You can do anything* with YouTube!

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A couple of weeks ago our car air conditioner decided that it hated me and was going to take a vacation. It came back for a brief stay and then died completely. If you’ve ever had a compressor replaced, you might know that it requires a number of parts for a proper replacement, which means that it adds up to quite a bill. Because I’m cheap and think I can do anything, I hopped on eBay and ordered the parts for an insane bargain (seriously, I think I had $150 in it all).

I should mention that I am not a mechanic, though there was this one time in high school when I was flat broke and my breaks stopped working. I had to replace the “master break cylinder” and breaks. Don’t ask me what that part does or how I did it, I have no clue. I just know that it (I?) was insane, but it worked!

Okay, back to the AC. Our parts arrived and my husband and I got to work. We found a video on YouTube, did a tiny bit of Googling, and we were on our way. To further bore everyone in my Instagram feed, I decided to document our monumental stupidity.

We disassembled the parts (a lot of them) above the compressor and, after about 12 hours, our car was back together – and it still ran! Since we had exhausted our brain cells on coolant and refrigerant fumes, we settled in for the night. Tomorrow, we would take the car to a service shop and have the system cleaned (of the swamp-like debris seen above) and the air conditioner charged.

The next morning, I dropped off the car and waited. I felt like I was waiting on my child to be born. Would it work? Would they come out and greet me with their hat off, tell me that it was a total loss and that my husband, who would love nothing more than to trade my car in, was right? It was real, people.

…and then. It happened! It was alive!!!!!!

For about 1/4 of what a mechanic would charge (they’d earn every penny!), we have a fully replaced AND functioning air conditioner! I couldn’t believe it, I even asked the guy at the counter, “…and it works?” when he told me my baby was ready. I rushed out to the parking lot with a dance in my step, hopped in my car, blasted oldies radio and danced in my seat at every red light on the way home!

The moral of this story is that you can do anything* with YouTube & Google. Replace car parts, learn to knit, cook something, cut a watermelon, etc. I’m like 90% on that. If nothing else, you can at least say you tried and have a funny story to share… you know, once the shame has worn off.

Have you ever tried to DIY something with the help of YouTube or Google before?
How did it work out?

*By anything, I really don’t mean anything. Always take precautions when trying something new and/or potentially stupid. Trust your gut.

Amanda Hearn
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  • Our dryer stopped drying and I was worried that we’d need to shell out hundreds for a new dryer or a repair. After searching YouTube, we found an explanation of the part that was broken and a tutorial on how to get it switched out. Rather than hundreds, we spent less than $50 and I am back to drying clothes in the dryer.

  • When my sewing machine stopped taking up the bottom (bobbin) thread I thought I was lost! I was in the middle of several projects and needed this machine to work. YouTube to the rescue! Found out that it was a timing issue and after doing a little search I found a video of a husband who took apart his wife’s machine in order to fix the timing. My husband watched it several times (and had it playing while in the process) and fixed my machine! Saved us a few hundred dollars (it only needed a screw tightened!) and time spent in the repair shop. Love YouTube! 🙂

  • Our dryer suddenly started squeaking and smelling like burnt tires. We watched a Youtube video on how to take it apart. It was easy to tell that one of the wheels that spins the drum had broken. Less than $20 for a new wheel and we were back in business. Whew!

  • My husband is about to install our new dishwasher, something he’s never done before. He installed our kitchen faucet and done some other work around the house with the help of YouTube. Though I admittedly don’t help very much (not much more than handing him tools and holding a piece up while he turns it and such).

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