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News   April 17, 2019   by Adam Malik

Five ways to spot a fake part


The team at GMB North America is trying to help cut down on counterfeit products.

The company created an infographic and provided the following tips to help keep inferior aftermarket parts out of a retailer’s inventory and prevent them from being installed on vehicles.

Since they’re designed to replicate a legitimate auto part, everything can look fine on first glace. But a closer inspection can reveal it’s a fake.

“As a parts manufacturer, we value our retail and repair shop clients and want to help them keep their strong reputations in the industry,” said Sarah Porter, marketing manager at GMB. “The infiltration of counterfeit parts into the supply chain could make those clients unwitting sellers of these parts. Not only can a low-quality part damage a vehicle but the business that sold the part could face damage to their reputation.”

Five things to check for are:

  • Cheap packaging: Parts that arrive in cheap, flimsy packaging. Check the printing on the box and inside materials. Actual auto parts are usually shipped with care and in high-quality boxes.
  • Missing numbers: Real brand parts often have the part number printed on the box. If the number is absent or slapped on with a sticker, it may be a fake part.
  • Typos: Look closely at the printing on both the package and the instructions. If there are typos or misspellings, inspect the part carefully. It may be counterfeit.
  • Poor instructions: Instructions are incomplete or incorrect. Fake auto parts may come with instructions that are missing a step or a diagram.
  • Something isn’t right: Compare it to the part you’re replacing. Do the fasteners match? Does the material feel like the same weight? An authentic part should match almost exactly, if not perfectly.

“In addition to causing financial issues, counterfeit parts can be unsafe,” Porter said. “Buying and selling counterfeit parts and stealing intellectual property are crimes and do have victims. We hope this graphic reminds everyone what to look out for.”


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