A repair and a decision
Your car has not been running smoothly, so you take it to your trusted mechanic to determine what the issue is. Once he examines it, he discovers there is a part that needs to be replaced. You are now confronted with a challenge that we all have to face – how to select the best part for the repair.
When it comes to auto parts, remember that not all parts are created equal. You should discuss the available options with your mechanic.
Basic vs. Premium
Like TVs, washing machines, refrigerators and computers, there are significant differences between quality auto parts, basic auto parts and an auto part that’s premium or best-in-class.
A basic brake pad will stop your vehicle, but a premium alternative – perhaps available for just a few dollars more – could stop your vehicle significantly sooner, last longer, do the job more quietly, and without depositing excessive brake dust on your wheels.
Premium part alternatives are available in a full range of categories, including steering and suspension components, gaskets, spark plugs, hub assemblies, air and fuel filters, wiper blades, vehicle lighting and dozens more. In general, these premium auto parts have been engineered and manufactured to address the unique demands of your vehicle model and will often provide noticeably better performance, superior reliability, better warranty, longer part life and improved safety.
Questions to ask
Here are a few quick questions to ask your mechanic when selecting the best auto part:
- What brand does the mechanic recommend and why?
- What is the price of the recommended brand and what is the part warranty?
- What other brands are available and how do their price and part warranty compare?
- Would the mechanic use this auto part on their own car?
- Are the auto parts readily available?
Do your own research
As an auto parts consumer, your best defense against buying an inferior, low-quality part is knowledge. Information about auto parts and manufacturers is readily available online. Visit the manufacturer’s website of the car part you are considering. Does the information match what your mechanic told you? Also, visit car enthusiast forums and blogs to see what others are saying about the part. Look for independent third-party reviews of the auto part.
In addition, look for feedback and reviews about the aftermarket auto part manufacturer. Do they have a good reputation? Are they well regarded? Reputable manufacturers typically have positive reviews from mechanics and customers alike. Those manufacturers who make inferior auto parts will see their reputation for poor quality catch up with them.
By spending a little bit of time researching, you’ll find the quality part for your vehicle that you need to keep you and your family safe on the road.
The content contained in this article is for informational purposes only and should not be used in lieu of seeking professional advice from a certified mechanic or mechanic. We encourage you to consult with a certified mechanic or mechanic if you have specific questions or concerns relating to any of the topics covered herein.