You can save money on electronic devices by buying previously owned or refurbished items. Sometimes you can find a great deal.
I’ve bought several phones and a laptop for less by using a program called Amazon Renewed. Amazon guarantees that these electronics will work and look like new.
In this article, I’ll spell out the fine print about Amazon Renewed and fill you in on similar services from other vendors. Also, I’ll share with you my experiences with buying electronics through Amazon Renewed.
1. What Is Amazon Renewed?
Amazon Renewed is a program that showcases refurbished, rebuilt and previously owned items. On the retailer’s website or app, if you see “Amazon Renewed” on a product page, it means:
- The device has been pre-owned or was a display model.
- The item comes with a guarantee from Amazon.
- The item has been inspected and tested by an Amazon employee or contractor.
The company says that all Amazon Renewed merchandise is “tested and certified to work and look like new by a qualified technician or a specialized third-party refurbisher.”
Amazon promises that you won’t have to worry about finding big scratches, dents or other blemishes you might expect to see on used electronics. But the website adds a qualifier to that promise: “The products have no visible cosmetic imperfections when held 12 inches away.”
The MacBook Pro I ordered through Amazon Renewed arrived in good condition. Other than it being a few generations older than the latest model, I can’t really tell that it’s not a new device.
The two iPhone 8s and iPhone 12 I bought have all worked like new, and I have no complaints.
2. Where Can You Find Amazon Renewed Items?
If you’re looking for refurbished products on Amazon.com, just type “Amazon Renewed” in the search bar.
3. Can You Save Money With Amazon Renewed?
The MacBook Pro I bought on Amazon Renewed cost less than $600. A brand new MacBook Pro with the same specs (though a newer generation) costs $1,299 on Apple.com.
I’ve also saved hundreds of dollars each time I’ve bought a refurbished iPhone, although they’ve all been a few generations behind the latest models.
4. What Kinds of Items Are Available on Amazon Renewed?
As an example of the deals you can find, this iPhone 12 Pro for sale on Amazon Renewed was priced at $789.99 in March 2022. The same model on Apple.com sold for $1,099 brand new when it came out in October 2020.
In addition to laptops and smartphones, here are some other items you’ll find on Amazon Renewed:
- Small Kitchen Appliances
- Power Tools
- Smart Watches
5. Is Amazon Renewed Reliable?
Amazon Renewed products come with at least a 90-day guarantee. That means if your device stops working or malfunctions, you’re entitled to a replacement or refund within 90 days of your receipt of the product.
Note that, to be covered by the guarantee, the product information page must have the words: “Backed by the 90-day Amazon Renewed Guarantee.”
When I got my laptop and iPhones, they all came with a warranty card that gave me a 90-day window of protection.
6. How Does Amazon Renewed Compare to Its Competitors?
You may be able to find similar used or refurbished items in other sections of Amazon.com or on other websites and wonder how they stack up against the Amazon Renewed items.
Below is a marketplace comparison based on the price and warranty information I found when I searched for a refurbished iPhone 12 Pro on Amazon Renewed in March 2022.
|Amazon Renewed||$779.99||90-day warranty|
|Newegg||$869.99||No warranty available for U.S. customers|
If you purchase a refurbished device from Amazon Renewed or any online marketplace, make sure to:
- Inspect the product for any visible flaws. Amazon doesn’t say the items will look perfect, but any imperfections should be minimal.
- Test the device completely to make sure everything works properly.
- Check to see that all promised accessories are in the package.
If you’re looking for another option for low-cost electronics, see what’s on sale at ClarkDeals.com.