In the automotive world, you may come to a crossroads when you are being forced to buy replacement parts for your vehicle: Do you settle for salvage parts or pay extra for quality refurbished parts backed by a warranty? Although the answer may seem incredibly situational, it is important to step back and look at the big picture before plunking down the greenbacks and the hard labor behind them for the risk of an unsatisfactory outcome.
When we are discussing salvaged parts, we mean those pick-and-pull parts that you dig up at the salvage yards. Although some salvage yards will pull the parts for an additional fee, a lot of the hard work is up to you. You have to match the VIN numbers, compare the interchangeability of parts from other models, and decide whether the part is of sufficient quality to meet your needs. Let's examine the pros and cons in greater detail below.
- Cheapest replacement parts available
- Environmentally friendly recycling of used parts
- No need to wait for an order to come
- May find interesting or rare parts by luck
- You gain perspective of how the parts are installed
- You can remove large assemblies with ease
- A chance to practice removing the parts on your own car
- High risk of injury when improperly removing rusty parts
- No compatibility support
- No guarantees
- Limited returns for in-house credit only
- Parts may not be available (waste of time)
- Special tools and skills required to pull parts
When it comes to reliability, car owners prefer refurbished parts, which have been bench-tested and backed with a substantial warranty. Refurbished parts are particularly important if you lack tools, mechanical skills, or time to do all the repairs yourself. These parts can be installed by a professional repair shop at a lower cost than new factory or aftermarket parts. Let's consider all the pros and cons of purchasing refurbished parts in greater detail below.
- Backed by a long warranty
- Bench-tested to guarantee function
- Seller support to ensure compatibility
- Possible money-back guarantees
- Environmentally friendly
- Original Equipment parts, not inferior aftermarket replicas
- Less expensive than factory car dealer parts
- No need to pull the parts yourself
- More expensive than salvage parts
- Refurbished parts may have a degree of wear
- Limited availability
When you compare salvaged parts with refurbished, it makes sense to buy refurbished parts when they are available. However, you are not likely to find a refurbished bumper, refurbished ashtray, or refurbished window glass. The number of salvage parts available makes it a broader resource than the low volume of refurbished parts on the market. In these situations, however, there is no need to compare when refurbished alternatives are simply not available.