Back in about January, I purchased a used Volkswagon Tiguan. Purchasing a car in Greece can be a bit of a chore which I may write about later. Compared to prices of similar vehicles in Athens, I think I got a fair deal, but compared to used car prices back in Canada, – wow…. the prices of both used and new autos here is insane.
Since I purchased it, I haven’t driven it much – perhaps a couple thousand kilometres on it. As you can see from the photo, the front passenger side fender has a bit of a dent – I got into an argument with a tree while trying to figure out the electric emergency brake while parked on a very steep incline on an extremely narrow road. I’ve been driving standard since I was 14 years old – but this was my first time really driving the vehicle, and combined with the 6 forward gears and reverse in a position I’ve never driven before, the electric “hand” brake, and the steep incline, well – the argument with the tree resulted.
The tree also took the passenger side mirror for its prize. Something I don’t want to be without when driving on Athens streets. I can remember when the mirror on that side of the car was an option and didn’t come standard with many vehicles, but here you do rely on all the mirrors. It was recommended to me at the time, to take the car to a Skoda/VW specialist not far away – “Petros would find a new mirror and install it at a good price.”
So, I did take it to Skoda Koranas, owned and operated by Petros Koranas. Mr. Koranas does not speak a great deal of English, but he has a very friendly and sincere attitude, and through some translation help, we managed to communicate. I was happy with the work that he had done, and at a fair price.
Tiguan Develops A Coolant Leak
I knew the oil needed to be changed (although I had been told when I purchased it, that the oil had just recently been changed – but an inspection of the dip stick showed dirty oil). I had also checked the coolant level a couple of weeks ago, an it was fine. But on the return trip, a coolant level warning came up on the instrument panel.
When I checked it later, the coolant reservoir was dry. I found a place nearby that sold G12 coolant, added it to the reservoir, and started the car up.
After about 15 minutes, when the engine warmed up – I could clearly see coolant on the ground under the car. Further inspection showed fluid in the area of the water pump – not a job I wanted to do, or to even pay for. Years ago, I could have changed a water pump in my garage but today, I have no space, nor the tools to do the job.
With a bit of research, I was expecting to pay 600+ Euros for a repair job.
Mr. Koranas Comes Through
I could have driven the car over to the Skoda Koranas – but again, with some translation difficulty, Mr. Koranas had the idea that I could not move the car. So he came to get it himself. There was no charge for this service.
He agreed with my initial assessment that it was likely the water pump, mentioning that Tiguans do have issues with water pumps. With this in mind, he could have easily have charged me for a water pump replacement job and parts.
But he did not. Later that day, I got a phone call advising that he had found a leak in a metal pipe, could not get the part for perhaps a few weeks, but he repaired it himself.
Next, he did the oil change the car needed, as well as an inspection of the vehicle for confidence that it will probably be fine over the summer and any longer trips I take.
The Final Bill
When I arrived to pick up my car, I was surprised to see that it had obviously been given a car wash. It was sitting in front of the shop, shiny and clean. Mr. Koranas took me to his desk and went over the work that he had done, advised that I might want to replace the wiper blades at some point, but other than that, the car was in excellent shape.
My bill for the coolant leak repair, oil change, and inspection was 105.00 Euros including VAT.
When I got into my car to drive away, I noticed that not only had they washed the exterior, they vacuumed and cleaned the interior as well! What amazing and thoughtful service, in my opinion. Everything inside and outside, were shining – and even the tires had been scrubbed.
We’re often quick to be critical of service that is not up to our expectations, but I believe it’s also important to recognize great service, where not only have you been given an honest and fair price, but when someone has gone even beyond what you’d expect.
Thank you very much, Mr. Petros Koranas!
The business doesn’t seem to have a website, but their Google Business Listing is here.