Advice and Cautions When You’re in the Market for Truck Parts

When buying parts for a truck, it's good to take your time to shop and compare your options, as even heavy passenger trucks will typically put more wear and tear on their parts than any lightweight sedan. At the same time, truck parts, especially those for heavy-duty delivery trucks, may be more expensive than parts you need for other vehicles. To ensure you buy the best parts for your trucks without overspending on something you don't need, note a few bits of advice, and a few cautions, before you shop.

Original versus aftermarket

Aftermarket parts, meaning those that are not made by the truck manufacturer or an authorized supplier, are often criticized as being somewhat inferior than original parts. In some cases, this can be true, as some off-brand parts will be made with thinner rubber and lighter plastic than original parts, or they may not be made to the same precise measurements and calibrations as original parts.

However, some aftermarket parts may actually offer improvements over original parts; they may be made with thicker rubber, not thinner, or may be connected with metal bolts and screws rather than plastic. Aftermarket shocks are sometimes stronger and larger than original equipment springs, and an aftermarket exhaust pipe may be wider and able to vent more bad air from your engine, as two such examples. Don't immediately dismiss aftermarket parts as being unreliable, but note if they have any such modifications that could make them even better than original parts on your truck.

The application

No matter the parts you need, it's good to understand their application, so you can then better determine if an off-brand, original, or used part is the best choice. For example, shocks and springs don't just cushion your ride while you're in the truck; they also absorb the truck's weight when you apply the brakes so that there is less wear and tear on the axles, tie rods, and other such pieces. Buying a cheap or used set of shocks can then be a mistake.

On the other hand, hoses may do nothing more than move fluid from a reservoir tank to a certain part, so off-brand hoses or even used hoses that are in good condition can typically be fine for any truck. If you understand the application of parts, this can tell you when it's good to invest in high-quality, name brand items, versus items that are cheaper but still durable and workable.

For more information, contact local professionals for Japanese truck parts.