7 Rules for Buying Used Equipment


Used equipment for customization businesses, like embroidery machines, digital printers, vinyl cutters and screen-printing machines CAN be a great way to save money. Or they can be a nightmare your business might not recover from.

That’s why QuipDealio has put together the 7 Rules for Buying Used:

Rule #1 | See it Run

This may not make sense for every used machine you look at, but there’s nothing more useful than a short video watching equipment do its thing! Buying a large automatic screen-printing system, a tunnel dryer or DTG Printer – see it run. Looking for used UV printers or even a small vinyl cutter like a Cricut – see them run. Everyone has a cell phone with video capabilities, so it shouldn’t be a hardship.

The only time the See it Run Rule might not apply is if you’re buying Used, but from a Dealer that will warranty the product. Or if the listing includes the fact that the equipment is not currently in working condition and you, the buyer, understands that.

Rule #2 | Pay Attention to Shipping

The BEST thing you can do if you’re buying used is to go pick up the machinery yourself. But barring that, you need to protect yourself against shipping damage in advance. You can do this by:

  • Requesting pictures of the machine on the inside of the box before it’s closed up
  • Ask for pics of the outside of the box before it ships
  • Inspect it AS it arrives. If it’s a big box, make sure you are there and examine the packaging. Compare it to the original box photos. Take pictures of the package on arrival.

Rule #3 | Payment Methods are Important

You have no recourse if you pay cash for a used item, but if you pay with a credit card you just might be able to get your money back if there’s something wrong. Check the terms and conditions on the payment method you will use.

How does PayPal or Venmo handle a dispute?

Rule #4 | Talk to the Seller on the Phone

If at all possible, just have a conversation with the seller. You’d be surprised what they may tell you – and you may get a “vibe” that makes you want more info or to look for a different dealio.

Rule #5| Talk to a Finance Company

Making payments can often allow you to get a much BETTER piece of used equipment for your budget. It will also free up your cash for business activities that will make you money. Think Marketing, Advertising and maybe some gas for your car so you can go sell the stuff you’ll be making.

Rule #6 | Check on Training

You may be an old pro at using a vinyl cutter or a home-style embroidery machine, but the more commercial machines are different.

Don’t let your business crash and burn before it gets built because you were SURE you could figure out how to do something, or use something, from all the YouTube videos you can find.

You may be a hands-on genius, but maaayyyyybbeeee not.

If you’re buying used commercial machines from a dealer they should offer you training with that.

If you’re buying a decent piece of higher end equipment, like a laser engraver or DTG printer for example, the person you’re buying it from might be talked into showing you how to use it.

Either way, it’s important you think about how you’re going to learn this thing before you buy it.

Rule #7 | Who’s Your Technical Support

Something WILL break. One day, you’ll be in the middle of a project, maybe even your first one, and something will happen to that big beautiful piece of equipment you invested in. And then it’s Ghostbusters:  “Who you gonna call?”

The seller may or may not be willing to help for awhile. Or they may have sold it because they never figured out how to make it work right either.

You might ASSUME that because the machine is pretty new that you can just call the manufacturer and get free support. That, in many cases, is a No.

There are even some great buys on great equipment out there where the manufacturer is no longer in business! So it might be a terrific embroidery machine, but there’s literally no one to call when you have an issue.

That’s not to say you shouldn’t BUY that equipment, you just have to have your eyes open and a plan in place when you do.

Most Popular

Subscribe To The WeeklyDealio

No spam, notifications only about new products, updates.

QuipDealio - Sell Your Equipment

Buying and Selling Used Equipment

Related Posts

7 Rules for Buying Used Equipment

Used equipment for customization businesses, like embroidery machines, digital printers, vinyl cutters and screen-printing machines CAN be a great way to save money. Or they