your comments blacker. us old people are having trouble reading them. or maybe itis because i am in the basement. sorry about your luck. haopy turkey day!!!

    • simplyaltered Says:

      Oh man, that would be bad!!! yep, sometimes we have to spend money were we NEED to and not where or how we WANT to !!!!!!!!!!!
      I don’t think I can change the font of the comments, you might just have to squint a little harder!! haha

  7. Jack Says:

    That was one expensive lesson.

  8. Pam Taylor Says:

    I like the days when you pulled in, a fella came out and you just said,”fill it up, please.” There was either regular or ethyl……and that’s it. You could ride around all night on a dollars worth of gas and still have change for a quart of beer and a pack of cigarettes…..guess that dates me but love the memories !!! Don’t smoke or drink any more….just put it all in the gas tank after I look over which gas label is the right one. What ever happened to simplicity? Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours….

    • simplyaltered Says:

      Oh pam, you are taking me back now!!! this is how I remember it at the old Texaco station. Life seemed SO easy then. Would you have ever thought something OTHER than gas would come out of a gas pump??? no, me either.

  9. Cheryce Says:

    Oh. My. GOSH. If we move there, I will definitely miss the luxury of NEVER pumping my own fuel. Oregon state law. Someone pumps for you, whether its raining, snowing, or 99 degrees out. I just roll down the window, hand them a card, and call it good. Maybe you guys should move out here… It would save you $$$. lol.

  10. simplyaltered Says:

    I would definitely love the scenery ALOT better!!! but the cost of living??? no can do!! :O

  11. sarah Says:

    i did the same thing about a month ago. filled my van from gas-light empty to full with e-85. my only excuse? a day of shopping with five kids alone and a husband in india on business for a month…so tired! my check engine light came on, too, but i researched it online and found that if you put premium in (less oxygen in the gas) the next few times (i did it when my tank got to 3/4) it will mix up and not wreck the car. my check engine light was on for about five days, but once i refilled entirely with premium a week after the initial fill, it went off, and i haven’t had any problems since. are you sure you need to replace all of that or are they just trying to make money??? thought i’d pass it along to you – everything my husband and i found said it would just clean out your engine if you only do it once. just fyi!

    love your blog, by the way! looking forward to trying the detergent – my baby has excema and i think this might be a great thing for him!

    • simplyaltered Says:

      Oh my goodness, I can not believe this!!!! yeah, for you that you skipped out so easily!!! I think the difference might be that we topped our tank completley off, and then when we were trying to run it out, we were still not using premium!!! had I known, I certainly would have. We went and finally picked up the truck tonight, and $600 later, it is finally running good. I have to say, it has high mileage and alot of years on it, so that might have also attributed to the extent of the damage. 😦

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