When to buy from auto parts stores????

Old 11-10-08, 07:06 PM
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When to buy from auto parts stores????


i am a do-it-yourselfer who dabbles in many different things. I am attempting to do a rear drum brake job on my 95 dodge ram 1500 P/U.

i am pricing replacement parts and i find them to be drastically different depending where i go.

an easy example is new drums. At Advance Auto Parts they have them for $33 (wearever brand) and NAPA has them for $83 dollars. The guy at Advance said with drums it doesn't really matter name brand from non-name brand.

So, my questions are:

1) do the drums vary greatly in quality and does it matter if I don't really drive my truck hard. I just use it around town mostly.

2) do you know any good online sites (that might include shipping for free) to buy my parts from?

3) what is better NAPA or Advance Auto Parts?

Old 11-11-08, 04:12 AM
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I'm not a mechanic but like you I usually tackle my own repairs. I get most of my parts from autozone because of their frequent promotions [and the local advance store's help put a bad taste in my mouth] and I like to save a $ when I can . . . . IMO any of the discount auto parts stores should be fine.

NAPA's better parts are top notch but as you've found - they charge for it
Generally if you replace your brake shoes on time, the drum shouldn't get a lot of wear. I'd go with the cheaper drum
Old 11-11-08, 05:27 AM
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I put a pair of rear drums on a project car several months ago from Advanced. They seemed to be good quality and were labeled as having been balanced. I generally buy parts from CarQuest (know the guys there).
Old 11-11-08, 06:57 AM
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You may also find that Autozone or Advance have really cheap and then a bit more costly. I believe they also list where they are manufactured. I had the option last time I bought discs of the cheapest ones from China or a couple of bucks more from Canada....guess which I chose?
Old 11-13-08, 08:01 PM
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I have to agree with GunGuy on that,,,

Let me throw this against the "wall",

I had opportunity to work for a decent small parts house (2 store company) and another large chain store yrs ago. At the time, ,70's, owner would turn or clean up .001 or .002 metal off new disc or drums we sold, if individual customer or garage requested, with no charge. I was made to understand all drums and lots of rotors get out of "true" or warp sitting on shelf and/or from shipping. To prove me wrong, one parts house salesman, back in '90s, put six new drums on their grinding machine to test for "no warp" he quit looking after six times and turned my new drums for free. Nowadays any store that can turn drums, will not do that without charge on new part.
Any thoughts or ideas on this? Is asking for "true" drums being overly critical when buying? Is it good enought to clean shipping grease from surface and slap them on your axle? Price of parts today, some people don't want to take metal off new parts. Beer 4U2
(excuse me for being so long)

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