Deere and Co is the largest manufacturer of tractors and lawnmowers worldwide. Everyone is familiar with the green and yellow colors that represent a John Deere lawnmower or a John Deere Tractor. Perhaps that’s why John Deere is also associated with the most expensive parts.
A part of the reason that Johne Deere parts are so expensive is that you are purchasing the name as much as you are the part. Also, John Deere manufactures its components using methods that only John Deere parts will serve as an adequate replacement so that John Deere can control the price.
With that being said, it might surprise you that in the grand scheme of things, John Deere’s parts are not that much different from others, especially when it comes to the more typical things you have to buy over time.
It’s true that when you buy major replacement parts, you’re paying a bit for John Deere’s name and John Deere’s control. But, when you’re purchasing oil filters, spark plugs, and other parts for John Deere tractors and/or lawnmowers, you’re generally paying competitive prices.
Possible Reasons for Expensive John Deere Parts
For this part, let’s briefly separate the John Deere name from the part. We know that John Deere parts command a higher price point because of the name, excluding all other factors. However, we also know that John Deere manufactures its equipment, so only John Deere parts will do.
If we set those two general rules of thumb aside for a second, we’ll discover that tractor parts are insanely expensive, all on their own.
An actual separation from a John Deere part and a competitive part that is exactly the same will reveal a price disparity that is almost negligible.
- John Deere parts are generally made to fit, where other parts won’t
- The John Deere name commands a price as well
- John Deere uses expensive components
- Costs are lower in the long run because of the durability
- John Deere prices are comparable with Kubota and other manufacturers
John Deere manufactures the vast majority of its tractors and lawnmowers in-house. However, they do outsource some of their components to other manufacturers (namely their smaller engines).
When John Deere receives those engines from the outsourced manufacturer, they modify them.
John Deere manufacturing facilities will meticulously go through every portion of the outsourced engine or part and modify it to John Deere’s standards. But, unfortunately, what that means is that you pay a higher price because only a john Deere part is compatible as a replacement.
For example, Ford manufactured its own machine that could sync a Ford vehicle’s Powertrain Control Module with your ignition, disengaging the passive theft system. If your Ford key ever lost synchronization with the PCM, you had to take it to Ford to get them synced once more.
Since Ford owned the patent on that machine, you couldn’t take your Ford vehicle anywhere else, and only a Ford dealership would do. So this 5-minute synchronization process would cost around $2,000 for nothing more than turning your key in a machine that synced it back up with your PCM. That was it.
However, because Ford was the only place you could take it, they could charge whatever they wanted because, after all, your car was useless without the procedure. The same thing (at least to a degree) goes on with John Deere, hence the higher prices.
John Deere Uses Expensive Components
John Deere prides itself on using the best components for the job. But does that mean they’re perfect? Absolutely not, and forums are littered with seriously ticked off people, swearing off John Deere tractors for life because something went wrong with one of their parts.
However, the majority of John Deere owners’ components are highly durable and long-lasting. Unfortunately, the voices of the few who have experienced problems are often the loudest and create the perception that John Deere is robbing its customers blind.
The reality is that most John Deere owners are perfectly satisfied with their equipment and have no need to storm the forums, erupting in purple-faced rage.
John Deere Prices are Comparable with Kubota
Replacing the front-end loader on a John Deere Tractor—let’s say the 1023e—will run you about $4,000. Guess how much a comparable Kubota front-end loader will run you? If you guessed about $4,000, you would be correct.
Of course, the difference here is that it’s much easier to go outside of the manufacturer and purchase other brand components with a Kubota than it is for a John Deere. However, the point remains the same and is a relevant comparison.
The John Deere Name
The John Deere name commands a level of respect. It just does. The company has been in business since the earlier half of the 19th century, and they have risen to become the world’s largest tractor and lawnmower retailer.
They didn’t reach this plateau because they are a garbage company that overcharges on garbage parts. It’s pretty easy to draw a correlation between a business’s success and the quality/value of its products.
It’s much more difficult to find a correlation between a company’s success and a long, sordid history of manufacturing weak, failing machinery with even weaker, more expensive, and failing components.
It doesn’t make any sense because there is no correlation to be found.
There is a lot of value in the John Deere name, and it’s okay that you prefer another manufacturer, but there is no denying that a percentage of the expense when it comes to John Deere parts is nothing more than brand.
John Deere Parts Save Money in the Long Run
One of the hidden facets behind the gnashing of teeth over expensive John Deere components is that, generally, John Deere tractors and lawnmowers have a great deal of longevity.
It may hurt to fork over so much money for a replacement or add-on part. However, when that add-on part lasts five times as long as the competition, there is real value.
What’s worse, paying $2,000 for a part that lasts ten years now or paying 5 x $900 for the same part several times over the course of ten years?
Most people are going to opt for the $2000. That’s where you see the true efficacy of John Deere manufacturing and the reason that John Deere only uses premium components.
John Deere mowers are built to last, and the proof is in the pudding. The average lifespan of a John Deere tractor is 8,000 to 10,000 hours of running time; if you crunch the numbers, that comes down to running a John Deere tractor non-stop for 365 days.
In real-world usage, that equates to many years of service before you should have to start replacing major parts.
If you visit just about any forum, you will see the constant division that has separated people since the beginning of time. But, of course, everybody has their favorites, and that’s perfectly fine.
John Deere tractor parts are quality parts behind a quality name, and that’s why they will always command a higher price tag.