Using high-quality tools, accessories, and replacement parts is advisable when performing auto maintenance; this applies no matter how old the car is. Because, after all, investing in high-quality auto parts goes a long way in ensuring your car lives and remains functional as long as possible.
However, original equipment manufacturer (OEM) car parts aren’t as accessible as aftermarket car parts. Plus, even if you find them, OEM parts tend to be expensive compared to aftermarket parts. But it’d be good to note that just because something is not as expensive means it’s of poor quality. This is especially true since there are affordable, high-quality aftermarket car parts that car owners on a budget can opt for.
While original parts are generally preferable, quality aftermarket parts can work just as well. But the key to note here is it all comes down to finding the correct car parts. This means you’ll have to conduct proper research and partner with reputable dealers to acquire quality parts for your car and eliminate the possibility of being scammed.
With that in mind, here’s a quick guide on choosing quality aftermarket parts for your car.
8 Simple Steps To Choose Quality Aftermarket Parts For Your Car
1. Choose A Reputable Car Parts Dealer
As briefly mentioned earlier, the dealer you’ll be working with plays an essential role in your search for quality aftermarket car parts and ensures you get the most value for your money. Since there are many dealers in the market, finding the right car parts dealer for you can be tricky. In that case, you’ll have to be meticulous in your search.
You can check online reviews to ascertain the reliability and reputation of the dealership. You can also ask for recommendations from friends or colleagues that recently purchased aftermarket parts. Moreover, if you’re planning to buy car parts online, check what customers say about delivery times, sending the correct orders, service ratings, and whether the orders arrive in good condition.
Based on the various testimonials you’ve seen online or feedback you’ve heard about a car parts dealer, you can decide whether or not they’re the right one to buy from. It would be best to steer clear away from dealers that don’t have any reviews or that have poor reviews. Checking out spare part companies like DPF parts direct, Boodmo or other car parts dealers in your locality that has an excellent track record can be a good start.
2. Research To Know Your Car Parts
Cars come in various models. These models may have various configurations, meaning they may have various parts. As such, conducting extensive research on your car’s original parts is critical before looking for aftermarket vehicle components.
You must know the part numbers and other specifics about your vehicle. This knowledge enables you to make informed choices when looking for parts. Moreover, this can help ensure you buy and install compatible aftermarket parts for your car. After all, purchasing a car part that’s incompatible with your vehicle can be a waste of time and money. For one, the wrong car part could also cause damage to your vehicle.
Furthermore, if you purchased your parts from a place that does not allow returns, such as an auction, you are stuck with that car part indefinitely, and your money has been wasted. With that, before you buy any aftermarket car parts, be sure they’re compatible with your vehicle.
3. Beware of Frauds and Fakes
When purchasing auto parts, you must exercise caution because not all products in the market are authentic – especially when it comes to motor oils & windshield replacements. Aside from ensuring you won’t be duped, doing this also helps you avoid installing fake products that could damage your vehicle, especially if they are engine parts. With that in mind, if possible, you must be able to test car parts for authenticity before paying for them.
Some cars come equipped with a warranty as standard with an option to get an extended warranty. New and OEM car parts usually also have a warranty. However, it may not always be the case for aftermarket car parts. Depending on the manufacturer or car parts dealer, aftermarket parts usually come with little to no warranty.
While car parts without a warranty could still be in good condition and may still be worth your investment, as a car owner, for the sake of prudence, it’s wise to look for parts with a warranty. Generally, if a part has a warranty, it could indicate that the manufacturer or dealer has confidence in the quality of its product.
4. Compare Prices
Comparing rates and prices is a normal part of shopping. To find the best deals, you have to shop around, especially since different stores or dealers generally have different prices. And so, having more options can increase your chances of finding competitive deals.
On the other hand, skipping shopping around and comparing prices can put you at risk of overpaying for a car part that you could get at a lower price. However, note that cheaper doesn’t always translate to poor quality, nor does expensive translate to high quality all the time. The best deal for you is one that offers value for money. And one of the best ways to get the most out of your budget and this investment is by exploring your options thoroughly and going for the best deal available in the market.
5. Check Part History
Whether you’re buying a new or used part, you need to confirm the history of the aftermarket car part you’re looking to buy. You need to know how much it was used and assess its manufacturing data.
And suppose you’re going to buy a used car part. You might as well know what you can expect from it. It’s not easy to obtain the history of car parts. But a reputable dealer should have this information on hand.
6. Quality Standards Verification of The Product
Before buying any car parts, ensure they have quality standard verification. Car parts, like most products, nowadays have quality standard verification. You should see quality standard verification on the product description of any car part. Note that a verified product is generally more reliable than an unverified one.
7. Ask A Professional
Lastly, if in doubt, consult a professional. Ask your mechanic if you’re unsure about which car parts to buy or where to buy from. As experts in the area, they are the best people to consult if you don’t know how and where to buy aftermarket car parts. They have been in the industry for a while and probably have good relationships with industry players.
Therefore, they also probably know a couple of dealers who could help you get the items you’re looking for.
In addition, they could also give you a few tips on how to get better deals on your purchases. They can offer advice on what to look for and things to be wary of.
While OEM car parts are great because of their authentic specifications, they tend to be inaccessible and more expensive than aftermarket car parts. Thankfully, you can find plenty of quality aftermarket options on the market, usually at a lower price. Some of which could equal OEM part performance.
Nonetheless, when looking for car parts, you must look for reputable dealers to work with. And of course, don’t hesitate to consult with your local mechanic if you’re unsure where or how to start. This can help reduce the chances of you being ripped off by buying poor-quality products that may damage your car, which can lead to costly repairs.