About My Blog

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I enjoy doing fun things outdoors. Family adventures, hunting, fishing, hiking, photography, 4 wheeling, etc. Get out there and enjoy ... NOTE: PLEASE CLICK ON MY PHOTOS IN THE BLOG POST SO THEY WILL BECOME LARGER.

Thursday, June 9, 2022

"Fog is My Friend" - Fog Pictures

When vacationing in years past, we had a couple days where the fog rolled in off the ocean.  Many people may get bummed out when the fog rolls in because it messes up their plans. 

I took a different approach from a photography perspective and started using the phrase “Fog is my Friend”.  I wouldn’t let the fog stop me and tried to use it to my advantage.

Fog gives you a different kind of depth of field making things disappear by distance or height.  Fog can also make the colors pop.

I decided to make a “Fog is My Friend” theme post with some of the fog pictures I have taken. 

This will be a work in progress.  

Click on a photo to enlarge ...
I won't comment on all of these but this first one was interesting.  I saw the fog roll in over the ocean water.  The water looked like clouds and half the houses disappeared.  Looks like the guy fishing is in the clouds.  I like the horizontal layers.
 We were on the beach and in a matter of minutes the fog rolled in.  I'm glad I wasn't on a boat!! 

Wednesday, June 1, 2022

After-Market Vehicle Warranties - My BAD Experience

I bought a used 1984 Toyota Landcruiser FJ60 in 1988 from a Toyota dealer in MA.  In addition, I purchased a 2-year, 24,000-mile warranty from the Toyota dealer.  It was a great truck, and I had no issues.

The warranty required me to have all the fluids changed at 12,000 miles.  I cannot remember the name of the Toyota Dealer in Woburn, MA but I was working close by at that time, so I brought it to them for service.

They changed all the drivetrain fluids as required by the warranty on Friday.  That weekend it started shifting funny.  I brought it back to the dealer on Monday and they told me there was transmission oil all over the bottom of the vehicle and I had blown the transmission!!  They blamed me even though there were no issues before they had done the maintenance required by the warranty 3 days before.

The dealer told me it was not fixable so they would have to find me another transmission.

I did my own searching and found a shop in Upstate NY that had several rebuilt transmissions on the shelf ready to go for $850.  The Toyota dealer wanted to go a different route.  My Landcruiser had 57,000 miles on it.  They said they were looking for a used transmission with less than 57,000 miles on it for a replacement to satisfy the warranty requirement.  I was livid.  I called an attorney and was told there was nothing I could do based on the after-market warranty I purchased.  The dealer gave me no option.

The Toyota dealer found and bought a used transmission from a junkyard in Canada for $150 and had it shipped to Woburn, MA.  I told them I didn't want that and wanted a rebuilt transmission ready to go from Upstate NY.  They said no.  Throughout the process, I also found out there are warranty deductibles per item that I was responsible for paying for.  I ended up paying hundreds of dollars in deductibles per the warranty I purchased.  IT WAS A BAD EXPERIENCE.

I currently have a Jeep Wrangler Rubicon Hard Rock and I started getting those vehicle warranty calls.  I talked to one company and told them my story.  The person on the phone promised me that wouldn’t happen with them!  I said I was interested but I wouldn’t sign anything until I could read the warranty agreement. 

They sent it to me.  Reading through their warranty in the middle of the document on page 5 it said, “Replacement of Covered Parts that have experienced a Breakdown may be made with original equipment manufactured parts, non-original equipment manufacturer parts, re-manufactured parts, or used parts, at the Administrator’s discretion.”

This brought back bad memories.  Hmm … let's see … an $850 rebuilt transmission on the shelf ready to go or a $150 used transmission from a junkyard in Canada.  I was forced to take the $150 tranny from the junkyard in Canada at the Administrator's (Toyota Dealers) discretion …

A Jeep Wrangler is one of those vehicles where you can modify pretty much everything.  

With that, this same warranty document, on page 10, “Section V-Exclusions – What’s not covered”.  "Any breakdowns caused by any modifications, alterations, and/or additions to Your Vehicle, or if any modifications, alterations, and/or additions have been made to Your Vehicle You are using or have used Your Vehicle in a manner not recommended by the Manufacturer, including but not limited to, the failure of any custom or add on/aftermarket parts regardless if supplied by a franchised dealer or not, all frame or suspension modifications, lift kits (unless the lift kit option is marked on the Application Page and not to exceed 6 inched of combined lift), oversized/undersized tires or wheels not recommended by the original manufacturer (unless lift kit option is marked on the Application Page and not to exceed 6 inches greater than the Manufacturer’s specifications), trailer hitches.  Also not covered are any emissions and/or exhaust systems modifications, engine modifications, transmissions modifications, and/or drive axle modifications, which includes any performance modifications.”  There were more paragraphs after this …

You will get those calls and can purchase a warranty, or not!  It's up to you but you can LEARN FROM MY BAD EXPERIENCE.   

If you are considering one of those after-market or dealer-extended warranties, read it carefully.  I had a Toyota dealer sell me that warranty.  It was not backed by Toyota.  Read the warranty someone is trying to sell you before you throw down your cash and sign so you aren’t forced to settle for “the Administrator’s discretion”.

Note: I had this lousy after-market warranty experience and a bad Toyota dealer service experience.  I did buy another Toyota after my Landcruiser as they make good vehicles.  Over the years I had 2 more bad dealer service experiences with a Toyota dealer in New Hampshire.  They are supposed to be honest.  3 strikes ... I would stay away from Toyota for your vehicle service.

Giving credit where credit is due, I have had positive dealer experiences over the years with a Jeep dealer, a Honda dealer, a Nissan dealer, a Mazda dealer, and a Chevy dealer.