Dead Car Battery + iPhone + Twitter = 1 Weird Hour
I do have AAA, but I didn’t have my card with me that day, so I used the Safari web browser on my iPhone to look up the phone number. I called and reported my location, etc. Then while I was waiting, I Twittered!
But not just about random stuff. I asked if anyone knew how much car batteries run these days. I was pretty sure I needed a new one, but I hadn’t bought one in a long time. The AAA representative on the phone said that the person they were sending out could test my battery and sell me a new one and replace it for me if I wanted. I thought that was a pretty cool deal as long as I could be sure I wouldn’t be gouged!
I got helpful replies from @enjaysauce, @HaDAk and even @AAAauto. @enjaysauce and @HaDAk told me about how much they run, which I really wanted to know right at that moment. And @AAAauto told me a tech could test my battery and sell me a new one and install it for me, if I so desired. I already knew that, but it was nice to see them on Twitter, checking in on their members!
When the tech got there he ran some diagnostics and, sure enough, I needed a new battery. There was corrosion on one of the posts, and he said my battery should have lasted longer than it did. Who knows why it didn’t, but it was a goner and needed to be replaced. The corrosion was just a symptom of some bigger problem with the battery.
So he proceeded to change out my battery, but there was a complication. The corrosion had eaten through the contact that attaches to the post of the battery that carries the charge to the engine. So he very carefully peeled off the contact, which he said was breaking in half like carboard (I believe him, I was watching – in fact, here is a picture!)
Fortunately he had one of those on his truck as well, and was able to replace it without harming any of the wires that go to the contact. It was a little while, but not that long, and he was done!
It was $141.xx for a replacement battery, replacement contact and the labor (which exceeded half an hour, due to the delicate contact-replacement operation). And because of my Twitter-attained knowledge of the price of an average battery these days, I was ecstatic with that amount. I thought it was extrememly reasonable, and I thought the tech did a great job.
To top it off, the tech saw the Blog Solace magnet on the side door of my car (my Vista Print special, which I love), and asked me about it. He said his wife needed a web site and blog built, and he took one of my business cards.
I’d say that was an all-around successful, social media, networking, modern, 21st century car battery replacement experience! Thanks to all my Twitter buddies and the help that day. And thanks to @AAAauto for following up afterwards to make sure everything was taken care of!