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O.T. aftermarket vehicle parts

That's not true at all. Just today I bought a hose I needed from the local Ford dealer. It is exactly the same as the one that came on my 2018 truck. I looked at Rockauto, Napa, Advance Auto, and everybody else on line. No one had it except some on line actual Ford dealers. With shipping their "discounted" price was only about $2 less than Ford list price so I bought it locally and paid list price in case there is a problem and I need to return it.

I rarely buy from a dealer unless there is no other choice and have bought from Rockauto, Amazon, Ebay, and all the usual on line and local stores. For important items I look for name brands and have bought Moog with no complaints. For sensors I find Denso to be very reliable. They are often what comes on new cars especially Jap ones. For brakes I like Wagner stuff.

I think you're kidding yourself.

American automakers are real good at not giving much of a shit if the parts that come in a box with their name on it have the same level of quality as the parts that a new vehicle was built with.

Buy a new Superduty. The balljoints and unit bearings will last 150K miles, maybe 200K miles. Then buy Motorcraft replacements from the dealer. See how long those last. You'll be lucky to get 50K miles from them.

It's because the parts that go on the vehicle on the assembly line have a performance contract. The parts in that box do not.
 
I've noticed Mevotech is a new name that has shown up at RockAuto lately. They offer different levels of quality. Their highest quality is what I have bought with good results. I had bought some top line Moog bushings...arrived Made in India...that looked like poop. Nowhere near the 1968-vintage OEM bushings I took out. So I tossed them and ordered the top line Mevotech bushings which looked good and ...Made in USA. Not all of their top line parts are made here....though even their offshore stuff has looked better than Moog.
 
Ok, garage gearheads, what is your favorite go to aftermarket auto part maker? For example steering components. I usually go hit up Advance auto or NAPA, but it seems like lately all the stuff has been junk, even Moog seems to have fallen a notch or two. When I am replacing ball joints, u joints, tie rod ends, I don't care about warranty on a junk part, I want a QUALITY part so I don't have to tear everything apart again. As much as I hate dealers, I'm almost tempted to go OEM and bite the bullet.

I buy through rockauto and use MOOG for all steering and ball joints. Gates, Delco and Daystar for rubber things. Most of the time I just pick the best option available depending on what it is that I need.

My vehicles are all 23+ years old. OEM is reserved for electrical components and parts that no one else makes.

Speaking of which... Does anyone know where I might find a new rheostat dimmer switch for a 95' YJ Wrangler? MOPAR # 56001864. I have not had dash lights since last spring and it's annoying. I do not want to buy a used one.
 
I've noticed Mevotech is a new name that has shown up at RockAuto lately.
I noticed that too. I bought something from them, I can't remember what... Control arms maybe? They do look like a quality brand.

Grease fittings are always a giveaway of quality on suspension parts for me. What arsehole engineer thought removing grease fittings from movable joints was a good idea? .
 
I noticed that too. I bought something from them, I can't remember what... Control arms maybe? They do look like a quality brand.

Grease fittings are always a giveaway of quality on suspension parts for me. What arsehole engineer thought removing grease fittings from movable joints was a good idea? .

Because the sealed ones use Polyurea based grease in them that lasts forever, but you cannot mix Polyurea grease with any other kind of grease.

A mechanic friend of mine kept having U-joint comebacks after installing Spicer premium U-joints. The premium ones don't have zerks so he was shoving "a little extra" wheel bearing grease under each cap when he did them. Then 6 months later he was doing them again. I was agreeing with him on how shitty modern auto parts are today, then he says how he "packs a little extra in there" and I had to clue him in that they use special grease and you can't do that.
 
I bought rotors, calipers and the rubber brake lines for my 1 Ton Chevy from R A. 6 months later and 400 miles from home while stopping for gas I could smell the brakes, left front was dragging. drove it home using the brakes as seldom as possible. next day I pulled it apart, the boot that seals the piston to the caliper was out and the piston was rusted to the caliper. Of course by the time I got home the rotor was junk as well. The A holes said no warranty as to much time had gone by! Got my new parts from NAPA, all was good. now a year later if you stab the brakes quickly it pulls left. I bet any money the right side brake line is deteriorated and partly restricted. All done with Rock Auto.
 
