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Support your local dealer!

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by OnMyOwn, Feb 1, 2006.


Should you buy your parts from the dealer that sells you the equipment?

  1. Yes...support your dealer > if he supports you

    37 vote(s)
  2. No...go for the almight dollar and buy the least expensive.

    5 vote(s)
  3. Who cares?

    0 vote(s)
  1. OnMyOwn

    OnMyOwn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 372

    I am struggling with the cost of supporting my dealer on ancillary purchases such as; filters, 2-cycle oil, plugs, etc. He is an outstanding person and I receive top notch service from him. We have had this relationship for some 15+ years. The only problem, as many of you know, is that the dealer pulls his GP margin on all parts.

    In no way do I begrudge him making a profit off his clients, because he has a family to support. I just think about going to NAPA for filters, Lowes for plugs, and online parts stores for blades. However, everytime I start to purchase cheaper parts from other sources, I feel as though I am cheating on the guy because he is my friend, and has been instrumental in my success.

    Do any of you put this much thought into your dealer support?
  2. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    I consider my dealer to be my "silent partner"...need I say more?
  3. OnMyOwn

    OnMyOwn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 372


    That may be the easiest way to say what I spent a paragraph rambling over. That's a nice way to look at it, and I must remember that he markets my business for free. I have business cards on his counter and he has helped me secure several nice clients. I almost feel bad for posting my indecision.
  4. nitrotim

    nitrotim LawnSite Senior Member
    from nj
    Posts: 525

    My dealer has always given me great support, Most recently the dump trailer I bought off them burned the ground wire to the charging system while I was dumping and it was stuck in the up position. I called them and they promptly came out to the dump I was at in 30 minutes. Apparently there was a bad battery ground so it was fixed under warranty. They are no the cheapest but with the kind of service they give me its worth the little bit extra. I completely understand ROD's silen partner comment.
  5. macaw

    macaw LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 415

    Yes support him my dealer is 35 miles away so I do buy oil filters, and plugs on line and mail order sharpen my own blades I get all the oem parts from my dealer and they do all major repair work.So if I brake down I call tell them about what time I should get there when I get there my mower most of the time don't
    even get off the trailer it's fixed on the spot now that what I call dealer support.
  6. Remsen1

    Remsen1 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,020

    It sounds like you have a good realationship and he is there for you when you need help. You wouldn't want that to change, and have to wonder how he would feel if he came out to help you and found a napa filter, or after market belts etc.
  7. cborden

    cborden LawnSite Member
    from 46140
    Posts: 177

    I do as much as passable to support my local SCAG dealer, he is one of the very few things in life I have no complaints about. I bought a used WB from him this past summer, after three hours of use it had a major mechanical failure. I bought this unit as a spare and without a warranty, but he still went to a large expense to repair the mower at no cost to me. If I don't have time to fix something, I can usually drop it off and pick it up in a couple of hours. I don't care if I can save a couple of dollars on filters, plugs or belts by going to another provider, good service and a good friend are hard to replace.:)
  8. Green-Pro

    Green-Pro LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,420

    My dealer has a vested interest in my continued success; ergo, the more I succeed, better service I receive, the more influence that will hold with me when making not only equipment purchases but parts as well from routine maintenance parts to anything more serious.

    I mentioned this in another thread about this same issue, I reward loyalty with loyalty, there is a right way and a wrong way IMO and this is the right way.
  9. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 14,700

    I used to buy everything from my dealer but something happened to change that. Things have also happened since that first incident to reinforce my notion that dealers don't care about you or your business, they're in it for the money and nothing else. In the first incident I wanted to buy a simple Tiny Tach for a mower I bought from him. I figured "No problem, 35 or 40 bucks and I'm outta there". Well my dealer wanted $65 for the same exact Tiny Tach that lists for $34.95 from Tiny Tach's website. I'm all for everybody making money and all but that is just out-right gouging. Other things like $20 fuel filters and stuff like that convinced me that I couldn't afford to buy parts from my dealer. In the latest incident I sent a friend to him to buy a new Dixie Chopper. CASH. Well the friend wanted a XW2503-50" model. That is the full commercial model with the 25 horse Kohler engine. Well my dealer only had a 20 horse Silver Eagle in stock and told my friend that there were no XW2503 mowers and that he should just buy the Silver Eagle since that was all my friend needed. I ended up sending my friend to another dealer further away from my house that I bought my first Dixie from and he ordered him the mower he wanted.
  10. lafrance4078

    lafrance4078 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 246

    I have had trouble with my local dealer in the past, because I hadn't purchased my first mower from him. It was a GD SS that I bought used in another state. The local service center was not very interested in providing me with the best service because I hadn't purchased from him. This year I bought a new ZTR from him and now they bend over backwards to help me. I still am not sure if I will purchase filters and blades and such from him. I do agree that they are an integrel part of my business, but are they really out to help me? Only time will tell.

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