Should I Buy a Refurbished TV?

Refurbished TVs Overview

Often times people ask me should I buy a refurbished TV. It’s actually a very simple process that is often overlooked by many people. This is because of how the TV industry works. They want to always be able to sell to the consumer at full price without much a of discount or deal on the price of a TV.

This is where the myth of refurbished TVs and other products comes into play. A manufacturer will have a new model that is released. Let’s say that approximately 5 percent of those same units failed the in warehouse test. Those same units, granted, did fail the test, but what does the company do with them?

They certainly do not  throw them away. They retest them and regrade the product. This is how new firmware is developed and released. Not to mention how hardware issues are caught.


 refurbished-tvs-trt
What it is: A TV that likely failed factory testing, but was fixed afterwards under a new guideline.
Why it matters: Often times these refurbished TVs are more inline with cheap TVs for sale. This will save your on average 300-500 dollars.
When it matters: When trying to save money when purchasing on a TV knowing that a longer warranty is not available.

The Re-Grading of TVs

Now think you’re a manufacturer and you have a fleet of TVs that are considered “bad” product. What do you do?

In most cases the manufacturer will do one of two things. They will sell to a company that is willing to do the work for them. This will allow them to make some of the cost back while washing their hands clean of the product.
The second and often most common thing they will do if re-grade the product. This involves software and hardware fixes. I’ve listed the most common things looked for when re-grading TVs:

  • Bezel Issues
  • Main Board Problems
  • Screen Defects
  • Stands made of a weak material
  • Sound Panel Problems
  • Internet adapter issues and hotfixes
  • Issues with Propitiatory smart platform fixes

This and much more all will be tested, improved on and then re-graded.

How Good are Refurbished TVs?

To tell how good refurbished TVs are is actually quite simple and I made a small chart to reference if you have purchased a refurbished TV or if you are interested in buying a cheap TV for sale. Note that there are three different common grades that make it easy to tell how good of a refurbished TV you have actually is.

A Grade B Grade C Grade
Bezel Like New Bezel Potential Scratches Bezel Potential Scratches, and dents
Stands Like New Stands Potential Scratches Stands Potential Scratches
Back Side Like New Back Side Potential Scratches Back Side Potential Scratches, and dents
Inputs Like New Inputs Potentially loose Inputs Potentially loose, and small issues
LED Screen Like New LED Screen Like New LED Screen Potential Scratches
Sound Like New Sound Potential Noise Sound Potential Noise
Inside Panels Like New Inside Panels Like New Inside Panels Potential issues, Internet does not work for example.
Warranty 90 Days Warranty 30 Days Warranty Often None

All information here is common within the industry and is subject to change.

TV Grades Summary

A Grade

Also known as “Like New”. A grade is the second most common type of re-graded or recertified TV. This is because it is the hardest to bring up to snuff because there have been more hands touching the product to ensure quality. On the other hand more people touching the product means for a more reliable end result.

B Grade

B Grade TVs are the most common TVs because of the simplicity of how they work and are graded. They are often ran against the same test A Grade TVs would be tested against, but since they are not as cosmetically appealing they fail A testing. Thus making them a B Grade TV.
This translates into savings for you. As long as you do not mind small issues with the TV that do not effect the image produced, you will save some cash on an otherwise most likely expensive TV.

C Grade

C grade TVs are the least common of the three grades for one reason. They usually will come with a small defect or part of the TV that is not working. Some cases are not so bad while others are very bad. In a case where the internet doesn’t work you might find yourself putting up with it to save yourself 500 dollars.
In another case, where the inputs are broken and the screen is scratched you’re not likely going to want to save money for a beaten TV.

Should I Get Extended Warranty TV?

The simple answer is yes. Yes, you should get an extended warranty TV. They will cover small things for your TV that you probably didn’t think about and offer a small cushion on your purchase if issues come about.

First the biggest thing here is that warranties are almost always to the original owner only. That means if you get sold something with a warranty still intact, you’re not likely to take advantage of that warranty for the TV.
The warranty is also often worded as the following:

“The 90 limited warranty covers manufacturing defects in materials and workmanship of your “Insert Brand or Manufacturer” branded product.”

What Does This Mean For Your TV?

Very little. It simply gives you a vague understanding of the coverage your TV actually has. A more detailed understanding is of what your TV is not covered for. I’ve listed an example as the following:

“This limited warranty does not cover any damage caused by: (1) transportation or storage of the product; (2) improper use of the product; (3) failure to follow the product instructions; (4) modifications to the product, except as authorized in writing by “Insert Brand Name”; (5) unauthorized repair of the product; (6) normal wear and tear; or (7) external causes such as accidents, abuse, unusual physical or electrical stress, or other actions or events beyond “Insert Brand’s” reasonable control.

This limited warranty also does not cover disposable items, or parts or components of the product that are inherently subject to deterioration during the normal operation of the product, such as batteries, stands, bezels, screens, etc.

This limited warranty only covers products purchased from “Insert Brand Name” or sellers authorized byInsert Brand Name”, and this limited warranty does not extend to products purchased from unauthorized sellers. You may obtain a current list of authorized “Insert Brand Name” sellers by calling “Insert Contact Number” or emailing our Customer Service Department at support@example.com. Proof of purchase from an authorized seller is required for warranty coverage.”

As you can see, most brands and manufacturers are more willing to tell you what is not covered than what is actually covered.

Warranty Rule of Thumb

The warranty rule of thumb is very simple and should help save you from tons of distress in the future.

  • Ask about a warranty and its length
  • Read the warranty’s details before purchase
  • If something is not covered you need or want covered
  • Do not Get Warranty
  • Do Not Trap Yourself
  • Ask for a better warranty
  • Make sure everything looks fine and covers what you need
  • Get the warranty with purchase
  • Save yourself from being trapped

With what is listed above, you should be able to save yourself from tons of headache all while saving tons of money in the process.

Conclusion

In the end it means you can save yourself some money on an otherwise expensive TV. As long as you’re okay with a TV that might be lacking some smaller features, or have minor cosmetic issues, you will be alright.
Often times you can score a decent warranty to help make the purchase a bi smoother too. Just in case you’re not one hundred percent sure it’s a good deal.

I hope this helps fill in the blanks about refurbished TVs.
Cheers!

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