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DFW Area Landscaper
07-09-2006, 08:20 AM
Are parts for discontinued models more expensive than parts for current models?

Reason I ask, is, we recenly bought a wheel bearing for our 2003 Honda HRC216k1HXA and it was $31.50. A week later, we had to buy the same part for our 2005 Honda HRC216K2HXA. It was a different part number and the shape was slightly different. The price was $13.06.

Does this make sense or did my dealer gouge me on one of the sales?

Later,
DFW Area Landscaper

mowerman90
07-09-2006, 08:25 AM
I'd say that Honda gouged :hammerhead: you both times!

Mowingman
07-09-2006, 08:31 AM
Honda parts of all kinds are way overpriced in my opinion. That is one reason, of many, that I would never buy Honda 21" mowers for my crews. When a typical Briggs or Kawasaki air filter might run $5 or $6, a similar Honda filter would be $15.00. Honda parts prices have been a ripoff for many years.

DFW Area Landscaper
07-09-2006, 08:49 AM
Are Toro prices generally more reasonably priced?

What kills me about these mowers is, they just aren't built well. Take the front wheel height adjusters, for example. That should have a sealed bearing inside there. But instead, it is metal forced down inside metal. It gets rusty and then I can't get my guys to adjust their mowing height. And I don't blame them.

Anywhere you have two pieces of metal coming together and they are designed to rub one another, there should be a bearing there. All over these Honda mowers, there are parts rubbing one another, by design, with nothing in that design to prevent those parts from wearing out.

I paid $16,000 for a new F-150 and there is nothing that should fail on that truck, outside of tires, for the next 10 years. That truck will get plenty of use. But with a commercial 21" lawn mower, they have failing/worn out parts all over them within 6 months.

Over a 10 year period, it will cost me $16K to keep that truck running and then I could sell it for $5K and be out $11K. That's $1,100 per year. With the Honda mowers, my cost to keep a 21" mower running, assuming I buy a new one each year and then clean it up and sell it on E-Bay, would be about $800 per year...almost as much as the truck. It doesn't make sense. We are talking about hundreds, possibly thousands, more parts on an F-150 than on a 21" lawn mower.

If the manufacturers would just build a 21" lawn mower as well as a new car is built, I'd buy it. I don't care if it's $2,000 for a new 21" mower. If it will last 10 years without any parts failing, it would be MUCH cheaper than what I am doing now.

Later,
DFW Area Landscaper

Precision
07-09-2006, 11:03 AM
If the manufacturers would just build a 21" lawn mower as well as a new car is built, I'd buy it. I don't care if it's $2,000 for a new 21" mower. If it will last 10 years without any parts failing, it would be MUCH cheaper than what I am doing now.

Later,
DFW Area Landscaper

Yes but that puts you in the distinct minority. Most people would rather buy an new cheap one every few months. Dumb but true.

I find that my Toro's with the Kawasaki 4 stroke engine are more reliable than my 2 strokers. Better air filtration keeps the carbs from getting crap in them. They also run stronger and use less gas. BUT you do have to change oil and oil filters.

There is also a decent aftermarket for Toro parts, especially oil and air filters and blades. Usually about 1/2 price.

I paid $950 for mine in a pre-spring sale. Only real problem I have had is breakage of linkage cables (covered under warranty) and the blade hub work welding on. With my next new purchase I am gonna take that off before it ever gets used and anti sieze it then put it back in.

We cut everything at 4" so that isn't an issue, but the adjusters are better made. the wheels are ball bearing mounted and metal rims. All in all the best 21" I have seen, but we still take 3 on the truck planning on using 2.

David Haggerty
07-09-2006, 11:19 AM
Can you read the number on that bearing? Check it against what these guys offer.

http://bearingsdirect.com/products/

Runner
07-09-2006, 12:35 PM
Exactly. This is why we very seldomly purchase stuff from a dealer. For bearings, we have a place here in town (used to be Detroit ball Bearing) that has every kind of bearing, hanger, pillowblock, or anything of that sort you could imagine. we are also blessed to have a place called MESCO that carries every type of belt, pulley, and idler imaginable (along with much else). Much of our stuff also comes from suppliers like J Thomas.

DFW Area Landscaper
07-09-2006, 06:44 PM
++++Yes but that puts you in the distinct minority. Most people would rather buy an new cheap one every few months. Dumb but true.++++

Perhaps, but those who are in the minority would not just buy one of these things. Those who want real equipment would probably need several. In my case, I would need 7 for production, and 2 for spares.

I know the technology is there to make a machine that will tolerate the dusty conditions and last. These engines are having no problems at all. That's what kills me...the engines are fine but the rest of the machine needs to be replaced every 18 months.

