In case you are wondering, "D" is my husband -- Dave Liu! As you've probably noticed, I don't update this blog often but I may post more as I've linked this to my Google+ account.

Wednesday, April 16, 2003

Auto Repair: Weather Guard

I drive a Volkswagon New Beetle and I'm proud to say that I love my bug. But there's a recurring problem with it that's driving me nuts. Apparently there's a plastic sheet at the bottom of the car (your car probably has one too) called a "weather guard". I'm sure it provides some nominal level of protection against rocks on the road, but nothing more. The problem I have is that Beetles (and I'm also told VW Golfs) are low so there's not much clearance between the road the bottom of the car. So if you go over a bump or drive up a ramp quickly, the weather guard will get hit and become damaged. And once it's hit a couple of times (doesn't even have to be that hard), it will progressively loosen until it turns into this twisted hunk of plastic that drags along the ground making a very scary noise. I know because it happened to me... already for the SECOND time since I bought my vehicle in 2000!

So how much do you think it costs to replace this chunk of injection plastic molding (probably made in China or Taiwan)? As it turns out, there is not one, but THREE PIECES to the weather guard. The list prices for the part (excluding labor charges) are as follows:

  • Center $55.87
  • Right $44.78
  • Left $79.66

I used a shop called Federal Collision Center in Mountain View, CA to have the repairs done. They're AAA approved, and also recommended by Progressive Insurance. I've had repair work done by them in the past, and I've been very pleased with their responsiveness, professionalism, prices and quality of work. I just wish no repairs were required at all!

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