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What to consider before buying a second-hand laptop

Buying complete equipment such as a laptop on the second-hand market entails certain risks, such as when buying a car: the equipment could have “hidden defects”, not function properly or have some hidden defects that the seller does not tell you about. reports, perhaps because he himself does not know. So, we are going to tell you what precautions you should take before making this purchase.

Your second-hand laptop, always on reputable sites

Laptops vary widely in price depending on the make, model, internal hardware, and how long they’ve been in use, but it’s fair to say that they’re generally not exactly cheap computers. When it comes to large investments of money, you want to know that you have some kind of protection at the time of purchase (legitimate sellers will think the same, obviously) to avoid scams, and that is why the first recommendation is that you make the purchase on sites renowned.

In this regard, large sites like eBay and Amazon are usually a pretty safe bet because of the buyer protections they carry. EBay’s protection policies tend to protect the buyer, so if the laptop is in worse condition than advertised, the seller will be obliged to accept the refund and also pay the costs himself.

Obviously you have many more options to buy a second-hand laptop, but you must be aware that most do not grant this type of protection to the buyer and therefore the purchase must be done at your own risk. If you finally resort to these types of sites to purchase, we recommend that you always pay through PayPal even if you have to pay commissions, since this way at least you can claim the money in case of problems.

Carefully inspect the status of the laptop

Once you have the laptop in your hands, either because you have bought it in one of these sites or because you have met with the seller to make the transaction in hand, you must carefully inspect some specific points of the laptop that we are going to see below to make sure it is in good condition.

The first thing you should do is an exterior inspection of the laptop body: that it has rubbing or scratches can be something normal due to the typical use that these devices have, but that it has cracks or dents necessarily means that that second-hand laptop has suffered a blow or fall and that, therefore, the damage could be not only aesthetic but that some of its internal components have been damaged as well.

Portable dent

Of course you should also check the status of the screen: check that it does not have bumps or scratches, and that when the equipment is turned on it does not have dead pixels. We recommend putting some video in full screen to see moving scenes and thus see that the colors are displayed well, that there are no dead pixels and that the viewing angles are correct.

You should do the same for keyboard and trackpad: turn on the laptop and check that all keys work well; that the serigraphy of the keys is a little worn can be something normal due to use and does not have to influence the operation, but to be sure you must check key by key that all of them work well, and the same with the trackpad.

Laptop key wear

To continue, it is advisable to check that all the ports The equipment works, be it USB or video outputs, but especially the charging port of the power supply, since it is one of the connectors that is used the most and that is why more ballots have to be damaged. Likewise, check that the webcam integrated and that speakers they work fine.

Finally, you should check that the wireless connectivity of the device works correctly, as well as its battery. The latter is difficult to see, but if it is a Mac what you are buying you can go to the battery status to see the charge cycles it has, or if it is a laptop with Windows you will have to disconnect the equipment from the power and see if the battery holds up well.

Finally, and this is the most complicated, make sure that by buying this second-hand laptop you are getting a fair offer for the money you are paying. That the hardware, the time of use and the health of the equipment are worth it for the investment you are making, although this is obviously quite subjective.