Later,
DFW Area Landscaper

DFW Area Landscaper
07-09-2006, 06:55 PM
Maybe the solution is to buy a $300 mower at Wal-Mart and run it for 90 days and then throw it out and buy another. Just figure on spending $300 3 times a year on Wal-Mart mowers. Perhaps you could get by with just two of these every season. That would be $600 per year per mower. If the things don't break down, that would be fine with me.

Maybe I will experiment with one of these for one of the crews and see how long it goes before a parts failure occurs. Heck, I just spent $350 on Honda parts Friday and another $50 on Saturday and this is but a fraction of the parts I need right now.

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4634160

Later,
DFW Area Landscaper

Precision
07-09-2006, 08:19 PM
Maybe the solution is to buy a $300 mower at Wal-Mart and run it for 90 days and then throw it out and buy another. Just figure on spending $300 3 times a year on Wal-Mart mowers. Perhaps you could get by with just two of these every season. That would be $600 per year per mower. If the things don't break down, that would be fine with me.

Maybe I will experiment with one of these for one of the crews and see how long it goes before a parts failure occurs. Heck, I just spent $350 on Honda parts Friday and another $50 on Saturday and this is but a fraction of the parts I need right now.

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4634160

Later,
DFW Area Landscaper


In my opinion buying anything from walmart is a fool's errand. You will have a significant period of downtime and hassle buying them all the time, not to mention diluting your professional image.

Just wondering, aren't these failures covered under warranty? So far everything on My Toro's have been a warranty item. Normal turn around is 2 days or less.

Buy one for $950 and sell it at years end for $350 and never be without warranty coverage AND you will certainly get your money's worth with +/- 300 accounts.

3 mowers per crew, so $1800 in depreciation divided by 3600 or more mows per season. I mean that is $.50 a cut. No big deal.

out4now
07-09-2006, 11:19 PM
If you build a mower that never falls apart you're out of business as a manufacturer, planned obsolecence. Sensation mowers lasted many many years, guess what people just changed engines and rarely bought new ones, hence they went belly up. And BTW you must have a blessed truck to go a decade and only need tires. ;)

DFW Area Landscaper
07-09-2006, 11:30 PM
The Ferris equipment never fell apart. As for the truck, we only put about 4,500 miles a year on them. I expect no failures with the first 50,000 miles.

Later,
DFW Area Landscaper

newz7151
07-10-2006, 11:06 AM
The Ferris equipment never fell apart. As for the truck, we only put about 4,500 miles a year on them. I expect no failures with the first 50,000 miles.

Later,
DFW Area Landscaper

4,500 miles a year? Geez.. you must have some really tight and close together routes.

bcg
07-10-2006, 06:00 PM
Are Toro prices generally more reasonably priced?

What kills me about these mowers is, they just aren't built well. Take the front wheel height adjusters, for example. That should have a sealed bearing inside there. But instead, it is metal forced down inside metal. It gets rusty and then I can't get my guys to adjust their mowing height. And I don't blame them.

Anywhere you have two pieces of metal coming together and they are designed to rub one another, there should be a bearing there. All over these Honda mowers, there are parts rubbing one another, by design, with nothing in that design to prevent those parts from wearing out.

I paid $16,000 for a new F-150 and there is nothing that should fail on that truck, outside of tires, for the next 10 years. That truck will get plenty of use. But with a commercial 21" lawn mower, they have failing/worn out parts all over them within 6 months.

Over a 10 year period, it will cost me $16K to keep that truck running and then I could sell it for $5K and be out $11K. That's $1,100 per year. With the Honda mowers, my cost to keep a 21" mower running, assuming I buy a new one each year and then clean it up and sell it on E-Bay, would be about $800 per year...almost as much as the truck. It doesn't make sense. We are talking about hundreds, possibly thousands, more parts on an F-150 than on a 21" lawn mower.

If the manufacturers would just build a 21" lawn mower as well as a new car is built, I'd buy it. I don't care if it's $2,000 for a new 21" mower. If it will last 10 years without any parts failing, it would be MUCH cheaper than what I am doing now.

Later,
DFW Area Landscaper

Think about this though. If you put 4,500 miles a year on those trucks at an average speed of say 30 MPH, you're only putting 150 hours a year on them. Those mowers are probably getting 30 or more hours a week on them, assuming you try to keep your guys on an 8 hour day, so in 3 weeks they have as many hours as you put on a truck in a year and over the course of the season they have 1080 hours on them, almost 7.5 times what you're putting on your truck. When you put it into perspective, I would be surprised if they weren't having stuff break on them.