Buyer’s Checklist

Purchasing used equipment saves you money. It also means you have to do a bit more due diligence to ensure your money is being spent wisely. We’ve put together this checklist to help you make a smart buying decision.

    • ✓ How old is the equipment? The age of the equipment is particularly important in ensuring the model is still supported in case repairs or parts are needed in the future.
    • ✓ How much was it used? Does the equipment have a lot of “miles” on it? Has it been unused in storage?
    • ✓ Has the equipment been thoroughly cleaned? This is particularly important if any hazardous or biological materials were used. It may be important to have third-party certification that the unit has been scrubbed of all materials and is safe to use.
    • ✓ Has the equipment been tested? Make sure the unit has been thoroughly tested and is in good working order. At BioSurplus, we test equipment when we purchase it and again before we ship it to customers.
    • ✓ Is there a warranty or guarantee?  Check to see if the equipment is still under factory warranty and if that is transferrable. If not, be sure to get some assurances from the vendor providing the equipment. Our warranty program guarantees your satisfaction with the product you purchased.
    • ✓ Can I afford to repair/replace the equipment if it breaks after the warranty? Even with thorough testing, equipment can still fail. If that happens after the warranty expires, can you afford to repair or replace it? How long can you go without a working unit?
    • ✓ Is it still supported by the manufacturer? Check to make sure the model is still supported by the manufacturer in case you need parts for repairs or you need to update software licenses. If it is no longer supported by the manufacturer, it may be supported by a third party.
    • ✓ How helpful is the company who sold the equipment if something goes wrong after the warranty expires?  Check online reviews on the company you are buying from and ask colleagues about any experiences they may have had.
    • ✓ Was it under a service contract before being resold?  Check to see if there is a service log. If so, review it to see if the unit was serviced regularly, if there were any recurring issues, and to check the history of the equipment. Check for the last time preventive maintenance was performed.
    • ✓ Do I have the space and ability to get the equipment into the lab? Be sure you can get the equipment into your lab without altering the structure of your lab and that it fits into the space you have designated for it. Be sure there’s room to operate the unit and service it in place if possible.
    • ✓ Will the equipment need to be installed professionally?  If you need assistance in getting the equipment installed, be sure to check with the vendor to get the help you need or have a third party who can help.
    • ✓ Are you buying the equipment from abroad or planning to use it abroad? If so, make sure you have the right power plug and voltage requirements to run the equipment. Also check to see if there are any restrictions or custom regulations inhibiting shipment of that equipment? (if you need it shipped to a different country)

We hope this check list will help you purchase the right piece of equipment, from the right vendor. Each situation is unique and not all of these may apply or there may be other considerations. As always, our staff is here to help. Just reach out to us at: or call 858-550-0800.