Save Money. Buy Used Auto Parts
Professional repairers, do-it-yourselfers or just the average vehicle owner will all have to repair their vehicles at some point. Using recycling auto parts for these repairs makes economic sense, with the added benefit of saving the planet.
All cars eventually need repair. Depending on the make and model of a vehicle, repair costs can range from a few hundred to thousands of dollars. If you’re looking save money, a little research can go far. Used auto parts can save you significant cash, or simply asking your local mechanic to source a used part for repairs can keep your wallet healthy.
When cars reach their end of life, many of their parts are still in great working condition. This is even true with cars involved in collisions. You may walk away with minor injury after a car accident, but sometimes your car is unsalvageable or it is simply not worth paying for vehicle repairs. This means that all the unaffected, perfectly working parts can be re-purposed.
In most cases, those who buy used are buying the original part intended for their car. Buying used auto parts is not difficult, and has multiple upsides for the consumer.
The cost factor is by far the number one reason to buy used parts. The difference in price between new and used parts can border on astonishing.
Take, for example, the cost of replacing your hood: Buying it used might run you as little as $50, while a brand new hood could cost over $300. Factors driving the costs of used parts are availability, condition, and scarcity. In general, you can easily save over 50 percent for the average car when you buy second hand. The only time used prices tend to jump is for classic car repair, where scarcity quickly becomes an issue.
Plenty of Parts Sources
Consumers can find their own parts if they want to save even more money. A visit to the local salvage yard can be a treasure trove. If you are mechanically inclined, you can increase your savings by removing needed parts yourself.
Since the beginning of car manufacturing, mechanics have had access to used parts resources. They offer used options as a consumer service that can give their business a competitive edge in the repair market. Some repairmen will even maintain their own stock if they are known to specialize in certain makes and models.
For the less adventurous, many auto dealers and retailers are highly reputable resources that keep used parts in stock. Today, of course, the internet provides a vast resource for finding exactly what you need. This is especially true in cases where something cannot be sourced in your local area.
With used auto parts, you can easily locate Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) units. OEM parts are the same brand that was original to the manufacture of your car. With OEM parts, you are less likely to have issues with your repairs.
Better yet, you can also find OEM pieces that are identified as refurbished, meaning they have already been cleaned and checked for quality. Refurbished parts might
be more expensive than their standard used counterparts, but they still remain significantly cheaper than new.
After-market parts are also available. For vehicles, after-market simply means that the part comes from a different brand than the one the original manufacturer used. For instance, your original battery might have been by DieHard, but a NAPA battery could be perfectly fine for your car as well.
The Recycling Advantage
A pleasant side effect of buying used auto parts is materials recycling. An impressive 80 percent of the materials in current automobiles are recyclable in some way or another. Recycled parts reduce the amount of oil and other resources that would otherwise be needed to produce new parts.
Not only does recycling keep materials out of landfills, buying them supports your local economy since over 75 percent of auto materials recyclers are local small businesses. So, buying used auto parts not only saves you money, it also gives you those civic-minded good feelings.
Rae is a graduate of Tufts University with a combined International Relations and Chinese degree. After spending time living and working abroad in China, she returned to New York City to pursue her career and continue curating quality content. Rae is passionate about travel, food, and writing, of course.