When you bring your car to a workshop for repairs, the question of whether to use Original Equipment (OE) or Aftermarket replacement parts might arise. Confused about which one to go for? We’ll take you through the pros and cons of each.

What is an OE Part?

An OE Part is either produced by the vehicle manufacturer or an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) that makes the parts according to the required specifications, then delivers them to the car manufacturer for final assembly. Sometimes, vehicle manufacturers that contract the production of parts to an OEM will put their brand and/or logo on them.

Pros:

  • Quality – Have peace of mind that you will get the same quality as the car part originally installed in your car, since it comes directly from the manufacturer.
  • Selection – You won’t have to worry about comparing different parts and prices, as there is usually only one type available.

Cons:

  • Price – The prices of OE parts are usually higher than Aftermarket parts.
  • Quality – OE parts are often engineered to have higher specifications than those necessary to keep your vehicle running, so you may be paying more for something that you don’t need.
  • Access – Getting OE parts may not be convenient as they are available in specific locations only.

What is an Aftermarket Part?

Aftermarket Parts are spare parts that are produced from companies other than the car makers. However, there are companies – like Bosch – that produce both OE and Aftermarket car parts.

Pros:

  • Price – Aftermarket parts can be significantly cheaper than OE, depending on quality.
  • Quality – There are established Aftermarket brands known for producing high quality parts that often perform as good as, or even better than OE ones.
  • Variety – There are plenty of Aftermarket brands and products available on the market offering a wide range of specifications and prices to meet drivers’ individual needs.

Cons:

  • Variance – Aftermarket car parts from different brands can vary a lot in quality, so be prepared to do your research.
  • Selection – If you are not knowledgeable about your car and how it works, the staggering array of available Aftermarket parts can be overwhelming – making it hard for you to find the right part.

Which one should you choose for your car?

Your choice greatly depends on how important price is for you, so use the above pros and cons to decide which one suits your needs best. However, keep in mind that consistently using poor quality car parts may turn out to be more expensive in the long run due to the need for frequent replacement, and they may damage your car or compromise the safety of you and your passengers.