Consumer Reports Issues Warning about
Aftermarket Parts in Latest Issue
September 28, 2010
The October issue of Consumer Reports (CR) includes a warning
to consumers about possible pressures from insurers to use aftermarket
parts when repairs are made to their vehicles. Though auto glass
isn't specifically addressed, the warning includes all safety-related
"Don't let your insurance company pressure you into using
aftermarket collision-repair body parts, especially safety-related
ones," writes the magazine. "If your car has already been
repaired, check your invoices or ask your insurer to see whether
aftermarket parts were used. If knockoffs were used, demand that
they be replaced with original equipment."
The article also advised that "a number of auto insurers have
recommended or required use of aftermarket crash parts, which are
often produced in overseas factories and can be significantly cheaper
than the parts from original equipment manufacturers."
"Unfortunately, the parts also might be cheaper in quality,"
The article also cites testing conducted on aftermarket bumper
bars by Fordwhich found that a saw could easily slice through
an aftermarket bumper bar, while it couldn't cut through the original
The Independent Glass Association recently weighed in on the issue
as well with a bulletin to its members.
"If a consumer was paying cash for the repair of their vehicle,
they would be advised of the differences in quality and price and
therefore, would have the information to make an informed choice,"
writes IGA. "Either pay for the aftermarket parts or the OEM
parts. The choice would be theirs' after taking into account factors
like the resale value of their vehicle, their own safety, etc."
The IGA adds, "The same should hold true with an insurance
The warning appears as part of a multi-page article about how to
save money on car insurance, and appears in a box called "Are
low-cost replacement bumpers safe?"
Do you believe there are quality differences in aftermarket
and OEM automotive glass? Please e-mail your thoughts to email@example.com.
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