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Which refurbished laptop is right for you?

9th January 2023Blog PostSustainability

So, you’ve decided that a refurbished laptop could be for you. The potential savings compared to a brand new model make them an attractive option, as does the guarantee of a quality product which wouldn’t be there with a used laptop.

But if you’re in the market for a refurbished laptop for the first time, it can be difficult to know where to start. The best ranges and prices generally won’t be found through the major retailers you might have bought a new laptop from before. And then there’s the matter of getting the most bang for your buck – how can you ensure you’re getting a high quality laptop at a considerable saving?

Office Resale are here to help; here are some of the key things to look out for when shopping for refurbished laptops.

Choose a budget and stick to it

Chances are, you’re keen on a refurbished laptop because of the promise of a low price. While it’s true that you have a far better chance of getting a high quality laptop at a significant reduction, it’s still important to set a budget and to know what you should expect from each price bracket.

Refurbished laptops in the £100 – £250 range generally won’t be the most powerful – they will likely have older processors and less RAM. However, for everyday tasks like web browsing, writing documents and storing photos, you’ll be able to find a suitable model in this budget – at a considerable discount vs. new.

The £250 – £450 price bracket will include a myriad of different laptop types. With some smart shopping, you can find a high-calibre refurbished option with the processing power to accommodate heavier and more varied usage. This price range is perfect for intensive work or creative use.

A budget of over £450 should be enough to get your hands on even more high-performance tech with the best processors, RAM and more advanced graphics cards. People planning to use a refurbished laptop for heavy gaming, for instance, will be best served at this price point.

Know the specifications you want

This is important if you’re buying a brand new laptop, but even more so when looking for a refurbished one. This is because the knock-down prices of many refurbished laptops can be extremely appealing  – but you need to be sure what you end up with is right for your day-to-day usage, not just your bank balance.

Refurbished laptops are also likely to have several replaced components. In most cases, these changes will be like-for-like and sometimes they will even have been upgraded. But you want to be sure they aren’t lower quality. If you have a particular model in mind, always double-check the specs on every unit you’re considering instead of assuming they’ll be the same as new.

Particularly important specifications to look out for include:

  • Processor.This will determine the performance of your new laptop – always look for the most modern processor within your budget.
  • Battery.Battery life is one of the most important factors to consider – especially if you’ll be using your laptop predominantly on the go.
  • Storage.The amount of space you need on your hard drive will vary depending on what you intend to use it for. 250GB of Solid State Drive space should be sufficient for a moderate number of files and applications, but other higher usage levels require more.
  • RAM.RAM is essentially your laptop’s short-term memory – dictating which applications and how many at once you will be able to run. You can always expand your laptop’s RAM by purchasing additional memory.

Laptop condition is key

Refurbished laptop retailers have a responsibility to sell only machines in good working order. However, there is a sliding scale of different conditions that a refurbished laptop might arrive in. To avoid ending up with a model that has more aesthetic blemishes then you’d bargained for, be sure to read up on the laptop’s condition before committing.

Fortunately, there is a handy grading system used by all good retailers to explain the condition of refurbished laptops:

  • Grade A.To earn a grade A rating, laptops will have to be in “close to new” condition. They generally won’t have any visible damage, while they should come with their original box and accessories.
  • Grade B.Grade B refurbished laptops may have light to medium cosmetic damage such as scratches or chips. They should also come with their full complement of accessories, although some of these may be replacements.
  • Grade C.Grade C laptops may have more substantial external damage – although again this won’t affect performance. It’s also likely they won’t have their full range of accessories but they will still arrive with a compatible charger.

A laptop’s age is also a big consideration. While all refurbished machines will be well tested before sale, older models will likely have lost some of their performance – especially when it comes to the processor and battery life. Your task as a buyer is to weigh any savings against the potential pitfalls of an older laptop, and to steer clear of any outmoded technology.

Pick a trustworthy retailer

Some sellers may claim to be offering refurbished laptops when in fact very little refurbishment has taken place. Before agreeing to a deal, read around to find out what your retailer’s experience and certifications are.

IT Resale guarantee the highest standard of refurbishment and testing of any laptop we sell. Our dedicated team of IT engineers are cleared to a high security level (both CRB and CTC). In addition, we are accredited by ADISA Microsoft refurbish and Blancco as a trusted retailer of refurbished electrical goods.

All equipment we sell is covered by a warranty, while our customers are protected by the Consumer Contracts Regulations. When you buy a refurbished laptop from IT Resale you can be confident you’re getting a quality laptop and a great deal.


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