Someone Stole Part of my Car. Here’s What I Did About It.
I recently bought a rad 2006 Subaru WRX. It’s got low mileage and it’s in great shape. I was pretty proud of my purchase. So, naturally I was pretty bummed out when, at the end of a work day, I found out the bumper had been popped out and piece was taken out of it. It seems some punk kids (have I really gotten so old that I use the phrase punk kids, now?) saw a cool car and decided to ruin the owner’s day (they were successful).
So I was faced with the question of what I was going to do next. File a police report? The part frankly wasn’t worth enough to make that worth anyone’s time – which does raise the question why anyone would take it in the first place. Seek vigilante justice? As appealing as Charles Bronson made it look, I don’t think that’s my style. In the end, I decided it would be best to just move on and get a replacement. I checked to see if 1A carried the part, so I could get that sweet, sweet employee discount, but sadly we didn’t have it. So now I had to find it on the open market.
So first of all, I had to figure out what to even call that piece. I started searching various phrases in eBay: bumper insert, bumper trim, bumper vent. “Bumper vent” brought up a couple appealing results. They seemed a bit pricey, though, for such a small piece. Many eBay listings use manufacturer part numbers, so you can check your fit. It’s also a convenient way to comparison shop. You can search eBay, Google, and any other resources you want for that part number. The listings I saw did not happen to have the part number, but luckily for me, the 1A purchasing team was able to turn up the part number.
I searched the part number in Google and found it on subarugenuineparts.com. Even better, they had the part already painted to match. The only problem was, I wasn’t sure what color my car is. How am I supposed to tell the difference between Steel Gray Metallic and Crystal Grey Metallic by eye? Sometimes that kind of info is found on a placard inside your door jamb. Not on my car, though.
By sheer coincidence, I also had to replace a headlight bulb around the same time. I noticed an info plaque under the hood, near the firewall. On it, it said, “Color Code: 48W.” Back to Google. A search for “Subaru 48W” told me that my car is Crystal Gray Metallic.
I ordered the part, it came quickly, and I was able to easily pop it into place by hand. I can definitely tell that my brakes feel sooo much more vented with it.