Aftermarket parts vs. OEM parts marketing

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If you don't want to read all this just go to the bottom for the bottom line:
bottom line: bearings, bushings, sensors, electrical parts, timing chains, gaskets stick with oem when at all possibly. The only aftermarket brands I usually trust universally for OEM replacements are Felpro gaskets and Spicer (because they make dang near all domestic oem driveline parts and jeep oem ball joints). You can't trust Moog, Gates, Timken, Gates, Airtex, SKF, Delphi etc like you once could for OEM like quality. You might get it or you might get something that last no longer than an eBay special.
SKf still make an excellent product, BCA and some Timken is also good. Felpro are fine but not for HG. The best timing chains by far are from Iwis.
If you know what you are looking at there are many product that are better than OE. Sensors and most electric stuff is usually best from OE.
 
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Sensors and most electric stuff is usually best from OE
Except the OE's don't make any of that stuff - and there are only a handful of companies that do make it for the OE's - Denso, NTK, Bosch, Infineon, Hitachi, etc. They usually have their logo on the stuff when you pull it out, and sell the same parts to the jobber market at a fraction of the OE price.
 
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I have often noticed that aftermarket companies will promote their parts as good, better, best. The good is often promoted as just meeting OE specs, whereas if you get the best, also considered premium, they make you think your getting something better than OEM. I have often noticed their are specs of how parts perform, like filter capacity for filters. OEM parts are generally silent in all that. So are premium aftermarket parts better than OEM parts?
I can stamp whatever I want on a box, as the customer will you take me for my word, or actually take the time, energy, and costs of purchasing each tier of part and validate my claims and design targets?

The reason OEM parts are silent, is because the product is already on your vehicle, you probably have some understanding of whether it works or doesnt. In addition, the psychology of purchasing a more expensive product also alludes to the idea that the part is inherently better (this works for the aftermarket as well).
 
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Except the OE's don't make any of that stuff - and there are only a handful of companies that do make it for the OE's - Denso, NTK, Bosch, Infineon, Hitachi, etc. They usually have their logo on the stuff when you pull it out, and sell the same parts to the jobber market at a fraction of the OE price.
True. Side note it also does seem that their is variation between Factory OE, Dealer OE, and OEM parts. OEM and Dealer OE parts seem to be almost the same, while Factory OE perform a bit better (Looking at you Toyota ZZ part numbers vs full numerical Factory OE parts vs the OEM Denso/NGK).
 
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Better on a racetrack where you are chasing tenths of a second? yes. Better on the street... no. The increased NVH negates any handling gains.
It depends where. In control arms? Yes, polyurethane can create lots of NVH. In rear subframe? Always polyurethane. Actually, in BMW’s many put aluminum bushings and it is really hard to notice difference in NVH.
 
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True. Side note it also does seem that their is variation between Factory OE, Dealer OE, and OEM parts. OEM and Dealer OE parts seem to be almost the same, while Factory OE perform a bit better (Looking at you Toyota ZZ part numbers vs full numerical Factory OE parts vs the OEM Denso/NGK).
Not that familiar with Toyota so you will need to enlighten me on the ZZ part numbers. However having been in a lot of these plants, I can't fathom someone like Denso or Bosch going to the trouble to build a lesser quality zirconia 02 sensing element, or use some sort of cheaper circuit board or components for a aftermarket part. Those places work on maximizing volume and throughput on their multi million dollar manufacturing line. Stopping production to make a different part wouldn't make sense. Now what I could see is them assembling it in a cheaper housing with a cheaper connector or whatever, so that's certainly possible.

Things I have seen is parts changing over time through value engineering - so on your first year model engine you might get a great sensor, and by the time the production run is done 8 years later they have engineered all the quality out of the part - which is now what there selling over the counter at the dealer as well. Not to mention their aftermarket specific parts - which might come from a different place altogether. And if the vehicle the part was used on is out of production completely - then all bets are off and who knows what your getting at that point from the dealer or anywhere else.
 
