At one point during the lifetime of your car, you'll need to replace some of its parts, whether it’s the headlights, the windshield wiper blades, or steering wheel. It could be wear and tear, damage, failure or malfunction that puts you in this situation. When this happens, you will need to get a repair which typically entails replacement of some spare parts.
In some cases, finding parts can pose a problem. For instance, classic cars will have parts that are not widely available or not anymore produced. Or the case could be that you don't have the money to buy an expensive auto part. Or you need replacements in a pinch, but your dealer tells you to wait for a week or two as they place the order.
In times like these, you can look for answers towards the used auto parts direction. There is no reason why you should not save yourself some dollars by going for used auto parts. Used car parts are affordable options, and if carefully chosen, they can last and perform as well as the newly bought parts.
What are the advantages of secondhand car parts?
Most people would think that secondhand car parts are always about low price and nothing more. Maybe so, but that's not the case all the time. Several reasons make this option a viable one.
Of course, this is the most obvious advantage of buying used car parts. Whether it is from a junkyard or an auto shop selling re-tooled parts, when you purchase non-new car parts, you get a significant price cut.
If your car is old or has covered a lot of mileage, say 250,000, it’s not practical to replace a faulty or damaged part with a brand new piece. The more economical option would be to find used but undamaged parts.
New auto parts are generally expensive, and they don’t come with a foolproof assurance that they will never fail or get damaged. Why pay so much more when you can buy car parts that do the job as well as the new components at a lower price tag?
Who expects quality from used car parts? Well, don't be surprised, you can find high-quality secondhand auto parts if you know where to look. Used car parts, especially those from auto shops, are usually professionally refurbished.
Most auto shops take car parts from damaged cars and tune them up, make the necessary repairs, and treat them before reselling them. Refurbished parts may be a little bit expensive but not as costly as the original parts.
It’s now easy to find used auto parts. You can check carpart.com.au to locate a seller of the part you need, or you may send it a parts request, and it will connect you to suppliers nationwide.
Search your local junkyards, online sellers, dealers in used car parts or auto parts shop, and you’ll most likely get the part you want. Some auto auctions also deal used auto parts.
4. Saving on other resources
When you buy used car parts, you save on raw materials and resources such as steel, iron, and electricity since you cut the need to manufacture new parts. Also, instead of throwing away the parts you are replacing, you can sell it or take it back to the factory where they get re-tooled and repaired for reuse.
Best Places to Find Secondhand Car Parts in Australia
In Australia, car owners seeking used car parts for the first time may be confused about where to start. Worry not - below we'll show you where to start if you ever find yourself in need of auto parts.
1. Automotive Swap Meet
If you are looking for used spare parts for a classic car, the best place to get them is at a swap meet. In Australia, there are dozens of swap meets hosted on different days of the week, depending on your location. All that you'll need to do is find out the specific days for the event. Find out whether your required parts are available.
You can find the date and venues of swap meets online in sites such as auswapmeets.com. Some of the upcoming swap meets are:
- Kustom Nationals and Swap Meet
- Bendigo National Swap Meet
- Epping Swap Meet
There are swap meets in all states in Australia, i.e. Victoria, Western Australia, South Australia, New South Wales, Queensland, Tasmania and also in the Northern territory. Find the automotive swap meet closest to your location and check if they include selling of used auto parts.
The con with swap meets is that you don’t get a guarantee or warranty in most cases. On the upside, you can get your parts at lower prices.
2. Online dealers
Today, almost everything can be found online as long as you have internet access. Used car parts are not an exception. A quick search through the internet is all you have to do to find them, but exercise due diligence when dealing with car parts sellers on the internet.
Always check the seller’s return/exchange policy and ask about warranty options. While buying used spare car parts online, make sure to choose the ones that meet all the specifications that your car requires. Most online dealers have no return or refund policy in case you select the wrong part.
Craigslist, CarsRus, CarPart, eBay, Findapart and Hollander Parts are among the online sites you can find secondhand spare parts for your car here in Australia. Start searching the location closest to you. If you can’t find the car part you need on these sites, broaden your search area.
3. Auto part shops and recycling groups
If you don’t like to go through many pages, you can alternatively turn to auto part shops and recycling groups. You can visit their shops or websites depending on the available options and your location.
With auto parts, you can negotiate the prices although this doesn’t go for every shop. You can also inspect the piece to ensure what you are getting is genuine, fits your car, and is worth your money.
They are available in all states in almost all major towns. Do note that some stores are only available in specific state, cities or towns. The best auto parts shops include:
- All Crash Parts
- Aus Auto Parts (Melbourne)
- Auto Parts Group
- Auto Parts Solution
- Troubles Wrecking
- Just Jeep Auto Wreckers
- Fawkner Motor Wrecking
- EKW Auto Parts
- Central Wreckers (Ballarat)
- Fetter Motors
- Auto Jap Daglis Corperation
- Werribee Auto Parts
- Mcwhinneys Wreckers
- Get Wrecked 4x4
- Burson Auto Parts
- JJ (Just Japanese) Auto Parts
- Online Auto Parts
- Queensland Car Parts
- Rocklea Auto Parts
- Total Parts Plus
- Toyrolla Spares
- Wholesale Car Parts plus
- West Wide Auto recyclers
- Smart Parts
- The list goes on and on.
These shops or recycling groups offer an extensive array of used car parts of many car models and make, including Japanese, European and American.
4. Junkyard and Wreckers
Do you ever ask yourself about the fate of the cars that get towed away or those that sit quietly in the junkyard? Well, when wreckers collect cars involved in accidents or old vehicles from their owners, they usually pay for them.
They then place the cars in yards to salvage car components that are in good condition before crashing down the remaining metal.
Most wreckers keep the collected cars in the junkyards as they work on them before declaring them scraps. So if you are looking for cheap auto parts, you can check through the wreckers. These salvaged parts are sold at reasonable prices and sometimes at generous discounts.
Before going to an online auto parts dealer, wreckers are worth a shot. They collect various autos thus have an assorted range of car parts. You can also visit their junkyards and pick out the items yourself.
Some renowned wreckers in Australia include QLD Auto Parts, Advance Auto Parts, Wreckery, Imlachs Self Serve Auto Parts, Pick-A-Part, and Jollys Auto Parts.
Factors to Keep in Mind When Buying Secondhand Parts
Despite the pros, you have to be cautious when going for used auto parts. To save you from getting defrauded or scammed, here are some factors to keep in mind when going for auto parts.
- Reliability of the vendor or dealer - whether it’s from a junkyard, an auto shop, or an online store, always do a background check of the seller or read reviews.
- Genuineness of the parts you are buying - be prudent as some dealers may sell duplicated auto parts.
- Paint colour of the used part (if it’s an external component) - if you don't want to incur additional cost for repainting, choose a piece that matches the colour of your car.
- Condition and age of the parts you are getting - always inspect the state of the part you’re buying and inquire about its age. Do not get used components that are older than your car part. Go for pieces that will be usable for longer.
- Covered with a return/exchange policy - to avoid being caught up in the same situation after replacing with the used parts, go for a dealer with a warranty or return/exchange policy.
Used car parts come in very handy as replacement parts, but you have to be careful when selecting the parts you need. Secondhand car parts that don’t fit or work properly are not an upgrade. Instead, they can take you a step back to the fix you were in initially.
Check out our guides, informational resources, and featured car parts sellers at Carpart.com.au.