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Using Aftermarket Parts for Hydraulic Component Repair

It’s not always necessary to replace an entire component in a broken hydraulic system, there are times when repairing it can deliver excellent performance and some welcome cost savings. This is true of many hydraulic system parts including motors, cylinders and even pumps.

When deciding whether it’s more beneficial to repair or to replace, your decision will most likely be based on how expensive the part is to replace. The more expensive it is, the more opportunity to make savings from repairing it. When it comes to the cost of the repair, you’ll need to consider these factors:
·  How worn or damaged is the component?
·  Do you have the knowledge and the facilities to make the repair?
·  How is the repair going to be performed?

In some situations, there are some parts of worn or damaged hydraulic components that can be re-used after they have passed through processes such as honing, grinding, machining or hard-chrome plating. Through skilled workmanship it’s possible to make a reduction in the new parts required in addition to making savings from opting to repair as opposed to sourcing a new part.

It is also sometimes possible to lower repair costs even further by using aftermarket or non-genuine parts. Some of these parts are actually made in the same factories that make the genuine OEM parts and will be of the same quality. In other cases, these parts will be made by other manufacturers and their quality may be considered to be anywhere between poor, questionable and first rate.

Keeping this in mind, it’s worth asking your repair shop whether the parts are proven in terms of quality, performance and service life in addition to whether they are covered by a warranty.

If the repair shop is aware of the quality of the parts and are willing to stand behind them, then you have limited risk in the implementation of your decision. If they haven’t used them before, then you will need to consider what cost it will be to you if the parts are not reliable in quality.

Weigh up the savings made by the unknown parts living up to expectation versus the cost to you if they don’t. You may find that the repair shop will share some of that risk as once they have discovered whether those parts are reliable, they can then offer them as a solution to other customers.

In summary, don’t go ahead with hydraulic component repairs without understanding what risk you are taking. How do the savings you could make measure up against the cost of this experiment failing? It could turn out to be a rather unpleasant and costly mistake.


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