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Top 5 Myths About Using the Gray Market for Aircraft Maintenance

Top 5 Myths About Using the Gray Market for Aircraft Maintenance

Honeywell estimates that 20-25% of TPE331 engines are supported by gray shops. Many operators believe that gray shops, or un-authorized service centers, offer faster service and lower pricing than a Honeywell Authorized Channel Partner. It’s time to set the record straight!

Check out the top five myths about the gray market and discover why having your TPE331 engine supported by one of our 19 Authorized Channel Partners is the most advantageous solution to saving time and money.

Myth 1: I end up paying more when I work with an OEM Authorized Repair Center.

Perhaps the most common misconception is that working with an OEM Authorized Repair Center results in higher costs. In reality, working with a Honeywell Authorized Channel Partner is the most cost-effective way to repair your TPE331 engine. Authorized Channel Partners receive the best pricing on parts and have access to special programs to keep your engine event costs to a minimum. Additionally, you can take comfort in knowing that the parts installed on your aircraft are Honeywell certified parts that meet the original OEM design intent and keep maintenance costs low, which may not always be the case when your engine is repaired by a gray shop.

Myth 2: My engine can be repaired more quickly at a gray shop, reducing my downtime.

Another common misconception is that having your engine repaired with a Honeywell Authorized Channel Partner will take longer than if you hire a gray shop. The truth is, Honeywell requires Authorized Channel Partners to maintain minimum inventory stocking levels, meaning Authorized Channel Partners have access to certified parts, reducing downtime. Additionally, Honeywell strategically selects partners based on their capacity and resources, ensuring operators have access to local providers who can turn repairs quickly. Many of the partners in our global network also have mobile response teams they can deploy to your location quickly, and in many cases, can fix your engine without removing it from the wing.

Myth 3: I can get genuine OEM parts from a gray shop, at the same price and with the same warranties.

Gray shops mix new and used parts throughout the repair process, meaning the parts you receive may not be OEM certified or meet the original design intent. When you have your engine repaired with an Authorized Channel Partner, you’ll have peace of mind in knowing that you are repairing your engine with high quality OEM certified parts and will have access to long-term OEM support and warranties.

Myth 4: It doesn’t matter if I go to a gray shop or a Honeywell Authorized Service Center - the maintenance technicians repairing my engine are certified to work on Honeywell engines, regardless of where they work.

While a gray shop maintenance technician may have experience repairing Honeywell engines and products, they may be utilizing outdated information. Maintenance technicians at Honeywell Authorized Channel Partners have been certified to work on our engines, receive the latest training and have access to the latest technical publications. Additionally, Honeywell Authorized Channel Partners must meet operational standards set by Honeywell. As a result, when you work with an Authorized Channel Partner, you have access to technicians with specialized talent and the latest training, unlike anything you’ll receive in the gray market.

Myth 5: I receive better customer service when I work with a gray shop.

Honeywell’s Channel Partner network acts as an extension of us. We expect our Authorized Channel Partners to mirror how Honeywell conducts business in the marketplace. Therefore, Authorized Channel Partners are accountable to high customer service standards, quick turn times on repairs and must maintain minimum stocking levels. Honeywell monitors and measures the performance of our Authorized Channel Partners in these areas on a regular basis. Additionally, as an extension of Honeywell, our Channel Partners stand behind the parts and their installation on your aircraft.

Want more? Download our infographic below!

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Krysti Roush
Senior Customer Marketing Manager
Krysti Roush is a Senior Customer Marketing Manager in the Business and General Aviation division of Honeywell Aerospace. Krysti joined Honeywell in October 2018 and specializes in all aspects of digital marketing and strategy, including search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), paid social, display advertising, retargeting, content syndication, audience analysis and developing data-driven content strategies.


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