Repairing your dental handpieces comes down to two main options: OEM Handpiece Repair or Aftermarket Handpiece Repair. Here’s a look at both options.
OEM Handpiece Repair: repair conducted by the original manufacturer using the same parts initially made for that handpiece.
Aftermarket Handpiece Repair: a secondary market that conducts repairs for dental professionals and is not affiliated with the original manufacturer of the products. Repairs are conducted according to the original product specifications.
There are pros and cons to using either OEM or aftermarket handpiece repair services including price, turnaround time, parts availability and service. Our goal is to best explain how each of these interrelates to each other allowing you to make an educated decision on which service will provide the most value to your practice.
To best describe this, we are going to tell you a common story about a dentist named John. John has been a general dentist for 20 years and has established a very successful practice. He no longer worries about marketing, scheduling patients, hiring or firing; his main concern providing the best care for each patient. Through the years John has been aggravated with outside factors, such as handpiece failure, preventing him from completing his job. He has tried many different companies for handpiece repair, and nobody seems to be able to provide an adequate long-term solution to this problem.
Company 1: When John just began his practice out of college he was swimming in debt so he turned to the internet and found a cheap company offering handpiece repair services. This company was an aftermarket company using a poor variation of compatible replacement components. John would ship his handpieces away and was left wondering when they will return. Although the work was done properly, the handpieces kept breaking.
Company 2: John got a referral from another dentist to use a local company. This company leveraged their ability to return handpieces quickly erasing one of John’s concerns. John was willing to pay a bit more for this service to alleviate his problems. The repair and service was better and he was happy until one day he had multiple handpieces go down at the same time. He called, and called, and called, but the repair man was not returning his calls. In a jam, he needed to find a solution…FAST.
Company 3: John called his rep from Schein who came to the office immediately. He provided John loners and assured him this problem will be solved. Two weeks later he came back with the handpieces working perfectly. John asked for a bill and the rep reassured him that Schein will be sending a bill in the mail. John then asked what caused these handpieces to fail and the rep again assured him that his company fixed everything that was needed. Three weeks later John came in early to finish some charts and there was a bill for 3 times what he usually pays for repair sitting on his desk. He sat confused not knowing what work got done, how long it took for the handpieces to come back, and why it costs so much to get these fixed.
Each of these scenarios is common when looking for the right handpiece repair company. Company 1 and company 2 use aftermarket handpiece repair parts. These tend to be cheaper, often times faster services, but there is a large variance in the quality of parts on the market. Two companies can be doing the same work using different components and one company can have substantially better results. There is even a possibility for an after-market company to provide work superior to the original manufacturer. It is essential to find a proven trusted company when dealing with aftermarket handpiece repair companies.
The OEM will always provide a consistently good repair for a substantially higher price. Pricing often times is two to three times after-market companies. You will also often times sacrifice handpiece knowledge, turn-around time, and service when dealing with OEM suppliers due to it not being their focus or core revenue generator. It’s an afterthought to most manufacturers.
Still not sure what path is right for you? Give us a call today, and we’ll walk you through the process and help you make the best decision possible for you practice!