I bought rotors, calipers and the rubber brake lines for my 1 Ton Chevy from R A. 6 months later and 400 miles from home while stopping for gas I could smell the brakes, left front was dragging. drove it home using the brakes as seldom as possible. next day I pulled it apart, the boot that seals the piston to the caliper was out and the piston was rusted to the caliper. Of course by the time I got home the rotor was junk as well. The A holes said no warranty as to much time had gone by! Got my new parts from NAPA, all was good. now a year later if you stab the brakes quickly it pulls left. I bet any money the right side brake line is deteriorated and partly restricted. All done with Rock Auto.

So if it comes in a Napa box it's good? How many parts does Napa make that go inside their Napa packaging?

Rockauto tells you who makes the parts you're buying and doesn't bullshit you.
 
Because the sealed ones use Polyurea based grease in them that lasts forever, but you cannot mix Polyurea grease with any other kind of grease.

A mechanic friend of mine kept having U-joint comebacks after installing Spicer premium U-joints. The premium ones don't have zerks so he was shoving "a little extra" wheel bearing grease under each cap when he did them. Then 6 months later he was doing them again. I was agreeing with him on how shitty modern auto parts are today, then he says how he "packs a little extra in there" and I had to clue him in that they use special grease and you can't do that.
Huh, I didn't know that.

Still, I think I'll stick with my greasable joints. There's something satisfying about crawling around under my rigs with a grease squeezer full of Schaeffer 238 and topping off each one. Call me old fashioned I guess lol.

I bought rotors, calipers and the rubber brake lines for my 1 Ton Chevy from R A. 6 months later and 400 miles from home while stopping for gas I could smell the brakes, left front was dragging. drove it home using the brakes as seldom as possible. next day I pulled it apart, the boot that seals the piston to the caliper was out and the piston was rusted to the caliper. Of course by the time I got home the rotor was junk as well. The A holes said no warranty as to much time had gone by! Got my new parts from NAPA, all was good. now a year later if you stab the brakes quickly it pulls left. I bet any money the right side brake line is deteriorated and partly restricted. All done with Rock Auto.

Returns and warranty service is a PITA through rockauto for sure. However the selection of parts and prices is pretty hard to beat. There is no replacement for the brick and mortar store when you need things right now though. I just can't stand paying $65 for a part that I can get on RA for $8.99 if it can wait.
 
I think you're kidding yourself.

American automakers are real good at not giving much of a shit if the parts that come in a box with their name on it have the same level of quality as the parts that a new vehicle was built with.

Buy a new Superduty. The balljoints and unit bearings will last 150K miles, maybe 200K miles. Then buy Motorcraft replacements from the dealer. See how long those last. You'll be lucky to get 50K miles from them.

It's because the parts that go on the vehicle on the assembly line have a performance contract. The parts in that box do not.
First of all, I don't kidd myself. Second I have critical eyes and I can tell the hose I bought today is identical to the factory one. Third your experience covers about 0.00000000000000001% of all the parts sold by eom car companies so your blanket statement is silly because your database of experience is so small.
 
First of all, I don't kidd myself. Second I have critical eyes and I can tell the hose I bought today is identical to the factory one. Third your experience covers about 0.00000000000000001% of all the parts sold by eom car companies so your blanket statement is silly because your database of experience is so small.

I know how it works. My company makes automotive products and I buy quantities of components from some of the same suppliers Ford GM and Stellantis do.

It's not anecdotal. It's fact.

You got a great hose from a Ford dealer. Good job buddy! You do understand Ford dealers are not owned by Ford right? You can understand that Ford's vehicle assembling supply chain is seperate from the dealer parts supply chain right? Now tell me what happens if it falls apart in 2 years? Does Ford do a nationwide recall of all of all those hoses and notify every person who bought one and stick the bill to the supplier that made those hoses? No, they don't.
 
