How to get original equipment manufacturer (OEM) repair parts after an accident

Your insurance policy will usually determine whether or not you can get original equipment manufacturer (OEM) repair parts after an accident. An article in the Claims Journal defines OEM parts as brand new parts made for your specific vehicle and application. These parts show the car company’s logo and meet the exact specification for the part that came with your car when it was new.

Insurance companies usually tell an auto body repair shop to use parts that are not new original equipment manufacturer parts. Examples of these kinds of options include:

  • Aftermarket or non-OEM parts
  • Remanufactured parts
  • Salvage parts


Aftermarket Parts

Aftermarket parts are made to a similar specification but may be different in some way. Non-OEM repair parts may be made with different materials or have other features that are not identical to an OEM repair part. Aftermarket parts are functionally similar to an OEM repair part. In some cases, the auto body repair shop team will have to make minor adjustments to be sure the parts fit well and work as expected. For example, a technician may have to file a small piece of plastic off of a connector so it will lock into the existing wiring. These modifications are safe and effective when a trained mechanic makes them.

Remanufactured Parts

Remanufactured repair parts may be OEM parts or aftermarket parts. You may also hear them referred to as “reman” parts. A company collects old part assemblies and refurbishes them. They will disassemble the part, clean the reusable components, and rebuild it to the part’s original specification with replacement parts for anything that was damaged or used up.

Stock photo of brake shoe linings during the remanufacturing process.

Salvage Parts

Salvage parts may be OEM parts or aftermarket parts. These are parts that have been removed from another vehicle that has been sold to a salvage company or junk yard. The salvage yard or your auto body repair shop should inspect parts removed from a salvaged vehicle to ensure they are in good working order. Salvage parts are used parts and do not have the same service life as a new replacement part. That means you may need to replace a salvaged part earlier than you expect to. This can occur if your car has fewer miles than the salvage part had when it was recovered and installed in your vehicle. In some cases, a salvage part may have internal wear that the salvage company or auto repair shop cannot detect through reasonable testing or inspection.

Stock photo of salvaged transmissions on a shelf.

Other options for getting original equipment manufacturer (OEM) repair parts after an accident.

If it is important for you to have original equipment manufacturer (OEM) repair parts after an accident, and your insurance policy doesn’t include coverage for that, you still have options.

Insurance policy riders for original equipment manufacturer (OEM) repair parts after an accident

Some insurance companies provide an additional “rider” for your policy. If your insurance company allows it, you can add the rider to your policy (in advance) that will allow you to get original equipment manufacturer (OEM) repair parts after an accident. We recommend checking with your auto insurance agent.

Customer pay options for original equipment manufacturer (OEM) repair parts after an accident

If you do have not added this option to your policy in advance, your auto body repair team will have to follow the rules of the policy. If this happens, you can still get OEM repair parts after an accident. You can choose to pay the difference between what your insurance company will cover and the price of the OEM parts.

How to get help deciding which parts to use in auto repair

You should choose an auto body repair shop that has experience with invoicing an insurance company when customers choose to pay for a portion of the repair. This will reduce confusion and the time it takes for your insurance company to pay the claim and release the vehicle back to you.

If you’re trying to decide what kind of repair parts to use for your vehicle during collision repair, please give us a call. Our team has the experience to help you make informed decisions about your options.

If you decide to use OEM parts, and you’re insured by one of our preferred insurance companies, we can work directly with them to help the claims process go smoothly.


About Automotive Collision Specialists in Fuquay Varina, NC

With over 30 years of experience in the industry, Automotive Collision Specialists is ASE certified and fully equipped with advanced diagnostic technology and repair tools needed to perform collision repair, paint service, and complete restoration for all vehicle makes and models.

We’d be happy to talk about your collision repair if you’ll call us today at (919) 522-0333!

Comments are closed.