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Buyer BEWARE: Questions to consider when buying a turbo kit (You should read)

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Buyer BEWARE: Questions to consider when buying a turbo kit (You should read)

 
Old 07-11-2006, 10:38 AM
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Default Buyer BEWARE: Questions to consider when buying a turbo kit (You should read)

If you are considering the purchase of a custom turbo kit, make sure you have done your research. Here are some points you may want to consider when making a custom turbo kit purchase:

-Is the turbo company reputable, and well regarded in the industry?

-What is their reputation for customer service and communication?

-How long has the turbo company been manufacturing the kit that you want to purchase?

-How are their kits performing?

-Are there any chronic warranty issues to be aware of, ie. cracking exhaust manifolds?

-Does the kit require that you do some fab work to make it fit, or work in your car?

-How long of a wait will you experience if you buy their kit?

-If the turbo company is just starting out, are you comfortable with the prospect of there being delays?

-Are you clear on whether they are shipping the entire kit at once, or sending parts in batches based on (a) when they have been made and (b) whether you have paid for the parts?

-If it's a new player, do you think it makes sense to send a large deposit?

-Do they prefer that you bring them the car so they can install the kit?

-Which payment methods will best protect you if the turbo company in the event that the company does not deliver parts or goes out of business? Be aware if you use a credit card, that some only allow you to dispute the charges for 60 or 90 days.

-Are you making your decision based on price or some other considerations? If making your decision primarily based on price, you might want to think about how the lack of profitability can adversely impact a turbo company's sustainability.

-Will you be receiving a quote, via fax or email?

-Will you be receiving a receipt for the funds you sent?

-Will you be receiving some sort of contract?

In summary, it's up to you to act as an educated consumer when buying a turbo kit.

*I am editing and adding content to this sticky based on feedback from everyone.

**7.12.06 Edit
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Old 07-11-2006, 11:48 AM
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heres a suggestion.... you should try to get to the shop (if possibly) and see the work or similar work done in person so you can have a better idea of who is working on your car and how that person(s) deals with the fab.
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Old 07-11-2006, 01:08 PM
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i mean no disrespect with this comment at all but maybe a relatively new company to the ls1 market, in such a touchy area as forced induction, should have to prove something and be more scrutinized before being allowed to be a sponsor on such a well known and used website/message board like this 1.
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Old 07-11-2006, 02:14 PM
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no disrespect taken. We are definitely going to be more strict in regards to turbo companies on this site. This message above is step 1 of the process. House cleaning to come next, if required.
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Old 07-11-2006, 03:46 PM
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Thats very admirable that you guys are stepping up to the plate.Nick
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Old 07-11-2006, 10:16 PM
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Awesome sticky, hope everyone takes a glance at it.
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Old 07-12-2006, 01:34 AM
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thanks for the heads up
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Old 07-12-2006, 07:26 AM
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Not only good info, but goes to show that the VAST majority of people on this site are brothers in hot rodding and looking out for one another. :thumbs: Keep up the good work Admin!
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Old 07-12-2006, 09:09 AM
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A few more points added.
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Old 07-13-2006, 10:37 AM
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Doing research pretty much covers it but ask the company what is needed to support their system. What fueling needs you'll have, any extra costs to keep it running smoothly that isn't always disclosed since it will raise the overall amount you need to spend and could deter you from a purchase. Be prepared to spend more than you think you will.

I personally only like to deal with Tom at Speed inc cause I get a straight answer and all the facts I need to make a decision. Talk to the pros don't just go buying blow off valves and wastegates you think you need, make sure they are the right ones first. As far as delays it isn't always the shops fault either so be prepared to wait as even the best shops can't always get you what you want right away. Turbo set ups that are custom take time, be patient.
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Old 07-17-2006, 10:14 AM
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i always like to see how far away shops are incase i need to make a trip there... especially if im spending over 5k$ on something
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Old 07-17-2006, 11:15 AM
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Interesting......
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Old 07-17-2006, 09:25 PM
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Agree with all the above. Also like said, talk to someone who knows something about turbos, wastegates, BOV's and the design, and just doesn't sell them. When I built my turbo setups I called around and talked to the best supposedly. Job Spetter, Corky Bell, Jose Zayas, Mark Carpenter...etc. The one who by far knew the most about turbos was Jose and Corky. I ended up buying everything from Jose "www.forcedinductions.com" though due to his prices were a little cheaper. Some of these guys maybe slower, but you can't put a price on the RIGHT components....period. I hate buying turbos, then having to swap later to meet a different goal.
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Old 07-27-2006, 11:36 PM
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I don't know why ANYONE would send a shop a "deposit" for a non installed ANYTHING What kind of BS is that? The only way a shop should require a deposit is if they are going to take delivery of a vehicle and they require $xxx as a deposit for their time and effort in case the customer cant afford to pay for the work done when the car is ready. That is reasonable. To send some company a deposit just to be "in line" for when/if the kit ever gets done is retarded especially from a company that is just starting out. Thats like buying a high dollar item from someone on ebay with no feedback. Sucks that time and time again on the internet people get screwed out of their money or delayed beyond any reasonable time frame just because someone comes on here and starts claiming "highest quality, best dyno/track numbers, blah blah blah"

Buyers should always watch out for themselves.
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Old 08-02-2006, 09:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Pro Stock John
If you are considering the purchase of a custom turbo kit, make sure you have done your research. Here are some points you may want to consider when making a custom turbo kit purchase:

-Is the turbo company reputable, and well regarded in the industry?

-What is their reputation for customer service and communication?

-How long has the turbo company been manufacturing the kit that you want to purchase?

-How are their kits performing?

-Are there any chronic warranty issues to be aware of, ie. cracking exhaust manifolds?

-Does the kit require that you do some fab work to make it fit, or work in your car?

-How long of a wait will you experience if you buy their kit?

-If the turbo company is just starting out, are you comfortable with the prospect of there being delays?

-Are you clear on whether they are shipping the entire kit at once, or sending parts in batches based on (a) when they have been made and (b) whether you have paid for the parts?

-If it's a new player, do you think it makes sense to send a large deposit?

-Do they prefer that you bring them the car so they can install the kit?

-Which payment methods will best protect you if the turbo company in the event that the company does not deliver parts or goes out of business? Be aware if you use a credit card, that some only allow you to dispute the charges for 60 or 90 days.

-Are you making your decision based on price or some other considerations? If making your decision primarily based on price, you might want to think about how the lack of profitability can adversely impact a turbo company's sustainability.

-Will you be receiving a quote, via fax or email?

-Will you be receiving a receipt for the funds you sent?

-Will you be receiving some sort of contract?

In summary, it's up to you to act as an educated consumer when buying a turbo kit.

*I am editing and adding content to this sticky based on feedback from everyone.

**7.12.06 Edit
I totally agree with this, but this applies to whatever you do or purchases you make. It is critical to use common sense and remove the emotional factor from your purchases. Do your research and speak to those that actually have the type of system you are interested in, on the car. Call the car owners and ask them about details.

Andy
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Old 11-14-2006, 04:34 PM
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This is all very good information and like Andy says, should be considered for any purchase. Unfortunately (or fortunately in some cases) it is very easy to start a 'business' these days with the communication capabilities of the Internet. The unfortunate part of this is that some individuals will take advantage of this as a way to make money at the expense of others - and not always intentionally.

The turbo business seems to be an easy avenue for people to get into the 'forced induction' industry as apposed to designing and building your own supercharger, so most potential customers are aware of many turbo companies that have gone south and caused pain, suffering and collateral damage on their way out. The truth of the matter is that it is very expensive to start a turbo company and to do it properly.

The first thing I would recommend asking for is proof of insurance. They should have 'garage keepers insurance' as well as a 'product liability insurance policy'. The latter costing tens of thousands of dollars per year. Pretty hard to justify spending this type of money if you are only selling a few systems per month or per year so most small start up companies don't do it.

I wish the best of luck to anyone that is trying to get into this business starting it as a side job - as they will need all that and more before they ever 'get rich' enough to quit their day job. Starting a 'manufacturing business' is quite complicated and expensive. So consumers, do your homework before signing up for the next 'better than all the competition new system coming out'. There is a big difference in building a one-off system for your own car and going into full production of quality systems to sell to the general public.

Like Andy said, talk to lots of current customers because they will give you a pretty straight up view of the product and company (unless it is so new that all the references are within a tight knit group). Also, try and find some people who had some problems with the system and see how the company handled the problems as well. We all know about working on cars and going fast so if they haven't had any customers with problems, they probably don't have many customers period. LOL.

Hope this helps. Thanks for letting us be a part of your online community.

Rick Squires
Squires Turbo Systems, Inc
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Old 11-15-2006, 02:52 PM
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Great post by Rick. Rick's company is an example of a newer player that has great service and consistency of product. I've gotten many positive comments about STS from other shops and of course customers.

If think when someone is looking at a turbo kit from a shop, ask for references. Of course some folks are probably friends of the shop, but I'm sure you can figure that out.

What you want to avoid is eagerly jumping on the bandwagon and purchase a kit from a new shop based on a 30 second video clip or 4-5 pictures. Ask for references. If you buy, ask for receipts.



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Old 04-05-2007, 11:26 PM
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Thanks for the this thread, I am considering getting at least the STS Turbo system, its pretty much bolt on, and I can do that my self

I seen this green LS1 TA in my area that has a STS Turbo and the guy that drives it says its a really nice set up and requires no modifications and such
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Old 04-06-2007, 08:23 AM
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For the record, we have asked the turbo kit sponsors to limit their up front deposits to $1000.

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Old 04-18-2007, 04:58 PM
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i am an sts power dealer & have gr8 results for my clients! they have first class sevice & support compared to others! no b.s. clogging up the engine bay either. very efficiant stuff bro!
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