We’ve been on the road for just over 4 months and just so you know that we’re not having fun all the time (just most of the time), I thought I would share with you some of the mishaps, breakdowns, repairs and recoveries that we have experience so far on this “Long Adventure”.
- Lost a wheel. While travelling between Mackville and Hat Head the rear passenger side wheel came off the caravan. The first we knew of it was when we heard this awful grinding noise coming from the rear of the car. Unfortunately we weren’t in a safe place to pull over and had to keep travelling down the highway for about half a kilometre. You can imagine our surprise and fright when we got out of the car and discovered a wheel missing from the caravan. A car pull up behind us and the driver informed us that our wheel had hit his car. Fortunately, on inspection of the car there was no damage. The driver then told us that the last he saw of our wheel it was travelling south, down the middle of the highway. It took Phil about 2 hours to find the wheel, which he was able to refit temporarily to get us to Hat Head where we could make proper repairs.
- 3-way fridge does not work on gas. Fortunately, Phil knows how to fix things and he was able to order the parts and get them delivered. Although, it was a little inconvenient to have to pull the fridge out.
- Caravan door lock fails and we’re locked inside the caravan. This happened a few days after repairing the fridge. After making coffee and then trying to go outside, we discovered we couldn’t open the door. The only way out was through the window, which is quite a big leap. Unfortunately the lock could not be repaired and Phil had to break the lock. It took five days for the new lock to arrive and in the mean-time we had to close the door using a bungee cord (so much for security). Again, Phil installed the new lock and the door was as good as new.
- Split air bag on car suspension. On our way up the Blue Mountains we heard a strange come from the car, just like a bag bursting. It wasn’t until we returned to our home base, at Tweed Heads where we intended to make some minor repairs and unload some of the gear that we were carrying, that Phil discovered we had burst one of the suspension air bags. Unfortunately this was an expensive repair.
- Cracked manifold on car. While at the Tweed we needed a minor repair on the car’s exhaust. And as things sometimes go further problems were discovered, the car’s manifold was cracked and needed replacing along with the catalytic converter. Sadly, this was an even more expensive repair.
- Connection to hot water system bursts and floods caravan. With vehicle repairs completed and excess load removed we were on the road again, this time heading for Boondooma Dam. But our woes were not over yet. After setting up and having a nice hot shower, I then went over to join Phil at my parents caravan, Phil then finished his beer and headed back to our caravan for his shower. He was gone less than a minute when I heard him calling. As I ran to the caravan, all I could see was water running like a curtain out of the hot water hatch, the tunnel boot hatch and the door. We had about 3cm of water throughout the caravan, it was under the bed and in all the floor cupboards. It was quite a job to clean it up, and after driving a long way, temporary parts were sourced and repairs were made the next day.
- Starter motor is stuffed. The last straw, anymore incidents and we’re going home. Well, that’s how we felt at the time. We stopped in Gympie to pick up the correct hot water system connections and then when we went to start the car, it just started. So we headed to the nearest car battery store, only that wasn’t the problem. The starter motor was caput and we needed a new one. Another expensive repair.
It’s been almost two weeks since the last incident and we’ve been a little unwell with a horrible gastric type bug. But we are now well, feeling positive and enjoying the adventure again. I’m a little behind in my blog posts, but will endeavour to catch up over the next week or two.