Aftermarket Parts

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by SLSNursery, Feb 13, 2000.

  1. SLSNursery

    SLSNursery LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 442

    In a previous, unrelated thread, a small discussion began about aftermarket parts savings. Speaking from experience, I have found that some aftermarket parts can be used with great success. However some blades, belts, or bearings cannot. In many cases, the amount of energy expended searching for quality aftermarket parts outweighs any savings. My feeling is that if the parts quality is apples to apples, then fine, go aftermarket for the savings. We use WIX filters for instance, or FRAM, instead of FORD, KOHLER, or KAWASAKI, etc. These products are time tested by labs, and in my field experience. We buy enough of them to be able to buy them from the same distributor as the local parts stores. The big filter brands likely manufacture filters for the mower or truck companies anyway. Other cases aren't so clear cut. Blades for instance come in different gauge steel, and over the course of several years I have purchased hundreds of OEM and Aftermarket types. The only real savings came when dropping quality for aftermarkets, and they didn't last as long. Now we mostly use OEMs or the heaviest Aftermarkets I can find. Same thing with Belts - Probably Dayco, Gates, etc. makes most belts, so if you go OEM or with a name the quality is the same. As soon as you go offbrand, forget it. Except in a pinch, we use OEM belts now. I used to go to an industrial belt supplier for some specialty belts. He only sold me top quality name brand belts. For bearings, I go to an Industrial Bearing Supply house, and get OEM bearings, eliminating any question of their origin. This has proven successful in numerous cases, including last season, with an aerator, Harley Rake, a couple of trailers,Leaf vacuum and more; all of which received bearing replacement without involving the machine manufacturer, just directly getting the best quality bearings we could find. By finding these types of suppliers over time, we don't need to constantly groom the catalogs only to find that the products weren't what we expected. How about tires??? I've tried everything, and end up with the big OEMs once again. GOODYEAR, MICHELIN or FIRESTONE always last and in the event of any problems are immediately replaced by the local dealer. Sometimes for mowers we used to get the cheaper catalog tires. They, in my experience, did not last as long as the OEM part did unless you stepped up to the better one, and threw the savings idea right out the window. Comments, success or failure stories would be welcome. <p>----------<br>Phil Grande - Soundview Landscape Supply - http://members.aol.com/slsnursery<br>Ivy League Landscaping - http://members.aol.com/scagrider<br>
     
  2. imowit

    imowit Guest
    Posts: 0

    Phil, I enjoyed reading your post, but I have to disagree on one point. Your air filter and oil filter are the life of a small engine. I won,t mention any brand names, but I believe if you will cut apart some off these different brands of filters you will see quite a difference. Just my opinion.<p>----------<br>Mike's Lawn Service<br>
     
  3. Jason

    Jason LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 256

    I have to agree with the filter statement. Over on the snowplowing forum, the moderator chuck has a home page. On his home page he has a link about a guy that studied automotive oil filters. Way too detailed to go into here. But it is an eye opener. The filter companies were threating legal action against this man I believe. He uncovered lot's of things about filters. Some of the big names like Fram aren't as good as people seem to think. I agree with the previous post cut a few different brands apart and see for yourself.
     
  4. Keith

    Keith LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,977

    I posted this over at the old forum a few months back. &lt;a href=&quot; http://www.pureoil.com/catalog/xref.asp&quot;&gt;Purolator&lt;/a&gt; they have a cross reference for oil filters that works for some small engines. I was able to cross a couple of Kohler filters and Kubota filters. Pretty cool. I like the Purolator PureOne. I'm not trying to convince anyone that Puralator is what you should use. But if you manage to cross your engine manufacturers filter to Purolator, then it will be mush easier to cross the Purolator automotive number into your favorite brand.<p>As for belts and stuff, I have had good luck with J Thomas but one of the other suppliers, I won't name, sold belts that were complete junk. You will have to find a good supplier.<p><p><p><p>
     
  5. Retro67

    Retro67 Banned
    Posts: 207

    I have bought blades and some other incidentals from both Replacement Commercial Parts Warehouse and ProParts direct. I have been happy with quality, service, etc. I am unsure of the quality of their other parts, or if their belts are aftermarket. One or the other has plowing parts, as well. They will send a free catalog, but you have to specify lawn and garden or plowing catalog, since they are seperate. &lt;p&gt;Pro Part Direct in Salem, NH can be reached at 1-800-305-9255. RCPW of Macedonia Ohio, at 330-468-2641. Either place would be happy to give you information. I am thinking for some reason that I saw Dayco belts in their 1999 catalog, but I could easily be mistaken. However, I do think that it may be worth a phone call.&lt;p&gt;John&lt;p&gt;PS Keith thanks for providing that link. I couldn't remember where I had seen it. It's at least worth a look.
     
  6. thelawnguy

    thelawnguy LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,412

    I have bought blades for my exmark from landscaper supply and rcpw. The landscaper supply ones were identical to the oem, right down to the numbers on the blades, while the rcpw blades, though they fit, were thinner and did not last as long. Hit a rock, instead of just dinking the blade the rcpw blde bent and scalped the heck outa the lawn for about fifty feet til I realized what happened. <p>This is the one big drawback of ordering parts thru the internet you do not have the ability to inspect before purchasing.<p>Bill
     
  7. SLSNursery

    SLSNursery LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 442

    Jason or others-<br>I remember a note about the filters on the old forum, and have e-mailed Chuck because the link was not apparent to me. So, I have been using the WIX almost 100%, with regular intervals between changes. Fram or Purolators were available from the chain store on the corner, but they keep changing hands, so I don't count on them for consistent stock because they change brands a lot. I would like to know what you know, and if I should research much further (in order to not use WIX). Thanks (I wouldn't mind if you mentioned brand names if you qualified your comments by stating whether it's based on opinion, reading, or experience). Thank you.<br><p>----------<br>Phil Grande - Soundview Landscape Supply - http://members.aol.com/slsnursery<br>Ivy League Landscaping - http://members.aol.com/scagrider
     
  8. imowit

    imowit Guest
    Posts: 0

    Phil,check out this site.<br>http://minimopar.simplenet.com/oilfilterstudy.html
     
  9. Keith

    Keith LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,977

    Phil, I think I mentioned this before on the old forum. I used Wix filters too and they worked pretty well. I had been told by some guys at a lube shop years ago, there Quaker State filters were Purolator and they were junk. I bad mouthed them and would never consider using them. It turned out these guys were wrong, the filters they were using were Fram. I tried a Purolator PureOne on my 12.5 Kawasaki(about 1500 hours), in place of a Wix. Up until that time when I would change the oil it would be, not bad, but somewhat black. I noticed after trying the Purolator the oil looked more like the oil I had put in, golden. I now run them on everything. Also it turns out the Motorcraft filters have PureOne elements in a standard Purolator case. I have used those in my cars and trucks for a long time, so I was really using Purolators all the time.
     
  10. SLSNursery

    SLSNursery LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 442

    Thanks for the info. I checked out the filter page, and am comfortable with the WIX too. The chain stores don't ever stock odd filters - mowers, diesels, off-road equip, etc. So, it would take some work to be able to switch from WIX, but I will keep checking to make sure quality doesn't drop. I've found that at oil change time, within regular intervals, the drain oil is consistent with the WIX filters, so, to me, that is a good sign. <p>----------<br>Phil Grande - Soundview Landscape Supply - http://members.aol.com/slsnursery<br>Ivy League Landscaping - http://members.aol.com/scagrider
     

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