Pay Later With Paypal! 0% Interest Across 3 Months. Find Out More

28 Sept 2023
Why Buy Refurbished?
Why Buy Refurbished?

Buying a refurbished computer is great for your wallet and the environment. Find out more about the pros and cons and what to look out for with Stone Refurb.

Why buy a refurbished laptop or desktop?

Buying refurbished tech - like desktop PCs and laptops - is great for the environment, and can give you the chance to pick up high-spec, well-built devices for a fraction of what they would cost new. 

Same as with anything, there are a few pros and cons, and some things to be aware of before you take the plunge. We’ll take you through exactly what refurbished means, and what the benefits (and possible pitfalls) are. Hopefully, this will help you decide whether refurbished tech is the right option for you. 

What is a refurbished PC?

When you buy something new, it’s exactly that. Box fresh, never been used, and with a healthy warranty and consumer rights. 

When you buy something second-hand, you’re taking a chance that the seller has described it honestly. You’ve no comeback if it stops working after a few weeks. 

So where does refurbished fit? Somewhere between the two. 

Our refurbished PCs and laptops are mostly ex-business machines. We buy them from the companies that have been using them (who would otherwise probably dispose of them in landfill), professionally refurbish them and sell them to you at a bargain price. 

You have the same consumer rights as if you’d bought new, including a warranty, you help to keep perfectly good tech out of landfill and you get a device with great specs for peanuts.

Is a refurbished computer worth it? 

We think so, and our customers agree


The refurbished ex-business devices we sell are generally built to a higher specification and with better quality components than cheaper consumer kit. 

If you’ve ever had a cheap laptop then you’ll know that they can feel a bit plasticky and flimsy, and not really built to stand much abuse. Business devices are the opposite. They need to withstand day after day of constant use, so everything is much sturdier and more solid. 

Business devices also need to last a full replacement cycle. That means that they’ll be bought new, passed on to an employee, and then need to be used for three or four years - without needing any major maintenance or repair. 

So more often than not, they’ll be built to a much higher spec than is really needed for the basic office tasks they’re likely to be undertaking. They’ll have more RAM than needed, plenty of storage space and mid-to-high-end processors instead of entry-level ones. 

That means that a refurbished PC will probably never have been overly stressed, so all of the components will have plenty of life left in them. You’ll also often find that a three-to-four-year-old midrange processor (like an Intel Core i5) will still outperform a newer entry-level CPU (like an Intel Core i3) in many tasks. 

On top of all that, we go through an in-depth checking process on every single device that we sell. We’re confident that you’ll be happy with your new device, but if something does slip through the net, or goes wrong unexpectedly, our warranty has you covered.

The other great thing about buying a refurbished device is the sheer amount of choice you have. Want the cheapest laptop you can find to type an email every couple of weeks? No problem. How about a pro-level workstation with a monster CPU and GPU? Yep, we have those too. And pretty much everything in between. 


Is it good for the environment?

If you’re buying tech, then buying refurbished is great for the environment. 

First up, you’re helping to keep it out of landfill. According to, in the first six months of 2021, the UK produced a frankly mind-boggling 148,134 tonnes of electrical waste. That’s the equivalent of 15 Eiffel Towers. 

Buying refurbished kit helps to bring that down.

The other great advantage for the environment is that it cuts down the need to manufacture new components. Producing computer parts pollutes. A lot. Current processes use huge amounts of fossil fuels and chemicals, so cutting these down is great for the environment. 

Using better quality kit for longer rather than cheaper, disposable stuff has to be a good idea right?

What do the different grades mean?

There’s no standardised grading for refurbished computers, so if you’re considering buying it’s worth having a read through the descriptions on the site you’re on.


We have a detailed guide on our grading system on our site. In a nutshell, Grade A is almost like new, Grade B is pretty good but may have some cosmetic scrapes and scratches and Grade C is fair, but you’ll know it’s been used - there will be more obvious signs of age and use. 


We also have open-box devices which are pretty much new - they’ve been bought, delivered, opened and returned without being used. And ex-demo kit is exactly that - and has generally been only lightly used. 

Whatever grade you go for, anything that’s integral to the function of the device - like the screen, CPU and hard drive - will be in good working order.

Do I get a warranty?

If you buy a refurbished PC from Stone Refurb then you’ll get a full year’s return-to-base warranty on the hardware.


That means if it develops a fault within a year, you can get in touch and we’ll sort it for you.

What is a Microsoft Authorised Refurbisher?

Every computer sold by a Microsoft Authorised Refurbisher (like Stone Refurb) will be supplied with a genuine copy of Windows installed and ready to use. It’ll be free of any defects, malware or viruses that could affect your PC usage, your privacy or your security. 

The requirements we have to follow to keep this certification are strict, so by buying from a Microsoft Authorised Refurbisher you can be confident that your new device will be professionally refurbished and have any data securely wiped.

Are there any downsides or risks?

When you buy a refurbished computer it’s important to remember that it’s not new. If it’s an ex-business machine, like most of our stock, then it will probably have been used every day for a few years. That means that you should expect a few signs of use, like minor scratches and scuffs. But our detailed grading system should help you to understand what you’re getting, and if you’re not happy you have 30 days to return it to us for a full refund.


It’s also worth bearing in mind that components probably won’t be the latest models - though our listing pages will let you know exactly what you’re getting. On the flip side, business PCs are often over-specced with powerful components. This means they won’t have been stressed in their previous life and will be more than capable of running modern apps for years to come. 


If you’re buying a laptop, the battery will have been used already and may not last as long as a brand-new one. But our refurbished business laptops tend to have much better quality, high-capacity batteries than cheaper consumer devices, so the difference might not be as pronounced as you think.

Is a refurbished computer right for me?

Do you want a great quality new computer or desktop with an unbeatable price-to-performance ratio? Are you not too fussed that it’s been around the block a few times? Do you like the idea of doing a little bit to help the environment? Are you happy with older tech as long as it does what you need it to? 


Then a refurbished PC could suit you down to the ground. 


On the other hand…

Do you absolutely have to have the newest, shiniest kit? Does the idea of someone else’s greasy fingers on your new keyboard make you shudder? Will the tiniest scratch have you ready to chuck it in the bin?

Then refurbished might not be the right option for you.


If you do decide to buy a refurbished computer - and we really do believe that the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages - then we stock a wide range of laptops and desktops, to suit almost every need and pocket. Why not have a browse and see if there’s something for you?