Alternate Part Numbers
A Simple Explanation as to why a part may have one or more alternate part numbers.
Occasionally, you may be looking for a specific part, and see a message that states that there is an alternate part number for the specific part that you are looking for.
In the parts industry, not just Appliance Parts, this is a common occurrence. This may seem concerning at first, but we assure you, that there's a practical explanation and that the part you are purchasing is an original part.
What is an alternate part number?
An alternate part number is simply the specific part that you are looking for under another part number. This happens for a few reasons, but the two most common reasons are that the manufacturer has either changed or updated the part slightly and given it a new part number, or that the part is an original part under an approved "second party manufacturer".
Let's simplify the above a bit...
For the first reason, the manufacturer may have realized that the part that they used in prior cases could have been improved in some fashion. Because these parts are patented, they can not simply be named the exact same part, and to also avoid confusion as to whether or not a part is the old version or the new version, a new part number is assigned to it.
As for "Second Party Manufacturers" this is simply when a manufacturer chooses to outsource or purchase a pre-made part from another manufacturer. Examples of this could be the drip pan on your range. The part is often made or outsourced by a couple of ORIGINAL manufacturers and used in the ORIGINAL appliance. Another example that may simplify this explanation farther would be the batteries included in an electronics device that you purchased. There are often many manufacturers that make the battery or the cell(s) used in the battery that you have in your original part. The manufacturer, in order to save money but maintain quality will often purchase from different second party manufacturers to get the best deal, and usually the quickest manufacturing lead time in order to streamline their own manufacturing process.
Is there any difference between the part that was originally in my appliance and the one I'd be receiving?
The short answer to this is, yes - there could be but most likely not. As stated before in our article, the manufacturer may at times use or alter a part to give you the consume a better value. This could be making the part last longer, or making it fit better.
In all cases however, the part is without question, intended to be used as a replacement for the part that you will be replacing.
Need some help?
As always, we're here to help assist you in making sure that you are getting the correct part. Please don't hesitate to contact us by clicking on the live chat or going to our contact us page. Afterall, we're consumers too, and we want you to feel how we would want to feel when purchasing something online.