Living With Our Rapido 963f Le Randonneur Motor Home.

Saturday, 1 March 2014

Genuine Parts Or Generic? That Is The Question.

When I started the engine for the first time last week, the alarm buzzer started to sound after around 5 minutes. The temperature gauge had gone right over to its end stop and its warning light was illuminated. As the engine was not yet warm, I suspected an electrical fault, and after investigation found the temperature gauge sender to be short circuit on one station. (Mine is a dual station sender, one for the gauge and one for the warning light).

As I find it difficult working in the enclosed space of the engine bay these days - (once in I can't seem to get out), I contacted Sandra at Ace Marine Electrical 07969 803439 - (Northwich based), to ask if she could attend and confirm my diagnosis, order parts and re-fit. Sandra has worked for me before, completely re-wiring the batteries and inverter in the engine bay after a cock up by another company who had then recently worked on something else. She does a great job and knows everything about narrowboat electrics.

The sender was confirmed as the culprit, and she made enquiries with the Barrus Shire agent, who quoted £120 + VAT for a replacement. Luckily Sandra had experience of the more normal price of this item, and refused to order it before speaking to me, instead enquiring with A.S.A.P Supplies whose helpful staff first confirmed which sender was required, whether it's resistance scale would match the existing Barrus de-luxe panel temperature gauge, and finally, whether it was in stock. Everything was positive, and a new Faria sender was ordered at £24 + VAT!

This was fitted by Sandra last Wednesday, and all is once again tickety-boo in the engine department. Total cost for the job - £70, including the first diagnostic visit. Great value I believe.

Volkswagen are currently running a TV advertising campaign which tries to get over their own point as to why their vehicles generally cost far more than their competition. To a certain extent, I would agree that you 'get what you pay for', but Barrus' £120 against £24 for a part that does the same job, and is made from the same materials?

To me - that is taking quality against price a little too far and is taking the p***!

1 comment:

  1. I guess it's being driven by the price the "market" is prepared to pay! Of course, the "marine" aspect would add to the price :-)

    ReplyDelete

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