OEM vs. Aftermarket Parts
OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer, which means the parts are made by the same manufacturer that makes the vehicle. Meanwhile, aftermarket parts are produced by a different parts company and are often designed to be compatible with as many makes and/or models as possible. Due to these design differences, aftermarket parts won’t always provide the same superior fit of OEM parts.
When looking at OEM and aftermarket auto parts, there are tons of differences to take into consideration. From pricing to the quality—all vary depending on where you go and who does the work for you. We've created a list of pros and cons to help you make a more informed decision when choosing what parts go into your car.
- Less expensive: Aftermarket parts are usually less expensive than OEM parts.
- More variety & Better availability: There are hundreds of companies that make aftermarket parts. Some specialize in specific parts, and other companies, like NAPA, make almost any part you can think of.
- Quality varies greatly: The saying "you get what you pay for" rings true here. Some aftermarket parts are inferior because of the use of lower-quality materials. Stick with aftermarket brands you're familiar with or are recommended by a technician you trust, even if these parts cost a bit more.
- Overwhelming selection: If you're not familiar with aftermarket brands, the selection could be overwhelming, and there's some chance you may get a bad quality part.
- May not have a warranty: To keep costs down, some aftermarket parts are sold without a warranty.
OEM parts are made by the vehicle's manufacturer. These match the parts that came with your vehicle when it rolled off the assembly line.
- Easier to choose your part: If you go to the parts counter at a dealership and ask for any part, you'll usually get one type. You don't have to worry about the fit and quality.
- Greater assurance of quality: The OEM part should work exactly as the one you are replacing. It is what the vehicle was manufactured with and provides a peace of mind in its familiarity and performance.
- Comes with a warranty: Most automakers back up their OEM parts with a one-year warranty. And if you get your car repaired at the reputable shop, they'll usually stand by their labor as well.
- More expensive: OEM parts will usually cost more than an aftermarket part.
- Need to be bought at the dealership: Even though there are other ways of buying OEM parts (eBay, online wholesalers), most people will go to a dealership to buy their car parts. This limits the number of places you can buy from.
When it comes to collision repairs, make sure you are getting OEM parts, since aftermarket body panels may not fit properly or have proper crumple zones for crash safety. You'll often find that your insurance company will favor aftermarket parts because they are cheaper. If you request OEM parts, some insurance companies ask you to pay an additional fee. Check with your insurance provider beforehand, to see what parts they will cover.
By choosing Regal Repair yo can be rest assured that your car will be repaired with OEM parts and manufacturer procedures, to make sure your safety and your car value are intact.