Questions about buying a standby electrical generator

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I am not sure what the differance is, but I bought a Dewalt 18 volt drill at Lowes on sale for $ 100. At work we have one just like it bought from a big distribituer and the one at work has a lot less plastic on the outside.
The John Deere mower will be taken care of if bought at a John Deere dealer. If bought at Lowes, Lowes will send you somewhere for warrenty work.
If you look at the modle numbers of lots of large dollar items, there will be a slight differance. This is so the stores will not have to 'price match'. Found out this when I was looking for a refrigerator. I think one had an extra emblem or piece of chrome on the door.
I can not prove it, but heard that batteries bought from Wallmart look the same, but internally there is less material than batteries at some other stores.
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On 8/18/2012 3:20 PM, Ralph Mowery wrote: ...

Plus the "John Deere" at Lowes is the "Sabre" homeowners' model and _not_ the same at all. I think, in fact, JD may have discontinued them owing to that they weren't up to Green paint. Indeed, I see the link at the Deere website links to a "discontinued models" page for support for them that have survived...
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About 6 years ago I bought a Deere L120 mower at the local dealer. Lowes had the same modle. I now have slightly over 300 hours on it by the meter on the dash. The transmission is just about out of it. It used to pull the hill on my yard with no problem. Now it will work ok for about half the back yard and the transmission gets hot and it will not pull the hill. It seems to do fine on the flat land, but I bet that will go out soon. I found out that transmission was a piece of junk and there is a third part replacement for it , but that cost half the price of the mower. That will be the last mower I buy from them. This mower is yellow and green. Should have been all lemon yellow.
I am not sure how well it will hold up, but I will be looking to the other brands next year if the JD lasts this season.
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On Sat, 18 Aug 2012 16:20:02 -0400, "Ralph Mowery"

Same model number?

Same model number?

Some things, sure. Low-end TVs and mattresses are famous for this.

If you can't prove it, how did you come up with the conclusion?
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Yes, unless there was an A or B after the number. I did not check that close.

Exectally the same mower. I asked the JD dealer if he could cut his price and he said no as Lowes sells the same model. The mower I bought from the dealer would run about 50 feet and stop. That was when it was brand new. They came and got it, replaced the seat and brought it back. If I had gotten it at Lowes, I would have had to taken it to some place to get it fixed uner the warrenty.
.

Saw it on other parts of the internet. Wallmart is big enough they give a company a price for a product and the company has to come up with a way to make the product for that price.
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On Sat, 18 Aug 2012 19:00:41 -0400, "Ralph Mowery"

I've bought a few of them and looked at many more in stores. None, at least from the same year, looked any different.

Completely irrelevant.

Wow! Now there's proof!

Sears does the same. So? They do *NOT* put the same model numbers on them if they're not the same.
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On Sat, 18 Aug 2012 18:41:42 -0400, " snipped-for-privacy@att.bizzzzzzzzzzzz"

A couple of years ago, the local JD dealer was selling the same exact tractor as Lowes and he would do their warranty work.. He also offered better start up service and free delivery. There may be other models involved now, but at that time they were identical.

The guy selling the higher priced batteries told him, of course.
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On 8/19/2012 12:32 AM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

Unfortunately there is no good answer. The big box version could be the same or it could be the "special walmart version". Places like walmart buy enough stuff that often it may represent a production run that is tuned to compensate for the price walmart names. And certainly "I looked at it " is the most meaningless way to judge if say bearings are different, a cheaper motor was used or batteries are not made as well.
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So you just make the accusation because you don't like WalMart. It doesn't matter if it's true.
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On Sun, 19 Aug 2012 12:36:29 -0400, " snipped-for-privacy@att.bizzzzzzzzzzzz"

If the part number is the same at Wal-Mart as it is from a factory dealer then the unit is the same. If any manufacturer were to make a unit "cheaper" for the big box stores then the model number is required to be different. Underwriters Laboratories will not list two different makes that have the same part number. There cannot be two different schematics for the exact same part number. If the big retailers are selling the units at a lower price than a factory dealer it is typically because the chain buys a shitload of units where as a local dealer buys on an as needed basis.
Example: As a dealer I can buy Signalink products direct from the factory. But I can buy the same product through a local wholesaler for less than I can buy it as a dealer. If I were to buy as much bulk as the wholesaler then I would get the same lower price as they do. But I don't need 1000 units at a time nor do I have the warehouse space to store that amount. So I buy as needed per job which is typically 30 or 40 units so I pay around $30 more per unit if I buy direct.
Another Example: You can purchase System Sensor products from Federal Signal cheaper than you can directly from System Sensor. Federal Signal buys a truckload at a time so they get a really low price by volume. And they pass that savings on to their customers.
Regarding Generac or other such products, authorized dealers may charge more than Lowes or Wal-Mart because they have trained technicians on staff and they take care of warranty repairs themselves instead of shipping anything back to the factory. That additional liability assumed by them does get figured into the asking price. The average mark up from a dealer's standpoint is typically between 30% and 40% (that percentage is how much of the list price is actually mark up). Big retail chains typically only mark up their products by 10% to 20% due to volume.
My own experience has been that you get better service and response from the factory authorized dealers than you do from retailers. Thus "you get what you pay for" pretty much applies.
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wrote:

That's where I'm going. OTOH, he insists that they aren't. I'd like some proof, other than what the guy selling the more expensive unit says.

