If you are a car owner, chances are good that you will find yourself in need of car parts at one point or another. If you don't have a lot of experience with buying car parts, you might not know much about the ins and outs of buying them. You will probably want to avoid making any rookie mistakes when buying parts for your vehicle, so just make sure that you avoid doing these common things.
1. Skipping Aftermarket Parts
Some people assume that they should only purchase original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts. Although this is sometimes the best option — such as if you are having repairs done to a car that is still under warranty — you should not just bypass the aftermarket parts that are out there. Aftermarket parts are typically just as well-made as OEM parts, and they are often available for a much lower price. Plus, you might find that you can get aftermarket parts right away instead of having to wait for your dealership or auto parts store to place an order for OEM parts.
2. Not Shopping Around
Don't assume that pricing is the same from car parts store to car parts store. Prices can vary a lot from store to store and part to part, so it's always a good idea to check pricing at a few different places each time that you buy a car part. This is particularly important if you are buying more expensive parts, since the price difference may be more significant from place to place. You can shop for car parts online, or you can call a few auto parts stores in your area to get an idea of the pricing that is available.
3. Not Ensuring They Are Compatible
Of course, it is very important to make sure that the car parts that you purchase for your car are compatible with your make and model of vehicle. Sometimes, parts can be very different between two cars that seem to only have slight differences. If you are shopping for car parts online, you can typically input information about your make, model and year model to make sure that parts are compatible. If you shop in an auto parts store, you can typically ask one of the staff members for help with choosing parts that are compatible with your vehicle.
Avoid making the three common mistakes above when purchasing parts for your car, and you can help ensure that the parts-buying process goes as smoothly as possible.