Abu Dhabi Weather

Friday, June 1, 2012

New Mechanic

After selling my Jeep, my wife and I have been sharing one car. When we had two cars, if something went wrong with one of them, we could still get around. Considering that our car is a 2006, we expect it to be running pretty well most of the time. Unfortunately, we had an emergency on Monday: our air conditioner went out. In most locations, that wouldn't be that much of an issue, but in late May in Abu Dhabi, the heat can be deadly.

I went out to my car in the afternoon sun to pick my kids up from school and found that the blower didn't work. Nothing. No air, hot or cold, was coming out. Fortunately, there had been a lot of sand in the air blocking out a lot of the sun, so the temperature was an unseasonably cool 103 degrees Fahrenheit (39 degrees Celsius). I rolled down the windows, picked up my kids from school and drove to the Chevy dealership which was about a mile from their school. Lucky me!

The staff were exceptionally friendly.  The service representative checked out the air conditioner and with a little fiddling of the controls, was able to get it to work, blasting out cool air. The rep said it would probably work most of the time. Considering that we have plans to drive to Dubai this weekend, I didn't want the air conditioner stopping on us on the way there so I arranged to have them look at the air conditioner and get me an estimate.

Seriously, screw these guys.
The next day he called with the estimate: over 2500 Dh for what was obviously a faulty switch or faulty wiring. The dealership wanted to replace the whole air conditioning unit including the fan and compressor when the rep had demonstrated that there was nothing wrong with the fan or the compressor. I'd realized that dealerships generally do not offer the best deal, but I hadn't expected this level of gouging. I told them I'd think about it, but what choice did I have? I'd been having difficulty contacting my old mechanic so didn't really have time to call him. A coworker, having overheard my telephone conversation, gave me the number to her mechanic, Razmeek. Apparently, a few of my coworkers at the college have been using him and the guy specialized in air conditioning.

I called him and arranged for him to pick up my car in the evening. He even knew the place because one of my coworkers lives in my building and has been having Razmeek work on his car for over 10 years. Even the guards at the guards at the place I park my car knew him and let him in to look at my car. He seems to be the HCT go to guy.

By Thursday morning, he had the car fixed and sure enough, there was an issue with one of the connections between the wiring and the switch. The total cost? 300 dirhams. He dropped off the car with my wife and that was it. I now have a new mechanic with a long list of recommendations behind him.


  1. If you're looking for a reasonable mechanic that not only picks up and delivers, but has great English and over 10 years of recommendations, here's the guy to call:

    Al Rafiden Store

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