Just about everything has misconceptions around it, and used auto parts are no exception. Used car parts, for a while now, have had some myths revolve around them, causing people to hesitate in using secondhand auto parts for their cars.
For this reason, most car owners are usually sceptical about getting used auto parts, which, more often than not, are cheap. Are you missing out on good deals merely because you’ve heard of and believed some myths? To be an enlightened buyer, you need the truth behind mere hearsay.
Here's a quick list to the myths we've busted.
Myth 1: Used car parts are inferior to OE and OEM.
Fact: OEs and OEMs are not always better than used car parts.
This myth is perhaps the most common when it comes to used auto parts. It’s incorrect to say that used car parts are inferior to Original Equipment (OE). In some cases, used auto parts outperform the OEs and OEMs because most used parts dealers retool and repair the parts to be better than the original.
Harvested secondhand auto parts are usually OE or OEM and, thus, have high quality. Used body parts such as door panels and lights will still exactly fit and look like the replaced parts. Sometimes they may be of different colours, but a minor paint job will solve the matter.
The only downside is that unlike brand new parts that have not been used prior, used parts have served some part of their life. Ergo, they will have a shorter usable life, especially if they are mechanical parts. However, their functionality will be the same.
On the bright side, used parts will always be cheaper than OEM or OE. With these affordable auto parts, you can save up to 50% of what you need to pay for an OEM or OE.
Myth 2: Used car parts will void your car warranty.
Fact: Replacement using secondhand car parts doesn’t always void your warranty.
Most of the scepticism by car owners stems from this apprehension. In some countries, customers get protected by set policies that prevent the manufacturer from voiding the warranty because of replacing a car part or component.
Likewise, in Australia, the Trade Practices Amendment (Consumer Law) allows the consumer to make a replacement and prevents the manufacturer from nullifying the warranty. This law states that the warranty of a product does not become null and void because of the use of replacement parts.
However, if the used auto part that you installed in your car causes problems and damage to other car components and systems that were previously working well, that’s when the company’s right to void your warranty comes in. This situation sometimes happens if an unqualified technician installs the used car parts incorrectly or commits an error in replacing the part.
A capable technician will generally cause no such problem or damage. All the same, always check your car’s warranty to understand the terms and conditions in the policy.
Myth 3: Used car parts should only be the last resort.
Fact: Many times, used car parts are the only option.
When replacing car parts in a pinch, new car parts may not be readily available. Thus, you'll need to wait for a fortnight or so. But what happens when you need the parts immediately? What can you do to find components of a classic car that manufacturers no longer produce?
That’s the time when going for used car parts becomes the only option. Look for retooled and tuned-up parts. Some used car parts dealers will even give you a warranty.
Myth 4: You can’t bargain on used car parts.
Fact: You can bargain, depending on the condition of the parts.
Don’t think that you cannot negotiate on the posted price of used car parts. On the contrary, you can bargain with the dealer depending on the part's condition, type, and other factors.
For instance, when getting used parts from junkyards, you can carefully examine their condition. If they suit your needs, you can ask for some price adjustments. Dealers are usually open to this.
Myth 5: Used car parts are only available at junkyards.
Fact: Junkyards are only one of the options.
Used car parts are available in many other places. You can get genuine used car parts from automotive swap meets, online dealers such as eBay, auto part shops, professional recycling groups, and wreckers, or salvage yards.
For more on places to find secondhand auto parts, refer to our other articles on how to buy used auto parts.
Myth 6: Used auto parts have no warranty.
Fact: Professional dealers of used auto parts provide a warranty.
Professional sellers of car parts such as used auto parts dealers and salvage yards usually offer a warranty. Used auto part dealers trust their products and thus have no problem attaching a warranty on them.
Myth 7: Repair shops won’t install used car parts.
Fact: Service centres and shops install used parts.
Although most service centres and repair shops prefer selling you the replacement parts and fitting them for you, it’s not the only option.
For the reasons mentioned above, some circumstances require you to consider other options for acquiring car parts. For the installation, it is best to visit service centres or auto repair shops to get the services of professional and qualified technicians.
There are service centres that install parts that you have purchased elsewhere, but you will have to pay for labour cost. To avoid any inconvenience, call in advance to inquire if the service centre or repair shop can do the job you need.
Not everything you hear about used car parts is accurate. That, however, doesn't mean that everything said about used auto parts is incorrect. To be sure, talk to a professional auto parts dealer to tell apart the myth from the truth or read through our blogs for information regarding used car parts.