How to find car parts online

How to find car parts online

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 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.

How to find car parts online - car stripped

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!

By |2017-10-20T12:56:48+00:00October 20th, 2017|General tips|17 Comments

About the Author:

Handyman tips is the author of Handyman tips website and the author of hundreds of articles in home improvement, landscaping, woodworking, DIY, appliances, tools and much more! He's always looking to find new and interesting info to share!


  1. Burton Spratte October 8, 2018 at 9:31 am

    They love to spend their money on the most beautiful and fastest cars in the world.

  2. Easton Memmott August 1, 2018 at 7:36 pm

    I love that you addressed how cheap parts are that come from China retailers, but also how flimsy and broken they are. I personally fall into the trap of buying whatever is cheapest. If I ever need to buy parts for my car, I will be sure to only buy quality product from local stores. Thank you for the tip; this will save me so much money.

  3. Easton Memmott August 1, 2018 at 7:36 pm

    I love that you addressed how cheap parts are that come from China retailers, but also how flimsy and broken they are. I personally fall into the trap of buying whatever is cheapest. If I ever need to buy parts for my car, I will be sure to only buy quality product from local stores. Thank you for the tip; this will save me so much money.

  4. Burt Silver July 2, 2018 at 3:51 pm

    I really like how you talk about finding car parts online and how to do it and everything. I haven’t really known how to fix my car lately. It would be great if I would follow your guide and maybe I can find all of the car parts that I am in need of.

  5. Earnest Watkins April 17, 2018 at 6:13 pm

    I like how you point out that identifying the part you need is the most important step of the car part buying process. This makes sense since there are so many different parts that are specific to certain models of car. I’d definitely be the kind of person that would benefit from taking the part I need to a local mechanic to help me identify what replacement part I need.

  6. Ivanna Flint March 31, 2018 at 1:00 am

    It sure got my attention when you started talking about the OEM parts, or the parts that are not exactly released by the original manufacturer but are made under the permission of the owner, so they are genuine yet cheaper. I will see to it that I look for that once I begin searching for a replacement part for my car. Regardless of whether or not I search online, what I am after is something cheaper, so I appreciate this. Thanks!

  7. Callum Palmer March 12, 2018 at 11:16 pm

    There is a lot that has to be taken into consideration when buying car parts online, so I like the advice that the article gives. I am particularly happy that the article brings up the importance of knowing the VIN number. After all, each part has its own VIN number so it can make finding the part you need much easier.

  8. Alexandria Martinez March 10, 2018 at 12:29 am

    A good friend of mine has been looking into getting vintage car parts for sale. This is something that he has been struggling with so I thought I would help him look for tips. I will let him know that it will be helpful to know the difference between remanufactured, reconditioned, and salvaged.

  9. Alexandria Martinez February 28, 2018 at 12:41 am

    My brother has been looking into going to a rebuilt auto parts store for some important pieces. He is trying to learn as much as he can so that he can get the best deals and the right parts. I will let him know that there is a difference between re-manufactured, reconditioned, and salvaged pieces.

  10. Larry Weaver February 26, 2018 at 11:25 pm

    Thanks for explaining that the big difference in prices between various auto parts is due to the parts being genuine or replacement. My car is getting close to ten years old, but I would like to get it some new parts so that I can extend its life. Buying a new car isn’t in my budget currently and with how happy I’ve been with my current car, I think that getting genuine or replacement parts within my budget would be a great idea!

  11. Kyle Wayne February 23, 2018 at 10:10 pm

    I thought it was interesting that you talked about being wary of parts that are unnaturally cheap since that may affect the quality. My neighbor is looking to buy some classic Chevy restoration auto parts so he can restore an old Chevy that he has. I think I will talk to him about being smart about which parts he buys to make sure they are quality parts.

  12. Amanda Drew February 7, 2018 at 12:01 am

    My car’s been having problems starting, and I think that I need a new battery. I’m glad to hear that you say that the first thing you need to do is figure out exactly which part you need. I think that I’ve done that already. I’ll just need to find an auto parts store that could get me a new battery.

  13. Ridley Fitzgerald January 23, 2018 at 10:34 pm

    You’ve got some great tips for buying car parts online. I like how you said to know the car’s information and VIN number to input. We try to do small repairs ourselves, so buying parts online is something we want to try and do.

  14. KMD Tuning & Engineering January 6, 2018 at 11:54 am

    It is amazing and wonderful to visit your blog. Thanks for posting some great tips on finding car parts online.

  15. Callum Palmer January 5, 2018 at 2:34 am

    Thanks for the fantastic advice, my brother-in-law and I have been looking for some parts online, but really didn’t know where to start. I actually had no idea that the VIN number could help you find the right parts for your car when shopping online. Although, in hindsight, that does make a lot of sense, especially considering that it would help identify the right parts that fit for your car.

  16. Johan January 2, 2018 at 5:50 pm

    When shopping for the part, check your local mechanic or car supply store. Many parts are relatively inexpensive. The true cost comes in when you need to pay for the labor to have the part installed. Used car parts are often available at a low price at these locations.

  17. Deb Pearl December 18, 2017 at 4:50 pm

    That is a great idea to make sure you identify exactly what part you need before you buy it. My husband loves fixing up older cars, and he needs to find some parts online. We will have to make sure we know the exact part we need, before we go looking. Thank you for the tips!

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