OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer, so when people talk about OEM parts, they mean parts that have been made for your vehicle by the manufacturer. If you have a Subaru, you'll be told to buy OEM Subaru parts.
However, OEM parts aren't all they're cracked up to be. There are actually several benefits that come with buying parts from a wrecker. Here are just four things wreckers offer that OEM auto parts don't.
1. Wreckers Offer a Greater Range
Firstly, going to a wrecker instead of your local dealership means enjoying a far greater range of parts. Even if you know nothing about cars, it can be nice having the option to choose between different grades, and you may even be able to pick up a part that's of a higher quality than its OEM equivalent. When you shop OEM, you're only looking at single parts, so you usually don't have any freedom of choice at all.
2. Wreckers Offer Greater Convenience
Dealerships will often tell you they have plenty of parts of stock, but they won't always have what you're looking for. After all, dealership service centres only have so much space. If you need a part they don't have in stock, it needs to be ordered direct from the manufacturer. Manufacturers aren't known for getting parts out quickly, so you could be waiting for weeks for it to even arrive. Wreckers keep a huge array of parts in-house. And if they don't have what you need, it should take far less time to order it in.
3. Wreckers Offer a Lower Cost
The most common reason for avoiding OEM parts also tends to be the most expensive: OEM parts are expensive. Even though you already bought the car from them, manufacturers like putting a mark-up on their parts, so you'll almost always save money by going to a wrecker instead. They'll have taken the best parts from older cars, so you can get what you need without having to pay the earth.
4. Wreckers Offer Eco-Friendliness
Finally, there's really no reason to pick up a brand-new part when a used one will do just as well. Most modern parts last beyond a car's lifetime, so reliability shouldn't be an issue, and you get to recycle instead of have resources wasted to create a new part. If you want to be good to the planet, it's well worth avoiding OEM parts and shopping with a wrecker instead.