Sunday, February 19, 2006

Car repair in Saipan

In a surrender to the standards, demands and practicalities of getting married and getting older, I decided to finally upgrade my hyper-rusted, though nearly indestructible Keith Richards of a car, an ‘89 Toyota Corolla. This car is basically like a 45 year old pinch hitter now. I drive it one mile to and from work, and that is about it. Naturally my wife drives the far less embarassing car.

I made the move for a much newer and ubiquitous car: the Toyota Echo. I'm pretty much a confirmed Toyota guy at this point. Naturally since the Echo wasn’t brand new, there were some issues with it, so I visited several repair shops in an attempt to make it right. I got about five different opinions on what was wrong with the car, but never the same answer. The one thing all five shops had in common was that it would be a complicated job and it would cost between $400 and $500. Remaining unimpressed with the shops I had visited, I consulted teaching colleagues for advice on a reputable car repair shop, and fortunately I was sent in the right direction.

A colleague recommended Manny Vitug from ELS Auto Shop on Texas Road beyond the Nauru Building and DPS. The $500 drop the engine, rebuild the car solution turned out to be four loose bolts, and that was it. Mr. Vitug runs that rare thing in Saipan, an honest and effective shop, and I can’t recommend a place for car repairs more highly than Manny and ELS Auto Shop.

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