BI warns against the unforeseen costs of using counterfeit bearings

March 2021 News

“Downtime, consequential damage, reduced lifespan, poor performance and safety are just some of the dangers of using counterfeit bearings, which are increasingly prevalent across South African industry,” warns Andrew Altree, product manager at Bearings International (BI). Major bearing brands distributed by BI include FAG and INA.

“Customers sometimes think they can procure genuine parts in a ‘closing’ sale, without realising that they might just have acquired counterfeits in the search for a quick bargain,” he adds. “If they are indeed aware of the fact that they are buying counterfeits, the main motivation seems to be buying good quality at a reduced price. Another factor is availability, which is normally subject to lead times due to the complex processes involved in bearing manufacturing.

“While counterfeit bearings seem to originate mainly from China, they are not limited to this source. We know that counterfeits are brought to market using ways that veil the real origin of the goods. These counterfeits are normally readily available and actively marketed by the counterfeiters.”

Counterfeits are not covered by any warranty offered by the brand owner. “This negatively impacts service contracts as anticipated, as the life expectancy will not be achieved, resulting in continuous downtime and associated costs,” warns Altree. “In addition, there are severe negative health and safety implications in all applications when installing counterfeit bearings.”

Authorised distributors such as BI are trained to support customers with regard to their complete bearing requirements, from technical information to determining the best bearing for a particular application, as well as being able to handle the products in the correct manner, such as storage conditions. This invariably means that bearings supplied via authorised distributors are fully supported technically and guaranteed by both the authorised distributor and brand owner.

BI is working closely with brand owners with regard to authentication services and providing accurate information. If any customer suspects that they have received counterfeits, they are requested to get in touch with the relevant brand protection team of the brand owner. Additional information in this regard can be obtained from BI itself.

For example, any suspected counterfeit FAG and INA bearings can be reported at Customers can also download the Schaeffler OrginCheck app for free in order to authenticate any Schaeffler products or contact specialised experts for advice.

For more information contact Bearings International, +27 11 899 0000,,

Share this article:
Share via emailShare via LinkedInPrint this page

Further reading:

From the editor's desk: Is additive manufacturing poised to go mainstream?
March 2021, Technews Publishing (SA Instrumentation & Control) , News
As digital manufacturing technology pushes its way further towards the production floor, additive manufacturing (3D printing) is emerging as a viable option to complement the more traditional methods ...

A new generation of sensors for liquid analysis
May 2021, Endress+Hauser South Africa , News
Endress+Hauser introduces the next generation of Memosens digital technology for simple, safe and connected liquid analysis.

Siemens and Google Cloud to co-operate on AI-based solutions in manufacturing
June 2021, Siemens Digital Industries , News
Siemens intends to integrate Google Cloud’s data cloud and artificial intelligence/machine learning technologies with its factory automation solutions to help manufacturers innovate for the future.

BMG hydraulic solutions for all sectors in KZN
June 2021, Bearing Man Group t/a BMG , News
BMG’s Regional Service Centre in KwaZulu-Natal provides engineering solutions designed to optimise productivity for all customers.

Rockwell Automation and Comau partner to simplify robot integration
June 2021, Rockwell Automation , News
Rockwell Automation and Comau have announced that they are joining forces to give businesses worldwide vital tools to maximise manufacturing efficiencies through unified robot control solutions.

GirlCode and RS inspire the next generation of female coders
June 2021, RS Components SA , News
More than 50 female learners and their teachers were recently invited to attend a day of inspiration, technology and fun.

Endress+Hauser holds its ground despite the pandemic
June 2021, Endress+Hauser South Africa , News
Endress+Hauser weathered the 2020 pandemic year well. The Group created new jobs and expanded its global sales and production network.

Africa’s most advanced perlite facility
June 2021 , News
Percolite producer Pratley has a dedicated, state-of-the-art filter aid production facility that represents the most advanced plant on the continent.

Optimising buildings for low-occupancy
June 2021, Schneider Electric South Africa , News
For building managers, facilities managers, owners and operators, having buildings at low or zero occupancy for extended periods of time, means a significant change in operating requirements and a need to adjust building systems accordingly.

Hitachi ABB Power Grids launches EconiQ
June 2021 , News
The EconiQ portfolio of products, services and solutions contributes towards a carbon-neutral future and accelerates the green energy transition