OEM, Salvage or Aftermarket Parts?

OEM Parts At Airpark Collision Center

What is OEM? OEM is an abbreviation for Original Equipment Manufacturer. The OEM is the original producer of the vehicle’s parts.

What Can I Expect from OEM Parts? OEM auto parts are identical to the parts used in producing a car, truck or SUV. OEM parts can be purchased from the branded dealership or the automaker. They are endorsed by the vehicle manufacturer and significantly more expensive. You can expect compatibility and the same quality standards as the original part.

What about Salvage Parts? Salvage parts are used OEM parts. This mean the fit and quality will be the same. A good collision repair facility will closely examine a salvage part before proceeding with the repair. If it is not in good condition it will be returned or exchanged.

What About Aftermarket Parts? Aftermarket parts are not endorsed by the manufacturer. This is not to say that aftermarket parts are substandard. These parts will vary in price, quality and sometimes fit. There are many aftermarket vendors and an experienced collision repair parts coordinator will know what vendor/manufacturer to order from. In addition, the part will be inspected, and the collision repair technician will pre-fit the part to make sure it passes the test. It is not recommended for consumers to purchase aftermarket parts online. The fit may be poor, and the part may not be returnable.

Can I Choose OEM Parts? Yes, you can choose OEM, salvage or aftermarket if you are paying out of pocket. If you are making an insurance claim, the insurance company will determine what type of part is covered by the insurance policy.

What are my Options? If OEM parts replacement is important to you (and an accident has not occurred) you may contact your insurance agent and ask about an OEM rider. This will ensure OEM parts replacement in the event of a collision. If the accident has already happened, you may be able to upgrade to OEM parts if you pay the difference between aftermarket and OEM. This discussion will be between you and the insurance company.

What is the Collision Repair Facility’s Role in Choosing Parts?

The insurance policy will determine what parts are used for the repair. However, a collision repair shop with a good reputation will take the time to test fit and inspect an aftermarket or salvaged part. When a part does not fit properly, the estimator will contact the insurance adjuster. If the auto body shop can prove that the fit is not acceptable, the insurance company will often pay for an OEM part. This process will slow the repair down a bit, but worth the extra time spent.

Will the Parts Affect the Value of my Vehicle? When it is time for the sale of your vehicle, the parts used in the repair will most likely not affect the value of your car, truck or SUV. It is more likely that an inaccurate paint color match will cause someone to realize your vehicle was involved in a collision.

To ensure a proper collision repair contact Airpark Collision Center. Our facility prefers OEM parts and follows OEM repair methods.  A lifetime labor warranty is available for as long as you own the vehicle. Walk in or get an online estimate!

Tina Small has been part of the Airpark Collision Center team since 2006. Working directly with customers, her goal is to share frequent customer questions, and proper methods of collision repair.