The temperature gauge on my car had been heading dangerously close to the red zone for a couple of weeks. I had some upcoming travel for work scheduled, so I bucked up and called the dealer for estimates. She immediately quoted $125 for a diagnostic fee, $150 for a radiator flush service, and, guessing it could be a thermostat issue, another $260 for that work.
I decided to go to Jiffy Lube Joe the next morning to have him do the flush service at the cheaper Jiffy Lube rate (plus, I had a coupon!). At least I'd spend less money if that was all it needed.
Joe popped the hood and investigated. He didn’t think that a radiator flush service would solve my problem but had liability issues offering up an opinion (since they don’t actually do full-fledged auto repair work).
But he put some antifreeze in the radiator anyway (it was empty – who knew!) and declared, “This is the worst water pump leak I think I’ve ever seen.”
He charged me $10 for the antifreeze and sent me to Car-X after calling his friend, who is the manager, for availability and pricing.
Mike, the Car-X Manager, took my keys and asked if I could leave it with him. I said I could go spend some time in the McDonald’s down the road but that I’d have to wait because it was my only transportation. “That’s okay. I’ll push you ahead of someone. It shouldn’t be more than 90 minutes.” An hour later, it was ready, and the bill was only $176 – a full $50 less than I was originally told.
When I say this has never happened to me, in all my driving years, I mean that my experiences have always been the complete opposite. I think there may be positive interference in my magnetic field. I can’t wait for something else to go wrong with the car to test it out. Well, not exactly. :o
And I like to think of this as my paying it forward, although I really can’t claim that, because it was so unintentional. The Car-X mechanic who actually replaced the water pump got in my car to pull it into its stall and, as I walked by headed towards my Egg McMuffin, asked if my car window was broken. I said, ‘Nahh, it’s just moody.” He must have laughed for five minutes. His laughing made me start laughing and we couldn’t stop. I know, right? Not really funny at all.
But I think I made his day, and all three of these nice men made for the nicest broken car day I’ve ever had. I don’t even care that I didn’t get to use a coupon.