I know how it works. My company makes automotive products and I buy quantities of components from some of the same suppliers Ford GM and Stellantis do.
EOM car manufactures buy billions and billions of parts from tens of thousands of suppliers every year. The scuttlebutt you hear about at work is not even a rounding error.

Wake me up you have statically significant data (10 million or so of parts tested) to back up your wild statement that they purposely source and sell only defective replacement parts to the customers.

Over the past few decades car companies have completely changed their business models to make customer satisfaction the factor used to reward their franchised dealers. Dealers get a monthly kickback based on customer surveys. Every car sale or repair generates a customer satisfaction survey and dealers are graded and paid on the result.
 
EOM car manufactures buy billions and billions of parts from tens of thousands of suppliers every year. The scuttlebutt you hear about at work is not even a rounding error.

Wake me up you have statically significant data (10 million or so of parts tested) to back up your wild statement that they purposely source and sell only defective replacement parts to the customers.

Over the past few decades car companies have completely changed their business models to make customer satisfaction the factor used to reward their franchised dealers. Dealers get a monthly kickback based on customer surveys. Every car sale or repair generates a customer satisfaction survey and dealers are graded and paid on the result.

By golly you are right! You sure got the inside scoop on this stuff unleashing those big facts like "billions and billions" into the discussion.

Fact- Assembly line parts are not necessarily the same as parts from the dealer.
 
One thing's for sure...the tires you get on a new car are poop. Good for about 35K miles if you're lucky. I've noticed on Discount Tire's site they often offer the exact OE tire, usually at a higher price, then a very similar tire. The guy there has told me the almost-OE tire is less money and made to a better standard and will last longer.
 
"Returns and warranty service is a PITA through rockauto for sure..."

Right - but it's worse after they ship a part and the shipper destroys it. Shipper says: delayed, damaged. Rockauto says: it's been shipped, not our problem. Classic case of mutual finger-pointing. Should I order a new set, or just give up.
 
I realize the OP originally asked about mechanical replacement parts. However I would also consider OEM when replacing body parts. Many auto manufacturers have rust through warranties on their vehicles. Should you have an accident the fine print in the warranty states that any replacement parts must be approved by the manufacturer to retain the rust through warranty. As far as I know only OEM body parts are approved.

There are also fit and finish problems with some aftermarket body parts. A few years ago, our Jeep was rear ended and sustained considerable damage. The body shop used OEM sheet metal parts but decided to go with an aftermarket rear window. The window never fit properly and always leaked. After several tries to correct the problem, they had to install an OEM rear window. Problem solved.
 
I always insist on OEM parts whenever the other party is at fault. When I'm at fault....aftermarket parts lol
 
Notice where the brake rotor was made for my Lexus......I'll step out here and suggest you will not find any Japanese rotors at any parts house?.
Not saying Lexus /Toyota walk on water but I have a lot more confidence with these than the porous cast junk rotors made in India.
Price wise was LESS than "name branded" rotors ....no brainer in my book.
 

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By golly you are right! You sure got the inside scoop on this stuff unleashing those big facts like "billions and billions" into the discussion.

Fact- Assembly line parts are not necessarily the same as parts from the dealer.
I see you have finally backed off your blanket all encompassing position that EOM repair parts are no good and not the same quality as assembly line parts, to a more realistic statement that they are not "necessarily the same." That is good, reasonable, and correct statement.

There is no way every replacement part is exactly the same as every assembly line part but manufacturers strive to ensure they are functionally equivalent. Even assembly line parts can change mid stream for many reasons like a supplier can no longer keep up. EOM auto companies have a huge investment in their brand name and would never purposefully sell defective parts. Every company however sometimes sells a lemon or two. Engineers make mistakes, suppliers don't meet specs, etc.
 








 
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