Everybody who drives or owns a vehicle knows that from time to time, parts will need replacing, whether through age, wear and tear, or accident. Most of the time, these problems are no fault of our own, but they need to be dealt with promptly to maintain the safety of the vehicle and other road users.

When replacements are sought for damaged or worn-out parts, most people will automatically accept the first reasonable sounding quote from their local garage. But is there a more cost-effective alternative than letting someone else source parts for you? After all, it is your vehicle, and the decision should be yours on how you maintain it.

This is where second hand car parts come in. Not only will they be far cheaper than brand-new versions, but it is also an environmentally sound choice which reduces waste and cuts down on the use of raw materials, and pollution from the processing, manufacture and transportation of new parts.


How to select the right part for your vehicle

Make sure you know exactly which part is causing the fault and needs replacing. The next step is to select the right part for the make and model of your car. This takes more than just matching the part to the range, because manufacturers usually bring out a new version of vehicles within the same range every few years.

Look for the VehicleIdentification Number (VIN) to find matching parts. It should be stamped on the chassis, and may also be printed on the driver door opening, or near the bottom of the windscreen. If you cannot locate this, have a good look on the actual part you need to replace, as it may have a code printed on it somewhere.

If you have no luck with these methods, you could try contacting suppliers of second-hand car parts directly and showing them the part you are looking for, as they may be able to draw on past knowledge and experience to help you.


Where to buy used car parts

When purchasing used parts, it is essential to choose your supplier carefully, to avoid being sold fake or sub-standard goods. Unless you really know what you are doing, it is best to avoid scrap yards and individual sellers on sites such as eBay. Search online for recommended sellers with positive customer testimonials.

Make sure you understand the seller’s refund policy and warranties before buying anything. Once you have received the part, check it over carefully to make sure it is as expected, and matches the product description. A good supplier will be upfront about minor flaws such as small chips and scratches.


Which parts are suitable to buy second hand?

It is fine to buy many parts such as bumpers and headlights second-hand, as these are likely to have plenty of life left in them and will last several more years. However, parts which undergo heavy duty work, such as brake plates, exhaust systems, and oil filters will degrade more quickly, and are generally not worth buying second hand.


If you are looking for a BMW 3 Series front bumper in white, please get in touch today.