It can be tempting…those after-market tractor parts, sometimes cheaper than the “real thing”. They can be so easy to order-on-line, promises of quick delivery…what could possibly go wrong?
Potentially, just about everything, says Chris Johnson, managing director of Johnson Gluyas Tractors. And he should know, after more than 40 years in the industry.
“When you buy brand-specific parts for your New Holland tractor you’re not buying just that vital component. You’re buying decades of quality production, experience and dedication to the farming industry.”
So, what are the benefits of choosing to avoid after-market parts that might appear to be an attractive proposition, especially for farmers striving to keep expenditure down.
“First and foremost, it comes down to performance and efficiency. The New Holland brand name is trusted for its reliability. When you buy spare parts that bear the New Holland name you are buying a product that has been manufactured from quality materials, using high-tech methods and with knowledge and experience that has been built up over many years,” says Chris.
This is the opposite of the ethos behind the production of after-market tractor parts. Maximising profit is their aim here and this can involve the use of inferior materials. The outcome of that hardly needs spelling out.
Chris’s technical staff reckon that cheaper, after-market cultivator discs, for example have been found to wear out up to three times faster than branded discs.
He also points out that research across the licensed dealer-network has shown that genuine parts are often comparable in cost to aftermarket lines, and in some instances, have actually been cheaper.
Sometimes, says Chris, after-market parts can bear a reputable brand name, such as New Holland. They are sold cheap because they are rejects which have by various means ended up on the market, despite not meeting their manufacturer’s strict quality controls.
So, how do you avoid this trap? After all, could you tell if a crankshaft branded with the New Holland name really was the real deal or was a pirated part?
That’s where your local licensed dealer is invaluable. They only buy parts from registered distributors who likewise, only source their stock from the true brand manufacturer.
Buying branded parts is not only about the assurance of quality that’s going to last.
After-market parts, because they are often made of low-grade materials and possibly using inferior manufacturing processes, will often damage other parts they come in contact with.
This can be extremely costly, not the least because this immediately renders the warranty on branded parts null and void.
All branded parts come with a full warranty, plus licensed dealers can access the entire range that bears the manufacturer’s warranty. They will have a huge range on hand but they can source all other parts quickly and offer a 24/7 service to their clients. You won’t find that level of service and commitment, buying after-mart parts.
Licensed dealers can also source parts for older models of tractors that are unlikely to be produced by after-market manufacturers. They need to sell cheap products fast, so have no interest in making parts that will only ever be sold in small numbers.
It’s not just the parts that are crucial to keep farming operations running smoothly, or in the event of a breakdown, getting things back on track quickly. Lubricants for example are also vital.
They too come in after-mart form and once again, what might seem like a good deal at first because of lower cost could well lead to trouble. Branded lubricants for example are designed and produced to meet machinery manufacturers’ standards and will do exactly the job they say they will do. Not only that, using after-market products may create warranty issues too.
“It’s a straightforward message,” says Chris “Opt for parts and lubricants from branded names because not only does that ensure quality and durability but a high level of service as well.”