OEM vs. Aftermarket Parts, Does it Matter?
When it comes time to replace a part on your vehicle, you may be overwhelmed by the number of replacement parts in the market. For example, a google shopping search for a “2012 Honda Civic brake rotor” yields 37 pages of results! To make deciding more complicated, prices range from $14 to over $150, so how do you know what to buy?
Unless you are planning to modify your car, lifting your truck for example, we always recommend OEM parts. OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer. This means the parts will be made by the manufacturer of the car, and match exactly what was previously on the vehicle. An aftermarket part is typically reproduced by a different manufacturer and quality can vary greatly. It is absolutely possible that an aftermarket part can match, or even exceed the performance of an OEM part. A slotted disc brake rotor, for example, may perform better under extreme braking than an OEM part. Or it may be made poorly, warp quickly, or even fit incorrectly. Here lies the problem with aftermarket parts.
When you purchase aftermarket parts, you are taking a risk. It is possible that an aftermarket part could match, or at a high price point, even exceed the performance of an OEM part. However, it is also possible that an aftermarket part could fail more quickly than an OEM part. In some cases, aftermarket parts are produced with such low quality that they cannot be installed without modification due to poor fitment. Despite all the safety features of modern cars, driving is still dangerous. Adding parts of questionable quality can increase the likelihood of a crash, and that isn’t a risk that we are willing to take. So when you’re picking out new parts for your vehicle, consider if saving a few dollars is worth risking your safety, and compromising your warranty. We chose the peace of mind that comes with OEM parts every time.