The Pros and Cons of Buying New Versus Used Car Parts 

used, vintage car parts in a shed

A vehicle needs regular maintenance to ensure performance, comfort, and safety. Part of this regular maintenance is replacing old and/or damaged parts.

There are two ways you can go about this: purchase brand new parts or opt for alternatives such as used, new old stock (NOS), new old replacement stock (NORS), or remanufactured parts.

Fortunately, finding these parts is relatively easy. More often than not, a trusted auto parts supplier will have the in-demand components in stock. The more pressing question is whether you should buy completely new parts or choose among the many other types available.

To help you figure things out, here are some pros and cons of new and used car parts that you should consider:

Pros of New Parts

Fewer Problems

This is the primary reason for buying brand new car parts: there’s no previous wear and tear so you can expect fewer problems and thus fewer mechanic visits. You can also expect to cover more kilometres before needing tune-ups and replacements, thus increasing your time and cost savings. Finally, you’ll also get maximum warranty coverage with brand new parts.

Cons of New Parts

Higher Cost

If you’re working with a smaller budget, then new car components might be out of the question. They’re more expensive compared to other types of car parts, except perhaps for old stocks made for rare car models. Obviously, you will get what you pay for with new parts but the cost might be a little prohibitive for some car owners.

Pros of Used Parts


Just like any other second-hand item, a used car part costs less than a new one. You might even find a part that’s up to 60% cheaper, sometimes even more. Buying used is definitely a good option if you’re looking to save quite a bit of money. Just remember to buy from reliable suppliers for quality components.


Sometimes, new parts aren't available, and your only option is to buy different types of auto parts.

It could be that you have an old-model vehicle for which the manufacturer no longer manufactures parts. Or maybe you have a limited-edition or vintage car with equally limited parts. As such, you need to accept that you can’t really get completely brand new components.

Some of your options include NOS, NORS, and remanufactured parts. NOS stands for new old stock, while NORS means new old replacement or reproduced stock. These two types of auto parts are technically new, in the sense that they are old car components that weren’t sold and therefore haven’t been used. The only difference between NOS and NORS parts is that the former is made by the car’s manufacturer itself, while the latter is made by third parties. Thus, NORS parts tend to be more affordable than NOS.

There are also remanufactured car parts, which are used car parts that have been disassembled, cleaned, and modified. The problematic areas are removed and then replaced by other workable components from other used car parts. Then, they are tested to ensure that they meet performance standards. Remanufactured car parts are significantly more affordable but don’t sacrifice quality.

Finally, there are also used and tested auto parts. These are literally second-hand parts that are sold as-is because they don’t have any defects. They also undergo a series of tests for safety and performance, before being approved for sale. Again, make sure to buy used and tested parts from reliable suppliers for your peace of mind.

Cons of Used Parts

Less Mileage

Obviously, the quality of used parts can’t be compared directly to brand new ones. Their materials have already suffered from a little wear and tear, which means their lifespans are also a little shorter. Thus, you can expect a little less mileage from used car parts. This is not always the case, of course, but you should definitely manage your expectations.

Other Points to Consider

Be Sure You Know What You Need

If you’re buying used parts, it’s best to know exactly what you need. If you have the old part with you, use it for comparison. Most of the time, used parts are not returnable; you have to get the part right the first time around to avoid wasting money.

Ask Questions

Whether you’re buying brand new or used auto parts, it pays to ask questions. Don’t be shy or feel ashamed that you don’t know a lot about car parts. Auto parts suppliers are more than willing to answer your questions. It’s part of their job to help you get the right components, so don’t hesitate to make clarifications.

As you can see, picking between new and used car parts isn’t as clear cut as you think. There are plenty of factors to consider beyond your car model and budget. The bottomline is to do your research so that you have all the right information before you make a purchase in order to make the best choice. 

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