ProParts Direct

5 Signs you're Dealing with an Upstanding Power Equipment Dealer

As a small, single, female, walking into any Power Equipment store can be a little intimidating. I know I can't be the only woman who worries about being scammed, mistreated, or underestimated. In my journey for the perfect Snow Blower, I had gone to a few bad dealership before I finally found a great one! Here are 5 Tell tale signs you are dealing with and upstanding Power Equipment Dealer.


1.) They will greet you at the door.

Nothing is worse than feeling like you are being completely ignored when you are shopping for something expensive, or waiting to get your machine serviced. A great Power Equipment Dealership should have a person ready and waiting to greet you by the door with a happy easy going expression.


2.) The showroom is clean and well organized.

A huge sign of poor management for any Dealership is a dirty store. If you don't care enough to clean your own store, why would you care enough to thoroughly service my machine? Or care enough to sell me something that is new and working for that matter. So after you have been greeted, scope out the area and make sure everything is looking in order. 


3.) The salesman looks you in the eye.

Your salesperson should be able to look you in the eye while selling to you or while he is explaining something to you. When someone is able to look you in the eye it shows that they are honest. If his eyes are darting around, or he is unable to hold eye contact for an entire conversation.... Be careful, chances are he isn't being honest with you. 


4.) Your salesperson gives you his contact information.

Your salesperson should not be nervous about giving you his information. He should be proud to stand by his words. They should also be to able direct you to a functional website, and show you how you can use it to better your experience.


5.) Explain reasons for service.

After you have bought your machine from a reputable dealership and used it for a couple seasons, wear and tear will occur. You should be able to bring your machine back to your trusted dealership for service. Your salesperson should be able to thoroughly explain all repairs and why you need them. If you feel as though they are tacking on extra work to a machine that had one problem, be careful, ask them detailed questions. If they are being honest, they should have no issue answering your questions.


So, in conclusion, stay sharp, trust your instincts, and stay strong in your decisions. You will know when you are being treated fairly, and when you are working with an excellent Power Equipment Dealership. The dealership I worked with was local to me, however, they had an online store that anyone can go on! 

Adding a Snow Blower to a Lawn Tractor: Everything you need to know

Want to use a lawn tractor to clear snow? It’s a great way for homeowners with longer driveways to get snow cleared away with ease. Here are some of the most common questions and considerations before turning your tractor into a snow clearing machine

- Storage. Keep in mind the total length of the tractor and snowblower will be considerably larger. Make sure you have room to store AND maneuver in and out when needed!  When changing over to snow clearing mode, you will need to remove and store the cutting deck – and in the summer, store the snow plow/blower. Plan storage accordingly! Any convenience or time saving the tractor may provide is negated when you have to battle to use it!

Simplicity tractors are an example of equipment designed with storage in mind. Attachments fold up easily and will stand on their own. Once detached, the hitch and snow blower will roll easily across the ground. 

- Change over. We mentioned removing the cutting deck and installing the snow blower. While not overly complex, this is a task that requires a bit of planning. Attempting to complete during the season’s first snow fall is just asking for trouble! 

If your tractor has a complex pulley system (common on MTD and Sears tractors), the change over will be more involved. Keep in mind that some tractor snow blower attachments are designed after the fact. Some Cub Cadet and Simplicity tractors will have a quick attach mount that allow for an easy, one or two pin installation. The attachments are very heavy so a “drive-on” connection can be worth the extra money!

- Weight kit and chains.  Adding tire chains to your garden tractor may be helpful if you are clearing snow from hilly or uneven areas. Adding a counter weight to the back of the tractor may help the tires dig in, but be cautious of adding undue weight and stress to the machine. 

Buying the right tractor is an important factor. A rugged lawn tractor with the K57 transmission for example is better suited for attachments.  More often than not, once a wheel weight is installed, it will stay on the machine all year. 

