Why shouldn’t I get my oil changed for $17?
One of the biggest questions from our customers is the price difference between our service and the service of un-branded independent service stations and is it worth the extra cost or not. Well we’re here to break down the PROs and CONs of using an Acura certified service department over the leading independent service station. One of the biggest reasons to come to an Acura dealership is the parts. Acura uses all OEM (original equipment manufacturer) parts; all of these parts were designed specifically for your Acura by Acura. Most independent shops use an aftermarket part, usually just a generic copy of the Acura part just reverse engineered and rebranded. Below is a short list comparing OEM and aftermarket parts:
Aftermarket Part PROs and CONs:
Aftermarket parts are usually less expensive than the Acura brand, how much usually varies by brand so shop around to find the best deals.
Aftermarket parts usually have a greater verity to choose from, there are hundreds of companies that make aftermarket parts. Some companies only specialize in specific parts, while others will make just about any part you can think of.
Aftermarket parts usually have a better availability. You can usually go to any independent service station and it’s almost guaranteed they have a supplier that makes parts for your Acura.
Aftermarket part quality usually varies greatly between companies. Most of the time parts are cheaper because they use lower quality materials in production.
Aftermarket parts companies can sometimes have an overwhelming selection; with several different tiers or variances between parts it can be hard to choose the right one.
Aftermarket parts sometimes do not come with a warranty to keep costs down, so make sure you do adequate research before buying an aftermarket part without a warranty!
OEM Acura part PROs and CONs:
With OEM Acura parts at an Acura store it’s usually easier to choose the part you need. Most of the time there is only one part available so you don’t have to decide between prices and brands.
OEM Acura parts usually have a greater assurance of quality. You get piece of mind knowing the part you’re replacing is going to be the exact same as the original part.
Most OEM Acura parts come with a standard 1 year 12,000 mile warranty. If you get them installed at an Acura store the labor is usually backed as well.
Most OEM Acura parts will usually be more expensive than an aftermarket part. This is usually due to the quality of materials and included warranty.
OEM Acura parts are only available at an Acura store. Sometimes it can be harder to get to an Acura service station over the leading independent shops that usually have more locations.
Now that we’ve covered the differences between parts let’s move on to the service department itself. When you visit an Acura service department you’re getting trained Acura technicians that work with nothing but Acura’s all day, every day. Acura service stations also have a direct line of communication to the manufacture themselves providing up to the minute service bulletins and recall information. Independent shops will not have access to this information and they usually have to go through the Acura service department to perform the work anyways. Acura service stations also have the latest state of the art equipment and tools, which get inspected frequently to assure you’re getting the best service possible. Most independent shops don’t replace equipment and tools unless they are completely broken, usually due to the cost involved. When you choose an Acura service station no matter the issue you bring your Acura in for your service technician will always complete a safety inspection on the vehicle ensuring everything is safe and in proper working order before you leave and inform you on anything that’s going to need attention on your next visit. When you visit an independent service station most of the time you’re only getting what you pay for, so if you take it in for an oil change you receive an oil change. If you want your tires rotated you’ll get your tires rotated. They usually don’t take the time to look over the entire vehicle top to bottom, because of the time and cost involved when they are only making money on a basic service appointment. No matter where you decide to take your Acura for service it never hurts to ask friends for recommendations or to check out online reviews to see if there have been any complaints or issues. We hope this helps you make an easier decision when it comes time to service your Acura, and if you have any more questions don’t hesitate to put a call into your local Acura store where we’re happy to help!