Tech Info >> OEM vs Aftermarket: Pinching Pennies has its Price > Page | 1 | 2 |

03-05 350Z Headlamp Bezel: OEM 03-05 350Z Headlamp Bezel: Aftermarket
03-05 350Z Headlamp Bezel: (Left=OEM / Right=AM) Rear Seal: (Left=OEM / Right=AM)

Check out the definition of the OEM bezel in comparison to the aftermarket replica. Not only are the ridges on the center bulge more prominent with the OEM bezel, but the replica has an obvious run in the upper-middle part of the chrome bezel. When comparing rear seals, the OEM seal is made of sturdy rubber which has no seam. The replica is made of soft foam and is joined together at the seam (center of photo). The seam is harder than the rest of the gasket which would result in possible water entry.

03-05 350Z OEM Headlight - Bulb Socket 03-05 350Z Aftermarket Headlight - Bulb Socket

Carefully inspect the above bulb sockets. As you would expect with a quality OEM light assembly, the bulb socket fits perfectly and uses high quality rubber seals to keep the interior leak free. You can clearly see that the plastic mold for either the bulb socket and/or the light assembly are inferior due to the large gap between the socket and light assembly. This gap is a water entry point. Unlike the factory which uses rubber seals around the wire leads, the aftermarket socket uses either hot glue or silicone -- unacceptable.