Copiers oftentimes get compared to cars, and it’s easy to understand why. There are several key similarities that can be drawn between the two. But there are also several key differences.
For instance: the decision to buy a brand new one over a refurbished (certified pre-owned).
Why would anyone pay thousands more for a new car when a low-mileage, barely-used car would suit them just fine?
Answer: because cars are a status symbol. They have aesthetic value, and there’s nothing wrong with wanting to look cool.
Copiers, on the other hand, have no aesthetic value. They do not reflect status on your company.
Think about it. When was the last time a potential client walked into your office, saw your copier sitting in the corner, said, “Wow, that’s an impressive copier,” and then immediately proceeded to ink a multi-million dollar deal as a result?
Probably never, right?
The truth is, copiers aren’t sexy. Unlike cars, they have little to no potential to impress the people that matter. So with that said, what reason does one have for buying a copier brand new versus buying refurbished?
Listed below are four more reasons why buying copiers brand new makes zero financial sense.
Buying Copiers Brand New Cost Thousands More Than Refurbished
A brand new commercial copier may cost roughly $20,000, while the refurbished version of that same copier may cost only $5,000 – sometimes even less. Depending on how many machines are purchased and how often new ones are required, the savings gained by going refurbished can add up to a serious improvement in your bottom line over the long haul.
Maintenance On Brand New Copiers Is More Expensive
This really comes down to two factors:
1. The Price of Parts
The price of replacement parts such as drums, rollers, and fusers for the latest generation of copiers is about 2x what it is for the earlier generations. Though the new parts are rated to last longer, the price per page still works out to being more expensive.
2. Experience Of The Technicians
Copiers are highly complex machines with many moving parts, all of which affect one another in some way. For instance, a copier throwing an error code for the fuser oftentimes needs more than just a replacement fuser. There are other internal components that connect to the fuser that may have gone bad. Knowledge of how to fix these problems can only be gained through experience, and experience can only be gained if the machines have been in the marketplace for a long enough time.
Productivity Gains Realized Through New Features Are Negligible
Since the late 80’s and early 90’s, when copiers switched from analogue imaging to digital imaging, there have been few major advances in copier technology. The core functionality remains the same. Copiers and MFPs are used mostly for copying and printing.
The most recent features such as mobile printing and cloud integrations might possibly shave a minute or two off your workflow, but are they really worth paying tens of thousands more in machine and maintenance costs?
Refurbished Copiers Are Just As Reliable As New Copiers
We talked about this bit in our recent article, but as long as the copier has been properly refurbished and is well taken care-of, it should run just as well as a brand new copier. Any copier remanufacturer worth its salt will also provide warranties and guarantees to back their products, so there’s no risk to you.
According to manufacturer spec (and our personal experience), a well-maintained copy machine should run smoothly for about 10 years or 1.2 million pages. If you find that your machines are increasingly breaking down before this, it may be time to reconsider your service provider.
So there you have it. When it comes to copiers, brand new machines offer practically no tangible benefits over refurbished machines, which are just as reliable and productive at a fraction of the price. Unless your company’s prospects are hardcore copy machine enthusiasts (we’re sure they exist…somewhere), do as the financial math tells you: go refurbished.