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My brother-in-law is getting divorced. All of his 4 sisters…

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My brother-in-law is getting...

My brother-in-law is getting divorced. All of his 4 sisters and their spouses, that includes me, have flown to Hawaii where he lives to give him support. My brother in law John is not well off and has been working for weeks to fix up his old VW van putting in seats so that when we all arrived between his van and one of our rental cars we can all get around ok.
Yesterday John picked up some of the group from the airport in his van. The seats are not securely fastened down and the seatbelts look rather improvised. Some of the family is reluctant to ride in Johns van that he has been working on so hard . Worse yet the van started to make a funny shimmy vibration as they drove to his house.
When I and my wife arrived the car rental place did not have the standard size car we had reserved and they asked if they could upgrade us to a SUV or minivan.
I chose the 2016 Dodge grand caravan. When we arrived at his home everyone was relieved that we could leave his unsafe car that he worked so hard on at his house and use my minivan instead.
So now John who we came to support because his divorce is making him feel like a loser feels like he is more of a loser than ever and I am the hero saving everyone from his junker.
John is not a mechanic but he is good at fixing things. Us four brothe-in-laws are all professionals.
Is there something I can easily do to my grand caravan to make it so it does not run well, or the door won’t close, or some other problem, that when I ask John for help he will most likely be able to figure out what is wrong and be able to fix it and be the hero of the day?

Mechanic's Assistant: Will the headlights turn on? Is the battery fully charged?

Yes

Mechanic's Assistant: What is the model/year of your VW?

No read my question. I don't want to fix his car I want to disablemine so he can fix it

Mechanic's Assistant: What year is your VW?

I don;t know

Mechanic's Assistant: Are you fixing your vehicle yourself? What have you tried so far?

Have you read my question

Submitted: 7 months ago.Category: Dodge
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Answered in 10 minutes by:
10/4/2017
Dodge Mechanic: Jared D, ASE Certified Technician replied 7 months ago
Jared D
Jared D, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Dodge
Satisfied Customers: 2,216
Experience: Shop Supervisor at County Fleet
Verified

Hi,

To clarify, you want to sabotage your rental so John can fix it?

I'm sorry if that sounds snarky, it's tough to establish tone over the internet- I just want to be clear before giving any suggestions. I admire your desire to help build John up by the way.

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Dodge Mechanic: Jared D, ASE Certified Technician replied 7 months ago

Any phone call pop ups are automated- not generated by me.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
i want to sabatoge my car so he can help me fix it without really damaging the rental car
Dodge Mechanic: Jared D, ASE Certified Technician replied 7 months ago

Ok cool. Let me think of what you could fiddle with that wouldn't cause any real issues on that van.

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Dodge Mechanic: Jared D, ASE Certified Technician replied 7 months ago

How about creating a funny noise?

If you open the hood on the passenger side of the hood you will see the air filter housing. There are some metal clips that hold the housing closed. If you flip them open the air filter housing will open slightly (don't worry, unless you hit a major dust storm nothing will get sucked in the engine that will damage it) and make a air sucking noise, and if you open it a little more it will make a whoomping noise when you accelerate. You could then ask John if he hears it while you rev the engine. All he'll have to do is open the hood and see that the air filter housing isn't buckled down. "Must have been left loose at the last oil change..."

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Dodge Mechanic: Jared D, ASE Certified Technician replied 7 months ago

This won't trigger the check engine light or anything and the rental place will never know anything was amiss.

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Dodge Mechanic: Jared D, ASE Certified Technician replied 7 months ago

If he catches you under the hood then the setup would be even better, you could say you heard a noise and didn't know what you were looking for, but thought it might be something under the hood.

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Dodge Mechanic: Jared D, ASE Certified Technician replied 7 months ago

Do you think that will work or should I keep thinking about it?

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
ok I did it but the increased noise it made was hardly noticeable. I can tell him the noise is only intermitent if I need to. Is there a way for it to be more notcieable?
Dodge Mechanic: Jared D, ASE Certified Technician replied 7 months ago

It should be more noticeable on acceleration. There's not much more you could do without triggering a check engine light which the rental place will be able to scan for and might assume you did something to cause it.

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Dodge Mechanic: Jared D, ASE Certified Technician replied 7 months ago

Please let me know if you need additional info.

If not:

* Please take time to rate my response- as an expert I don't work directly for Just Answer- any resources I provide to you are furnished at my own personal expense. I only receive compensation based on positive ratings from you. Therefore, I cannot offer my time, insights, advice, diagrams, etc, without that positive rating. If you are unable to positively rate my response please let me know. After rating I will still be available for follow-up questions at no additional charge.

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Jared D
Jared D, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Dodge
Satisfied Customers: 2,216
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Experience: Shop Supervisor at County Fleet

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