5 Tips for Buying Used Medical Equipment

Buying quality used medical equipment on or off line can be a difficult process because there are a number of potential mistakes you can make that can cost you dearly in both time and money. The marketplace is full of people trying to make a quick buck flipping equipment and they know little or nothing about the equipment they are selling.

 In addition, there are a number of sellers online who may trick you into thinking you are getting a piece of equipment at a great price, when, in fact, it’s a great price simply because it’s only a component of the equipment. 

For example, they may sell you an exam table that appears in the stock photo to be a table with an upholstered cushion, but when you read the fine print, you realize it’s just the base or just the cushions. When you add those pieces, the price climbs pretty dramatically.

At Angelus Medical & Optical Equipment we specialize in buying, refurbishing, repairing and selling used medical equipment. We’ve been in business since 1946 and we’ve seen a lot of companies come and go. And, unfortunately, we’ve heard some real horror stories from our customers who thought they were getting a great deal, when, in fact, all they got was ripped off.

In order to help you not become one of those people, we’ve put together a simple guide to buying the best used medical equipment and we want to share five tips with you to help you purchase used equipment that looks and works as advertised.

5 Tips for Buying Used Medical Equipment that Can Save You a Ton of Aggravation and Money

Is the company legit?

The first thing you need to consider when buying medical equipment from someone is are they a legit company? Let’s face it, the internet marketplace is not terribly well regulated and virtually anybody can put up a website or create an Ebay account and sell medical equipment.

If you doubt this, do a quick search on buying and selling used medical equipment. There are tons of articles on how to do this and make a killing. Well, the reality is that many of the customers who buy from these outfits are the ones getting killed.

When checking out a seller, do a little investigating and try to determine a few things.

Do they have a physical address? Or is their business really just a P.O. box, storage facility or a home? Do a Google maps search and look up the physical location.  Many online sellers of medical equipment are actually just brokers or resellers.

reupholstered medical equipment
Our craftsmen reupholstering exam tables.

Here at Angelus Medical & Optical Equipment, we have a 50,000 square foot facility in Gardena, CA. that houses our warehouse, showroom, shop and painting and upholstering facilities. We’ve been around since 1946 and we’re the only full service company that does everything in house in all of California. You can visit us by coming into our showroom or check us out online where we have tons of pictures of our actual inventory and facility.

Beware of the Bait and Switch

Many online sellers of used medical equipment will post pictures of the equipment that come from stock photos or catalogs from the manufacturer. The actual piece that you are buying looks nothing like the photo.

If you are thinking of purchasing the product always ask if that advertised photo is the actual piece. If it isn’t, make them send you a photo of the piece that you are going to receive. If they hem and haw or give you some excuse, that’s a red flag. Think twice about buying from them.

refurbished medical equipment
Refurbished Exam Tables in our Showroom

Here at Angelus Medical & Optical Equipment, we post photos of our actual  inventory. Sometimes we’re so busy it takes us a while to get to photographing the actual piece, and we use a stock photo temporarily. If you see one of our pieces is a stock photo, just ask and we’ll be happy to send you an actual photo, no questions asked.

Make Sure You’re Buying the Whole Piece, Not Just Part of It.

As I mentioned above, a sneaky practice of some online medical equipment sellers is to post a stock photo of a piece of equipment and then offer a competitive price. At closer inspection, when you choose the configuration, you can see that, for example, it’s only the base, or only the cushions.

When you select both the cushion and the base together, you see the price jump quite a bit. Always read the fine print, and look for configuration options. Make sure you are buying the whole piece not just a part of the equipment. The same is true when comparing prices, make sure it’s the whole piece, not just a part of the piece that you are comparing.

Here at Angelus Medical & Optical Equipment, we post the actual prices of our equipment. There is some equipment that may have different configuration options, but we clearly explain that to you and don’t make you search around trying to figure it out. Furthermore, when you compare our prices to other sellers, our prices are for the whole piece of equipment.

Be Careful Buying Equipment on Ebay

If you read the articles on how to get rich quick selling medical equipment, Ebay is a place that is often mentioned as a great place to launch your used medical equipment empire. What that tells you is that you really need to be careful about purchasing used equipment there.

The pieces are sometimes in “as is” condition, they have not been actually refurbished and sometimes there is no guarantee that that will actually even work. It’s definitely a buyer beware situation. When shopping on Ebay, try to find as much information as you can about the seller. As I mentioned above, do they have a physical address? Is the equipment refurbished or “as is”? Do they back up their equipment with a warranty? 

Also, this is not to say that everyone on Ebay is not reputable. There are some excellent sellers on Ebay. For example, here at Angelus Medical & Optical Equipment we have an Ebay store. We sell our refurbished equipment there.

In fact, the majority of our inventory is refurbished. That means we have had our experienced technicians and engineers do diagnostics on the equipment, replace what was broken, and test and recalibrate to make sure everything is working properly. In addition, we have our craftsmen repaint and/or reupholster the equipment and restore it to a state that looks like new.

repainted medical equipment
Painting Booth in Our Shop

And when it comes to painting, we have a state of the art painting facility, much like the factory where the pieces were made. Some used equipment sellers will simply buy a can of spray paint and tell you their piece has been refurbished. These paint jobs usually don’t last. Our repainting is professional quality and it will be able to withstand considerable wear and tear.

 Finally all of our refurbished equipment comes with a 90 day warranty that includes parts and labor. Make sure you ask other medical equipment sellers about their warranty policy.

Details Matter

Bottom line is this, when shopping for medical equipment, the details matter. Do the people you are buying equipment from have an actual physical location? In this day and age, it’s not absolutely necessary, but it can be a red flag if there is no place to get a return or refund.

 Do they know anything about what they are selling? You want the people you are purchasing your medical equipment from to have expertise in this area. What if your equipment breaks down? What if you need help learning how to set it up or use it? 

In addition, is the equipment you are considering buying used and in “as is” condition which may require additional costs to make it functional or has it been refurbished? And does the equipment come with a warranty? 

All of these details matter. It’s a lot to remember and think about. The goods news is when you purchase refurbished medical equipment from Angelus Medical and Optical Equipment, you don’t need to worry about any of these things.

We sell refurbished equipment, and we do repairs. In either case you get quality craftsmanship and a worry free warranty on parts and labor. If you need your equipment repaired, we also provide a free loaner so that you don’t lose any time or patients in the process.

Are you interested in getting some equipment? Check out our inventory here: CLICK THIS LINK. Use the coupon code 5Tips to get 15% off when purchasing $2000 or more on equipment.