A $15 piece of rubber

Last Saturday, I took my 2013 Chevrolet Cruze “Dracourage” to DePaula Chevrolet for the car’s annual inspection, as well as an oil change, fuel top-off and a detailing.  Hey, when you’ve owned the car for a year (and your more than halfway complete on your goal of paying off the car loan), you celebrate anniversaries.

I dropped the car off, and figured I would wait at DePaula’s customer service lounge for a couple of hours while my car received the TLC from DePaula’s certified GM technicians.

About twenty minutes later, one of the DePaula employees met me at the customer service lounge.

“That was fast,” I said.

“Mr. Miller,” he interrupted.  “We have a problem, I think you should see this.”

Oh no.  No no no no no no…

“We inspected your car, and we discovered that your torque converter seal is leaking transmission fluid.  We need to replace the seal.”

Image from stockauto.com.

What you see on the left is a little rubber seal – it costs approximately $15 as an AC Delco OEM part, but can also be acquired for as little as $3 for an off-brand.

The customer service rep brought back to the repair area, where Dracourage was elevated on a high jack.  He and the repairman showed me where the seal was on my car.  They also showed me the dripping puddle of transmission fluid.

“We need to replace this seal,” he said.  “But to get to the seal, we have to keep the car here for a couple of days.”

Oh great.  At this moment in time, my wallet is screaming, “Please don’t hurt me, please don’t take a pound of flesh from me, please…”

“How much is this going to cost me?” I grimaced.

“No charge.”

“No charge?  You mean this is covered under the extended vehicle service contract that I purchased with DePaula Chevrolet when I bought this car from you last year?”

“Actually, Mr. Miller, this is covered by your GM warranty.  So it’s no charge to you.”

Okay … now I have to get a rental car for a couple of days.  And the last time I had to deal with a rental car company was less than pleasant.

“Actually, Mr. Miller, we will provide you with a loaner car for the duration of the repairs, at no charge to you.”

Wow.  This I can live with.

So for the next couple of days, I’m tooling around in a 2017 Chevrolet Cruze – it’s okay, not as comfortable as Dracourage, but it’ll get me from Point A to Point B – and maybe by this evening, I’ll have my chariot back in my possession.  This will be good.

Good thing I scheduled this appointment.  How horrible would it have been if my car conked out from lack of transmission fluid – especially at an important moment.  I can NOT have that happen to me.  EVER.

A $15 piece of rubber.  That’s what could have caused my car to collapse.

But it won’t collapse now.

Okay, DePaula Chevrolet, you’re back in my good graces.  😀

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