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OEM, OCM and After Market Parts – What’s the Difference?

Did you know that Tundra Restaurant Supply first started as a parts company back in 1993? Determined to empower restaurateurs to take DIY into their own hands and bypass costly service calls, Tundra quickly grew a diverse restaurant parts catalog that features over 22,000 different kinds of parts (including a wide assortment of Original Parts) for in and out of the kitchen.

When searching for restaurant parts you might come across terms like “OEM,” “OCM” or “Aftermarket”—but what do they actually mean? Find out below:

OEM Parts

OEM parts stands for “Original Equipment Manufacturer” parts, and often refer to parts with specific branding. The best way to think about OEM parts is to think about brand-name versus generic products in the grocery store—in many cases, these products are identical but just feature different marketing.

OCM Parts

OCM parts, which stands for “Original Component Manufacturer” parts, are frequently made in the same factory as OEM parts and undergo the same rigorous testing standards. Though OEM parts are associated as being higher quality, in many instances the parts are completely identical.

Original Parts are a type of OCM part. Unlike some inferior OCM parts on the market which are not tested, Original Parts must pass the same standards and tests as OEM parts before they leave the factory. Original Parts are also backed with a 6-month warranty, twice as much as the 90-day warranty found with most OEM parts. So why are Original Parts significantly cheaper than OEM parts? Primarily marketing. Because Original Parts removes the middleman from the production chain, you’re only paying for the part itself (not the administrative overhead that goes along with an OEM part). And with hassle-free returns, if the part is not to your satisfaction you can get it replaced or return it for a full refund within 6 months of purchase (though with Original Part’s guaranteed performance, we doubt you’ll be returning it anyways).

Some manufacturers like to scare customers into buying OEM parts by telling them that using non-OEM parts will void their equipment warranty. This is true, but with a catch. For most restaurant equipment, the warranty only lasts a year, with maybe a 2 or 3-year warranty for specific parts. Typically parts fail on equipment well past the warranty date, which if that’s the case for you, there’s no problem in using an OCM part. That said, before purchasing any new parts always check with your manufacturer to see if your equipment (and the parts inside) are still covered under warranty.

Aftermarket Parts

When you see parts marked as “Aftermarket” it indicates that these parts (and accessories) are part of the secondary market, and are typically not made at the same factory as an OCM or OEM part. Aftermarket parts are a great way to acquire replacement parts at a fraction of the cost. For example, parts like replacement cutting boards for prep tables are a great way to save some money while still updating your existing equipment.

About Tundra Restaurant Supply

Tundra Restaurant Supply features over 60,000 products including restaurant supplies, equipment and equipment parts , a sweet eCommerce site with all the bells and whistles, a whole restaurant design and opening package team, low prices without sacrificing quality and more smart customer service reps than you can shake a stick at. If you'd like to browse Tundra's site, visit www.etundra.com.

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