Saving the blinker

The guys kind of poo pooed the guy claiming he wanted to save his blinker switch by not using it. I’ll have to say though if you have had GM cars, I’ve had to repair quite a few that I or my folks have owned. They have a left and a right spring in them that eventually breaks causing the cancel function not to work. I used to keep a few on hand all the time that I had collected from the junk yard until they started stocking new ones at the dealer. 80 cents worth of springs versus $30 for a new switch and a lot easier.

Let’s just hope the guy doesn’t decide he wants to save wear on the brakes :wink:

Why would anyone use the turn signal when there are no other vehicles in sight? I usually drive through red lights when there are no cars in sight. Why sit and wait? Who would I be waiting for? Would anyone roll down the window and hang their arm out to signal a turn if there were no traffic on the road?

“Would anyone roll down the window and hang their arm out to signal a turn if there were no traffic on the road?”

Actually, I have. The turn signals on my motorcycle stopped working, so I used hand signals for a few days. You never know when there is a car you can’t see, and I wouldn’t want to get a ticket.

If you are so afraid of something breaking that you are afraid to use it, (like turn signals), get a better car.

When driving off-road, it’s hard to break the habit of using turn signals. Using turn signals should be something you do automatically without thinking about it, like putting on your seatbelt, or putting your foot on the brake pedal when you see brake lights on the car in front of you.

I have, too. I’m one of the few around here who does. I also turn into the correct lane on multi-lane roads, and then blinker to the lane I need. Again, one of the few who do that here.

Like Whitey said…you never know. That car you didn’t notice might even be a cop who’s behind on tickets for the month.

Triedaq goes the person one better who wants to save his blinker switch by not using it. Triedaq is so cheap that he wears his glasses as little as possible and goes around bumping into things. He maintains that looking through the lenses wears them out and glasses are expensive.

Mrs. Triedaq

A penny saved is a penny earned…

I would not buy a car that I thought I might have to refrain from using the blinkers on in order to prevent them from failing. Blinkers are a safety item. Having to refrain from using them is unthinkable.

In over 40 years of car ownership I’ve never had to replace a blinker switch. And I always use my blinkers, whether turning or changing lanes. It is safety common sense. The thought of acepting that type of failure as so normal that one needs to keep spares around boggles my mind.

I’m a great believer in habits = no need to think.

Turn? Blinker on. No need to decide how much traffic, etc.

This reminds me of a former co-worker who refused to turn on her headlights while driving in fog, at dawn and dusk, and during rain–despite state ordinances requiring the use of headlights. One day, I asked her why her car was always the only one entering the parking lot without lights in the early morning hours when it was still quite dark.

Her answer? “Oh–I used my headlights a few times, forgot to turn them off, and wound up with a dead battery both times. So, I stopped using my headlights except at night”.

I then asked her if she had any idea how much the fine was if she was ticketed for driving without lights, and she replied that she did not know. I upped the ante a bit, and asked her if she had any idea about how much a car accident might ultimately cost–in terms of both actual monetary damages and possible loss of life–especially if someone is found to have caused the accident by driving without headlights. I must have stumped her with this question, as she just looked at me more blankly than she usually did.

I am practicing my blank stare just in case someone asks me such a question.


All joking aside, I did have a close shave one day with someone who didn’t know when to use their signal. Down a back country lane, in broad daylight, I was coming up behind a car that was stopped on the road; it looked like they were stopped to get their mail, so I started to go around them when the car suddenly turned into a driveway on the other side of the road. I had to slam on the brakes and came very close to hitting the car as it was turning in. Had the guy had on his signal, I would have stopped instead of trying to go around him.

So, no s**t, there I was in Butzbach, Germany back in - oh, it must have been 2001 - at about 0100 pulling away from an ATM. It being the wee hours of the morning and there being no visible moving traffic, I simply pulled out of the bank parking lot and turned without signalling. Well, a Military Police officer pulled me over and gave me a ticket. I argued that the purpose of a turn signal was to SIGNAL other drivers of my intent. If there was no one to signal, then why use the signal? His response was that it was the law in the same manner I wouldn’t run a stop sign or red light even though there was no cross-traffic. While I agree that use of the signal may shorten the life of the device, in some places, it’s just as illegal as running red lights.

I have also replaced blinker switches four times, once in my '68/‘69’/72 GMC/Chevy/Chevy Frankentruck. This was the stalk on the column. I replaced one in my 1979 Toyota SR5 pickup when the thermal switch wore out. I’ve replaced it twice in my Jeep, but there’s probably something wrong with it. It hasn’t worked right ever since a fender vs. guard rail encounter back in 2000. Old blinker switches were mechanical and could wear out. Newer switches are solenoids and will likely outlive the car and its owners.

I like watching high-speed car chases in which the rabbit uses his turn signal. Yet, soccer mom in the mall parking lot doesn’t. Hmm.

“I simply pulled out of the bank parking lot and turned without signalling [sic]. Well, a Military Police officer pulled me over and gave me a ticket”

He pulled you over because you allowed it by not signaling. If you’d been drinking to excess or had a bong between your legs, he’d have a good story to tell at the end of his shift. He got you for a primary offense, but that opened the door to a secondary offense, like a seatbelt violation (in some areas).

You don’t seem stressed about it, which is to your credit.

42 years ago, stationed in Quang Tri Province, there had been problems with the main road being mined overnight. A standing order was issued that the road be closed at dark and not opened until an engineer/EOD man was escorted the 6+ miles with a mine detector each morning to find explosives buried in the dirt road. I was amazed that every morning the EOD man rested the mine detector on his shoulder and walked the road which by then was paved. The military is the epitome of anal retention it seems.

True that. Ted Bundy was pulled over in Utah by a sharp-eyed state police officer for nothing more than a missing front seat.
I work in the Army’s JAG office. We see many routine traffic stops that turn up many larger offenses. If an officer plays the odds, someone pulling away from an ATM at 0100 is probably replenishing his drinking fund having drained it by drinking. My point was that in some places, it’s illegal to turn without using the signal. And it was no big deal. The Special Prosecutor worked down the hall. He dismissed the ticket. It’s good to be JAG.
It would be foolish to keep a bong between my legs. What if the bong water spills?
What? As if I don’t know? I went to the University of California.
Yes, the military is all about routine and regimen. However, some of the most compulsive people I’ve ever known are not in the military. Some of the most disorganized people I know are fellow Soldiers.
Good catch. One ‘l’. Thanks.

I see it everyday. People making lane changes, turning, whatever and NOT using a turn signal.

All you guys are missing the one important part. The cost of the blinker fluid would be a fortune.

If you ever let the smoke out of that column switch it’ll be over with. And obsession with petty details seems quite anal. My local city court seems intent on robbing every poor kid in town at $110 for burned out tag light.