With so many new brands of laptops in the market today, why would anyone consider buying a refurbished laptop?
Well, some circumstances may require it: you might suddenly lose your laptop through theft, or it might crash on you, and you need a replacement as soon as possible.
Cash is another factor: if you’re looking to save money, a refurbished laptop can be the perfect solution.
If you’d like a laptop for your child, for example, to test their level of responsibility, you could start them on a refurbished laptop before splurging on a more expensive machine.
In addition, you might simply not be a heavy computer user.
If you only do the basics, such as word processing, web browsing and entertainment, not heavy usage such as gaming, a refurbished laptop is an excellent solution.
Despite all these advantages, there are lots of horror stories about refurbished laptops. As with all secondhand or used electronics, there is a fear of being ripped off or getting a device that might fail after very short use.
However, if you check your expectations, and keep these tips in mind, you can find a refurbished machine that meets all your needs without fear.
1. Buy reputable brands.
There is no limit to the brands of refurbished laptops on the market today, but Dell is highly recommended.
They refurbish their own machines, so you can be sure of good quality with a Dell refurbished laptop: you can identify them by the handwritten serial numbers on the laptops that confirm that the device has been thoroughly cleaned and checked.
They also come with genuine OS installed, so you won’t need to worry about any error messages that your copy of Windows is not genuine.
Confirm this by right-clicking on the Computer icon, then “Properties”, and then checking under the “Windows Activation” section.
2. Expect about half the brand new battery life.
For example, if the brand new laptop promised eight hours of battery life, a refurbished laptop may give you three or four hours tops.
This should be good enough to serve your needs because you ideally would carry your laptop cable wherever you go anyway, and it should be sufficient if you’re using your refurbished laptop for basic or light tasks.
3. You will need lots of updates.
Your refurbished laptop will likely come with an old version of Windows, so the first thing you will need to do is to get connected to the internet and get all the necessary updates and drivers – display, Bluetooth, sound, and so on – to make your machine work perfectly.
Refurbished laptops often come with a version of Windows 7, but if you would like to upgrade to Windows 10, ensure that the laptop you purchase has enough RAM to run Windows 10.
This is because refurbished laptops are generally older models, and sometimes they may not have the capacity for OS upgrades or RAM expansion.
4. Buy in person, not online.
With refurbished laptops, it is important to get your eyeballs on the device yourself.
Refurbished laptops are used laptops, so look for signs of wear like faded keyboard letters or a worn touchpad.
In most cases with factory-refurbished laptops mentioned in #1, the hardware should be intact, but it’s best to check everything from the screen to the battery charger.
When you’re buying it in person, you can also check the startup time to gauge the laptop’s speed. A refurbished laptop can be a great choice when you’re shopping for a laptop.
These tips should get you closer to finding a refurbished laptop that can serve you just as well as a brand new one at a fraction of the cost.