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Labor

Someone clipped the wife’s car in a parking lot and took off her passenger side mirror. That’s her story, and she’s sticking to it.

Anyway, she called up Honda and said she needed a new mirror. They were happy to do so for $300. Instead, we ordered one for $30, paid $15 to ship it and I put it on myself in about 30 minutes. You really can Google up directions for almost anything.

16 Responses to “Labor”

  1. DAD Says:

    Sounds like someone got one cheaper than you.(Five finger discount.)

  2. Don Gwinn Says:

    I wish I’d been able to do that with the last mirror I bought, but it was someone else’s mirror. I got out of the car in a parking lot and bumped the mirror on a Pontiac with my hip as I walked to the back of the car, and it clanked against the side of the car. I honestly couldn’t figure out whether it had been loose (or even hanging detached already) but it sure seemed like incidental contact. Still, the thing was made by Pontiac, so maybe I was just lucky it didn’t catch fire or maybe cause some kind of chemical burn.
    Anyway, I left a note and offered to pay for it, and of course the owner had to go to a Pontiac dealer to get the mirror.
    She seemed shocked that anyone would even leave a note, but I guess that shouldn’t surprise me. People in general are jerks.

    Anyway, if your wife didn’t see the mirror come off, then for all she knows some guy bumped it while walking past and it flew off. They seem to be designed to pop off at the slightest provocation.

  3. Molon Labe Says:

    Had the same issue when the wife’s VW needed oxygen censors. V-dub wanted about $500 to do the job. I paid about $150 for the censors and had about 3 hrs labor putting them in. If it took me 3 hrs, it would have taken V-dub about 1 hr. It WAS a pain in the ass, but $350 for labor is ridiculous.

  4. Lorimor Says:

    Reverse lights wouldn’t work on my truck. Turned out the switch in the tranny was bad. $90 for the stupid damn microswitch alone!! I installed it in about 3 minutes.

  5. Mikee Says:

    Do it yourself if you have the time and the skill. Some repairs require more specialized tools and knowledge (or at least access to the instructions that specify the order of dis- and re-assembly). Those get done by the shop, but definitely NOT a dealer. Dealers are always way overpriced.

    I detached the plastic lower bumper on my truck when I parked it touching a low stone wall. All but 2 of the fasteners broke when I pulled out of the parking space, which is apparently what they are designed to do so the bumper plastic does not rip apart.

    The exquisitely designed plastic releasable fasteners cost $30 at the dealer, and a handful of bolts, nuts and washers cost $3 at Lowe’s. The bumper is still attached, and I for one cannot tell a difference. OEM parts are nice, but not necessary.

  6. Mikee Says:

    Not to mention the baling wire and duct tape any responsible pickup truck owner keeps in the glove compartment for the most common repairs, from failure of the radiator hose to loss of the muffler support….

  7. Rustmeister Says:

    Where’d you order the mirror from?

  8. SayUncle Says:

    have to ask the wife.

  9. Hypnagogue Says:

    Sounds like you just earned $250… what are you planning on spending it on?

  10. DAD Says:

    Turkey Honey

  11. Weer'd Beard Says:

    “Those get done by the shop, but definitely NOT a dealer. Dealers are always way overpriced.”

    +1 to that. I always ask people who somehow thing going to the dealer is a good idea who they deal with when dropping off their car. It’s always some guy wearing a shirt and tie with clean hands. You pay him to simply type up your request and then bring it to the grease monkey out back who actually DOES the work.

    Besides the obvious design flaw where you risk the shirt-and-tie not understanding your problem, or relaying bad info to the wrench, you’re also paying for a superfluous job!

    and you KNOW Shit-and-tie isn’t making minimum wage running that keyboard and handing you your keys and receipt.

    I’ll stick with a guy who won’t shake my hand because his hands are greasy handing me my receipt covered in grease spots and telling me exactly what HE did and what HE saw while doing it. (Pronoun note I’d be perfectly willing to send my truck to a rugged woman in coveralls…hell I’d even be willing to pay a little extra if she did good work and cussed while explaining the job to me!)

  12. Gregory Markle Says:

    You can Google instructions for MOST anything. Can’t grab a .pdf of the manual for the Colt Automatic Machine Gun (aka “Potato Digger”) which I could use pretty directly. I did find people willing to sell me photocopies of the manual and, surprisingly, I discovered that the library at the university here in town is one of only 6 in the country which had the manual in it’s collection (a 1973 reprint of the 1916 edition.) The next nearest location is the Library of Congress so it looks like I’m headed to Bloom U. with my laptop and scanner because I could really use a copy yesterday. Then begins to moral dilemma…post it for free or make copies and sell them like everyone else…gotta pay for that spiral binding equipment I bought at an auction this summer somehow!

  13. Lyle Says:

    And THAT is how universal insurance can drive up cost. Most people would have had the work done at the dealer, had the insurance pay for it, and hardly even look at the price.

    I took a 60s T-bird in to a body shop that I knew did some pretty good work, looking for a quote on a complete paint job. I’d seen them do it before, but they wouldn’t even give me a quote. They said they only did insurance work…………

  14. straightarrow Says:

    The dealer quoted me $200.00 for a tune-up, which on my car is only changing spark plugs, and installing a new air filter. Not even an oil change in that.

    Needless to say I did it myself for less than $30.

  15. straightarrow Says:

    Does anyone remember the $800 charge for changing over A/C to r34 from r12? Requirements? Two 15 cent washers or o-rings, 15 minutes labor, evacuation and recharge with the new refrigerant, which is expensive, but not $800 worth.

    Anytime ignorance of the issue is detected in the market, there are people who will gouge unmercifully.

  16. straightarrow Says:

    I remember one time I had replaced my entire front end on my all time favorite car, tie rods, ends, ball joints (upper and lower), sway bar and grommets, everything. I had aligned it well enough to drive but took it in to have the alignment fine tuned with the proper equipment.

    As the mechanic took it back to the shop, I told the owner of the shop what I had done and no parts in the front had more than 350 miles on them. Then I said “In a few minutes your mechanic is going to come back in here wiping his hands on a shop rag and say ‘you need some front end parts’.”

    The shop owner assured me they didn’t play that. Just then his mechanic came in wiping his hands on a shop rag and said “You need some front end parts.” The shop owner barked at him, “Just align the damn thing.”

    I laughed like Hell but the owner of the shop was sure red faced.

    No real point to this, but the subject caused me to remember it and I just thought I would share it. That happened in Manhattan,Ks, but it could have been anywhere.

    A word of warning to everyone, never let anyone in Flagstaff, Az touch your vehicle. They have a deal with the police there and can and will screw you unmercifully if you are from out of town.