The idea of shopping for junkyard car parts is attractive to some but daunting for others who may be skeptical in regards to the quality and reliability of the junkyard part. There are good reasons for both sides and depending on the situation, a junkyard car part can serve as a cheap and effective alternative for your car or it could mean disaster for both you, your car and your pocketbook. A previous article in this series discussed instances when used car parts are a bad idea. The following sections discuss auto part replacements that should (and in some cases, only should) be obtained from the junkyard.
Replacement auto glass is the one item that should always be obtained from a junkyard if at all possible. Auto glass repair tends to be expensive if it is done at a repair shop, especially if they obtain new auto glass. Also, aftermarket brands of auto glass may present problems in their compatibility with the frame of the vehicle. Obtaining a junkyard car part will not only save you money, but it will save you the headache of having to deal with the repair shop if for any reason the replacement glass is not working out for your car. At the junkyard, you obtain original manufacturer auto glass, which is identical to the preexisting glass in your vehicle. This eliminates any potential compatibility issues.
Certain parts in your vehicle are specific to the make and model of your car and a replacement part may have to be obtained through the dealership, meaning exorbitant costs and a financial burden to you. Many of these parts are in the interior of your car, including the interior door panel and dash panel along with their respective small components. Even the smallest of these parts can be costly to replace with new parts through the dealership but the junkyard can provide these parts at little cost to you. Fixtures like the overhead visors and the rear view mirror can also be replaced with used parts as well.
Two parts that are especially prone to damage on the vehicle exterior are the left and right door mirrors which can be costly to replace with new parts. Used parts from the junkyard will suffice for this repair job and usually the repair itself is not a cumbersome task. If your door mirrors are constructed to match the color of your vehicle, you may have to perform a more extensive search to find the appropriate mirror that matches the color of your car. Other exterior parts like the grille, bumpers and side panels should also be sought out at a junkyard.
From the above discussion, you may have come to the conclusion that junkyard parts are ideal for repairs that have little to no bearing on the mechanical function or safety of the vehicle. This is definitely one way to determine what should or should not be replaced with a junkyard car part.