Should I buy used computer spare parts?

Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central

Best answer: You should consider buying used PC components if you are looking for a good deal and understand that these parts may not perform as well as their new counterparts.

It’s possible to get a good deal when it comes to refurbished or used PC components, but like any second-hand purchase, you’ll want to know some of the negatives when it comes to used items, especially PC components and parts.

Why buy used

Advantages:

  • You probably don’t need New
  • Save the environment (ish)
  • Buy more powerful parts at a lower cost
  • To save money

The main point when it comes to looking at new PC components is that you don’t really need new parts. It’s great to unbox that shiny new processor, but you don’t really do it need it must be brand new. Grabbing a working processor from someone else, saving up to 70%, is a superb OK. This means that you can either spend more to get a better-used part or spend more on something else.

Potentially save a lot on used parts compared to new parts.

Even if there is something wrong with the product itself, like cosmetic damage, as long as everything is working as intended, you will be good to go. It also means that you will do your part to keep as much equipment out of landfills as possible. Not everyone recycles electronic equipment, so removing parts from someone else means the part will benefit from extended use before finally reaching end of life.

You also never have to feel cheap when looking at second-hand hardware for your PC. That GPU you get for less might just be a throwaway due to the previous owner asking for an upgrade. It doesn’t make sense to throw away the old unit, so if this is an upgrade to your system, why not take advantage of it?

Why you shouldn’t buy used

The inconvenients:

  • Kiss that guarantee goodbye
  • Difficult condition to examine
  • Unknown wear
  • Some parts should always be new (PSU)

The warranty for a particular product is usually tied to the original owner through proof of purchase, so be sure to check the general condition of anything you buy from someone and take note of any fault. However, buying used from a retailer tends to come with a limited warranty on the item. That said, it can be difficult to examine the condition of a part, such as the CPU, without having advanced technical knowledge. Manufacturer refurbished products generally have their own warranties from the point of purchase, although they are often shorter than the warranty for a new purchase.

Used parts are not all good and are probably not covered by the warranty.

While used components can be a good plug, there are some components that should always be bought new. Namely motherboard, power supply and hard drives (including SSDs). These parts, in particular, are very important, especially the motherboard. In my opinion, it’s just not worth going for a second-hand power supply or any other storage drive you will be using on a daily basis. Hard drives suffer from mechanical wear and tear, so to get maximum life from them, you should always renew them.

In the worst case scenario, the used motherboard or power supply unit may appear to be in excellent condition to the naked eye, but it could fail prematurely and take other components with it. This is something you don’t want to happen that would end up costing you more to fix, and you have no way of verifying how hard the previous owner pushed your newly purchased parts. The last point to emphasize is confidence. Research who you’re buying from if it’s online and always test your used equipment before reassembling everything.