Laser brokers typically give you a 90 Day Warranty when you buy a used laser, but they are really just gambling that it won’t break down during those 90 days. If it does, they have to get someone to service the laser, get parts etc. so be ready to be down for awhile if this happens. In addition, the cost of the repair is coming out of their gross profit from the sale, so they may wish to drag their feet to avoid paying these costs. A good broker will deal with the issue head-on and get it taken care of immediately. Every day that your laser is not functioning is a day you are losing money and the broker should and must respond QUICKLY to this emergency.
Paying top dollar for new equipment allows peace of mind with warranty protection, but it comes at a very high cost. While it is true that most used laser equipment is no longer under a manufacturer’s warranty, research has shown that you are almost ALWAYS better off buying used equipment and paying out of pocket for maintenance and repairs versus buying new and having it covered under warranty. You are simply paying too high of a premium for the luxury of buying new. If peace of mind is the issue, then buy a back-up piece of equipment at a 70% discount that you can rely on when your primary equipment goes down. The reality is you will still be paying less than buying the brand new piece of equipment or a manufacturer’s warranty.
The truth about buying manufacturer warranties is this: They are extremely expensive and are written HEAVILY in the favor of the manufacturer. If nothing goes wrong with your laser device while under warranty, you normally have nothing to show for the money you have expended. We call this “vaporware” because the only thing you bought was a little peace of mind for a short period of time. This money can never be retrieved and is forever lost. Instead of buying “vaporware,” how about buying a back-up piece of hardware? This will give you peace of mind AND something to actually show for your money.
Laser companies do not like customers buying on the used market. They will treat you like a second class citizen and you will get third rate service and response from them. Depending on what laser you are looking to buy and how much training and upkeep it requires should be the main factors. Certain lasers have a good history of maintenance and others have a poor. It will be important to do your research on which lasers and manufacturers have a history of reliability and quality.
You also need to find out which laser manufacturers are user-friendly to pre-owned equipment. Some manufacturers can charge you a laser “RECERTIFICATION FEE.” Recertification fees are sometimes required by the manufacture if the laser device is sold to someone else. The laser manufactures claim it is to ensure the device has not been tampered with, however the real reason is to protect the manufacturer from being undersold by doctors looking to sell their used equipment. Charging a “recertification fee” levels the playing field between the new and used price. These fees can be as high as $25,000.
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