Rock Auto parts?

Joined
Sep 18, 2002
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5,652
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VA
I don't order anything from Rock Auto. My brother "worships" them. But he's the kind of guy that thinks all Coolant
is the same, all motor oil is the same, a spark plug is a spark plug, etc.


I have 2 dealerships I get "all" my parts from.

RA's cheesy commercials are the icing on my cake. LOL
 
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Joined
May 11, 2013
Messages
659
For certain parts like a crank sensor, I agree 100% with the mechanics. OEM from the dealer only. Rock auto parts is the equivalent of shopping at Walmart , Alibaba or Flea Bay for electronic vehicle parts.

I blame the mechanics as much as the customer though. I would never ever let a customer bring in a part for me to install unless they are willing to give up the standard 3 year 36,000 mile warranty included with every repair.
 
Joined
Feb 6, 2010
Messages
952
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KY, USA
I figure I've been using Rock Auto pretty much exclusively for 15-20 years. In that time I think I've received 2 parts that weren't as described. One was a set of brake pads which had 1 of the brake shims missing from the box the other was a tie rod end that didn't have the grease cup in the box. Both times I received a full refund of the purchase price and shipping. I've never experienced any premature failure on any of their parts even when using lower tier parts often on manufacturer closeouts. I've used everything from wheel cylinder rebuild kits to electrical parts.
 
Joined
Apr 25, 2017
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Ohio
For certain parts like a crank sensor, I agree 100% with the mechanics. OEM from the dealer only.
You can frequently buy OEM parts (or the name-brand that makes the OEM parts) from Rockauto. For example, NGK = Motorcraft spark plugs, Denso = Honda, Nissan (and others) ignition coils and crankshaft sensor. And no, they aren't making "cheaper" versions that they sell under their own, direct name. They wouldn't risk their reputation to do that.
 
Joined
Nov 22, 2004
Messages
9,054
Location
Texas
I went a few years without issue using rock auto parts for my own misc. repairs. Everything was fine until it wasn't, I had an A/C compressor that failed within the warranty period, the issue is that rockauto would not refund the bad part or send a replacement until I shipped them the defective part. That means I would have to go buy a new compressor, pay a shop to install it, then send rockauto my failed compressor for a refund that would of course only cover the purchase price of the compressor, not the additional components that must be replaced along with the compressor also. They have no live customer service at all (I did try the google fu). The compressor that failed was the same brand the dealer put on the car 3-4 years prior. I have had great luck with 1A auto recently, and they have excellent how-to videos.
As soon as you enter the tracking number on the website return page - RA sends the replacement out - no waiting for them to get part and review - its rather quick. I've warranted several parts (including an AC compressor) and the new part was back to me within 2-3 days. I buy 98% of all my parts from RA and over the last 15 yrs only had 1 issue and they bent over backwards for me.
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
Messages
13,468
Location
MA
For certain parts like a crank sensor, I agree 100% with the mechanics. OEM from the dealer only. Rock auto parts is the equivalent of shopping at Walmart , Alibaba or Flea Bay for electronic vehicle parts.

I blame the mechanics as much as the customer though. I would never ever let a customer bring in a part for me to install unless they are willing to give up the standard 3 year 36,000 mile warranty included with every repair.
I shop there all the time, depends on the part you're buying. They have Bilstein shocks/struts cheaper than pretty much all other sites and Bilstein has a lifetime warranty so it doesn't matter who you buy it from. Yeah, certain items like crank sensors, you're better off with OEM, lots of stories out there of aftermarket not working correctly. I never expect a warranty from any part I ask a mechanic to install and I've never really had a problem with the parts I've brought to a mechanic, when you buy them yourself, you can afford to pay more for a better quality part so you don't have to do it again for a longer period. I did get bad Monroe struts once and as it was a manufacturer defect, they offered to pay for the labor.
 
Joined
Sep 30, 2013
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Indiana
They have cheap parts similar to the parts store brands, and likely what the guys at the shop use, all the way to OE.

I myself prefer OE and will try to get them whenever possible.
 
Joined
Jan 22, 2011
Messages
7,569
Just picked up my car from the shop and overheard two mechanics joking about a crank sensor that a customer had ordered from Rock Auto. The conversation was disparaging as the two mechanics were making comments about what a joke parts from Rock Auto are. As a long-time customer of Rock, I wonder what your thoughts are?
How could they be a joke when there's more selection of brands available at RA. Sounds like a couple of spudheads that have a problem with someone trying to save money. I am not convinced that OEM is always better.
 
Joined
Oct 27, 2014
Messages
375
Location
Pacific NW USA
Rock Auto can access a range of brands. Pick your brand and price point through your own resources and order what you want.
This ^^

Seems like a majority of the time you can buy an OEM supplier brand. These parts generally aren't the cheapest choice. As the old adage indicates, you get what you pay for.
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2004
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California
Those hacks will be in for a surprise when they find out their beloved Duralast/Valucraft, BrakeBest/MasterPro is the same as the “economy” choices on Rock.
 
