You should question the motives of any Auto Body shop that would knowingly use aftermarket and reconditioned parts on their customer’s vehicles.
Safety and Value Are Sacrificed
If a repairer will sacrifice the quality of your repair without your knowledge by using non-original manufacturer’s parts, what other shortcuts are they willing to take for the sake of saving money for an insurance company?
Aftermarket parts are, by definition, reproductions. They are imitations, copycats and reverse-engineered parts that are designed to accomplish only one goal: to offer an alternative “similar” part that are less expensive than OEM parts. Their only purpose: to save money.
Ask yourself… ask your auto body shop… ask your insurance company: “Who is being saved money? And at what cost?” The answer is: aftermarket parts save money for the insurance companies. They do not offer you a discount on your premiums – and in many cases, will raise your rates, sticking it to you not once – but twice.
As a consumer you should be informed, and have a full understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of using aftermarket or reconditioned parts on your vehicle. But that means that YOU will have to ask those questions, because the great majority of body shops will never tell that they are in a financial partnership with your insurance company. They will not tell you that they’re using inferior, untested or ill-fitting parts. Instead, they will put the proverbial “lipstick on a pig”, making everything look great – while your vehicle’s value… and possibly your very safety has been forever compromised.
The fact is, according to the law, the insurance companies are obligated to pay whatever it costs to repair your vehicle to it’s PRE-LOSS condition. You have the right to insist upon the original, manufacturer’s parts – specifically designed for your vehicle’s safety and value. It does not cost you more – you pay your deductible, and they must repair the vehicle properly. Proper repair with inferior reproductions simply makes no sense… and it can cost you everything.
In the photo above, you will see an actual estimate provided to Nylund’s by a popular cut-rate insurance company. Please notice that this estimate is for a brand-new, 2014 Lexus luxury SUV. Every red arrow indicates where the insurance company has insisted upon ordering reconditioned (RECOND) and aftermarket (A/M) parts. Of particular interest are the last two arrows where they are calling for an aftermarket radiator and an aftermarket condenser unit. Remember: those are imitation parts that are NOT identical to the original parts provided by the manufacturer. The use of those two parts will very likely void the warranty on all parts associated with the cooling system of the vehicle – potentially including the engine.
Should you allow those parts to be used in your vehicle’s repair, no matter what happens – you will never again be in a position to require the insurance company to replace them with OEM parts. Your vehicle will absolutely be worth LESS when it comes time to trade it in or sell. And in some cases, your very safety could be compromised.
Ask yourself: should you really be saving the insurance company money at YOUR expense? Or should you insist, as we do here at Nylund’s, that the only correct way to repair a vehicle is to replace broken parts with original, manufacturer’s parts.
BREAKING NEWS: As this article was being written, a photo directly related to the use of substandard parts came across our Facebook stream. CLICK HERE to view (Warning: Graphic Image)