Counterfeit Roof Rails

Usually when a customer wants Honda accessories installed on their car, they buy through the dealership’s parts department for their service department to install. It’s not often that a customer brings in the accessories to have us install them.

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Because they weren’t bought from us, I was immediately suspicious of the roof rails and crossbars the customer brought in. The first thing I noticed was that the box the roof rails were in didn’t have a Honda parts label, and was shipped from an unnamed fulfillment department. This was for a 2015 CR-V, and I don’t have much experience installing accessories on those, so I couldn’t be sure of whether the packaging was different from what it should be.

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The next thing I noticed was the instructions that came in the box. Honda accessories almost never come with instructions in the box, we have to look them up in the service information system. Looking at the instructions, they were correct, but were missing a few things, like the Honda logo at the top, the part number, and the copyright info at the bottom.

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Then I saw something that made me absolutely sure that these were counterfeit parts. When I looked at the bag of hardware I saw that the bolts had allen heads instead of torx like they’re supposed to. This matched the one previous time I’d seen counterfeit roof rails, which didn’t even fit on the car and couldn’t be installed. At this point I talked to the service adviser and told him what was going on. He came over and looked at the parts and noticed something I hadn’t. The roof rails didn’t even have the bolt holes for the crossbars to attach, essentially making them useless.

The moral of the story is if you want OEM accessories on your car and you find a really good deal online, chances are it’s fake. Buy from a dealership or the manufacturer’s website and you’ll be okay, but buying from somewhere else is taking a risk on getting counterfeit parts that may not work, and you’re probably not getting a refund when they don’t.


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-Dan

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