Second Hand Spares vs. OEM Auto Spares

The current economy isn’t allowing much spending room in terms of luxury. Necessities have to be chosen carefully and according to price tag to ensure that enough money is left… for other necessities. Car parts are no different – vehicle owners are opting more and more for second hand spares instead of buying the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) auto spares when the need arises.

Is it a good idea? Let’s look at instances where it’s better to buy second hand spares and instances where it’s better to buy OEM auto spares.

When You Should Buy New OEM Auto Spares

OEM auto spares refer to those car parts that have been made by the vehicle manufacturer specifically for the model of your car. More often than not these refer to essential items that are required for the everyday functioning of the vehicle, and that contribute to the safety of its occupants. Ignition points, break pads, oxygen sensors, head gaskets and catalytic converters all fall into this category.

Although these auto parts might be more expensive than their second hand spares counterparts, they’ll keep longer since they’ve been made to function in concert with all other OEM engine components.

When You Should Buy Second Hand Spares

There are two main points to keep in mind here. The first is that there are second hand auto spares which are generically manufactured. The second is auto spares that, although second hand, have been manufactured specifically for your vehicle make and model (in other words, they were previously in the same model as yours).

When items from the first category mentioned above are the only ones available, it’s important to ensure that they do not comprise non-essential parts. Water pumps, air filters and break pads constitute this category and will not only save you money, but will also last a reasonably long time.

It is however an ideal situation to find an auto dealer specialising in second hand parts specifically for your vehicle make. This solves two problems:

  • 1. Cost – since they’re second hand, they’re more affordable.
  • 2. Performance – since they were originally made for your vehicle, they’ll do the job better than generic spare parts

Instances where this option is ideal is when there’s a limit on the money you’re able to spend on your vehicle. Selling your vehicle with auto spares made specifically for the make and model is also preferred by many buyers – these parts are more trusted than generic parts, which contributes greatly to the buying decision.

That being said, one thing should always be kept in mind: Safety and performance first. Investing in new OEM auto spares will inevitably help you save money, but only in the long run. Investing in OEM auto spares is a second option. Less expensive, already slightly worn, these parts usually still have a good few miles in them and, since they were designed for your vehicle model, will wear at a slower pace than generic parts. A last option should be generic second hand spares – they may be cheap, but in the end you get what you pay for.