- Stay dry! Adding a protective snow cab to a lawn tractor is a way to avoid wind and snow. Snow cabs are available in two versions: expensive and cheap. If you can afford to spend a little extra, an upgraded cab will have doors that seal and keep heat in – some even have a wiper to see where you are going. The cheaper cabs will keep you dry but the effort involved with constant adjustment, clearing off, and lack of protection make a strong case for the upgraded version.  

Is there a down side to using a lawn tractor as a snow blower? You’ll be clearing huge paths of snow with minimal effort, but clearing narrow walkways, around cars, and other elements that cause frequent turning, can restrict the snowblower. So, don’t throw away the snow shovel, there will still be shoveling involved. 

Keep in mind that the lawn tractor was designed to cut grass on a warm sunny day! Adding another season of use means increase wear and tear. Water and salt can take a toll on the front end, wearing away at the clutch and wheel bearings. Running the machine in heavy, deep snow is possible but will require preventative maintenance to ensure you get the most of the lawn tractor.  

Adding a snow blower to a lawn tractor is a great way to put the mower to good use and tackle an otherwise unpleasant task. In short, the tractor snow blower is a tool that requires a bit of planning and diligent preventative maintenance. You will look forward to seeing a rough weather forecast when you have a 20HP engine throwing snow!

What No One Ever Told Me about Pintrest

What no one ever told me on Pinterest

First of all, I love Pinterest, it's amazing. Pinterest has so many different ideas for me on a daily basis, from outfits to dinners. However, sometimes Pinterest makes things look a lot easier than they actually are. Learn from my naive mistakes. Here are some of the hard truths that no one wants to talk about.

Chalkboard art...
You can't use regular dry chalk on your cute chalkboard. Regular chalk will wipe away even with a slight breeze, and won't show up brightly. You will spend time going over and over your chalk lines to make them brighter, and not even realize that your new marks begin to erase your previous marks. You will need liquid chalk markers! Liquid chalk will make it cleaner and brighter. You can find liquid chalk markers at your local craft store.

Mason Jars.... are expensive.
If I could put 3,000 mason jars around my house I would! I think they are so beautiful and Pinterest has so many fun crafts you can do with them. However, the going rate per pack is, at least, $14 in stores. So if you think they would make a great wedding favor, be sure to check the prices before you fall in love with a cute mason jar craft idea. Also, it looks easy to tie bows around them and fill them with chocolate powders. It's not, it takes a lot of time. So be ready to invest yourself

Sharpie Mugs.....
You can't use your regular Sharpies for your ceramic mug art. So don't go and grab whatever you find from your desk. You need a special oil-based paint Sharpie marker. Otherwise, your cute baked design will be gone in 1-2 washes in the sink or dishwasher. You can find oil-based paint Sharpies at your local craft store.

Exact ingredients in recipes..
Don't just say "Brown sugar" that doesn't help anyone. In a recipe, we need all measurements to be clear and labeled. A miscalculated measurement could change the entire flavor or chemistry of a dessert. So be sure to read through the recipe entirely before beginning, and use your best judgment to either solve the problem yourself or find a new recipe.

So my friends go now and make all of your Pinterest dreams come true. However don't be like me, know that all things that look easy usually aren't. In the end, the most important thing is to have fun while making your DIY pin-craft. Because really isn't that what it's all about?

3 Easy Steps to Replacing Your Pressure Washer pump

How to Replace Your Homelite Pressure Washer Pump
1. Remove the Bolts: Locate the bolts that hold the engine and pressure washer pump together at the base of the engine. There should be (3) bolts. Remove those bolts.
2. Transfer The Thermal Release Valve:
Remove the Thermal Release valve from the old pump with a wrench. Before re-installing make sure you wrap the threads with some kind of thread tape or sealant.
3. Mount the New Pump: Place the pump on the engine shaft. Rotate the pump until you get the keyway to line up with the key on the engine shaft. Install all (3) bolts and tighten.
Installing a new pressure pump is easy to do and can save you some money if you repair this yourself. Alot of times these manufactures do not offer repair parts and in this case installing a new pump is cheaper than repairing the old one. To replace your Homelite Pressure Washer Pump Click here to purchase a new one. A Quick repair will have you up and cleaning in no time!

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