CAPA, the well-respected Certified Automotive Parts Association established in 1987, released information that may be troubling for many in the automotive industry. As the non-profit, non-partisan certification organization that oversees the structural and operational integrity of replacement auto parts, CAPA’s latest findings expose the glaring need for more stringent regulations in the field, and the importance of purchasing parts that have earned CAPA certification.
In an effort to raise awareness about the deficiencies of many replacement parts, CAPA tested 15 popular parts to determine how they hold up when compared to dealer renditions. What was discovered is a bit unsettling:
Of the 15 parts tested, 13 of them failed miserably! Deficiencies included poor craftsmanship, non-galvanized steel materials, and faulty hinge fasteners. All of these problems create safety issues for vehicle owners and liability issues for the shops that install them.
CAPA’s Testing Procedure
Anytime that CAPA tests an automotive replacement part, they do so based on the part’s corrosiveness, the quality of the creation materials, and the model compatibility when compared to the dealer’s rendition. All of these key points play a significant role in the performance of the part for the long-term, and the potential dangers that non-certified parts can have when put to the test.
Once an auto part passes the examination, CAPA certifies it, and adds it to its parts listing. The product is not out of the proverbial woods, however, as parts are often re-tested to ensure continued compliance.
CAPA’s study has given the automotive parts industry a bit of a scare, as it is now increasingly difficult for repair shops and insurers to gauge the quality of parts they install or protect on a daily basis. Consumers are becoming increasingly aware of CAPA’s existence, which will push the quality expectations much higher for many parts distributors.
Those interested in learning more about CAPA, or determining whether or not the parts they are considering are certified can do so at -www.CAPAcertified.org
Remember, not all parts will be certified, and while it does not mean that the part itself will fail you, it can be a determining factor in the overall quality you can expect upon purchase and installation.