Our vehicles need maintenance and every once in a while you’ll need to buy spare parts for your car. Servicing your car in a shop is always the best way to go, but letting your repair guy to sell you the parts isn’t advisable. They often charge much more than most dealers and you can save a lot of money if you buy your own parts. The days of visiting scrap yards and local shops are really behind us and you can get all your parts online for a better deal than in a local shop. Today, even scrap yards have webshops and you can even buy used car parts online. In general, we don’t advise you to buy used spare parts if you don’t get a written warranty from the seller. In this small guide, we’ll show you how easy it really is to buy car parts online.
We’ll brake the guide into easy to follow steps and you’ll find your car part in notime.
Identify the part
First step isn’t really related to buying car parts, but it’s the most important step in the whole process. If you have some knowledge about cars, you can identify what is wrong with your car and you can identify which car part you need to replace. If you aren’t skilled, it’s best to take the car to the local repair guy and he will tell what part is faulty. Once you identified what part you need to buy we can start our search for the best spare part.
Aside from the name of the part, you’ll need some additional information if you want to buy a correct car part.
Car data and VIN number
In all online stores you need to input your car data before you start searching for the part. You need to input your car manufacturer, series or model, year of manufacturing and engine type. You can find this data in vehicle’s license or vehicle registration certificate. Another important information which you need to enter in order to find the correct spare part is the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN number) or Chassis number. You can find this number at the corner of the dashboard, inside the driver’s door on a factory sticker, inside the passenger door, in a small compartment in the floor next to the passenger seat, trunk, hood, and sometimes, on the engine.
For instance, if you have Alfa Romeo you will visit one of the respect online shops like wWw.OnlineCarParts.co.uk and you’ll enter your model, engine type and choose the category of the parts you’re looking for. On each spare part, you’ll find chassis number range and you can compare it to the chassis number of your car.
Genuine or replacement car parts
When you narrow your search to the specific car part you’ll notice that there is a big difference in prices between them. The difference is in the manufacturers of the parts and whether they are genuine or replacement parts. Genuine parts or sometimes called OE parts are original parts made directly by the manufacturer of your car. Those parts are the best quality parts but they are always very expensive when compared to replacement parts. Replacement parts or sometime called OEM parts are parts made by other companies under the license of the original manufacturer. Those parts are always much cheaper than genuine parts.
We always advise that you buy replacement parts because they are much cheaper that genuine parts but they are still high quality parts. You may also notice that there are several manufacturers of replacement parts and that prices between them also vary. In most cases it’s not that important which replacement part you choose but if some of them are way cheaper than other you should be careful and avoid those parts.
Avoid Chinese online stores
If you start your online search for the cheapest car part you’ll notice that Chinese online stores are significantly cheaper than all the other stores. The prices there are super low but don’t start celebrating just yet. Car parts sold there are not OEM parts and they don’t have any licence what so ever from the original manufacturers. Those parts just look like original parts but they are made of cheap and low quality materials and they are simply piece of junk. In some cases they don’t even fit on your car because they screwed up the measurements. If you buy spare car parts there, you are throwing your money down the drain.
Remanufactured, reconditioned and salvaged parts
In your search for the best deal, you’ll surely encounter terms like remanufactured, reconditioned or salvaged parts. Those parts aren’t new parts and we’ll explain to you what those terms mean.
Remanufactured parts are the parts that are made up of multiple components such as an engine or gearbox. When this parts fail, it’s usually only one component that breaks so stripping the unit down, replacing the broken part with a new one, rebuilding it and testing it ensures they’re very nearly as good as new.
Reconditioned parts are parts like engines and gearboxes with multiple components. When they are stripped down, failed parts are frequently replaced with used parts, although items such as bolts and other fasteners may be new. These are far cheaper than the new equivalent but it’s impossible to know how long they will last.
Salvaged parts are also known as used parts, and they come off scrapped cars. Salvaged parts are the cheapest parts of the lot but unless you’re driving an old banger, you shouldn’t consider them. You don’t know how many miles they’ve covered or what condition they were in when they were taken off the donor car.
Now when you know all about finding car parts online you can start your search for the best deal without getting ripped off by the local repair guy!