Car Replacement Parts
Not all auto parts are the same. There are many grades of parts from the ultra
cheap designed to get your money out of your pocket, to all the way up to the finest
replacement parts directly from the car dealer in which your vehicle was made. The
industry of car parts is huge and many levels of quality exist.
Beware of a company
that offers a lifetime warranty on their parts because they are playing a numbers
game and figure you will get rid of your car or have someone else fix it. 1 year or
12,000 miles is the industry standard for new replacement parts.
Automobile manufacturers make their own replacement parts at the highest quality
and price. They also license outside companies to produce a line of parts that
are almost as good and a bit cheaper but still better quality than non-licensed
third party companies.
A company like GM makes great parts but they want to be competitive when repairing your car at the dealer or selling you parts so they license under contract an outside company to make their replacement parts at a lesser cost and give the customer a choice to help lower their repair bill.
GM's contracted companies are: AC Delco and Delphi.
Most car companies have these licensed alternative
parts manufactures. Ford's alterative vendors are
called Motorcraft and FoMoCo. Denso and Nippondenso are licensed to manufacture Japanese
parts while Bosch handles the Germany built cars.
There are over a hundred other "big company" parts manufactures that the industry has
come to rely on to supply parts for stores such as AutoZone, Pep Boys, Advanced
Auto Parts to name a few and with thousands of smaller re-builders around the world
which mostly service their local areas.
There are basically two styles of auto parts, dealer items which only the dealer
will have and serviceable items which almost all parts companies manufacture or
rebuild such as starters and alternators which go out often. There are a host of
companies that make service items such as oil and air filters because these items
need to be replaced very often.
"Dealer items" are parts that can only be purchased from the dealer because they
are either not permitted or they are so low in volume that it is not profitable
for an outside company to produce them. These items can be as small as a special
clip to hold a brake shoe in place to something large such as an engine wiring harness.
The bottom line is if you are going to keep the car buy the best parts you
can find or at least the middle of the road. Cheaper parts are just that and will
not work as well or as long. Avoid "patching" a car to sell it so becomes someone
If you are unsure if a particular part is the problem such as a camshaft actuator
solenoid here is a tip. Call the dealer and ask if they have the part
in stock, if they do it has a better chance of being the problem than if they need
to order it. Most of the time the dealer knows there is a problem with a particular
car and will have the part in stock so their mechanics can fix it quickly. The problem
is most of the time they wont come out and tell you the part you are looking for
is the problem, this would be a conflict of interest because they want you to bring
the car in so they can repair it.
There are basically two methods to buy parts, first and the most traditional
way is to head down to the dealer or parts store and buy them or order your parts
for pick up if they don't have them in stock. Next, is to search for your parts
online from places such as Amazon. We like
because they have name brands, fast delivery and the lowest price which
is a triple win.
Below is a list of factory OEM (original equipment manufactures) part stores
you can buy from. When searching for parts do not be fooled by websites that say
they are factory sites, there are plenty of them out there. We have found genuine
factory sites for you if they are available. Many manufactures are not yet online
(crazy right?) such as BMW, Mazda, Nissan, Mercedes Benz and Volvo. Genuine sites
will have the actual name in the second half of the domain ex: parts.honda.com or
just honda.com. Beware of sites that are these styles of domains: USAMercedesbenz.com
which are not the manufacturer's site.
If you have a vehicle that is not on the list below then we recommend you choose
from the list below the factory outlets.
Dealer Online Stores
Independent and Aftermarket Online Stores
These stores have a great high quality selection and price for common replacement
and service parts such as brake pads, rotors, alternators, starters, spark plugs,
air and oil filters, etc.
If you have any
please ask your online mechanics we will answer you promptly.
Article first published 2017-01-27