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    Personal Insurance Blog

    Jane Logan

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    OEM Parts vs After Market Parts

    Posted by Jane Logan

    Mon, Mar 26, 2018 @ 03:01 PM

    What’s the difference between OEM and After Market Parts?

    • OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) parts are “name brand” new parts made by the original manufacturer to meet the specifications of a specific vehicle make and model. Authorized auto dealerships that sell this particular brand of vehicle(s) usually have exclusive distribution rights to sell these parts.
    • After Market (Non-OEM) parts are “generic” new parts made by companies other than the original manufacturer.  Independent auto part stores and independent (not auto dealership) repair shops sell these parts.


    Why don’t people want After Market Parts used for repairs?

    Owners believe After Market parts are inferior or less safe than OEM parts.  Independent safety rating organizations such as The Certified Automotive Parts Association (CAPA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) dispute this concern.   If After Market parts weren't as safe as OEM parts, manufacturers would pay the price in product liability lawsuits.  They compete just fine by selling the same quality parts, same specifications, just with lower margins.


    Why do insurance companies use After Market Parts for repairs?

    • Parts are easier to get, reducing repair time.
    • Using After Market parts reduces repair costs by 35%, which in 2010 saved $14.08 Billion.
    • Reducing repair costs reduces premium costs that consumers pay.
    • State law either allows or in some cases requires insurance companies to use After Market parts

    Damaged Vehicle for OEM Blog-1.jpg


    What gives insurance companies the right to use After Market Parts?

     The laws in each state regulate auto repairs. In Massachusetts, 211 CMR 133 ( requires the use of After Market parts if the damaged part meets the guidelines:

    CMR 133.04: Determination of Damage and Cost of Repair

     (1) Appraisers shall specify that damaged parts be repaired rather than replaced unless: the part is damaged beyond repair, or the cost of repair exceeds the cost of replacement with a part of like kind and quality, or the operational safety of the vehicle might otherwise be impaired. When it is determined that a part must be replaced, a rebuilt, aftermarket or used part of like kind and quality shall be used in the appraisal unless:

    (a) the operational safety of the vehicle might otherwise be impaired;

    (b) reasonable and diligent efforts to locate the appropriate rebuilt, aftermarket or used part have been unsuccessful;

    (c) a new original equipment part of like kind and quality is available and will result in the lowest overall repair cost;

    (d) for vehicles insured under policies written on or before December 31, 2003, the vehicle has been used no more than 15,000 miles unless the pre-accident condition warrants otherwise; or.

    (e) for vehicles insured under policies written or renewed on or after January 1, 2004, the vehicle has been used no more than 20,000 miles unless the pre-accident condition warrants otherwise.

    A part is of like kind and quality when it is of equal or better condition than the pre-accident part.


    Are After Market parts really as good and safe as OEM parts?

    The manufacture of After Market parts is regulated and repair shops need to be licensed.  If After Market parts were indeed inferior they would be causing accidents, ultimately increasing costs for insurers.  Using inferior parts isn’t in anyone’s best interest, but using After Market parts is in everyone’s best interest as it increases competition, reduces repair costs, and ultimately lowers insurance premiums.


    Is it worth challenging the insurance carrier requiring I use After Market Parts? 

    If State law allows using After Market parts, your insurance company will authorize these for repair.  If a consumer wants to pay for OEM parts on their own, that is, pay the higher margin the manufacturers get for these, most body shops will agree to use them.  Even so, this can delay repairing your vehicle as the claim can become more complicated.  The longer it takes to negotiate the claim, the longer you’re without a vehicle and/or you’re paying for a rental.


    I’m still not convinced.  Can I buy OEM coverage?

    Yes!  We represent several companies that offer OEM part coverage for personal vehicles (not yet for business insurance), based on the model year and odometer reading/mileage on your vehicle.   As a rule of thumb, the cost is generally 30%-40% additional to the cost of your collision and comprehensive coverage. 


    If you'd like to discuss your personal automobile coverage, call one of the Gordon Atlantic Insurance professionals toll free at (800) 649-3252.  Prefer to type instead of talk? Use the form at the top left of the blog for a return phone call or email.


    Tags: auto claims, OEM Parts, After Market Parts, OEM Coverage

    What if my Vehicle Catches on Fire?

