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  #1  
Old 08-02-2004, 06:42 PM
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OEM vs Aftermarket parts

I'm getting to the point where I only want to buy Mercedes OE parts, they really seem to be better. For example four recent examples:
1. The oil filter thread that is going on now.
2. I purchased an aftermarket throttle pedal for my SDL. It had a cheap ball that the throttle rod went into it seemed like a poor design. Well it broke and I ended up going to the dealer to get an OE one that was designed better. Aftermarket cost me $12 dealer $15.
3. The Mercedes serp. belts seem to be made a lot better than the Gates I have on their now. My friend has 147k miles on his original belt!
4. The Mercedes hoses, oil cooler and power steering lines seem to be of much higher quality than aftermarket versions.

My point is OEM parts don't seem to cost much more but they seem to be so much better. I'm to the point where I only want OEM stuff.
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  #2  
Old 08-02-2004, 06:53 PM
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Re: OEM vs Aftermarket parts

Quote:
Originally posted by Hatterasguy

My point is OEM parts don't seem to cost much more but they seem to be so much better. I'm to the point where I only want OEM stuff.
Basically I am in complete agreement. With regard to the oil filter, however, I think you can be quite confident of a Hengst or Mann filter, purchased aftermarket.

I recently changed the serpentine belt on the SDL. Now as we are all painfully aware, the loss of this belt, even for one minute, can be catastrophic to the 603. So, I purchased the OEM for $43.00. A bit pricey, but I'll bet it lasts twice as long as the aftermarket POS that was on there by the PO.
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  #3  
Old 08-02-2004, 06:59 PM
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I paid $40 for a Gates! Not a junk belt but still... Filters I use Hengst or Mann I feel safe with them.
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  #4  
Old 08-02-2004, 07:05 PM
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MBZ parts not all they're cracked up to be either

Twice in the last year I've been at the local MBZ parts wholesaler and either received a defective part or seen someone else receive a defective part.

1) replacement taillight bad (mounting tabs cracked) out of the box. Box OK, no sign of trauma.

2) customer checking out in front of me with replacement OM617 oil pan sporting a huge crease in the sealing surface that was, get this, painted over. It had to have come from the mfgr like that.
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Old 08-02-2004, 07:09 PM
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Randy,

It's one thing to have defective parts now and then from just about everybody. It's quite another to have a cheaper aftermarket design, relative to the OEM, that will not go 1/2 the distance.
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  #6  
Old 08-02-2004, 07:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Brian Carlton
Randy,

It's one thing to have defective parts now and then from just about everybody. It's quite another to have a cheaper aftermarket design, relative to the OEM, that will not go 1/2 the distance.
Agreed. However, it appears to me that MBZ is slacking in other areas as well. Case in point, TomJs trials and tribulations with Indian and Turkish injector nozzles.
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Old 08-03-2004, 01:19 PM
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The additional price you pay for a MB factory part is generally warranted as compared to the amount of labor required to redo the repair if you had used an aftermarket part.

We are lucky in that this forum gives us the opportunity to discuss the differences between a factory part and a aftermarket part.

Case in point:
Oil cooler lines. Factory parts are generally the same or less than the aftermarket parts (300D). The SDL factory lines are about 50% more. BUT we have heard on this very board, that the aftermarket lines are not made as well and this particular part can do catastrophic damage if it fails. Result: not worth the risk.

Window regulators: My 300D rear regulators are the same part whether from the factory or purchased outside the factory distribution chain. Risk: none.

Tail Lights: They are made by Bosch, buy the cheapest Bosch unit. Risk: none.

I also believe that the value of the dollar has influenced the aftermarket parts MORE than the factory parts. I have noticed that the aftermarket parts have gone up in price more rapidly than the factory parts prices. Perhpas MB is not as organized with their parts system as a company (World Pac) whose only business is parts.

Plus I get 20% off the parts at the dealer. That helps the equation.

Later.
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  #8  
Old 08-03-2004, 03:20 PM
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Minor clarification - OE is dealer "genuine Mercedes" parts. However 'OEM' (Original Equipment Manufacturer) means the same mfr makes the part for Mercedes, but the OEM item may (or may NOT) be the same as OE, and is essentially aftermarket. Sometimes MB has higher standards/specs and the OE part costs more, but the mfr chooses to make the same item to their own specs - what they consider "good enough" - and sell it to parts retailers as OEM. Same mfr, different quality part. Make sense?

Anyway - I agree completely, and most of the items I buy are OE dealer parts. Both Rusty and Caliber sell dealer parts at wholesale (MBNA list, minus 20%.) Sometimes this is *cheaper* than the WorldPac aftermarket price!! And some aftermarket items suck - the 124 speedometer cable is ~$35 aftermarket, and is junk compared to the ~$80 OE part. Other items should have near zero difference - suspension/steering parts, brake rotors, etc. One interesting item was wheel bearings. The OE kit was $50/side, the OEM was $25/side, and it turned out to be an SKF 'Made In Germany' kit! That was one time I was glad I saved the $50. Other times (like the speedo cable), I wish I had spent the money for OE.

The May 2004 dealer price list is here - download the 1.4MB Zip file,, unzip the 8MB text file, open with Notepad or Wordpad:

http://www.meimann.com/docs/mercedes/MB_Pricelist_May-2004.zip

It pays to be informed - not all dealers charge MBNA list price, some charge significantly more, especially for small items.


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