July is here, and it’s the perfect time of the year to celebrate your freedom! Even though the freedom to buy Aftermarket parts may not be the first thing you thought of during the celebrations this year, it can be a reliable and affordable choice for your company. Let’s take a minute to understand the differences between OEM and Aftermarket parts, and how ensuring you purchase the correct one for your machine can be a vital component to the success of your business.
When it comes time to make repairs on your industrial equipment, you have the freedom to choose Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) parts or Aftermarket parts. Some in the industry have the assumption that OEM parts are higher quality than Aftermarket, while others believe OEM parts are overpriced. Either can be true depending on your piece of equipment and parts you need to replace, and here at Hi-Gear®, we know the most important factor to determine what’s best; your personal preference and freedom as the customer.
For example, a common reason some parts clerks and technicians prefer to use OEM parts is due to the fact that Aftermarket parts may void the warranty on that particular machine since that part may not have been produced by a reputable manufacturer. Technicians also might not be as familiar with alternative Aftermarket options for a particular replacement part, so they may prefer an OEM part simply due to familiarity. Other parts clerks prefer to use Aftermarket parts due to the fact that they are typically cheaper compared to their OEM counterparts. The truth is there are justifiable reasons for each option, while there are also important downsides to consider as well.
One downside to OEM parts is that they are manufactured to function exactly like the original part, typically with the same look, branding, and style. While this may be reassuring for some, it more often than not results in limited availability, making them harder to come by and more expensive than an Aftermarket alternative of similar quality. Aftermarket parts come with their downsides as well, especially if you are purchasing them from an unfamiliar or unreliable manufacturer. Even though these parts may be a fraction of the price compared to the OEM version, it could cause extensive damage to your equipment over the long term, resulting in more expensive repair costs than you had in the first place. One valuable advantage that Aftermarket parts offer is the typically wider range of variety, functionality and availability across a multitude of machines. This larger overall selection of Aftermarket parts gives you the added benefit of convenience, as you’re more likely to find the aftermarket version of the part you need in stock and ready to ship compared to the OEM counterpart.
The debate of Aftermarket parts vs. OEM parts is one that has been taking place since the dawn of the industry, and is one that will continue to take place for years to come. What is important is to stick to your personal knowledge, preference, and freedom to make the best choice for yourself and your company. Contact our sales department, or visit www.hi-gear.com, for the right industrial parts and accessories for you!