Anyone who has checked vehicle prices lately knows they’re skyrocketing, with no relief in sight. Presently, the average price of a new car in the U.S. is slightly over $47,000, an all-time high. For used cars, the average is about $27,500, a 35 percent increase since the beginning of 2021.
The reasons for these surges are pretty obvious. COVID-induced labor shortages, supply chain issues, and a critical shortage of microchips have all contributed to a short supply of new vehicles and surging prices. The scarcity of new vehicles and the higher prices have carried over into the used car market.
Car dealers get much of their supply of used cars through trade-ins as their customers purchase new cars. With fewer new cars to sell, however, there are not as many used cars to be resold. At the end of 2021, nationally the supply of used cars on the market was about 16 percent less than at the beginning of the year. That scarcity, like the limited availability of new cars, has had the effect of driving prices skyward.
Given these price increases, with no decline in sight on the horizon, for many of us it just makes sense to keep your present vehicle running as long as possible to save money. Further, when it comes to the repairs needed to keep your “old faithful” on the road, you can save even more with used auto parts.
Cheap Auto Parts in Chicago, IL – An Auto Parts Primer
For those who may not have paid much attention to the topic earlier, here’s a brief summation of the most commonly available auto parts and what auto repair shops and insurance companies think about them.
That stands for original equipment manufacturer, the original pieces of equipment produced by the vehicle’s manufacturer. OEMs are brand-new, never-used parts. They’re more expensive, and most repair shops don’t keep a ready supply of them. So, they have to be ordered from the manufacturer, and that can delay the repair process.
On the other hand, repair shops actually like OEM parts because they fit perfectly without having to make any adjustments. Insurance companies, on the other hand, are not so enthused about OEM parts. Yes, they want to get your car back on the road, but they also want to keep their costs down.
So, your insurance company may pay for OEM parts only if no others are available, or if you have an OEM clause in your policy. You’ll have to pay extra for OEM coverage, however.
These are parts produced by a company other than your vehicle’s original manufacturer. These parts are new and have never been used on another vehicle. They’re similar to an off-brand version of one of your favorite foods, cheaper than the original, but they usually work quite well.
Repair shops can get your vehicle back on the road using aftermarket parts, but adjustments sometimes must be made to make the parts fit correctly. Insurance companies love aftermarket parts as a means of keeping their costs down. Frankly, if aftermarket parts were never used, insurance rates would soar.
They’re exactly what they say they are, parts that have been used on another vehicle. Many vehicles are junked and discarded for various reasons. Anything from a wreck that totals the vehicle to an engine or transmission failure on an older vehicle may cause it to wind up in a salvage yard.
While junked, the vehicle probably has a lot of usable parts that can be salvaged and used to repair other vehicles. One of the great things about used parts is that they are usually OEM parts. They’ve just been previously used.
Repair shops and insurance companies both like used parts. Since many of them are, as we said, actually OEM parts, they can be used easily to make repairs and often work as well as new parts. And because they’re cheaper than new parts, insurance companies like them as a way of keeping their costs down.
Don’t Worry About Used Parts
It’s easy to understand that a person might be hesitant about repairing their damaged or broken vehicle with used parts. To overcome your hesitancy, you can be assured that no reputable repair shop would put used parts on your vehicle if they’re truly junk parts beyond repair. You also need to remember that if you’re driving an older vehicle, repairing it with used parts may be the only option to keep it running and out on the road.
Finally, for a little extra assurance about used parts, here are a few examples of where they can be used to save money.
- Tires – You can save hundreds of dollars shopping for used tires that still have usable tread. That helps a lot when you’re just trying to keep an older vehicle running a little longer to avoid paying for an expensive new or used car.
- Alternators – This part should last between 80,000 and 100,000 miles, and one with just a few thousand miles on it should last for many years.
- Body parts – A lot of money can be saved finding used fenders, bumpers, and doors to repair your vehicle after a wreck.
- Lighting – It’s easy to find used headlights, fog lights and taillights for repairs.
- AC compressor – You need a cool vehicle to get through our hot, sticky summers, and you can save hundreds by replacing a failed compressor with a used one.
Chicago Wholesale Auto Parts
This is only a partial listing of the many ways used car parts can be used to repair your vehicle and avoid having to make payments for years to come on a new or used vehicle. At Aero Auto Parts we’ve been assisting Chicago area motorists for over 50 years, and our knowledgeable, experienced staff wants to help you keep your vehicle on the road.
We hope that what we’ve said will help you overcome any lingering fears you may have about used auto parts today. So, the next time you need vehicle repairs, come see us at Aero Auto Parts. We’ll do everything we can to find the parts and help you save money, using only the highest quality used parts.