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Mar 18, 2014
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PA.
It was only one part, but I purchased a PCV valve from Toyota that was completely identical to a SMP PCV valve that I had on hand. Including the number code and same color anti-seize.
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
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This ^^

Seems like a majority of the time you can buy an OEM supplier brand. These parts generally aren't the cheapest choice. As the old adage indicates, you get what you pay for.
Not sure what you mean by that. The OEM brand is always cheaper than the labeled OEM part but pretty much comes off the same assembly line. Like Wahler makes thermostats for Mercedes and they're about 1/2 to 1/3 the price of the OEM MB part at the dealer. But if you look at the part, there's actually a spot that had the MB logo and someone had the job of grinding it off with a grinder as that's the only thing missing when you just buy the Wahler part instead of the MB part. Only thing that's really different is Bosch, seems that the MB spark plugs are indexed and the same part number from Bosch are not. I guess the Bosch ones are hand picked for MB.
 
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Not sure what you mean by that. The OEM brand is always cheaper than the labeled OEM part but pretty much comes off the same assembly line. Like Wahler makes thermostats for Mercedes and they're about 1/2 to 1/3 the price of the OEM MB part at the dealer. But if you look at the part, there's actually a spot that had the MB logo and someone had the job of grinding it off with a grinder as that's the only thing missing when you just buy the Wahler part instead of the MB part. Only thing that's really different is Bosch, seems that the MB spark plugs are indexed and the same part number from Bosch are not. I guess the Bosch ones are hand picked for MB.

How old is your Mercedes ?
 
Joined
Mar 3, 2022
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699
Location
Amherst, MA, usa
it's all a crap shoot.
Maj corps have several lines of product w/differing quality standards (ACDelco for instance hasa walmart brand differing from those sold @ higher price elsewhere). I stick w/one (NAPA) and look to the variety of quality w/in 1 brand - say elgin) to "believe" I stay on top of it. As a counterman for AZ you see all kinda stuff happening on a given month by these corps (buyers w/in switchin lots for manafacturing due to managment decisions, etc)~
Just like any relationship, pick well, observe over time, stay skeptical and switch if needed...
 
Joined
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Champlain/Hudson Valley
chrisful said above: "...Just like any relationship, pick well, observe over time, stay skeptical and switch if needed..."

A local parts shop near me says they don't sell "cheap parts". They sell the best and one step down (so as not to lose a sale).
They've never dealt me a bad part.
Is every NAPA run as well as mine? I couldn't tell you but I bet not. My guys are involved and care AND they're not the only ones.

Also, I'm OK with RA but will "always" buy heavy items locally because returning cores is just a time waster. I know how to pack & ship. I just like surrendering the oldie in person.
 
Joined
Oct 27, 2014
Messages
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Pacific NW USA
Not sure what you mean by that. The OEM brand is always cheaper than the labeled OEM part but pretty much comes off the same assembly line. Like Wahler makes thermostats for Mercedes and they're about 1/2 to 1/3 the price of the OEM MB part at the dealer. But if you look at the part, there's actually a spot that had the MB logo and someone had the job of grinding it off with a grinder as that's the only thing missing when you just buy the Wahler part instead of the MB part. Only thing that's really different is Bosch, seems that the MB spark plugs are indexed and the same part number from Bosch are not. I guess the Bosch ones are hand picked for MB.
Yes, that's what I'm taking about. The point I'm making is when comparing parts within RockAuto. For example, Denso, Hitachi, Delphi, NGK, ACdelco, will be more costly than the other available cheaper Taiwanese knock-offs. Some folks aren't hip to this so the buy the cheapest part on the list. That's likely what the auto mechanics are referencing.
 
Joined
Apr 17, 2004
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Texas Hill Country
My uncle had a small shop for 20 years. Doing mostly honda work and timing belts.

He never worked with rockauto for one reason. There is a NAPA in town, and they drop the parts on his door of his shop in 30 minutes, and they warranty everything and he deals with them directly.

In his business, sending parts back to rockauto via the mail would mean a car is sitting in his shop not fixed, and he's not getting paid.

So he deals with NAPA for that reason alone, it keeps his business going, and is one less hassle for him.
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
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How old is your Mercedes ?
I have a 2008 and 2011 E-350, the W211 and W212, but the same engine so I can use the same oil filter on both cars. They went with a different engine in 2012 that used indexed spark plugs. I was thinking of upgrading at one point to a 2016 as they started going 4 cylinder in 2017. The 6 cylinder models are much rarer after 2017+.
 
Joined
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Amherst, MA, usa
usta get them yellow'n green german oil filters by the case for the MB/volvos @ home (Manns?).
AND
no NAPA is not the same all over. Ours was great till the owner did something (may B it was the overarching co) and all the counter guys were gone. Now they suck, but the products, availability etc is still good. Cores get picked up here w/delivery no matter who comes, not an on-line mail delivery (car down days) system.
 
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