There’s a lot to love about BMWs, but when things go wrong, there’s no arguing that repairs can often be expensive. When you’re looking for ways to cut costs, you might consider using aftermarket parts instead of splurging on OEM. After all, they can’t be that much different – can they?
The truth is, in most cases, choosing OEM parts can make a major difference in the performance, reliability, and resale value of your BMW. Here’s what you need to know before taking your vehicle for its next repair.
OEM vs. Aftermarket Parts
Before we dive in, it’s important to understand what we mean when referring to “OEM parts.” OEM stands for “Original Equipment Manufacturer.” These parts are manufactured and approved by BMW. They’re exactly the same size and are made of the same materials as the original part that was installed in the factory.
Aftermarket parts, on the other hand, are produced by another manufacturer. They’re typically designed to be as compatible with as many different makes and models of vehicles as possible.
Are OEM Parts Really Better?
While buying aftermarket parts may save you a bit of cash upfront, spending the extra money on OEM is almost always well worth it. Here are a few of the benefits BMW OEM parts offer over their aftermarket counterparts.
BMW OEM parts are specifically designed to fit your vehicle and work perfectly with all the other parts inside. Since BMWs are such complex machines, even a tiny difference in an aftermarket part’s size, shape, or material can cause some serious issues. OEM parts will ensure you get the optimal response, output, and efficiency from your BMW.
The last thing you want to do is pay for an expensive repair, only to have the part give out on you again. Aftermarket parts may corrode, wear out faster, and could even damage the structural integrity of your vehicle. This can lead to more costly repairs in the future. When you choose BMW OEM parts, you can be sure that they’re made of high-quality materials that are built to last.
It might surprise you to learn that not all new vehicle parts are covered under a warranty. While some aftermarket parts come with a warranty, not all do. This is actually one of the ways that aftermarket manufacturers can keep their prices low.
BMW offers a generous two-year/unlimited mileage warranty on their parts, giving you the peace of mind that comes with knowing your investment is protected.
Common BMW Repairs That Require OEM Parts
While BMWs are high-performance machines that are mostly reliable, they do have some problems that commonly occur. When you run into any of these issues, choosing OEM parts is always a smart option.
1. Oil Leaks
Oil leaks are often caused by a failing fuel pump, a leaky valve cover, and/or brittle gaskets. If your BMW has an oil leak, you may smell burning oil when you drive or notice a small puddle of oil under your vehicle.
2. Engine Cooling System
BMWs often have issues with their engines overheating. While this can be caused by a number of factors, a faulty water pump or coolant leak are common issues. You may also need to replace the radiator, sensors, or fan. Since there are so many different possible causes, if your BMW is overheating, it’s best to have a certified technician take a look and pinpoint the problem.
3. Tail Lamp Failures
Faulty tail lamps are also somewhat common. This is often caused by corrosion, which can lead to a bad bulb connection at your tail lamp circuit board. This may trigger the dashboard’s “Check Rear Lamp/Brake Lamp” message.
4. Steering Wheel Vibrations
If your steering wheel vibrates or shakes while you’re braking, there may be a problem with your thrust arm bushings, which are a critical part of your suspension system. These rubber units are known to fail at around 75,000 miles and should be replaced with an OEM part whenever possible.
5. Electrical Issues
Electrical issues can cause problems with everything from your windshield wipers to your heating and AC. If your BMW is having electrical issues, you may also notice problems with your window regulators, driver or passenger restraint systems, door lock actuators, and/or your tire pressure monitor system.
Trust The Haus for Your BMW Repairs
When you have problems with your BMW, it’s best not to cut corners on the quality of the parts. If you’re looking for ways to save money, consider skipping the dealership and bringing your vehicle to The Haus instead.
The Haus is the area’s most trusted certified independent BMW repair shop. We offer full-service auto repair using BMW OEM parts and have the most affordable prices in the area. Contact us today to schedule a VIP appointment at one of our two convenient locations.