During the past month, I've learned a few things about car repair:1) Winter is the wrong time to do any kind of car repair outdoors.
2) It's always harder than what Chilton's Book says.
3) There will always be the right tool to use, and you won't have it.
4) Repairs (especially in cold weather) will take 3 times as long as you thought they would.
5) Car repairs are for people who have three arms, strong necks, and infinite patience.
6) Winter is the wrong time to do any kind of car repair outdoors.
Replacing the CV boot today was a disaster. This particular "Speedi-Boot" must be the worst designed CV boot ever. Everything that could be designed wrong was. I could've made a better replacement out of an old sneaker. The instructions say that one should check the repair every 12,000 miles to make sure it is in tact, but I didn't even make it 3 miles before the boot popped off the clamp, which was so horribly designed that it was impossible to secure the boot as the instructions simply explained. As a result, the joint is actually more vulnerable now that it was before the fix.
I went back to Pep Boys to see if there was something I could get to fix the repair, and I noticed all the different "Speedi-Boot"s they have. And wouldn't you know it, every one of them was better designed than the one I bought just a couple days ago. Great. I guess I'm supposed to pay another $20 for something that should've worked the first time! Screw that!
Usually I'm not someone who would be very angry about something as trivial as a rubber boot, but lying on the ground under my car in below freezing weather for an hour while rust falls into my eyes and my grease-encased hands struggle with badly designed auto parts that don't fit correctly tends to put me in a bad mood. Yeah.