"Required"? Dou have a cite for that?

Not everything is UL listed (batteries) but that's a good point re: Genrac.

...and the big retailer has the power to tell the supplier what the cost has to be. Sale or no sale.

*Maybe* you can get the same price at the volume. Because they sell so many of everything, they can demand a price that isn't on the normal price sheets. I work for a large company that does similar. "We need it at $x, or no sale". I've specified many components this way; at price $x, I'll design it in. At

Makes sense. Expertise isn't free and Walmart doesn't sell it.

Like everything in life, it depends. Sometimes I go to the car dealer for repairs, sometimes not. A lot depends on what the work is, but also on the way I feel about both as businesses.
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On 8/18/2012 3:01 PM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

different lines of generators, one for sale at Big Box stores, the other sold via distributors. According to the author of the post, there is supposedly "a world of difference" between the two.

version as being any different because it isn't any different when it comes to these Generac / Guardian models.
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On 8/18/2012 11:41 PM, Smarty wrote:

Except that they are different.
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Here's an idea- has anybody called the manufacturer to ask? I'd think that if it has the same model number it's the same unit, although with cars you might find the same model made in different factories, even in different countries.
I bought a nice HD video camera last year, then saw a very similar unit at Costco, with a slightly different model number and different color. I called Canon and they said that the only difference is that the Costco model lacked one feature- you can't plug the camera directly into a Canon DVD burner and directly make a DVD, you have to use a computer. Not wanting to buy a special Canon DVD burner anyway (obviously I have a computer...) I bought the Costco model as well (wanted two cameras).
You'd be amazed what you can learn by asking.
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On 8/19/2012 8:34 AM, snipped-for-privacy@brainchampagne.com wrote:

it has the same model number it's the same unit, although with cars you might find the same model made in different factories, even in different countries.

Costco, with a slightly different model number and different color. I called Canon and they said that the only difference is that the Costco model lacked one feature- you can't plug the camera directly into a Canon DVD burner and directly make a DVD, you have to use a computer. Not wanting to buy a special Canon DVD burner anyway (obviously I have a computer...) I bought the Costco model as well (wanted two cameras).

Agree, a good friend had a similar requirement as the OP. He decided to buy on price and went with the home depot version. I helped them with the panel wiring. When we started it up we couldn't believe how loud it was. So we figured that even though it was a packaged unit maybe we did something wrong. After a bunch of calls the factory guy came out and after some polite conversation he said this unit was made for home depots price point. During that time I needed something at the local industrial service place and I asked about differences. It was slow so the guy invited me back and said they used different components and showed me various differences on the dealer site they used for diagrams and service information.
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On 8/19/2012 8:24 AM, George wrote:

purchase, the model numbers, weights, and specifications were identical from both Home Depot and the distributor model (which I personally purchased since I avoided sales tax and also saved a couple hundred more bucks compared to Home Depot pricing).
What proof do you have that there actually is some difference?
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On 08/18/2012 06:42 AM, Smarty wrote:

Why don't people don't just hook up a $300 VW air-cooled engine to a generator head? I've seen those things start up after they've sat for years, and they still run fine.
Jon
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I realize this is an older thread, but I'm just getting to it. Let's see, 200/24 = 8.33. So you're claiming that a typical homeowner won't be needing a generator for a total of just over a week? I'd say anyone who expects that level of reliability from their power company doesn't need a generator at all.
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wrote:

8.33?? Are sure it's not 8.32 or 8.34? Did you learn about significant figures in community college?
Aside from Shitty's over-decimalization, 200 hours is about alls yer gonna get if you buy an effingGenerac.
And then there is the issue of "typical home owner". And the issue of expectations of future reliability.
But the implied point is actually a good one, skewed a bit by Irene and that crazy Halloween storm in the NE. After that, generators were backordered for up to 5 months, mebbe more. 3 million people lost power in the Halloween fiasco, hundreds of thousands of them for up to a month. holy shit.....
So statistically, most proly don't need one. But, not many in the NE will forget Halloween.
Plus, if all's yer gonna do is get a bitty gasoline generator for lites and a fridge, it's no big deal. But if yer tryna do a whole-house thing "right", without breaking the bank, the setup really is a pita. Noise is a big issue, most of these units are unbelievably noisy, even with quality Honda engines. Incl Generacs. Don't believe that 73 db bullshit.
If a contractor sets this up "right", esp. on nat. gas, it *will* break the bank. Tri-fuel is a neat and not super-expensive option, as it allows a wheeled unit to act as a true standby on nat gas, AND a portable work unit on gasoline/propane.
For me, $1500 for an 8750 W noisy Honda-powered tri-fuel is worth 200/24=8.33 days, esp. with the prospect of another Irene/Halloween, and a fledgling biz. But that is because I can do the whole installation. It would not be worth it to me for the total price of proly $5K+ for a contractor to do it.
Hey Shitty, wadn't it you who was going to do geothermal, and get 100% ROI in, like, 3 years?? Howzat goin?? You were perty quiet in the recent geothermal thread.....
--
EA



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wrote:

That is why I don't have a generator. One time we were out for two days (hurricane Gloria). Another time we were out for 8 hours. Never had any outages more than 30 minutes at any other time in my life.
I can't justify having $1000 sitting out in the garage not used.
Back to your math. Would you have it running 24 hours a day? I bet that 8.33 days can easily be 16.66 or more.
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