It’s a given that every vehicle is going to need a replacement part at some point in its life. In many cases, replacement parts are easy to come across at dealerships and repair shops. However, locating parts for older vehicles and cars that are no longer being manufactured can prove difficult. If you’ve been searching in vain for a certain part for your vehicle, don’t give up without trying the following options.
Online Parts Stores
The Internet is an invaluable tool for tracking down elusive auto parts. With a seemingly endless number of online parts dealers, you’re practically guaranteed to find exactly what your car needs. Thanks to the convenient search functions many of these stores offer, customers can easily locate parts by providing their vehicle’s make and model number. Most online parts dealers feature prices that are considerably lower than those found at dealerships and repair shops, so even if the part you’re looking isn’t hard to come by, shopping online may be the best option.
Many online auction sites host sellers who specialize in auto parts. In addition, most prominent online retailers feature well-stocked auto parts departments. The only real downside to purchasing parts online is not having anyone to install them for you. For experienced gear-heads, installing parts is no problem, but people without automotive knowhow will need to delegate this task to a mechanic.
Junkyards are veritable treasure troves for auto enthusiasts. With countless abandoned vehicles at your disposal, you can search for parts to your heart’s content. Many people fail to realize that even the most rundown clunkers contain parts that are perfectly useable. So when hunting for rare parts, make a point of visiting your local junkyard.
There are two types of junkyards: self-service and full-service. Self-service junkyards require customers to bring their own tools and search the property for the parts they need. After finding a vehicle that contains the part you’re looking for, you’ll need to remove it on your own and pay for it on your way out. Alternatively, full-service junkyards take care of all the grunt work for you. Simply tell the staff what kind of part you need and they’ll locate it. Depending on the junkyard, they may even install it for you. Not surprisingly, full-service yards tend to charge more than their self-service counterparts.
While hardly the best places to find rare parts, car dealerships are convenient places to find common parts in a hurry. So if you need a certain part replaced posthaste and don’t have time to explore a junkyard or order from an online retailer, head to the dealership from which you purchased your vehicle. If your car is still under the manufacturer’s warranty, the part you need may not cost you a penny. As an added bonus, the installation should also be free. Your dealership is also the first place you should visit in the event of a parts recall for your vehicle.
Since cars are such tremendous investments, it’s in your best interest to keep your vehicle running for as long as possible. Knowing how to locate replacement parts in a timely manner plays a vital role in accomplishing this goal.