Refurbished Products may be unused goods a customer returns. For example, products that are essentially “new items,” or they may be defective products that were returned under warranty. Not to mention, being resold by the manufacturer after repairing the defects and ensuring proper functionality.
Surprisingly, Refurbished Products isn’t just another word for used, but the two terms are related. Whereas, used goods, also known as secondhand or pre-owned goods, are products that another person has bought, used, and sold.
Equally, Refurbished goods, also known as reconditioned or remanufactured goods, are products that another person has bought and then, for some reason, decided to return.
Factory Certified Products
These days, it seems like there’s a never-ending conveyor belt of electronics circling our lives. Although few of us can actually afford every device that catches our eye. Price tags on new gadgets are rarely reasonable.
But, if you take a dip into the refurbished market, you can get some of those gadgets at decent discounts. And if you’re careful, they’ll be indistinguishable from the new.
The manufacturer may have repaired a minor or a major fault. It may have been returned because there is cosmetic damage to the product. It could have been returned because the packaging was damaged. There’s also a chance that the buyer just changed his or her mind.
Why buy Refurbished Products?
Firstly, refurbished products can come from any number of sources. And in many instances, the products may have never been used by anyone. Meaning, they are exactly the same as their brand new, fresh out of the box counterparts.
Equally important, the resellers may have either returned them to the manufacturer, or distributor or brokered a deal with companies. In particular, to those that specialize in overstock and discontinued product buyouts.
Below are additional aspects leading to Refurbished Products. Including,
1. Shipping or exterior damage
Minor scratches or dents to the product during shipment would force a retailer to return it to the manufacturer and put on the refurbish checkout lane. Often, there are instances when new products get shipped before bugs discovery.
To enumerate, a simple hardware or firmware upgrade could solve the problem. But sometimes that isn’t really practical. In these cases, someone can take that product, perform the fix and sell it at a discount. Even though it would actually be better than the original version that still had the flaw.
2. Demo units
For instance, products used for sales displays, demo units or products used for review can also end up as refurbished products. Not forgetting, countless days on the counter being;
- banged on by kids,
- open and closed,
- turned on and off a thousand times.
Or even being left on for months at a time and generally suffering constant physical abuse may not be the safest choices.
3. Opened box
The opened box can mean anything. Technically, there should be no issue and the item is “like new,” but the box was simply opened. In some cases, people decide after opening the box that the product wasn’t exactly what they wanted. Perhaps they received the product as a gift.
Opened products that have been returned to a store can no longer be sold as new. Even if they have never been used. The trouble is, you don’t know what happened to that device after it was opened. Of course, perhaps nothing, perhaps everything.
4. Production Defects
The issue is that in most cases, you don’t know why a product has been labeled refurbished. For instance, if a customer just changed his or her mind and returned it. Then the item is basically new and—sweet—you’ve saved yourself a lot of dough.
But with things like “opened box” items, a returns department clerk could have just slapped that label.
When buying Refurbished Products, consider
Important to realize, not all refurbished products/ factory-certified goods are the same. Notably, third-party refurbished products are available but go for the factory-refurbished electronics. And at the end, which comes with the manufacturer’s warranty.
Below are the key aspects to consider before buying factory certified/ refurbished products. Including,
1. Refurbished Products Warranty
Many retailers and manufacturers offer 90-day warranties on refurbs. As mentioned above, for peace of mind you’re better off looking for the full warranty cap.
Unfortunately, credit cards are not likely to extend the warranty on refurbished products. But ask the retailer if you can get an extended warranty on the item. Not that you should buy it, per se, but if the retailer does offer an extended warranty. Hence, it’s a good sign of faith in that product.
2. Refurbished Products Return policy
A liberal return policy means if you can catch any issues early. Generally, do some stress testing if possible. In reality, Target allows returns within 90 days of purchase. Whereas, Amazon and Sony have refund refurbs within 30 days. On the other hand, Apple has a 14-day refund policy. Make sure there’s at least some return policy.
3. Accessories and Other Details
Make sure that the chargers, cables, cords, manuals, software, drivers, etc. are included. And also, whatever else comes with your product package. Additionally, check the complete description and specs list for your product.
Above all, make sure it is the item you are expecting. Whereas, a simple change in model numbers, for example, might mean you’re looking at a different product.
Where can I buy Refurbished Products?
This is the most important thing when you buy refurbished: only shop at reputable places.
Generally speaking, the bigger the brand is, the better your chances are of getting a properly tested device with a decent warranty.
Here are a few official outlets that I recommend:
- Apple Store — Devices are tested and certified with a 1-year warranty.
- Amazon Kindle Outlet Store — Devices are tested and certified with a 1-year warranty.
- Dell Outlet — Type of refurb labeled, tested and certified with “as new” warranty.
- Nikon Outlet — Devices are tested and certified, but only carry a 90-day warranty.
- Lenovo Outlet — Type of refurb labeled, tested and certified, usually has a 1-year warranty.
- HP Outlet — Devices are fully tested and offered with “as new” warranty.
That’s by no means an exhaustive list. There are also some big online retailers offering huge discounts for returned and refurbished goods. The difference is that they don’t usually come with warranties.
Retailers offering refurbished goods:
- Amazon Warehouse Deals — Returned products that are fully tested.
- NewEgg Outlet — Refurbs inspected and repaired. It has an open box and clearance discounts.
- Best Buy Outlet — Devices are fully tested and certified with a 90-day warranty.
You should avoid buying from anywhere that doesn’t accept returns. You will find some apparently amazing deals on eBay and through various online sellers.
But, before you think about buying, read through the seller’s terms and conditions carefully, check its ratings and look for reviews. If it looks too good to be true then it probably is.
In general, technology experts are enthusiastic about refurbished electronics. As a matter of fact, as long as you buy from a reputable source, you can get a convenient product. Especially, that which works just like new for a fraction of the cost.
However, they also stress that it’s important to do your homework first. The more you can learn about both the product itself and the seller, the better your chances are. In particular to avoiding an unpleasant surprise when your package arrives.
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading and have understood some of the main benefits of Refurbished products.
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