Houston, TX (PRWEB) November 12, 2012
The Automotive Body Parts Association (ABPA) is continuing to help educate consumers and repair professionals by reiterating its message that alternatively and independently produced crash replacement parts are not counterfeit parts. ABPA President Nick Scheid shares the association’s position on alternative parts versus counterfeit parts.
The subject of counterfeit parts was recently an issue when the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) alerted vehicle owners and repair professionals to the dangers of counterfeit airbags.
Said Scheid, “The ABPA believes that consumers and repair professionals should be aware of the difference between illegal and unsafe counterfeit parts versus safe and effective alternative, or independently produced aftermarket automotive parts, often referred to as generic. Scheid said that there are significant distinctions between the two categories:
-Counterfeit parts are imitation parts in lookalike packaging to mislead the consumer or repairer into thinking that they are a specific brand and have been manufactured by a reputable producer. Counterfeit parts may work for a short period of time or may not work at all and may pose safety hazards for drivers and passengers.
-Alternative aftermarket parts, in total contrast, are packaged in recognizable alternative packaging, identifying the alternative manufacturer, the specific part, production lot and supplier. They are often certified by independent third party standards organizations, clearly labeled and marketed by reputable alternative parts distributors. Additionally, they come with a warranty that in many cases, may be longer than those offered by the original manufacturer or dealer.
“Our first concern is for the safety of all consumers who are at risk of having counterfeit airbags installed in their vehicles and we commend NHTSA for recognizing this threat and taking the appropriate steps to alert the repair industry. To our knowledge, none of our ABPA members sell replacement airbags and there are no quality standards in place from any agency verifying there are viable alternatives available for the collision repairer. However, we also want to ensure that consumers and repairers fully understand that they can continue to use legally produced and distributed alternative automotive parts with confidence,” added Scheid.
ABPA Executive Director Stan Rodman said, “Since counterfeit parts are intentionally meant to mislead the end user, it is imperative that the installer do their due diligence to ensure they are purchasing from reputable suppliers and ensure that the supplier is providing a warranty. If the price is substantially lower than the “brand” it is representing, it certainly should raise flags and verification should be sought before installing the part.”
Headquartered in Houston, Texas, the Automotive Body Parts Association represents manufacturers, distributors and suppliers of independently produced aftermarket body parts. The membership base consists of more than 150 of the industry's leading companies which operate in approximately 400 separate locations and which supply more than 75 percent of these type parts to the marketplace. Visit http://www.autobpa.com.
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