Choosing an Engine Supplier? Then Ask the Right Questions

Choosing an Engine Supplier? Then Ask the Right Questions

Whether you're new to the automotive service business and seeking a supplier of remanufactured engines, or a seasoned veteran looking to switch vendors, you've probably found that it's not as simple as a "who's got 'em, I'll take 'em" scenario.

By Mike Pfau
Advertising Manager
Jasper Engines & Transmissions

Whether you’re new to the automotive service business and seeking a supplier of remanufactured engines, or a seasoned veteran looking to switch vendors, you’ve probably found that it’s not as simple as a “who’s got ’em, I’ll take ’em” scenario.

Selecting a supplier of remanufactured engines, requires a great deal of care. You want to be sure that the company you select will not only provide your short-term needs, but that it is one you want to build a long-term relationship with. Just like good customers, good suppliers are hard to find. You want to be sure that you’ve done your homework, asked the right questions, and feel comfortable with the person and company with whom you plan to do business with for many years to come.

So what should you look for in a remanufactured engine vendor with whom you want to develop a long-term relationship? And remember, it’s not only you who’s involved in this relationship — it’s your customers as well.

Quality: When it comes to a remanufactured engine, quality counts. You want the next phone call you receive from your customer to be for more business, not a complaint about the engine you just installed. Find out what steps and procedures the vendor takes to build a quality remanufactured engine. What machining operations do they perform? What kind of quality procedures and steps do they take? It’s also good to check what parts are automatically replaced, and if a part is reused, how has it been qualified for reuse? Do they perform the minimum procedures or do they go to the next level and incorporate updates to improve the engine’s performance?

Warranty: Of course, if your supplier has taken care of the quality issues, you hope that the need for warranty coverage will never arise. Things happen, however, and everyone makes mistakes, so how your vendor backs its products is an important concern. What is the length of the warranty? What labor coverage do they provide? Is it a nationwide warranty so your customer is covered when they travel away from home? Are premium service plans that enhance the warranty or provide for additional coverage items offered?

Breadth of Product Line: For you veterans, you know the broad range of vehicles out there and the numerous applications. It’s a good idea to learn about the breadth and depth of the company’s engine line, and if they offer other drivetrain components that may compliment your business. Sometimes it’s nice to one-stop shop.

Availability: Does anyone like to wait for anything anymore? Most of us don’t, especially when it comes to our basic transportation needs. Lengthy delays for the completed work mean frustrated and unhappy customers — not the kind of service you want to provide. How many units does the vendor stock? If it’s not in stock, how soon can you receive it? Are there delivery charges?

Sales Support: What kind of sales support does, can or will the vendor provide? Purchasing a remanufactured product is a big, but sound investment for your customer and they need all of the information you can provide. Does the vendor offer sales literature and point-of-purchase materials? Do they have a video presentation you can show your customers on the spot or send home with them? Do they provide co-op dollars to assist you with your advertising efforts? How about seminars and other materials that will assist you with your sales efforts?

Remember, when you select a vendor, you’re not only selecting a source of product, you’re choosing to develop a relationship — especially if the product applies to a large facet of your business. Will your engine supplier consistently meet and exceed your expectations? And, most importantly, will the vendor’s product provide a high level of satisfaction for your customers and reflect favorably on your business? Asking these questions will help you address your shop’s bottom line and improve service options for your customers.

For more information on products offered by Jasper Engines & Transmissions, call (800) 827-7455 or visit www.jasperengines.com.

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