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There is a different quality standard for OE and retail. I have had trouble with NGK coils lately, one waste spark coil and two cop. These were made in Korea which were previously made in Japan part #'s.
This is a higher quality OE part sold on the aftermarket notice the VW/Audi symbol has been removed. The OE part does not necessarily have to come from a dealer but you have to know what to buy and who and where to buy it from.

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My 1994 Explorer has what my mechanic called "some kind of race car radius arm bushings." They are red, and they are probably getting replaced with normal ones the next time I am in the suspension.
Sounds like PST or similar poly. I wouldn't replace them, they're bloody awesome. If they squeak, just grease them. (Seriously.) Friend's father has them (albeit black) in his Econoline, and the improvement, especially towing, is dramatic.
 
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There is a different quality standard for OE and retail. I have had trouble with NGK coils lately, one waste spark coil and two cop. These were made in Korea which were previously made in Japan part #'s.
This is a higher quality OE part sold on the aftermarket notice the VW/Audi symbol has been removed. The OE part does not necessarily have to come from a dealer but you have to know what to buy and who and where to buy it from.

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The VW Auto Group logos is in a different position from the scratched off area.
 
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I can't fathom someone like Denso or Bosch going to the trouble to build a lesser quality zirconia 02 sensing element, or use some sort of cheaper circuit board or components for a aftermarket part. Those places work on maximizing volume and throughput on their multi million dollar manufacturing line. Stopping production to make a different part wouldn't make sense.
I have preached that logic for years when people suggest companies make 19 different "versions" of a part, one for the OEM, one for Walmart, one for Autozone, and so on. It makes almost no sense to do that. Same with something like a chemical/fluid. They want to buy a million liters of fluid additive "X" in order to make product "A". They do NOT want to buy 250k liters of "X" to make "A", 250k liters of "Y" to make "B", and so on. They get volume purchasing power by sticking to one version and for other versions, they simply exceed a spec here and there.
 
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I have often noticed their are specs of how parts perform, like filter capacity for filters. OEM parts are generally silent in all that.
Because it doesn't matter (to the OEM). It meets their requirement (plus a safety factor) and they can call that data proprietary. They aren't "marketing" the product for retail sale anyway so they have no need to promote it, advertise it, etc.

Brake pads are a common area with better choices than oem.
That seems to vary across manufacturer though. Toyota and Ford OEM brake parts seem to be extremely high quality and last a very long time. Some people buy them as replacements but the average Joe sees Raybestos pads for $29.99 or Ford pads for $109.99 and go aftermarket. Same with rotors. Those are made-up numbers but the idea is the same.
 
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I have purchased numerous Dorman parts for customers and family and even a few for my SuperDuties...... some parts have the Ford logo literally ground off you can see where it was hand ground with a dremel tool .....

Gates belt tensioner same thing I compared Ford vs Gates and the Gates logo has been machined off of " Motorcraft " tensioners however the Gates branded had different brand bearings installed

I drank the kool-aid on MB spark plugs recently had numerous people say the actual MB plugs were "indexed" where the NGK were not and of lower quality ...... NGK makes the MB plug on that particular application compared side by side only the porcelain logo was different of course

Anecdotal.....MB factory plugs (NGK) use Delphi coils
 
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Gates belt tensioner same thing I compared Ford vs Gates and the Gates logo has been machined off of " Motorcraft " tensioners however the Gates branded had different brand bearings installed
That's sad to hear.... Almost certainly a cost-cutting matter there and Gates is putting cheaper-priced bearings in. The housing is the expensive part to produce (at least the original casting pattern) but the finished part will accept any brand bearing of the appropriate size.
 
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OE parts = Genuine

OEM parts may be as good or better than OE/Genuine. Depends on the size of the OEM and the part in question.

Aftermarket parts depend on the application and what attribute has been "enhanced". IMO the juice isn't worth the squeeze on the majority of aftermarket parts installed on a daily driver.
 
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