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LawnSite Senior Member
St. Louis, Mo
Do you find it hard to demonstrate equipment?

I am finding that not many places are willing to let me take a mower out for half a day or more. They only want you to cut a yard or two, if that. I went to one shop the other day and the salesman told me, "You know what they do, They cut grass." He did let me drive it around the parking lot, but I don't know of any parking lots that need cutting.

What are your experiences?


LawnSite Bronze Member
Southern, Maine
We demod all our Walkers and Toro's before purchasing them. As a matter of fact the Walker salesmen came out to one of our jobs so we could demo on site. I would never buy something at that expense without a demo first.


LawnSite Platinum Member
My local dealer has a huge open house every March. All the factory rep's are there. You can ride every kind of mower that they sell. They nake a killing every year!


LawnSite Silver Member
Just be up front and tell them your going to buy the mower if you like the quality of cut. The only way to see if the mower lives up to your standards is to demo on several lawns. They don't care about quality, just sales, so do not take a salesman word that it cuts as good as any mower. Make him prove it. He should be willing to let you demo it. What kind of dealer is it?

Jeff in AL

LawnSite Senior Member
To all---
I am an OPE dealer, and that is what I do, is sell equipment. We do have many people come in and look at different pieces of equipment. However due to our shop location, we no not have any grass to demo machines on.
What we due is set up a demo time and place(if homeowmer, usually at their house, and most don't have a trailer to get it there anyway). We go over the machine operation with them and then let them go to work. We have no set time limit as to how long they can use it, but we stay there incase they have a problem or questions.
Now as for commercial cutters, most of them we let take the equipment out on their own. However it must come back in the same shape that it was in when they left with it, not all beat up from mowing along a 200 foot fence or running into walls. For the most part they can tell if they like the machine, and it will work for them in a matter of minutes. We will not let them demo it for days or weeks at a time.
Now as for customers that are not our "regulars", we will set up the same type of demo as for homeowners. We have done this because we have had a few come in and say "I wish I try it out at such and such a place".
When the equipment comes back with 12 hrs on it and it is plain to see that they have been bushhogging with it, it really pisses me off. They won't admit that they did not want to use their own equipment on that property.
We have even shown up to due a demo, at the same time another company was there. (I like those).
Bottom line is I/we will due what ever it takes to get you to be one of our customers, and to keep you one for life.
I don't understand why a dealer will not go the extra step to help you guys, when it is their business to, and furthermore I don't know how they are still in business.
Most of our sales are from pro cutters, and we due WHAT EVER it takes to keep you guys up and going, if it requires staying after hours to get a repair done, then that's what will be done.
I have had a few times that the guys stop at my house after hours or on Sunday, because they had a problem or needed a belt etc.. They feel bad for doing it, but if their equipment is down, their not making money. So I will go the extra mile to get them up and going.

Jeff in AL

Richard Martin

LawnSite Fanatic
Greenville, NC
Jeff in Al wrote:

<b><i>I have had a few times that the guys stop at my house after hours or on Sunday, because they had a problem or needed a belt etc..</b></i>

I wish we had you here. One of our local Exmark dealers isn't even open on Saturdays and the other one couldn't give you a belt because he doesn't have them. He keeps what few belts he has in a cardboard box in the corner.


LawnSite Senior Member
We finally got a dealer here that sells about everything for the professional trade. He tells you up front, "Do not buy it until you come in, take it out and mow". "Mow with it all day on your regular route, put it through the mill like you would any other day".

Very cool concept. He use to mow! He has hurt the other dealers alot! Things are looking up for us around here.


LawnSite Bronze Member
I left my hand blower at the farm one day. Stopped by my Stihl dealer and told him what I had done. He asked me what blower did I want to borrow ! I choose the BR-320. Used it for 6 days. He had no problem with me useing it that long. I said thanks and he said no problem, anytime.