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Auto Parts That Typically Wear Out

Most vehicles are used every day or at least several times a week. With that much wear on a car or truck, it's inevitable that some of the parts may eventually wear out. For this reason, we started this blog to inform you about vehicle parts that often need to be replaced. We aren't auto mechanics or car specialists, but we do drive cars and we wanted to become knowledgeable about the various car parts and components that typically wear out. After doing our research, we decided to share our information with others to help prevent breakdowns and expensive repairs. By reading our blog posts you'll learn which auto parts including the alternator, fuel pump, and brake components you should periodically check to make sure they're still functioning properly.




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Auto Parts That Typically Wear Out

3 Tips For Buying A Used Alternator

by Dale Gibson

Alternators are a common failure point on many vehicles. When your alternator begins to die, you may experience many frustrating and seemingly unrelated symptoms. Ultimately, you will find yourself stranded on the side of the road with a dead battery and no hope of charging it. Replacing your alternator at the first signs of trouble is the best way to avoid this fate.

Of course, alternators aren't cheap parts. A new alternator from your vehicle's manufacturer may cost several hundred dollars, and that's before factoring in labor. Purchasing a used alternator can save you some cash, but it's a process that you shouldn't enter into blindly. These three tips will help you to find the best part (and bargain) for your car.

1. Look for Genuine Parts

When purchasing used, it's usually best to focus on genuine or OEM parts. These components come directly from your vehicle's manufacturer or, in the case of OEM parts, the manufacturer of the original piece. Genuine and OEM parts typically have the best reliability and lifetime, so they are the right choice when looking for an alternator that already has some miles on it.

Since these parts also cost more to purchase new when compared to aftermarket alternatives, they also offer the most significant savings. By choosing genuine or OEM used parts, you'll get the highest possible quality at the best price.

2. Research Typical Lifespans

Alternators can last for a vehicle's entire useful life, but some models are more durable than others. Perform some research on your particular vehicle to determine if alternators typically fail after a certain number of years or miles. If so, you'll want to pay careful attention to the age of the donor vehicle that's providing your used part.

As a general rule, avoid purchasing an alternator from vehicles of a similar age to your own. Try to find an alternator with fewer miles, especially if you've determined that they often fail after a certain number of miles on your vehicle model.

3. Get It Tested

If possible, have your alternator bench tested before you purchase it. A bench test can provide you with peace of mind and save you the time and effort involved in removing a part that doesn't work. Not all shops will have the equipment to perform an alternator test, so make sure that some form of warranty is available if you can't confirm that the part is functional.

Buying used is an excellent way to save some money while still getting quality parts, and alternators are a particularly great option for used purchases. With a little care and research, you can replace your car's failing alternator for a fraction of what a new part would cost you.

Reach out to a local used car parts dealer to learn more.