I’ve always had this question and thought you guys would know better than anybody. What is the easiest way to find if a part you’re looking for is also used in another year, make or model? Say I’m huntin’ a starter for a '07 Ford Festiva. Could I use one out of an '06 model or maybe even a Chevy Cobalt? Is there some database for this somewhere? It would be really helpful.
Unless they’ve changed it, the Advance Auto site does (or used to) provide an interchange table.
Another method is to look up another car and make sure the part numbers match but that could be a much slower process.
Some public libraries also carry Hollander interchange manuals that will specify what fits what. Hollander subscriptions are pricy so you would not likely want to go that route.
You can visit most junkyards, too. They can tell you, but they’ll normally want to tell you which one they have in the yard with that part on it.
A lot of online parts stores have a fitment guide. When you look up the part, it will tell you what years and models the part fits. I use car-parts.com and Rockauto.com a lot.
Other than the above, the junk yards subscribe to an interchange book that tells them what parts interchange, but its not free.
The other thing I’ve noticed is on Rockauto.com, when you are looking at a part, if you click on the “info” icon (I think), it will list all the other cars the part goes to.