When you suddenly find that you need to shop for car parts, there are a few options to help you get sorted. You can order car parts online and have them shipped to your door, you can go to a physical store e.g. a motor factors and buy them on the spot, or you can find a mechanic who will supply and fit your car parts. Each option has its own set of pros and cons, but in many situations, there are ways to actually save yourself some money without compromising on expertise or quality. In this article, we'll take a look at each option and give you some great tips to save you some money and possibly expand your car knowledge in the process!
Order Car Parts Online
Advantages: When it comes to ordering car parts online, the most obvious advantage is that you have an enormous selection of parts to choose from. This can be really helpful if you're looking for something ultra specific or hard to find. The other main advantage, is that looking for car parts online allows you to shop around much more easily, so you can browse dozens of websites in the same time it would have taken you to visit a local motor factor. There's also the added bonus that you can compare car part prices between different stores in very little time at all. However price and value is really the strongest advantage to shopping for car parts on the internet. Online car part stores are normally backed up by massive warehouses, allowing them to hold far more items in stock than your nearby motor factors, and as a result, they're able to offer much better value than a physical store. There are many jobs that can be successfully completed on a car that do not require skilled labor (e.g. a mechanic) - literally anyone can fit wiper blades or top up engine oil for example, simply by watching an instructional video and carrying out the steps. Having to wait for a delivery doesn't seem to be an issue anymore, with most car part retailers now offering next day delivery as standard.
Disadvantages: The main con of ordering car parts online is that you have to wait for them to be shipped to your door. Ordering online can be a bit too easy sometimes, and if you order the wrong part, then you would have to carry out a return.
Tips To Save Money: Visit large, dedicated websites that specialise in selling car parts... (ahem, MicksGarage.com is a fantastic start!). Why? They know their products, and understand what type of quality they're selling. They're buying car parts in volume, so can offer the best value across a wider range with the same warranties. Sign up to their discount initiatives so you can get deeper discounts (access ours here). Avoid marketplaces like eBay and Amazon for more common car parts. They rarely offer better value, and are frequently listed incorrectly.
Buy Car Parts From Motor Factors
Advantages: When it comes to buying car parts in person, the real advantage here is that you can see and touch the parts before you buy them. This is super helpful, as it allows you to analyze the part in detail before you buy, ensuring it's correct. If you're not sure of the part you need, it's also helpful being able to speak face-to-face with a store assistant to choose the part for you.
Disadvantages: The main cons of buying car parts in store are the limited selection and the higher prices. Motor factors are small with very limited storage space. As a result, they keep less stock, and rely on deliveries from larger distributors. This can mean that you need to wait a couple of days before getting a part, which could have shipped from an online retailer same day. Prices are usually higher for a reason - it's very difficult for a Motor Factors to push out frequent or substantial discount offers, meaning you could pay more. Depending on where you live, you may have a very limited set of options when it comes to car part stores. In addition, most stores only carry very popular car parts brands, so if you're looking for something more specialized or from a particular brand, you may have a bit of difficulty getting it via a local in a motor factors.
Tips To Save Money: Do your research. If you're not sure what part you need, try finding out information online or calling the Motor Factors to get a part number. Shop around and ultimately the decision will rest with you on the availability of the product and price with the Motor factor versus an online seller. Try asking at the counter for a better deal (If you don't ask, you don't get!)!
Get Car Parts From Mechanic
Advantages: This is really the favoured option for novices or people seeking the most convenience. When it comes to getting car parts supplied and fitted, the main advantage of going through your mechanic is that you don't have to do any of the work yourself. I mean, who better to know what's needed than the mechanic, right? This can be helpful if you're not sure what you need, how to install it, or if you don't have the time or tools to do it yourself.
Disadvantages: Let's talk straight - this is certainly going to be the most expensive option. The main disadvantages to using your mechanic for the parts plus install is the higher cost. Transparency around mechanics fees have always been the subject of great debate and while a mechanic should be allowed to charge accordingly for their labor, allowing your parts to be sourced in this way could mean an extra markup is applied to the parts before your final bill is presented. Additionally, you're putting a lot of trust into the part brand / product / price that the mechanic chooses also. The other issue is that you could be completely without your car while it's with the mechanic, waiting for parts to arrive and be installed. This, coupled with a higher cost, can be a bit of a sting.
Tips To Save Money: Ask your mechanic for an itemised quotation and a list of options when purchasing parts through them. Do your research on the costs and the recommendations being presented. The way to save the most money, (but it's not for everyone), is to carry out small jobs like changing your wiper blades yourself, using parts you've sourced, yourself.
Save Money On Car Parts
Knowledge is power - further your knowledge on cars by watching some YouTube tutorials for simple everyday car tasks that do not require a qualified mechanic. We'd recommend you get started with changing your wiper blades, topping up your engine oil, then looking at changing your spark plugs and filters next. Regular DIY servicing of your car can keep your annual garage fees lower. The best way to save money on car parts is by shopping online for them with a specialized car parts retailer. At MicksGarage.com, we have over 13 million car parts listings (yes, 13 million!) available for next day delivery at seriously good value. If you want to save even more money on Car Parts, then make sure you're signed up here to the exclusive sale alerts. Thank you for reading!