Friday, April 3, 2009

More Automobile Leprosy -- SOLVED!

Again, I've got to give a plug to our mechanics at Larsen Repair in Iona.

We own a Pontiac Montana minivan that's going through the standard General Motors Automobile Leprosy, wherein parts wear out and fall off at an alarming basis. You've read on my blog about the serpentine belt issue, the second serpentine belt issue, the windows switch issue. Well, this week we had a windshield-wiper issue. The wiper on the driver's side suddenly got all floppy after trying to carve through some rather stiff snow on the windshield. The wipers wouldn't wipe, they'd just cross as if they were fencing. So we went a week -- a snowy, rainy week -- without wipers. Not fun at all.

I figured the wiper arm had sheared its teeth and needed to be replaced, so I started looking for one. First checked online and found that a new wiper arm would cost $26. A bit high, yes, but I'd do it for safety sake. Then I noticed something. They were only selling the passenger side. That made me suspicious, so I called a parts store. Indeed, they had the passenger side, but the driver's side, she said she'd have to order. Then she plugged away at her computer and came back with this: "Sorry. Looks like I can't order that for you at all." Huh?

So, throwing caution and reason to the wind, I called our local Pontiac dealer. Yes, he can get the arm for me, but it'll cost me $95. And we wonder why these auto companies are going out of business, with prices like that (I know, I know. GM buys them from someone else. Still. $95 for an arm? Outrageous.)

So Michelle calls Kevin at Larsen Repair. His suggestion -- which I didn't get from the other places I called -- was to tighten the nut at the base of the arm where it attaches to the wiper motor. Did that this morning. The wiper now works. No charge, except that whenever I listen to Kevin talk I want to pass out because he talks really really really fast and never seems to pause for a breath. But a good mechanic, one who will tell a guy like me how to do something at no charge. That, again, earns them customer loyalty when we have something that breaks that I can't fix.

So if you're in eastern Idaho and need a mechanic, go to Larsen Repair. Highly recommended.

No comments: