Generators claiming to be from brands different from theirs are everywhere in Nigeria. In generator markets. In the malls. In the road-side dealers’. And of course, in the homes of uninformed buyers. Culprits in most of these cases of brand counterfeiting are unknown brands trying to exploit the popularity of well-known brands to sell their wares, or dubious generator importers trying to sell their inferior, less reliable brands at the prices of the trusted brands. This has made shopping for a new generator a very tiresome experience as uninformed buyers trying to escape the fate of previous buyers who ended up with inferior, counterfeited products that performed below expectation.
Below we guide you through how to detect the fake of the popular generator brands in Nigeria, with the hope that you end your shopping with what you expected, which is the best value for your money.
GENERAL WAYS TO IDENTIFY A FAKE GENERATOR
1. THE COIL
All generators have coils which could be copper, aluminum or brass. Top quality generators have coils made with copper. Check a generator’s coil very carefully before buying. The coil should be neatly rolled inside the engine. If it isn’t, then the coil has been tampered with. Rub your hands against the coil. If your hands are stained, this means the coil has been sprayed to make it look like copper. This may also be an indication that the engine has been refurbished: it will “knock” within three months.
COPPER WIRE COIL
You will notice that the copper wire’s colour is reddish-brown. Although, some sellers might spray the aluminum or brass wire to look like the copper, you will know if it is sprayed because it will stain your hands once you feel it.
ALUMINIUM WIRE COIL
The aluminum wire coil comes in shiny silver colour. This is not as durable as the copper coil.
BRASS WIRE COIL
The brass wire coil
is gold coloured. It is weakest of the three. In fact, you should never buy a generator that comes with such coil.
2. THE ENGINE BLOCK
This is an easy check you can do by yourself. You can identify a fake engine block from an original one at first glance. A fake engine block is very shiny and light weight. Tap the engine, the sound it makes should be muffled if it is original, but if it is fake, it will make a loud, resonating noise.
3. ENGRAVED/CRESTED NAME ON THE GENERATOR
An original generator should have its name crested/engraved on its parts: tank, engine block, air filter, carburetor, muffler, cylinder head cover, alternator rear frame and AVR. This might not be the case for all generators but ensure the generator you are buying has its name crested (not painted) on at least three to five of the parts mentioned before you pay for it.
4. THE SOUND OF THE GENERATOR
Don’t just enter a generator dealer’ shop and pick up a generator without asking the seller to test it for you. A generator’s fine packageing does not mean it is original. Insist that the generator is unpacked and switched on for you to hear its sound. A good generator makes a regular, continuous sound. If the generator’s sound is “rough”, don’t buy.
HOW TO IDENTIFY FAKE ELEPAQ GENERATORS
Original ELEPAQ generators come with full copper oil and an enlarged ELEPAQ anti-counterfeiting label. If the anti-counterfeiting label doesn’t exist, then it is most likely a fake.
HOW TO IDENTIFY FAKE SUMEC FIRMAN GENERATORS
Being a best-selling generator brand in the lucrative Nigerian market means that FIRMAN generators are target of criminals who clone the brand name to sell sub-standandard products. Nigerians who set out to buy a FIRMAN generator now walk home with fake as these criminals ingeniously imitate the SUMEC’s branding to sell different and most times lower standard generating sets. So, how do you identify original SUMEC FIRMAN generators? How do you ensure that the generator you bring home when next you go shopping for a new generator is actually from the brand you trust and had in mind?
An original SUMEC FIRMAN generator has the brand logol engraved to to the oil tank, the Automatic Voltage Regulator, the air filter, the engine block, the alternator rear frame, the muffler, the carburetor, and the cylinder head cover. If this anti-counterfeiting coating is scratched off or it’s missing, then it’s surely a fake SUMEC FIRMAN generator.
HOW TO IDENTIFY FAKE HONDA GENERATORS
There are Honda Logo’s embossed, assimilate with the Engine (located in engine block / under fuel tank. Honda also provides for its customers and intending customers to verify if the product they are buying is original Honda product by typing in a verification code on their website.
HOW TO IDENTIFY FAKE TIGER GENERATORS
Buying a good I Pass My Neighbor
generator for your self is not a difficult task, b
ut distinguishing the original from the numerous fakes in the market is where issues pop up
. So how do you identify an original Tiger generator?
You can’t identify a good Tiger
by its appearance alone, so you need to take your investigation steps further. But you need to start from somewhere.
1.You can preview the identification through the label on the tank. The original T
iger(TG950) always have a two written alphabet(TM) on top of the label on the tank.
2.The bolt that is been used to tie the whole part of the generator
is always white in color and there are two written alphabet(KS) on the bolt, while that of the Fake
is always black in color with no written word nor alphabet on it.
he carton of original Tiger
is always brown in color while that of the fake is always
4.On the label, the brand
iger is written in a bold form and it has no T
iger head picture on it while that of the fake
has a drawn carve of a tiger head on it.
don’t have a fuel gau
ge on them
but the fake
Buying a generator remains one of the most important purchasing decisions for Nigerians. You want to buy a generator that delivers on your expectations e.g. powers all your air conditioners and refrigerators and does so reliably, for many years without frequent need to replace parts or carry out repairs. Unfortunately, the excitement of buying a new generator often too quickly turns into disappointment. For instance, a generator that effortlessly powers two or more air conditioners could, just after six to eight weeks, struggle to power only one air conditioner or none! It soon starts to demand the attention of the neighborhood “generator engineer” every week and parts have to be changed. This is because a significant number of the generators in the open market is fake.
If you are buying your generator from the manufacturer’s representative e.g. purchasing Honda generators from John Holt, then you can rest assured you are buying an original. But to enjoy savings of up to 25%, most Nigerians buy from independent importers in the open market which is replete with fakes, from the Honda with cheap Chinese-made engines to counterfeits of high quality Chinese generators. However, when you know what you are looking for, and can identify it when you see it, the chances of being cheated are drastically reduced. This is what this guide hopes to acheive.