Q:

How do prices at salvage yards compare with brand-new car parts?

A:

Quick Answer

Prices for both salvaged and new parts vary based on the type of part and the specific vehicle model, but some salvage yards advertise savings of up to 80 percent over new parts. However, salvaged parts generally don't come with a warranty and may fail faster than new parts.

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Full Answer

There are two basic types of junkyards: those that have parts categorized and offer assistance in picking up the part, and those that require customers to find their own parts and remove them. Junkyards that fall in the former category often have searchable databases, and customers might be able to call an employee or search the database online to see if a particular part is in stock.

Salvage yards that require people to find their own parts typically offer lower prices, but it's important to know what the part looks like to avoid purchasing incompatible equipment. In addition, buyers might need to know how to identify different versions of a particular model, as two individual cars that look the same might use different parts for different years.

Before looking for a deal at a junkyard, it's also worth getting estimates for how long the replacement is likely to take. In some cases, most of the cost of a repair is due to the labor cost involved, not the part. If a mechanic has to redo the work due to the part being faulty, it might cost less overall to buy a new part.

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