Monday, March 20, 2017

Serviced my car for the first time

According the service manual, my 2007 XV40 Aurion only requires an annual service if driven under normal conditions. I don't drive the car often - I don't have to. When my parents were here, I hardly drove to work. I walked to work because it took only 20 minutes and because my wife had all the support she needed. There was no real urgency to get back home.

Since owning the car, I had only done about 7,000km, out of which about 1500km was for driving practice (my wife and I).

After the VVT-I hose burst incident, I wanted to get the service done as soon as possible. But I didn't know where to take the car to for the service. Toyota dealerships are known for ripping off people (as that is where they make up for the little margin they make selling cars) and some others are known for misdoings (like magically finding issues that were never present in the first place, leading people to believe that they did something).

After a bit of looking around, I came across a site called fixedpricecarservice.com.au (which they have renamed since to autoguru.com.au) where you can find mechanics to get the service done. They gave me several options with mobile mechanics. Mobile mechanics would come to your place and perform the service then and there which was not only convenient, but also you could monitor their work to make sure they weren't doing anything 'naughty'.

I contacted the highest rated one, but it didn't work out. Then I contacted the 2nd highest rated one called Australian Mobile Mechanics and they arranged the service to be performed next day. I told them that I had bought some parts (engine oil, filter etc) on sale and they deducted the cost for those parts. I lose the warranty on the parts, but the 1 year warranty on labour is applicable. The service charges ended up being $134, for the 105,000km logbook service. I was at 102,500km at that time. It is not cheap, but it is not that expensive either. Car service in Australia is expensive, because labour is expensive.

There was a problem with the parking brake (it didn't work on an upward slope) and I got it fixed as well. Unfortunately, it was not included in the service checklist, so I had to pay extra. But the guy was reasonable with it. Getting the hand brake to engage the right rear wheel took a lot of effort. But he had quoted me a fixed price, so he had no choice.

Anyways, the service is done and I don't have to think about it for a while.

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