    Posted by Jane Logan

    Wed, Aug 17, 2016 @ 09:35 AM

    Recently a client’s 2016 vehicle engine started smoking. He got out of the truck to check the engine and couldn’t get back in the truck because the fire caused the doors to lock.  The truck was very quickly totally engulfed in flames and was a total loss. Luckily our client was alone and wasn’t injured - can you imagine if there was a child, elderly or disabled person or a pet in the vehicle and the doors wouldn’t open?

    So what should you do if your vehicle catches fire?

    • Pull over as soon as possible in a safe area

    • Open a door or roll down a window

    • Turn of the ignition

    • Take your cell phone – if you can find it quickly as you exit the vehicle

    • Get everyone out of the vehicle and don’t let anyone return to the vehicle

    • Move away as far away from the vehicle as possible

    • Call 911

    How to prevent a vehicle fire

    • Check fuses – if a fuse keeps blowing have the vehicle serviced

    • Clean up oil spilled during an oil change or from an oil leak

    • Check wiring for damage

    • Watch for rapid changes in oil or fuel levels which could indicate leaks or a wiring malfunction

    • Keep cap on oil filter

    • Check hoses

    Fire damage to a vehicle is included in Comprehensive coverage and subject to the deductible.  Damage to personal property in the vehicle isn’t covered by Comprehensive coverage.  In order to have coverage for personal property you’d need to have a Homeowners or Renters policy.  In order to have coverage for business property such as tools and equipment, you’d to have a commercial property or tool “Inland Marine” policy which covers property not kept in a fixed location and transported in the vehicle to job sites.

    So please check you vehicle for any mechanical condition that might cause a fire and check your policies to make sure if you carry property in your vehicle you have coverage to replace items lost in the fire.

    Tags: Emergency, fire prevention, emergency preparation, car fire

    Boating Safety

    Posted by Jane Logan

    Mon, Jun 20, 2016 @ 03:55 PM

    Summer is here and it’s boating season, here are some boat safety tips:

    1. Check fuel levels and engine for liquid, vapor or carbon monoxide leaks

    2. Check electrical systems and lights

    3. Test radios and navigation equipment

    4. Attach boat and vehicle keys to a floating device

    5. Check weather reports

    6. If possible have an inflatable device or an actual life boat on board

    7. If you go boating alone, always wear a life jacket so if you fall overboard you’ll have a better chance of surviving - especially if you hit your head, or if a medical event such as heart attack, low blood sugar or seizure cause you to fall overboard. You may not be able to swim at all or for very long during a medical event.

    8. Tell someone where you plan to go boating and when you plan to return so if you’re not back when expected they can notify the authorities.

    9. Take the boat registration, towing policy information, a fire extinguisher and first aid kit

    10. Only allow authorized operators to operate the boat – don’t risk having an uninsured loss!

    Stay safe when boating and have fun!


    Tags: summer, boat, new england, Boating safety

    Automobile Property Damage Liability – How Much is Enough?

    Posted by Jane Logan

    Thu, Jun 25, 2015 @ 02:51 PM

    Dont_drive_when_distracted_to_prevent_car_accidents_and_cover_yourself_with_auto_from_Andrew_Gordon_Inc_Insurance_Norwell_MAAutomobile property damage liability is the coverage that protects you from the financial consequences of negligent operation of a vehicle which results in damage to other people’s property. In other words, when you crash your vehicle into something owned by someone else, automobile property damage liability coverage pays for the damage.
    Most people are safe drivers, but even safe drivers can have a medical event while driving and be determined negligent and therefore responsible for the accident.
    The property most often damaged by a vehicle is another vehicle. If your policy provides $100,000 of Property Damage Liability coverage and you total a $170,000 Land Rover, a $234,000 Bentley, several $30,000 vehicles in one accident, a moving van filled with priceless art or just someone’s household contents a house or building, your insurance company will pay out $100,000 coverage limit. The insurance company covering the other person’s vehicle, art collection or building will take the $100,000 from your insurance company and expect you to pay the balance due – how would you pay the $134,000 due after your insurance company pays $100,000 for that totaled Bentley?
    The cost to increase auto Property Damage Liability is minimal compared to the benefit provided, we recommend increasing your limit to the highest limit available.
    The other option is combing Bodily Injury and Property Damage Liability in a Combined Single Limit (CSL) of say $1,000,000 that way there’s a total of $1,000,000 available in the event of an accident with no Sub-limit  for how much of the $1,000,000 is available for injuries or property damage.
    Don’t risk a lot to save a little; increase your automobile Property Damage Liability coverage. Contact us with questions!

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