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Straightline Collision

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OEM vs Aftermarket Parts

If you have been involved in an auto accident or have undergone repairs, there are often industry terms you may not fully understand. We would like to address the term “OEM,” and what it may mean to you throughout your repair process.

OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer, but because people use the term in multiple ways, there is lingering ambiguity about the meaning.

OEMs as Parts Producers

As the term used in the automotive service and parts business, the OEM is the manufacturer of your vehicle, and is also the seller of its replacement parts. For example, you drive a Toyota 4-Runner and have been involved in an accident that will require your body shop to order replacement parts. In these cases, the body shop relies on a Toyota dealership’s parts department to provide OEM products to completely repair your vehicle back to its original pre-accident condition.

OEM Part vs. Insurance Coverage

If it is non-negotiable to you to have OEM parts installed, you will need to look for a car insurance carrier that provides replacement with OEM parts. Some carriers offer an OEM-parts policy endorsement at additional cost, and some do not offer them at all. When you are shopping for car insurance, make OEM parts one of your top questions for the insurance agent.

If you request OEM parts coverage, you will most likely pay an additional fee to get it. Also keep in mind, OEM parts are easier to obtain for newer vehicles and can be nearly impossible to find for older models.

No matter what you choose to do with your repair, there are pros and cons when using OEMs and aftermarket parts.

OEM Parts

When you request a particular OEM part, you will receive the one that matches your vehicle. You don’t need to worry about comparison-shopping.

You can be 100% certain that the OEM part works identically to the one it’s replacing. Also, you will typically receive a one-year parts and labor warranty.

OEM parts generally cost more than aftermarket parts, in some cases as much as 60% more.

Aftermarket Parts

An aftermarket part is any part that is made by someone other than the vehicle manufacturer.

Aftermarket parts are generally less expensive than OEM parts, and the cost savings can be significant.

Aftermarket parts are made by reverse-engineering the OEM part, which can often mean their fit and finish are not ideal. Your vehicle may have panel gaps that are uneven or excessive.

Aftermarket parts may or may not be certified. The Certified Auto Parts Association (CAPA) certifies individual parts meeting certain criteria, such as material properties, fit, finish, paint adhesion, coating performance, weld integrity, adhesive performance, and corrosion-resistance. If the sampled parts comply with all of the CAPA quality standard requirements, the part manufacturer is allowed to apply a CAPA Quality Seal (decal) to the part. A CAPA part is generally more expensive than a non-certified aftermarket part that does not have to meet these requirements.

Not all aftermarket parts come with a warranty. Ask your collision repair estimator to use only parts that come with a warranty.

There is no right or wrong answer to the question of OEM vs. aftermarket parts. Choosing a reputable body shop for all of your collision repair needs will make all the difference in the world when it comes to your auto collision repair outcome.

If you have an unfortunate automotive incident in Staten Island, call

Straightline Collision first. Our team of Collision and auto body experts provides stellar customer service at a troublesome time. We strive to offer a transparent service that is a hassle- and stress-free experience for clients.

Customers are welcome to get a free estimate by stopping at our location at 2912 Arthur Kill Rd, Staten Island, NY 10309. Our expertly trained staff is available by phone Monday through Friday at 718.966.8900