6 Tips for Purchasing Used Parts

March 9, 2018 8:56 am Published by

Buying used car parts from a salvage yard can save you quite a bit of money in repair costs. In fact, the average used auto part will cost anywhere between 20 to 80 percent less than its brand new equivalent. Not only does this help you keep more money in your pocket, but it helps the environment as well by keeping that part out of a landfill. If you’re planning to visit the salvage yard soon, below are six practical tips to keep in mind when purchasing used parts.

1. Cash is king.

Most of us are accustomed to pulling out the plastic for everyday purchases, but when it comes to buying used auto parts, it’s better to come with some cash in your pocket. As the old saying goes, “Cash is king,” however, at U Pull & Pay the following credit cards are accepted: Visa, MasterCard and Discover.

2. Have your VIN number handy.

It’s easy to unwittingly purchase a car part that “almost fits.” The best way to avoid this drama is to write down your VIN number and have it handy, so that the seller can make sure that the part you’re looking for matches the make and model of your particular vehicle. Fortunately, the digital age has made this process much more precise, as modern computer systems can pinpoint the exact parts that will be compatible with your vehicle. In fact, most salvage yards can simply plug your VIN number into their system, and the computer will give them a list of all available parts to help speed up the process.

3. Bring your own tools.

Most salvage yards do not offer tools for sale or rent, because that could get real messy in a hurry. For this reason, you should bring all of the tools that you think you’ll need (and some extras just in case) to extract the used part you’re looking for. You also shouldn’t count on having access to any power outlets in the scrapyard, so if you’re going to be using power tools, make sure that they’re battery operated. It’s also a good idea to bring a flashlight, as sometimes it can be difficult to see into the deeper, recessed areas of a vehicle.

4. Only pull the part you need.

Keep in mind that there are several car parts that are comprised of multiple components, and each one must be paid for individually. You don’t want to end up paying for extra components, so be sure to only pull the specific part that you need.

5. Inspect the part to ensure its authenticity.

Unfortunately, duplicate parts abound in the automobile world. Not only are these counterfeit parts on the low end of the quality scale, but they’re unreliable as well, and could pose a significant safety hazard to your vehicle (and you). Carefully inspect the part you want to buy, keeping an eye out for anything that looks a little “fishy.” For example, if you see a typo or a slightly altered logo, the part could likely be a fake.

6. Double-check paint colors to ensure a proper match.

There are all kinds of color variations in the world of auto paint, so you really have to be precise when buying a painted part. Double-check to make sure that the paint color of the part truly matches the color of your vehicle.

If you’re looking to repair or replace a part on your vehicle, paying a visit to your local U Pull & Pay is always a smart move. Keep the above points in mind to help you get the most bang for your buck.


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This post was written by Scott Blankenship