What Type of Car Parts are Used by Insurance Companies in Auto Claims?

OEM Parts, After Market Parts, Used Parts

Car repair
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Body shops have lots of different types of parts available to fix your damaged car. What types of car parts are primarily paid for by insurance companies? The answer to the question can vary depending on which insurance company you are insured with and how your policy is set up. Take a look at the different types of car parts available and why body shops and insurance companies like them or not.

Three Types of Car Parts

OEM Parts:

OEM parts are original equipment made by your car's manufacturer.

OEM parts are brand new never used before parts which go directly with your vehicle. They are often more expensive than other options and can sometimes take longer to get. Lots of body shops do not keep tons of OEM parts on hand and will have to order the parts directly from the manufacturer.

What the Body Shop Thinks About OEM Parts

Body shop repair people love OEM parts because they fit perfectly without need for any adjustments. They also make a bigger profit on OEM parts versus other types of parts. Easier repairs plus more money make OEM parts a no brainer for body shops to sell.

Insurance companies on the other hand usually only pay the cost of OEM parts if no other parts are available. Or, if you have requested an OEM endorsement which you pay extra for. Insurance companies are looking to repair your vehicle like, kind, and quality which can usually be done just as well by using other types of car parts.

It is not only the job of the insurance claim adjuster to make you whole again, but to also do so at the lowest cost.

    After Market Parts:

    After-market parts are parts made by a company other than your car's manufacturer. The parts are still new. They have never been used on another vehicle, they are just not new from your car manufacturer.

    The specs on the after-market part should be very close to identical as the specs on an OEM part.

    What the Body Shop Thinks About After Market Parts

    Good body shops can handle after-market parts well. The repair to your vehicle will look the same as it did prior to having any damage. Sometimes adjustments need to be made by the body shop repair people in order to get the parts to fit. It can be a hassle, but they can still get the job done.

    Insurance companies prefer after-market parts to OEM because they are cheaper. Lowering the cost of the claim is an important part of an insurance claim adjuster's job. If after-market parts were never used, the high cost of OEM parts would send insurance rates soaring. Most of us feel we already pay more than enough for our insurance coverage. Standard insurance coverage typically covers after-market parts and not OEM parts.

      Used Parts:

      Used parts are just that, used. They come from the junk yard. Lots of vehicles get discarded every day for various reasons. Anything from a car accident to engine trouble to age can all be reasons for a vehicle to make its way to the junk yard. Most of the time lots of parts are still good on a discarded vehicle. Those parts can be resold individually to repair other vehicles.

      The great thing about used parts is they are usually OEM parts only used.

      What the Body Shop and Insurance Company Think About Used Parts

      Both body shops and insurance companies like used parts. They fit great and can be made to look and work good as new. Used parts are cheaper than OEM parts so insurance companies can save some money. Sometimes the parts needed can be hard to find so they are not always an option. The ability to recycle something sitting in the junk yard is also a perk to used parts.

        More than likely, your vehicle will be repaired with used or after-market parts in an insurance claim. It is very common among most insurance carriers. If used or after-market parts are a problem for you, request OEM parts ahead of an auto claim. Talk to your insurance agent about an OEM part endorsement.

        If one is not available, check around to different insurance companies to see if it is a possibility for your vehicle.