Auto And Truck Parts – Aftermarket Or Original?
When you take your car to a dealership for repairs, you know you are getting original equipment parts, but is this your best option? If you take your car to an independent repair shop, you probably will get aftermarket parts. Is there anything wrong with that? Do less expenses parts mean poor quality? What situations should you use only original parts?
What are aftermarket parts? These are parts not made by the original manufacture of your vehicle. As long as the aftermarket part is a direct replacement part, your warranty will not be voided. A large number of companies make parts designed to function the same as, or better than original parts.
Here are some Pro and Cons to help you to make a good informed decision when choosing parts. You should be able to make some informed decisions about cost and quality as well.
Aftermarket Pros – Fact is aftermarket parts are normally less expense, but the amount you save may vary by brand. Shop around some if you can to get an idea of how much the part normally cost.
Sometimes the parts you end up with may be better than the originals. Many times the aftermarket manufactures will re-engineer and remove any weak sections of the part. Better performance is the goal of the aftermarket manufacture.
Aftermarket suppliers also offer more variety. Some will specialize in specific parts only. More selection means wider pricing ranges and better selection.
Aftermarket Cons – Quality can vary greatly amongst the suppliers. As if they say, “You only get what you pay for” they must mean it. Sometimes these parts can be inferior because they use low quality materials. You should stick with aftermarket brands that are recommended to you by a mechanic you trust or your experience with the company.
If the price you find seems too good to be true, please ask some questions. They may be made in another country with less quality than you desire for you vehicle.
Even the simple parts are made by many different companies and numerous variations. Ask your mechanic about using original or aftermarket parts if the prices are similar.
Original Factory Pros – When using original parts they are exactly the same as those installed as when it came off the assembly lines at the factory. All these parts should be identical to the original parts. With some people, it comes with more peace of mind about it being correct.
Original Factory Cons- Parts are normally more expensive to support the dealership sales department. Some dealerships are trying very hard to compete with independent shops. Many times parts must be ordered slowing the process of repair.
You may find that if you have an accident your insurance company may insist on using aftermarket parts because they cost less. You can insist on original parts but they probably will charge you for the difference in cost. Check what your insurance provider will cover beforehand in case you do have an accident.
If you are able to work on your own vehicle using aftermarket parts can save you lots of money. This of course is not always the case with some of the new vehicles of today without proper training.