Percy was called upon to take us (including Mimi the rabbit) to Bath this weekend. We were visintg family and also off-loading lots of surplus to requirement bits that everyone has in their cupboards and wardrobes, which ranged from a Wii drumkit and guitars to motorcycle helmets (I no longer own a motorcycle). I don’t know why I ever doubt Percy but I did, and started to panic about whether all the stuff would fit in along with Mimi’s travel hutch. However, it was a breeze of course, although his boot and front passenger compartment were both full.
We took the M4 then tried to avoid a reported 50 minute delay between J13 and J15 by diverting onto the A4 but, naturally, everyone else had the same idea, so we were then stuck on in traffic on the single lane A4 for the next 10 miles. On the plus side, Percy was driving like a dream, wipers were working, heater stuck on full as normal but it wasn’t too bad for once with the heatwave now over.
Whilst staying in Bath, we decided to take a trip to Bristol. I chose to take the A4 instead of the M4 as I thought the slower speeds would be easier on Percy, except I forgot the long steep hill on that particular stretch of the A4 and Percy really struggled up it. In hindsight, I should have disengaged the overdrive and selected 2 on the automatic gearbox, but I ploughed on. The rather unfortunate result (but it’s probably unlikely to be the cause) is that Percy now has a problem shifting out of 1st gear in D. This isn’t just after steep hills now, he’s doing it when we start him from cold too. Although he seems to be only doing this to me, as it doesn’t happen to Nina when she drives. I suspect he’s sulking and having his revenge on me for forcing him up that hill.
I have resorted to shifting between D and 2 to try to get him to behave and it has worked so far, but I don’t know how long this will last. It has made me slightly nervous about the journey back to London. His engine won’t last long if he won’t shift out of first gear! I’ve already checked the transmission fluid level and it’s fine, so I’m going to attempt to change all of his transmission fluid this week. I’m also planning to treat his ever-expanding rust hole where the aerial is attached, while the weather is still being kind. We don’t have a new gearbox filter yet but I only need him to last until we get back to London, so a transmission oil change will probably do for now. Fingers crossed it does the trick.