Leaky Radiator

Honda Element

Well, before I purchased the vehicle I took it to a mechanic for and overall evaluation and he gave it a clean bill of health.  Sadly, that same day when I got home, Jerry called me to tell me that there were a few spots of what appeared to be coolant on the spot where I had parked the element.  Sure enough, after closer inspection I saw where there was dripping from the bottom radiator hose area.  I replaced the hose but the leak continued, so I replaced the radiator with a new one and the leak stopped.  Cost me $180 at NAPA and took me several hours.  While the face/bumper was off, I:

  • took the opportunity to make a few cosmetic corrections (sanded and primed small rust spots.
  • added a front camera that I already had,
  • added an air horn which I took off my motorcycle.
  • added I light bar which I integrated into the grill $44 at Amazon

    Autofeel LED Light Bar, 30 inch 20000LM 9000K Spot and Flood Beam Combo Triple Row Light Off Road Fog & Driving Light Bars.

     

Car Camping

Honda Element

After thinking about the pros and cons, I broke down and bought a Honda Element to convert into a mini camper.  I got the idea after my last road trip when I had to sleep one night in a Walmart parking lot because I was tired and could not find a campsite to pitch a tent.  I’ve seen lots of videos on camper vans, but I can not afford a van right now and I am not comfortable driving a large vehicle.

The Honda Element seems like the ideal size but finding a decent one is tough since they stopped production in 2011.  I wanted it to be:

  • a manual transmission,
  • all wheel drive,
  • under 100,000 miles,
  • free of accidents,
  • free of rust,
  • between 2006 and 2008 (2006 got a small boost in horse power and other refinements.  And 2008 was the last year model with a sunroof or skylight like Honda calls it),
  • and under $5K

Finding an Element that meet the above requirements was a challenge.  I finally found a 2007 EX model for $5,500 and 121,000 miles.  It has some dings and dents but overall seems like good deal.

I will use this blog to log all the tweaks, modifications and corrections that I make to the element.

DAY 13 – YNP WORK

Road Trips

No hiking today.

Work is frustrating with the international youth. It seems that it is very hard for them to get fired and they know it. I have repeat offenders (loud voices, music, drunkenness, etc.) and nothing happens.

My sleep deprivation is also taking its toll.

If I do not find a hiking partner soon I think I will blow off this clam bake. I did not come here for the work, I came to enjoy the park and I am doing very little of that.