On the Line / Operations / Everything you Need to Know about Used Restaurant Equipment

Everything you Need to Know about Used Restaurant Equipment

Looking to buy or sell used restaurant equipment? Here is everything you need to know.

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Whether you are gathering equipment for a new restaurant space, renovating your current restaurant, or closing down shop, you may find yourself needing to buy or sell used restaurant equipment. 

Before you decide to buy brand spanking new appliances or simply ditch your existing items, consider buying or selling used restaurant equipment. You can save precious moolah if you’re opening a new space, or make good money if you’re closing one. 

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Pros and cons of buying used restaurant equipment

Pros

  1. Save money: With used restaurant equipment, you don’t have to shell out cash for a full-price appliance,

  2. Make room in the budget: As you save money, you can spend money. Consider using your savings on marketing or staff training. 

  3. Help the environment: By purchasing used instead of brand new restaurant equipment, you save an item from going to the landfill. Do a happy dance as you think about the positive impact you can have on the planet. 

Cons

  1. Less selection: With new equipment, you have every option and model available to you, but with used restaurant equipment, you’ll clearly have less. 

  2. Mismatched equipment: Some chefs and restaurant owners dream of a gleaming commercial kitchen with appliances that look great together. When you buy used restaurant equipment, you may have to settle for a hodgepodge. 

  3. Takes more time: If you have specific models or a certain brand of equipment you want for your kitchen, it may take time to find them used. 

Where to buy used restaurant equipment

Do you want to buy used restaurant equipment? Start by making a list of everything you’re looking for. Use this handy equipment list to develop your personal checklist. 

Once you know what you want, determine how and where you want to look for your restaurant equipment. Here are a few places you can conduct your search:

  • Facebook can be a great place to buy used restaurant equipment. As a global social media app, you can find items listed locally or expand your search further away. You can use the Facebook marketplace to search for items or look for groups where equipment may be listed. You might look for restaurant management groups, local restaurant industry groups, or check out this group designed for buying and selling used restaurant equipment. 

  • ACityDiscount has been providing restaurant equipment for over 40 years. They have a used equipment section on their website, or you can visit their Georgia showroom in person.

  • Gillette Equipment in Massachusetts has a plethora of used restaurant equipment on their website. They even have a Bargain Corner where they list their best used equipment deals. These deals can’t be delivered, and must be picked up at their warehouse. They also have multiple brick-and-mortar locations, if you prefer to see equipment in-person before purchasing. Just remember, you’ll see the most options online.  

  • You can check out the sale and clearance section on the Central Restaurant Products website to find some scratch and dent deals. These are brand new products that were returned because they were damaged during shipping. If you aren’t bothered by a nick here or a scratch there, this could be a great place for you to find a deal on gently used restaurant equipment. 

Take advantage of your local network and ask around for places you can buy used restaurant equipment. You can try local buy and sell apps like Craigslist or OfferUp, or you may find a local restaurant supply store that has some great deals. 

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Where to sell used restaurant equipment

Instead of taking it to the dump, you can sell used restaurant equipment, so you don’t completely lose your original investment.

Consider the following places:

  • Facebook. Again, Facebook is a great place to find buyers. You have access to people all over the world as well as right in your backyard. Check out restaurant management groups and local restaurant industry groups, like this group. You can also list your items on Facebook Marketplace

  • Manufacturer buyback programs. Some equipment manufacturers will give cash or credit for used items. They can recycle these items to make new products or refurbish and sell them. 

  • Newspaper ads. The newspaper may seem outdated, but posting an ad in the paper can be a great way to reach your local community, and advertise your used equipment for sale. Reach out to local newspapers or magazines to see how much an ad might cost.

  • Craigslist or OfferUp. These sites offer you the opportunity to list your used restaurant equipment for free, and reach your local community. You don’t have to worry about shipping prices, since you can either require the buyer to pick up the equipment or drop it off yourself. 

  • Restaurant supply stores. Any restaurant supply store that sells used restaurant equipment has to get it from somewhere. 

If you can’t resell your equipment in its current condition, determine if repairs are possible. Sometimes, replacing a broken knob or button is all that’s needed to make an item sellable.

If you can’t do the repairs yourself, check out appliance recycling centers or metal recycling facilities. Some equipment may be in such poor condition that even a recycling center won’t accept it. For this equipment, your best option is to get rid of your equipment at the dump. Make sure you follow local trash and recycling regulations to dispose of all equipment correctly. 

How much is my used restaurant equipment worth?

Not sure how to fairly price the restaurant equipment you are selling? Check out these tips.

  1. Research pricing for similar equipment that’s brand new. 

  2. Research listings of other similar used items.

  3. Examine the quality of the used items you have to sell.

  4. Estimate a good price based on similar listings and an honest evaluation of your item’s current quality. 

Remember to be flexible with pricing. If you find an item isn’t selling, try lowering the price or accepting some bartered offers. 

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If you are starting a restaurant or looking for a new piece of equipment, buying used restaurant equipment can be a thrifty way to save some money. Similarly, if you need to get rid of some used restaurant equipment, you can save yourself the total loss of your original investment by selling it. 


Either way, be sure to do your research and find the best avenue for buying and selling used restaurant equipment. Consider the convenience, time, and cost in your decision. 

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