What is a Reconditioned OEM Wheel or Rim?
OEM Wheel or Rim, as you may or may not know, stands for the original equipment manufacturer. Do not confuse OEM with Replica- which is simply a wheel or rim that looks exactly like the original (OEM) but is not. Think of it as knock-off version. Do not confuse OEM with aftermarket either, aftermarket are produced to look for extravagant than OEM and at times may cost more. Let’s look at the basics of OEM New and Used wheel versus Reconditioned wheel.
New OEM Wheels
These are fresh from the manufacturer- they have never been mounted on a vehicle or used for showcase purposes. New OEMs are classified as “used” the moment they step out of the lot. Ten times out of ten, purchasing these brand-new wheels will be costly- the perfect wheel comes at a not-so-perfect price. Brand new wheels/rims are usually what the dealerships provide/sell to their customer(s).
Used OEM Wheel
We use an OEM Grading Scale to determine the quality of each wheel. Grade A wheels/rims are new looking wheels- which may only have a couple of minor scratches or rashes. Grade B & C wheels or rims have imperfections such as scrapes, or minor bends- worn down- with noticeable flaws. The upside about purchasing used wheels/rims is savings. In some cases, people have a better chance of finding a wheel for a make or model that is no longer on the market/discontinued.
Reconditioned Wheel or Rim
A reconditioned wheel is safe and functional for your vehicle. The main difference between Reconditioned and New or Used wheel(s) is the repair process. Any imperfections such as a crack, scrape, blemish, etc. can happen for multiple reasons. Damaged wheel(s) or rim(s) decreases value due to an adverse cosmetic change. To fix this damage, some are “Reconditioned.” During this process, the wheel gets stripped of any imperfections such as curb rashes or bends- to look like new! Please keep in mind that not all wheels/rims are eligible for reconditioning or a cosmetic upgrade. Occasionally wheels are irreparable due to severe cracks or bents! The benefit of a refurbished wheel/rim is lower costs and a like new look.
New wheels are readily available for a price. Used wheels may not look as perfect but offer the same high-quality job. Recon wheels are original(s) except they are enhanced cosmetically.