One of the questions we often deal with when people bring their vehicles in for repair concerns after market parts vs factory parts. There is a lot of uncertainty about price, quality and reliability when it comes to replacement parts.
When we are deciding on which parts to use to repair a vehicle, whether or not we use after market or factory parts depends on a few factors. Things like the age of the car, cost, warranty and availability of the parts will help determine what we use. Our priority is to return the car to factory condition so whatever we need to do in order to achieve that, we will.
Here’s a look at both aftermarket and factory parts, and some of the pros and cons for each.
These vehicle parts are any part not sourced from the maker of the car. There are many companies on the market that manufacture aftermarket parts and they are designed to function the same, or in some cases even better than the original.
Availability — Especially if you have an older or rare car, they might be your only reasonable option. And, depending on the part (like filters for example), they are often widely available at any gas station, auto parts store or local mechanic.
Variety — Since there are many companies competing on the market, there is a variety of quality and price range to choose from.
Quality — These parts are reverse manufactured so often times small kinks have been worked out since the original factory design and are of excellent, even superior, quality.
Cost — Often cheaper than factory parts, and you have the luxury of shopping around and comparing prices.
Warranty — Check to see if the parts come with warranty, they may not in an effort to keep costs down (best to avoid these!).
Quality — While they can be great quality, there is a wide range in quality so make sure to research.
Also called Original Equipment Manufacturer or OEM parts, these are manufactured by the car maker itself. They are custom made for your vehicle.
Easy to choose — Instead of walking in and having to sift through a host of different options, there is usually only choice one available, making your decision quick and easy.
Quality guaranteed — The parts should be interchangeable with the one you are replacing so you can have peace of mind that it will work exactly as needed.
Warranty — Factory parts should always come with a warranty.
Cost — OEM parts may simply cost more money than a similar quality after market part.
Quality — While you can rely on a certain baseline quality, as mentioned above, they may not be the highest quality available.
Limited availability — These parts will likely need to be bought at the dealership, which might limit their availability to consumers.
As you can see, there are pros and cons to both factory and aftermarket parts. At Grandcity, we weigh them all carefully and make informed decisions based on the vehicle and the repair required.
If you have any questions about the parts needed for your car, feel free to contact our Vancouver Auto Body shop today!