What are OEM parts? OEM is an abbreviation for Original Equipment Manufacturer. Parts are made and are directly from your car manufacturer.
What are after market parts? After market are parts manufactured by a third party, a company other than your car manufacturer.
OEM parts are obviously the “better” parts. They will fit perfectly but, ultimately, will cost more. If you wish to keep the vehicle as close to its original state before the accident, this is probably the way to go and will probably be of more importance to you if you own a new car or are a car enthusiast.
After market parts will not cost you as much but may not be a perfect fit. The quality is similar and are approved, suitable replacement parts but parts have been mass produced at a third party company opposed to your car manufacturer. Insurance companies tend to use after market parts to keep insurance rates down. If everyone used OEM parts, for every claim, car insurance would cost considerably more.
If you are insistent on always using OEM parts on your vehicle it would be a good idea to search out an insurance company that offers this included in your policy. Even so, your premium will probably be a little higher. Most insurance companies, however, do not offer OEM parts as an option. It does not mean you have to settle for after market parts. You could pay the difference between what the insurance covers and the actual cost of the OEM. It all depends on whether the extra cost is worth it to you.
Ultimately, like most things, the decision is yours, whether you are paying for repairs out of your own pocket or going through insurance. Using OEM or after market parts really does not have any bearing on the resale value of your vehicle. You should, however, take into consideration the age of the car and whether or not the extra cost is worth it to you.
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