A pass and a fail

image: http://twu514.org/

I had my car inspected this week.  It passed without any issues.  I was a couple of weeks late on taking care of things, but my reasons were understandable.  At least that’s what I hoped the police officer would think should I have been pulled over.

I initially delayed the process because I wanted to wait until the calendar turned to March. That way I would have gotten 13 months from my previous year’s inspection, a real “stick it to the man” move, right?  Of course, I screwed myself because days before the end of February (such a short little month!), a bulb went in my headlight necessitating a trip to the auto parts store and the efforts of three well-intentioned adults to successfully remove and replace the little halogen beauty.

A few days later, I left my car at the place around the block, Delaware Tire and Service,  for them to take care of the annual requirement.  I was a bit surprised to learn when I returned 90 minutes later that my car had a “few bulbs out” and also needed a new rear windshield wiper blade.  “Bulbs?” I asked, thinking how odd that I should have nonfunctioning bulbs, yet not have received a dashboard message light informing me of this deficit.   I mean, the reason I knew my headlight was out a couple of weeks ago was because my dashboard told me.  Were we now in a fight, my dashboard and I, and no longer talking?  I didn’t think so.  I thanked him for his time and drove home still without a valid inspection.

I next scheduled an appointment with my regular mechanic, the folks I’ve bought 4 cars from and relied upon for more than 15 years to maintain my vehicles.  Naturally, the day before my scheduled appointment, my Check Engine light randomly appeared.  I canceled the appointment and waited for the light to go off, as it reliably does.

I noticed Tuesday that the light was off and yesterday took advantage of an early dismissal to stop at Hoffman’s on my way home for an inspection.  Obviously, I didn’t mention or suggest any issues with my bulbs until after the new inspection sticker had been affixed to my windshield.  At that point, I questioned the technician to see if he had seen anything wrong with bulbs or wiper.  Not surprisingly, all was fine – nothing needed to be addressed or replaced.

So – my while my well maintained vehicle passed inspection with flying colors, Delaware Tire and Service gets a huge fail.  Wonder how many other innocent drivers have been victimized by this unscrupulous business?  You’ll want to give that garage a big pass.

6 thoughts on “A pass and a fail

  1. Not defending the shop – but we have that same car in our family (now given to our daughter). We always kept extra bulbs in the glove box because, for whatever reason, bulbs are always burning out in that darn car. Also the bulb replacement is challenging. Love the car – don’t like to bulb issue so much. When I’m done putting a zillion miles on my CRV – I’m going back to Volvo. Bulb or no bulb!

  2. It was so hard to change that headlight bulb! I love my car and will tolerate the struggle with the bulbs, but that guy will never touch my car again. He was totally scamming me and I won’t indulge that behavior.

  3. What they did is pretty common. I took my car to a valvoline once and I needed new wiper blades and an air filter. Both of which I literaly replaced 2 weeks before.

  4. Thanks for the comments, everyone! I think what set me off was the fact that LAST year he dinged me for 2 tires. When I went this year I had 4 brand new tires, so I guess he had to “find” something else. I’ll never go there again.

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