Monday, October 19, 2009

Day From Hell

Last Friday was truly a day from Hell for me. It was also a sad day in that I lost something very important to me. My mechanic. Even though he did nothing wrong.

I have no complaints with my mechanic. I think he does a very good job with my car and I trust him. They body guy who works for him, not so much. I've also noticed the last few times I have had my car in for whatever, the prices have started to climb. Enough that I am starting to feel that I am being Gringoized. Something I really, really hate. It used to be that when I picked my car up, it felt brand new and almost purred in its' performance. I was very satisfied each and every time. I now am convinced that I am being sabotaged. For example....

I recently had some starter problems. Nothing else was wrong. When I went to pick the car up, I was told that there had been a short in the wiring and as a result, the whole exhaust system had to be removed! The wiring for the starter runs all the way under the car to the back where the muffler is? I admit I know little about cars but this struck me as very strange. To top it off, about half way home all Hell broke loose under there. It sounded like things had not been put back correctly or tightly enough. Lots and lots of rattling.

I took the car back and explained that evidently things had not been put back together correctly and something needed to be fixed under there. They then told me that the brackets they put back on were so rusted, they needed to be replaced. At my cost, of course. The question I did not ask was why did they put rusted brackets back on that they knew were not going to stay on? Why not call me and tell me and get permission to put new ones on right then?

I took the car back and the brackets were replaced. Now for the strange part and the part that made me swear to never go back there. Remember though, I am talking about work done by the body guy now, not the mecanic. Putting on the brackets was the body guy's job.

When I dropped the car off, I left all the windows down. I usually do this because otherwise the interior would get too hot. As I approached my car, I noticed that only the drivers side window was up. Well, almost up. It was about 5 inches open. I also noticed hand smears and finger prints all over the window. I went to roll the window down and got nothing. The handle just spun in my hand! I called the mechanic over and asked what had happened to the window. He said I would have to ask the body guy. He called him to come over to where we were. I knew it was not going to be pretty by his body language and facial expression as he stormed across the lot towards us.

He, of course, denied ever touching the window and had no idea why it wasn't working. Yeah, right. I asked who had put the window up in the first place and whose fingerprints were all over it. He just stared at me, not replying at all. Short version, I said I was too angry to continue the conversation and I would return the next day with an interpretor so we could be sure we were communicating correctly with each other. "Fine", he said and stomped off.

to be continued....


Constantino said...

Your gut feelings and your conclusions are undsiputable....time for a new mechanic.
The sooner the better, and not worth the effort or aggravation to even try to achieve any level of satisfaction from the old one....
And, it is not only to Gringos. Many of our Mexican friends no longer use local mechanics because they tell that items return in much worse condition than the left. Not saying that there are not honest reputable mechanics, but when the locals can't find them it's time to expand your circle of friends and invest in some tools.

Anonymous said...

If the battery is in the trunk of your car..
That would explain the starter wire running under the car.
If it's in front ,under the hood, then you got snookered...or misunderstood the explanation.

IslaZina said...

I thought I could save 50 pesos on a muffler rather than have my mechanic job it out. I got a muffler without a breather hole. In the end, the mechanic found the main problem: the coil. It never ends, but it is the change of seasons that is causing this and too bad for us the change of seasons means everyone is broke and we, of course, have money trees!

DanaJ said...

Thanks for posting this. It's interesting to get the nitty gritty details of life in Mexico.
Staying tuned for the Confrontation and the commentary.


jeanie said...

Having a reliable mechanic seems to rare on Isla. I would be P'd off.