Posted by: Lee | May 22, 2007

Fun with my car

My car was due to go to the garage yesterday (Monday) to have the bearing on the rear left wheel replaced (the joys of old age). It had been grating away so thought I best get it fixed. I know a mechanic (I’ll call him Bob) who looks after the car for me so I had arranged for him to come and sort it. He provides a useful service. He collects the car, drives it to the garage, fixes it and then brings it back. Saves me having to trek down to the garage and back, brilliant! I was slightly peeved that he had already had the car a few months earlier to fix the same problem. At the time he just patched it up hoping it would do the trick and save me money in the process. He did this with the best of intentions but to be honest had I been given the option I would have rather have paid the extra to get it fixed completely, anyways………….

Everything had been arranged in advance, I’d booked the morning off work and Bob had ordered the part for the car. Everything needed for a quick turn around with the aim that I could then go into work in the afternoon. Simple!…………….yeah right!

Driving the car back from work on the previous Friday had not been a pleasant experience (it had appeared to take a sudden and plunging turn for the worst on that day). The bearing had been grating all the way home, emitting a rather loud and disconcerting noise whilst at the same time the steering was not at all comfortable. All this being symptoms of a scr*wed bearing. Needless to say, the car stayed parked up on the street at home for the rest of the weekend.

Bob turned up promptly at half eight on Monday morning to collect the car and I mentioned the issue that I had with it on Friday. He quickly removed the wheel and checked the bearing and that was that, the car was going nowhere. It turned out that the louder then usual grating noise had been caused by the fact that the wheel was on the verge of falling off and it was highly unlikely that it would stay attached on the way to the Garage. The fact that I had got from Knutsford to Sale (via Wilmslow) with the wheel still attached is now considered a minor miracle!

To add punishment to an already annoying situation Bob then discovered that the part he ordered was not the correct one (though he refrained from mentioning this at the time). Bob told me he would catch the bus down to the garage (as the clutch cable in his car happened to snap that morning, most useful) collect the part and then come back with it and fix my car on the street. Great I thought, the garage isn’t too far away, he should be back in a bit…….how wrong I was! What actually happened was that Bob went to the garage and ordered the correct part for the car only find out that it is not held in stock, this means he would have to wait for one to be shipped over. This would take a few hours so of course Bob got straight on the phone to advise me of the situation………did he hec! Instead, whilst waiting for the part he decided to fix the clutch cable on his car (how he got it to the garage I don’t know) whilst I was left pacing round the house wondering when he was going to turn up and whether I would make it into work in the afternoon or not (I don’t have his mobile number, if he has one).

It turns out I wouldn’t make it to work as it was 4 hours plus before he turned up with the part. By then I had already phoned work to ask if I could have the afternoon off as I came to the conclusion that I would never make it in at a reasonable hour. It took him 30 minutes or so to change the hub and the bearing and also tighten my handbreak so it really was a quick job to do. I just wish he could of let me know what was going on during the morning so I had some idea, it’s courteous more than anything.

In the end he did redeem himself as he didn’t charge me for his time, just the parts, on the philosophy that he had already had the car once before to fix the same problem and didn’t. That was good of him, many mechanics would have just lied and charged you an arm and a leg. This is why I will use him again, he’s honest. He might be a bit absent minded at times but you try finding an honest mechanic, it’s not easy, they’re like gold dust and he got my car back on the road quickly.

Work didn’t mind me taking the afternoon off either so it all came good in the end, groovy!

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