Saving Money on Auto Repairs With Auto Salvage Parts
During recessions and times of high inflation, many households need to cut back on expenses wherever possible. However, cutting back on auto maintenance and repairs is not always the best strategy since a reliable vehicle is critical, especially if you depend on it for commuting to work.
Luckily, there are ways to save money on auto repairs even when budgets are tight. One great money-saving strategy is using recycled auto parts from a salvage yard instead of brand new replacement parts.
Benefits of Auto Salvage Yards Used auto parts, also referred to as aftermarket, recycled, or salvage parts, offer much more affordable options over new OEM parts from the dealer. Parts pulled from vehicles in a junkyard or auto salvage yard can cost around 25-50% less on average versus brand new.
For more common vehicles like Hondas, Toyotas, Fords and other popular domestic models, the savings can be even greater – sometimes up to 80% off! This makes used parts extremely budget friendly options for drivers needing repairs.
Reliable Parts While used parts were pulled from old, likely accident-damaged vehicles, this does not directly correlate to the components themselves being unreliable or prone to failure. Auto salvage yards go through rigorous inspection and testing procedures before deeming parts as reusable.
Parts that pass testing are cleaned, refurbished, and resold at substantial discounts. This makes salvage yards a reliable source for mechanical as well as body parts.
The large inventory of vehicles at a salvage yard translates to an abundance of available parts. From engines, axles, transmissions to door panels, mirrors, tail lights, and wheels, you can likely find every part needed for repairs at an auto recycler.
This convenience means you can often get all your parts in one location rather than ordering from various retailers and paying multiple shipping fees.
Environmental Benefits Using recycled parts also provides ecological benefits since it reduces waste and the need for newly manufactured replacement parts. This helps conserve valuable resources and energy needed to mine raw materials and transport new parts.
Getting OEM Replacement
Body Panels While used mechanical parts offer substantial cost savings in most repair situations, body panels may be one exception especially for late model vehicles. Using aftermarket or recycled doors, fenders, hoods, and quarter panels involve much more custom fitting and adjustments to get proper alignments on unibody vehicles after accidents.
Since modern vehicle bodies are complex structures engineered to meet strict impact standards, getting direct replacement OEM panels from the manufacturer is usually the best solution after collisions or damage. Though significantly pricier than junkyard parts, factory body components offer:
OEM panels are precision formed and adhere to exact specifications of vehicle make and model down to every contour and mounting point. This ensures perfect fit the first time without the tedious adjustments required of salvaged panels. Proper fitments preserve original structural integrity.
Better Corrosion Protection
Factory panels also have galvanized metal and multi-step anti corrosion treatments allowing them to better resist rust over time. Aftermarket of used parts have no guarantees when it comes to long term durability against corrosion which can lead to issues down the road.
Retains Resale Value
For those looking to sell their vehicle later on, having OEM components in place of non-standard aftermarket parts also helps preserve resale value. This is especially true for newer vehicles that buyers still expect have original factory panels.
So when it comes to body repairs on late model cars and trucks, the extra upfront cost of factory replacement panels usually pays off in the long run through proper fitments, better durability, and higher resale value. The exception would be on older vehicles where finding factory panels may be impossible or extremely expensive.
In these cases, going with more affordable used panels makes sense financially given an older vehicle’s lower overall resale value. Though still very usable vehicles, buyers have lower expectations on originality for vintage models.
The key is assessing each repair scenario to determine whether new OEM or recycled auto parts make the most economic sense. For mechanical components, salvage yard parts offer huge cost savings for all vehicle age groups. But for body work, factory replacement panels are generally the better long term investment on newer vehicles today.