As far back as I can remember my mother was always a member of AAA – the Automobile Association of America. If I try to place it to approximately how many years ago she first became a member, I would say about 42 years ago. The tradition started there and still continues in my family long after my mother has passed away.
AAA’s Emergency Road Service has always been a life-saver for us, especially when stranded in very inconvenient and sometimes unsafe locations.
Just this past Monday I had to call AAA’s Emergency Road Service and all I could say afterwards was, “Wow.”
Let me explain.
It was a normal, good Monday and I was on my out to go to a dentist appointment. When I got in my car the battery wasn’t enough to turn over the engine.
I don’t know what I would have done if we weren’t members of AAA.
I immediately called their emergency road service telephone number: 1-800-AAA-HELP (1-800-222-4357) because I knew the sooner I put the call in, the quicker they would come.
I then called my dentist’s office to cancel my appointment because I knew I would be spending my afternoon in the Sears Auto Department, as I waited for a new battery to be installed. I was more concerned about the car being fixed, than I was about having to cancel my dentist appointment. A car is a necessity. Okay, so are our teeth, but my appointment was just for a cleaning.
The AAA employee on the telephone took my AAA membership information very quickly, she verified the nearby cross streets with me and she immediately put the call in to their battery technicians. She then asked me for a description of the vehicle and a contact number in case they needed to call me. She informed me it would be about a 45 minute wait.
As I waited, I imagined my change of plans and the wasted afternoon I would be spending walking through the mall Sears is in, as I waited for the car to be fixed. I am very familiar with the 2+ hours wait at any mechanic. There wasn’t anything I could do. I was saying to myself, “This is what happened today and what needs to be done.” I had to accept my very unexpected change of plans.
I was supposed to have a very successful Monday out, going to the dentist and doing errands and instead now I knew I had to sit in an auto shop for hours.
The 45 minutes went by fast as I waited for the AAA mechanic to arrive and he called me to tell me he was about 15 minutes away. I found that to be very courteous of them.
Two AAA battery technicians came very easily with no problem finding my location. They tested the battery and showed me that it was low on their testing device. I waited for them to take out their jumper cables, when one of the technicians said to me, “You know we can change the battery right here for you, right?” I surprisingly said, “No. REALLY?” I agreed for them to do it right then and there because it was such a convenience and I wouldn’t have to sit in the Sears Auto Department for hours after all.
I asked them how long AAA has been installing batteries on-site and they said about 5 years. I never knew that about them.
The price was right.
I agreed to also have them clean the cables and treat the connectors for an extra $19.00. The total came to $149.00 which I thought was fantastic, considering the convenience. These days I know with labor cost included, an auto mechanic wouldn’t charge too much less than their price.
I watched everything they did as they worked diligently and neatly. Both technicians couldn’t have been nicer while we spoke as they worked on my car.
They also did a diagnostic test on the electrical components of the car, including the alternator and they gave me a little receipt with all the normal ranges and my car’s results on it. Everything was working great. This diagnostic test they would have done anyway for no extra charge, even if I didn’t have them put in the new battery.
A job well done.
After the new battery was installed, my car started right up.
When both technicians were done, they cleaned up the area they worked in and put my old battery in their van. They explained the new battery warranty to me – 36 months free, 5 years total warranty and they handed me all the battery information and receipt to keep in the glove compartment of my car.
Surprisingly, they also gave me a coupon for a free oil change to be used at a nearby auto repair shop. Perfect timing – next I do have to get the oil changed.
After they left, all I could say was, “Wow.” In a total of about 80 minutes, I had a new car battery, a diagnostic test was done on the car and I received a coupon for a free oil change – all for just $149.00.
My day was hardly inconvenienced because of a dead battery. I drove away feeling very confident that my car was in excellent running condition. I went on my way to having a great, fun Monday out just as I had originally planned.
Every year I renew my daughter’s AAA membership as a Christmas gift to her. It gives parents peace of mind to know that if our child(ren) ever get stuck on the road, mechanical help is just a phone call away.
From the time a call for help is made to their toll-free 800 number an AAA mechanic is usually at your location between 45-60 minutes. It’s not a long wait and all and the time usually goes by very fast, especially if you are stuck at home. AAA’s Emergency Service will come to your location any time day or night.
AAA’s Emergency Service at their Classic Annual Membership price, which is what we have, includes battery service as I described above, mechanical first aid that doesn’t require parts or supplies, flat tire service to install an inflated spare tire, fuel delivery at pump price, locksmith service up to $60.00 cost and towing service with the first 5 miles free.
AAA also offers Premier Emergency Service and Plus/Plus RV Emergency Service. Each of these annual membership fees are a little bit more expensive than their Classic Annual Membership fee. Membership fees for all their plans vary depending on the state you live in.
AAA membership also includes all of their other services, benefits and discounts.
To view all the AAA services and their detailed information visit their website at:
http://www.aaa.com On their website you can also join AAA, renew a current membership and order emergency road service.
Membership services can also be done by telephone. AAA’s toll-free telephone number is: 800-352-5382, extension 4814.
In my family, we will always be members of AAA.
I highly recommend AAA’s Emergency Road Service to anyone who drives, or owns a car.