Collision Repair Parts Terms

When you’re having your car repaired after a collision, there are bound to be a lot of auto parts related terms thrown around. We’ve put together a list to help you understand some of them that are less common outside of the collision repair world.

Aftermarket Parts - Replacement parts for a vehicle that were not built by the original equipment manufacturer.

Basecoat - This is a layer of highly pigmented paint that goes over the primer and under a clear coat. It provides color, but requires the protection of a clear coat.

Body Filler - A material that is used to fill in dents on car panels.

CAPA - The Certified Automotive Parts Association, located in Washington D.C., exists to manage testing and inspection of auto parts used in collision repair.

Clear Coat  - A top layer of clear paint (it contains no pigment) that protects and covers a pigmented basecoat.

Collision - The loss that occurs when a vehicle hits or is hit by another vehicle or moving object.

Competitive Parts - This is another term used for aftermarket parts.

Ferrous - This describes metal that contains iron.

Filter - A filter removes contaminates from a material. Your vehicle contains many kinds of filters, like an oil filter, a fuel filter, and an air filter.

Finish coat - Another name for a top coat, clear coat, or gloss coat. However it can also be flat, or without gloss.

Frame - The skeleton of the vehicle is called the frame. It is usually made of steel or other strong metals and holds things like the suspension system, the engine, and the body together.

Galvanized - A steel that is coated with zinc is galvanized.

LKQ - Like Kind and Quality describes an auto part that was salvaged from another vehicle - usually another of the same make and model, or one that uses the same exact part.

Panel - The outer parts of a vehicle. The painted surface that you see on a completed vehicle is made of different parts, each of these is called a panel.

Putty - A plastic material used to fill deep holes and wide gaps.

OEM - Original Equipment Manufacturers make auto parts for new cars. If your vehicle is damaged and the part is replaced with an OEM part, it’s being replaced with a piece made by the same place that made the original part.

Substrate - An unpainted and uncoated panel.

Quality Recycled Part - An auto part salvaged from a yard.

Quality Replacement Part - Also called an aftermarket part, this is a new part that was not made by the original equipment manufacturer.


I was extremely happy with everything from start to finish. Everyone working there was polite, informative and quick to deliver. Getting into a car accident can be extremely stressful and all of the associates, especially Jorge helped to take away from the stress. On top of that, my car looks like new again. Thank you!

Ally Simons

Everyone at Clarkstown truly cared about me, and my car. It was returned to me sparkling clean, an unexpected and pleasant surprise. The car looks like it did the day I started the lease, it’s as though the deer never happened. Nice work all around, thanks!

Larry W.

I am extremely happy with my experience at Clarkstown International. The whole process was really easy (checking in, loaner car, pick up) My collision consultant Jorge Acevedo went above and beyond to make sure I was a happy customer. I am very neurotic when it comes to my car and they accommodated all of my needs and concerns. .

Michael M.

Thank you for the great work the car came out great. The repair was done faster than I expected it. I would come back and recommend anybody to get their repair done at Clarkstowns International Collision.

Felix H.