Why are replacement engines more costly than mower

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I have a 10 year old $200 mower. Still runs fine. I've rewound the starter a few times and riveted it back on. But the holes are getting so elongated from drilling out the rivets that I don't think I can do that too many more times. Anyway, I've toyed with the idea of getting a replacement engine, as this one also helps fog the neighborhood. Yet it seems I can get a similar mower, but without the ball bearing wheels for about $219 today with a 190cc Briggs and Stratton engine. Seems most 190cc replacement engines are almost if not more than that. My engine is a 190cc quantum, but with the Intek style oval air filter. I'm toying with the idea of just getting a mower with a higher end engine, but a cheap deck and putting the engine on my deck with the ball bearing wheels, etc. I've also toyed with the idea of getting one of those Harbor Freight engines for about $140. I think I still have a 15 or 20% off coupon for HF, so if it doesn't work, I'll only be out about $120. It's probably not worth the effort to rebuild it. But I could re-ring it, clean things up and see how that goes as well. But what is my time worth? Seems either a new mower, or repowering this one with a engine donated from another $200 to $220 special may be the way to go if this one should die in the next year or two. But it just doesn't seem right that replacement engines are as much if not more than the mower.
 
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I just blew a Briggs Vanguard 16 HP. A new engine is $ 1,200 and $200 labor to install. For $700 more I bought a new Simplicity Tractor with a 20HP commercial B&S V-Twin. I see your point all too well. Not worth what they charge in my case.
 
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The OEMs buy the engines in quantities of hundreds to thousands at a time per model. If you were buying 100,000+ Briggs engines every year like American Yard Products, I bet that 190 cc engine would be under $100. When you buy a replacement, it is at retail, so there is no volume discounting and somebody is trying to make 25% on it. I recall seeing a GM quote that their parts and assembly cost for a 60 degree V6 was under $1000. Mass production, and quantities purchased make a huge difference.
 
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Remove what you said and the labor costs and it's then the cost of distribution from manufacturer to the end user/customer. How much is in what you said (retailer costs + profit) and distribution....
 
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I've bought replacement engines from acengines.com. They have Briggs starting at $101.95, Tecumseh starting at $83.95, and Honda starting at $174.95. I got a Honda GCV 190 from them last year for my mower. Edit: shipping is cheap from them too. The small engines ship to my zip code for around $12.
 
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Ship for $12? I can barely ship a pair of shoes to Chicago for $12. java, I would look into rebuilding the engine. You'll probably want to look at ordering parts online as the local guy will probably want to sell everything at list. Of course, price isn't everything. Your time is worth next to nothing. Any kids (heck, even adults) that you could teach about engines while you do it? How do you account for mowing your yard? Around here it would be cheaper to hire someone to mow it that for me to mow it. It's the same with growing a garden. Produce is expensive if I figure just $50/hr for my time. It's outrageous at $100/hr.
 

javacontour

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I thought about teaching my daughter, but I doubt she would be really interested. Mowing my yard keeps me in shape. My step daughter did it once. Hasn't come back wanting to do it again. Rebuilding it would probably entail a new shroud and starter as well. Sadly, it's probably best to just put a new engine on it and call it a day. I can still have my daughter take it apart and put it back together to see if it still runs after we do it, and not spend anything on the old tired engine other than time. As long as it's still running when we decide to tear it down. Somewhere, I still have my small engine ring compressor from when I rebuilt a few of these back in high school.
 
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That would do it :) If you have a welder, you could weld the recoil back on. That should keep it working as long as the spring and rope last. If you order a new engine, figure out the diameter and length of the shaft on your current one. Otherwise you may be buying a new blade adapter. Also look for "Compliance Positive Stop." That is the blade brake that stops the engine when you release the lever. When I got my replacement engine from them, I got the Honda GCV190 because the GCV160 they had was the wrong diameter shaft. I second the idea of using it to teach a kid about engines. Dad has rental houses, and when I was a kid I got all the dead mowers people left when they moved out. Some of them I got to run. On one of them, I opened the block with a hammer to see what was inside (this was when I was elementary school age).
 
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 Originally Posted By: javacontour
I've also toyed with the idea of getting one of those Harbor Freight engines for about $140. I think I still have a 15 or 20% off coupon for HF, so if it doesn't work, I'll only be out about $120.
That's what I did. Every few weeks they have the mower engine on sale for $100 and then I had a coupon for 20% off. It bolted right on (with a minor tweak due to linkage position interfering with the drive cable) in place of the Honda 160 with a bent crank. Runs great and has a much larger gas tank. Hard to beat for $80.
 
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 Originally Posted By: javacontour
Somewhere, I still have my small engine ring compressor from when I rebuilt a few of these back in high school.
A hose clamp works, too.
 
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Often times, Surplus Center dot com has engines cheap. Same with Small Engine Warehouse and a few others. Flea Bay too. Chris
 

JTK

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 Originally Posted By: Canawler
 Originally Posted By: javacontour
I've also toyed with the idea of getting one of those Harbor Freight engines for about $140. I think I still have a 15 or 20% off coupon for HF, so if it doesn't work, I'll only be out about $120.
That's what I did. Every few weeks they have the mower engine on sale for $100 and then I had a coupon for 20% off. It bolted right on (with a minor tweak due to linkage position interfering with the drive cable) in place of the Honda 160 with a bent crank. Runs great and has a much larger gas tank. Hard to beat for $80.
In this case, that's the way to go IMO. A pushmower with commercial quality hardware is worth the repower. Today, a basic commercial series pushmower costs a grand +. Joel
 
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I bet if you tried to assemble a $20k Ford from new parts and paid retail for those parts, it'd end up costing you $80k or more. This is no different
 
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