When a body shop in Palmdale, (or anywhere in the US really), performs an auto body repair on your car, they have three options to sourcing the parts: from the dealer (OEM), from a junkyard, or from an aftermarket parts supplier. To the uninitiated, you probably don’t know the difference but there is a big one and it is very important to understand not only the difference, but also what is going back on your car.

OEM parts (Original Equipment Manufacturer)

OEM parts (Original Equipment Manufacturer) are literally the exact same parts that came from the factory on your car and are only available from the dealer. For example, if you own a ford, these parts come directly from Ford and can only be purchased from a Ford dealer. These OEM are guaranteed to fit perfectly, and perform properly in the event of another collision after the vehicle is repaired and they are the preferred option. OEM parts are the most expensive option and insurance companies don’t always want to pay for them. In fact, your insurance policy may even state that you agree to the use of none OEM parts sources such as salvage or aftermarket.   In the auto body repair world there is talk about parts being restricted only to OEM certified auto body shops but so far, the Germans and soon the Swedish are the only ones with parts restrictions.

Salvage Parts

This leads us next to salvage. Just as the name implies, these are parts purchased from a local salvage yard such as Pacific Auto Recycling Center in nearby Lancaster CA. In most cases these are OEM parts (not a guarantee) but they are used parts. For items such as doors and hoods, it is less of an issue, but some insurance policies even require that shops use salvage suspension parts which is an area where some manufacturers had an issue. In fact, some brands such as Volvo suggest that the steering rack gets completely replaced with any front end or side swipe damage what so ever. The problem with salvage yard parts is that they sometimes need a little work done to them in order to be useable, and may have more wear and tear on them than your vehicle has. Of course, we will paint them to match, but sometimes they require some metal work don’t to them which is less desirable than simply using an OEM part.

Aftermarket

Finally, we have aftermarket parts. Of all the parts options, this is the least desirable for both the repair shop and the customer. But sometimes we have to use them because your policy only covers aftermarket parts usage. Aftermarket parts are made by a company other than the original part manufacturer. These parts can sometimes be of an inferior fit and quality. Quite frequently these parts are recalled for warranty issues. Of all the options, aftermarket parts are the cheapest. Worth noting is that the manufacturers recommend against the use of aftermarket parts and their use could also void your warranty so it is important to understand what parts are being put back on your car and why.

What are your options as a car owner here in Palmdale?

If you are against using anything other than OEM parts, the easiest thing to do is to pay the difference out of pocket. Sometimes this can be a reasonable amount, but sometimes it can be quite expensive. There are no laws demanding the use of EOM parts although nearly every state has some form of legislation pending that could require their use on vehicles three years old or newer.

The next option would be to contact your insurance adjuster and see if they would be willing to reconsider the parts usage of your car. Some insurance companies are easier to deal with than others and if you are a good customer they might make some special considerations in your case.

You can also consult with us here at Telesis to determine if this is a critical part or not. Some parts such as a splash shield or even a door handle may not be worth the trouble of fighting over.

Regardless of the parts used in your vehicle, all of our technicians at Telesis Collision Center have your safety in mind when repairing your car. If we see an issue we will bring it to your attention. We consult the OEM procedures for repairs so you can rest assured that we are following the correct method to return your vehicle to its’ pre-crash state.

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