OEM Vs. Aftermarket Subaru Rotors: Which Type is the Better Investment?

It can be expensive to replace your rotors, so it's not surprising when Subaru owners turn to aftermarket options. Aftermarket rotors can be cheaper upfront than OEM rotors. But not always -- see the last section of this article. So, do they really deliver more value than OEM rotors do?

If you ask us, the answer is no. Read on to find out why.

Are Aftermarket Rotors Really Cheaper Than OEM Rotors?

Old subie rotors

A big selling point of aftermarket rotors is the fact that they're typically cheap upfront. However, are they really that cheap when you take into consideration their lifespan and reliability in the long run? Not always. The saying "you get what you pay for" especially rings true when it comes to aftermarket auto parts.

It's common to run into problems with aftermarket rotors after some time. Not only that, but also aftermarket rotors tend to cause problems with related parts like brake pads. It's because aftermarket rotors aren't built with the right specs or materials.

When it comes to replacing your rotors, OEM is the safest bet. Here’s why:

1. OEM Rotors are Made to the Right Specs

Aftermarket manufacturers rarely follow OEM specs. Instead, they create their own specs, which are often universal. This approach may be okay with certain parts that don't directly affect your Subaru's performance or safety. Since rotors play a big role in your car's braking power, it's very important for the rotors to be built to OEM specs.

A rotor is basically two plates with cooling fins between them. The fins and the cooling plates have to be designed to have a certain thickness in order to absorb an appropriate amount of heat and stop the vehicle on a dime.

Subaru spent a considerable amount of time and resources developing and testing their rotors. As a result, OEM Subaru rotors are the ideal size for great performance and reliability.

2. OEM Rotors Are Built With the Right Materials

Your car's entire braking system is based on the compatibility between the rotors and brake pads. Subaru developed the right material makeup for its OEM rotors to ensure that they're not too hard or too soft for the brake pads. The right material makeup will ensure:

  • Even heat dissipation
  • Long lifespan
  • Good, solid contact with the brake pads

Aftermarket rotors are rarely built with the right materials. It's common for aftermarket manufacturers to cut corners with cheap materials. This results in rotors that are too hard or soft for the brake pads, which means a shortened lifespan and braking performance issues.

3. OEM Rotors are Backed By a Warranty

Subaru offers a 1-year unlimited mileage warranty on genuine OEM replacement parts as long as you can supply proof of purchase and maintenance. It's pretty rare for an aftermarket manufacturer to offer a comprehensive warranty on their products. In fact, most aftermarket manufacturers don't even warranty their products. That means you would have to spring for a whole new set of rotors if your aftermarket rotors fail. That would negate the whole purpose of saving a few bucks on aftermarket rotors in the first place.

Where to Find OEM Rotors Online at Wholesale Pricing

New subie rotor

Are you shying away from the idea of replacing your rotors with OEM rotors because you’re under the impression that OEM rotors cost an arm and a leg? You’ll be pleased to find that’s not always the case.

At SubaruPartsPlus.com, we offer wholesale pricing on genuine OEM Subaru parts, including rotors. You’ll save about 30% on OEM rotors if you order from us. We also ship fast, which is a huge plus if you need your new rotors as soon as possible.

Look up your Subaru in our catalog to see if we have rotors designed just for your car. Please contact us if you need help finding the right part number.