When you buy a new car, or you need to fix some things on your old one, it’s always a better idea to use genuine and original parts instead of replacements. It can easily happen that you get a bad quality product, that will make even bigger damage to your vehicle. When it comes to Toyota, you have to remember that sometimes the fake parts are so well-copied, you can’t see any difference by eye, but you will have issues while using it.
A lot of people aren’t aware of this problem until the part is installed in their vehicle, and they face mechanic and technical issues with it. It’s very easy to fall for fake ads too, especially when they offer some low prices and free shipping, so people think they have nothing to lose. But they do because they will have to pay a lot of money to resolve the new issues. Initially, if you order the parts online, you need to be sure that the website is reliable and that they sell 100% original products, or they transparently mention if there are replacements in their offer.
There is no way to tell if the spare parts are original or fake because sometimes even the experts can’t spot the differences. But, you can at least try to use reliable supplier websites like https://sts-global.com/
Fake things and items are a huge problem nowadays, because sellers easily offer them through social media for competitive prices, creating a fake scenario that they are cheaper because they don’t own a store to pay rent and other commercial place expenses. And a lot of people will fall into that trap too.
The main difference is the quality of the materials, and you need to be an expert or really experienced to spot that. Fake product manufacturers want to save on production, so their parts aren’t even comparable to the original ones, because they don’t meet any quality standard at all.
So, if you have a Toyota vehicle, and you ordered some spare parts online, here are a few ways on how to check them:
1. Track the serial number on the package
But before you do that, see if the package is good, or there are some damages that aren’t a result of the transport. The reliable sellers always have a valid batch number, even when they are using spare products. Keep in mind that these used parts are always checked if they are working properly, so accidents can be prevented. That means after they are tested, cleaned, and polished, they get a new serial number and batch code.
Also, the serial number can be engraved on the product, and you can check that too. Keep in mind that there can be some specific spots on the part, that can’t be counterfeited, as holographic labels over the code, and so on.
2. Check the QR code
Your smartphone already has an option to scan the QR codes. Check if the one on the package leads you to the manufacturer or the seller’s website. That means they don’t have anything to hide, and they stay behind their product and guarantee the quality.
3. Know the differences between OE and OEM
OE stands for Original Equipment, and that are the genuine spare parts that are removed from some old and damaged car, but still good to use if cleaned and fixed on time. They fit the very same model of vehicle, or at least the same manufacturer. They are the safest option, especially when you know their origin and age. OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer, and they are also legit, but sold through a reseller (person or a company).
They are also a pretty good option, because they still maintain the same quality, but come cheaper. There are also ASP, which stands for Aftermarket Spare Parts, and they are known as replacements. They are still original, but the fake manufacturers can make exact copies without even noticing. Knowing these terms won’t prevent anything, but now you know where and how to start and lower the risk of being scammed while buying.
4. Check the tags
Some tags and stickers are there to cover something. We don’t say that every sticker is for that purpose, but before you insert that spare part in your vehicle, you need to check all those tags on the package and directly over the item’s surface. Sometimes, the fake manufacturers underestimate their clients and forget that some things are too obvious.
Also, there is one specific tag you need to look for. That’s the one that contains the RFID code, which practically means the original manufacturer is approving this type of reselling and replacements. Also, they can confirm the legitimacy of your part following the RFID code.
5. What to do if your part is fake?
If all these code checks and technical control are showing the part is fake, you can file a complaint to the national inspections, depending on where you are in the world and which institution covers these problems in your country. Also, report that to the original manufacturer. Don’t spend your money on parts that are too cheap to be true, because they can be dangerous if installed in the vehicle, or at least hazardous when heated.
The easiest way to be sure the part is not fake is to find a trusted seller or mechanic professional who will cover all these things for you. Keep in mind that some of the spare parts are usually in really good condition, and they will fit your vehicle nicely. Use only services with a high reputation, so you can be sure no one will try to sell you fake parts.
We know that telling the difference can be a pretty difficult task, so that’s why we always suggest going with reputable suppliers and professionals. That’s probably the only way to be sure your new part will work well with your car.