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Ergatta Longevity


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I've heard that the Concept2 is built like a rock and can last years with minimal maintenance, while Hydrow longevity/durability isn't very well known because it's a pretty new machine. Ergatta gets the rower base from the brand water rower. How long have they been around and are they durable? What kind of maintenance is required? Water pills to keep the water clean? Does the water need to be periodically drained and the basin scrubbed? Does the wood need to be treated? Do the straps hold up well?

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All good questions. You are correct that the Concept 2 rower is built to withstand years of CrossFit abuse and is nearly indestructible. This is one of the main reasons it is found in commercial gyms and professional training facilities. Neither the Hydrow nor the Ergatta are designed to withstand the type of commercial environment that the C2 can handle.

We don't have long-term durability data on the Hydrow, but we don't hear a significant amount of negative feedback either (believe me - we hear plenty of negative feedback about all types of equipment). The Hydrow feels and functions like a solid piece of home-fitness equipment. It may not be designed to challenge the top athletes at the CrossFit Games, but it will certainly provide smooth, consistent training with impressive content for those who wish to row at home. 

Water Rower as a brand has been around for a long time. The Ergatta has a few flaws that could be problematic over time. The nature of the pulley system under the seat could be cut, fray, or break, which would render the rower inoperable. This would only happen if someone (or a child) damaged the machine, but it is possible. The handle strap frays along the sides and this is something we've already noticed on our Ergatta and mentioned in our video review. Any wood furniture should be treated with care, set away from direct sunlight, and may require a coat of oil over time depending on your ambient temperature, humidity, sun exposure, etc. The water tank requires a chlorine tab every three months and the tank should be drained yearly or so. While none of this adds up to a significant amount of maintenance, it is certainly something to consider. 

While the Concept 2 rower is certainly durable - it also looks (and sounds) like commercial equipment. It's loud, looks industrial, and may not be the look or feel you want in home exercise equipment. None of these three rowers has significant issues that would cause us to hesitate recommending them. They are simply designed for varied uses in different environments. 

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