Monday, April 1, 2013

Windshield Washer Fluid Problems - Volvo S40

I've been driving a 2005 Volvo S40 for about 8 years now. It's a great car. No major problems with it, decent gas mileage, and a great sound system. But at almost 150,000 miles, the car has seen its share of minor annoyances.

Lately, the windshield washer fluid hasn't been spraying from the hood-mounted nozzles. This was a problem in the winter months, when salt and dirt build up on the windshield. So I took a few minutes yesterday to find the problem.

First, I wanted to see what was happening when I pulled the washer fluid level in the car. So I opened the hood and got a friend to pull the lever. Fluid sprayed out EVERYWHERE! All over the engine and battery, and even over the front of the car. But doing this let me see exactly where the problem was.

The problem: missing cap on the bottom.
At the back of the hood, the tubing for the washer fluid runs from the right corner to both nozzles. And a small piece of plastic (sometimes called a vacuum T) joins two pieces of hose together just before the first nozzle. The problem is that this connector is supposed to have a small plastic cap at the bottom. Without the cap, the washer fluid just sprays out of the bottom, and never makes it to the nozzles.

The good news is that you can get this part for a few bucks at any decent auto parts store. Pop it in place, and you're back in business.

What does this have to do with Datacenter Virtualization? Nothing. But I like to take things apart and figure out what's broken and how to fix it. And believe it or not, I don't spend all my time in the data center. Just most of it.