OEM Vs. Aftermarket Auto Glass: Factors To Consider When Buying A Windshield For Your Vehicle

21 April 2022
 Categories: , Blog


If you are in the market for a new car windshield, you may have come across two options: original equipment manufacturer (OEM) and aftermarket windshields. OEM windshields are made by the auto glass company contracted by the car manufacturer, and they bear the exact specifications of the original windshield. Aftermarket windshields are made by other glass manufacturers. Some are reverse-engineered to function just as well as OEM glass, while others are generic products that work in various types of cars. Consider these factors when choosing replacement glass for your car's windshield.

Age and Condition of Your Vehicle

Your car's age can guide you on whether to spend money on OEM glass or aftermarket glass. If you have an old car that isn't in good condition, buying expensive parts may not be worth it in the long run. This is especially true if you intend to sell or scrap the vehicle in the future. You can save money by installing an aftermarket windshield.

Conversely, if your car is fairly new and not nearing the end of its usable life, opt for high-quality glass. OEM glass is the best option, as it is identical to your car's original windshield. However, you can also opt for reverse-engineered aftermarket windshields. Also known as original equipment equivalent (OEE), this kind of aftermarket glass is almost identical to OEM glass. However, it is more affordable than the original manufacturer's products.

Auto Glass Availability

Two factors can determine the availability of OEM windshields for your vehicle: the age of the car and access to auto parts. If your car is old, there's a chance that the automaker's glass manufacturer no longer makes OEM glass for the specific model. Therefore, you have no choice but to go for OEE or generic windshields. 

Also, if you are unable to access car spare parts, you must work with what's locally available. For example, if your car make or model is less popular in your area, you may have a hard time finding OEM replacement glass in the local auto parts stores. Therefore, if the cost of shipping is too high, buying aftermarket glass may be a great idea.

Technological Factors

Modern car windshields come with advanced technologies that aim to improve safety and visibility and lower the risk of accidents. These windshields have advanced driver assist systems (ADAS) such as lane departure warning, autonomous braking, automatic wipers, and collision warning systems. For the ADAS to work, it must be compatible with the auto glass. Therefore, if your car has these advanced technologies, avoid generic windshields because they can cause the systems to fail or behave abnormally. Install OEM glass as it is compatible with these advanced technologies. 

Consider these tips when choosing the best glass for your car's windshield. For further consultation, contact an auto glass service.