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Old 11-17-2014, 07:19 PM
 
Location: Sand Key, Clearwater ICW
137 posts, read 197,702 times
Reputation: 109

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The left front door lock actuator went out on my 2009 Chevy so the powerlocks don't work on the driver side. I got it diagnosed and had an estimate for work done. The local garage wants about 420$ to do the repair. The new actuator alone is 256$, the rest labor. Was more that I budgeted for. I got a similar estimate from the dealership garage.
So I decided to check around on parts prices and found aftermarket parts at half that price. I asked about installing aftermarket parts and the dealship said that was risky because
  1. aftermarket parts may not carry a warantee
  2. they are made in China
  3. they might be inferior quality copies
Gee, I thought that those arguments aplly very well to the original OEM actuator part that failed abnormally soon! Aren't all OEM car parts made in China now anyway?


I checked aftermarkets do have a 1 year warranty. The local garage said they would be putting in aftermarket parts. So I decided on aftermarket parts.



Which would you prefer OEM or aftermarket?
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Old 11-17-2014, 08:10 PM
 
Location: Blue Ridge
20,899 posts, read 22,710,808 times
Reputation: 8636
If the part goes bad and you supplied it, then you have to pay the labor to replace it again. If the local garage or dealership supplies the part (they add margin to the price they paid) then depending on their labor warranty then the labor will be free for X months/X miles and they supply the parts warranty during that time period. As to using aftermarket vs OEM, it depends on the part as some aftermarket parts require modification to make them fit and work in the place of a OEM part. So IMHO on this part, I would get OEM.

As to the labor, watch the following video and you'll see how much of a pain it is to replace it and thus justify the labor cost.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1tdtPTB0qYA
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Old 11-18-2014, 09:56 AM
 
8,740 posts, read 8,951,501 times
Reputation: 12208
I would go OEM.


As someone whos spent 10-15 years repairing their own cars, i've found myself in plenty of situations where the aftermarket sensor, motor, etc did not last anywhere near as long as the OEM parts did.

So given the choice, I would sometimes make the call to install a more expensive OEM part vs an aftermarket.

In this case, with a door actuator, i'd go OEM simply because labor is a big part of the replacement. No point in trying to save $100 if i have to do the job twice and it's tedious work.

Now, something like a PCV valve, i'd go aftermarket because 1) hard to mess up a PCV valve, and #2) it's usually a 30 second swap out.

But when it comes to electronics, i tend to prefer to stick to OEM. Off the top of my head, Ford TFI's and Nissan cam position sensors are two examples of where you want to go OEM vs aftermarket. I'd trust these sensors USED, over brand new aftermarket NEW anyday.
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Old 11-18-2014, 09:58 AM
 
Location: UpstateNY
8,613 posts, read 7,824,191 times
Reputation: 7508
OEM used, but that's just me. YMMV.
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Old 11-18-2014, 10:05 AM
 
Location: Phoenix metro
20,005 posts, read 67,995,907 times
Reputation: 10053
OEM only for me. Ford only. I went aftermarket on my sway bar end links (Moog), and they failed not even a year later. What a joke. I learned my lesson.
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Old 11-18-2014, 03:28 PM
 
Location: Chicago
38,691 posts, read 86,869,750 times
Reputation: 29355
Well no wonder. Who would buy a sway bar from a keyboard manufacturer??

Anyway, when I've had 15-year-old jalopies that I was just trying to keep zip-tied and duct-taped together to keep them running, I had no compunction about using aftermarket parts.
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Old 11-18-2014, 03:39 PM
 
8,189 posts, read 6,028,704 times
Reputation: 10581
Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonMike7 View Post
Now, something like a PCV valve, i'd go aftermarket because 1) hard to mess up a PCV valve, and #2) it's usually a 30 second swap out.

But when it comes to electronics, i tend to prefer to stick to OEM. Off the top of my head, Ford TFI's and Nissan cam position sensors are two examples of where you want to go OEM vs aftermarket. I'd trust these sensors USED, over brand new aftermarket NEW anyday.
I agree.. Something like a heater core.. I'd use OEM parts without question just because of the PITA it normally is to replace a heater core...

Something 'outside' of that.. Depends on what it is.. I've got a Chevy with the Crankshaft Position Actuator Solenoid that gives problems.. It's a quick swap, but.. I go OEM on it. The MAP sensor, I used an aftermarket part, it failed in about 40k miles.. So went and bought the OEM part on it.
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Old 11-18-2014, 03:49 PM
 
2,680 posts, read 2,745,755 times
Reputation: 7734
OEM ONLY !! When the alternator went out on my 89 GMC pickup, I replaced it with an after market one, it had a 1 year warranty on it and sure enough, within a year it went bad. They gave me a replacement and damn if it didn't go bad within a year. I went back and said give me a genuine replacement part no more of that AM junk and the guy at the counter said "A OEM will cost you more than twice as much and you can keep getting these replaced for free" and I said what about all the down time when the damn junk part goes out and I'm stranded ? I wouldn't waste my time or money on AM parts. You get what you pay for.
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Old 11-18-2014, 03:55 PM
 
Location: TX
86 posts, read 92,523 times
Reputation: 133
For me, the answer is not black or white here, for some parts i will prefer OEM, but for other (brake pads are a good example over here), I wouldn't mind getting after market.
There are some very good quality after market parts out there :-)
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Old 11-18-2014, 04:00 PM
 
Location: Butler County Ohio
885 posts, read 1,957,645 times
Reputation: 593
OEM are much better. If the part is hard to get to, always go with OEM.
I put a cheapo power lock replacement in my wife's van recently only because it was easy for me to install.
BTW, some OEMs are made in China. I have seen made in China on Mopar and Motorcraft boxes.
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