Is it worth paying more for brand name switchgear?

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There’s a mind-boggling large selection of brands in the switchgear industry. Some position themselves at the ‘Rolls-Royce’ end of the market, while others take a ‘value-for-money’ approach. But where is the sweet spot? Is it really worth paying that extra for Schneider over a generic Asian brand, for example?
Let’s take a look at why brand name switchgear is better.


The purists say there’s no substitute for quality, and we agree.

In our experience, we’ve found some cheaper brands with build quality equivalent to much more expensive brands; but we’ve also found some very ‘cheap-and-nasty’ brands of switchgear. The cheap end of the market tends to be hit-and-miss with reliability. With a major industry brand such as Schneider, you can have peace of mind that the quality has been tried and tested and is supported by a large multi-national company.


This is a huge advantage over generic, cheaper brands. Almost every electrical wholesaler will stock industry brands such as Schneider and Sprecher + Schuh. If a piece of switchgear needs replacement or upgrading, you’re much more likely to find the correct part if it’s a known industry brand. Keep brands consistent throughout your equipment leads to better reliability and easier servicing.

Industry standards

We’ve all heard horror stories about imports from Asia that don’t comply with local standards. The major industry brands all have a major local presence or representation in Australia, and keep up to date with changing industry standards and protocols. By sticking with a reputable industry brand, you’re minimising the risk of non-compliant and unsafe equipment.

Cost considerations

What about the expense? The good news is this: with the ongoing trend of globalisation, the price difference between major industry brands has been shrinking for some time. For a small amount of extra upfront investment, you can secure long term peace of mind and reliability.