We receive calls frequently from folks asking if we sell used refrigerators. We do not. However so many of these callers purchased a used refrigerator, and then found out it doesn’t cool. That can put people in a difficult situation with no refrigerator and no money. We wanted to provide you with a guideline on what to do when purchasing a used refrigerator.The most important thing to do before picking up a refrigerator is to have the seller plug it in 24 hours before pickup. DO NOT BUY A REFRIGERATOR THAT YOU CAN’T TELL IF IT’S COOLING.
Have a list of questions ready to ask the seller about the used fridge that he or she is selling. You should be able to get a feel for whether the appliance is a fit for your needs. Some questions should be asked by phone, text message, or email before scheduling your appointment to see the fridge in person. Consider asking:
Why are you selling it?
The answer to this question will tell you plenty. If they are simply moving to a place that comes equipped with a refrigerator or are remodeling their kitchen and are choosing to recycle their old unit, the item could be a top-quality find.
Is there anything wrong with it?
Most people will be honest about any imperfections or problems, and then you can decide whether it’s something you can live with or fix.
Are you the original owner?
A one-owner appliance is as desirable as a one-owner car, in that this person knows all about its history. Plus, if a person owned something for a length of time, chances are it wasn’t a lemon.
What does is look like?
Hopefully, the ad where you spotted a potential refrigerator has posted a photo of it, inside and out. If not, ask about color, condition, shelves, and storage bins, in order to assess whether it will meet your needs.
Does it have all its parts?
Make sure everything is included such as shelves, containers, and door handles, or research whether you can easily replace them.
6. Inspect the Unit
When you’ve narrowed your search down to a few units, it’s time to visit each one in person. Be prepared to perform a thorough inspection, and if you can bring a friend or relative with you for a second opinion, all the better. Here are some things to look for:
A fridge that has been around for more than a decade is probably too old. While appliances of the past are known for their quality craftsmanship, they aren’t as energy efficient as you’d like them to be. Even a very low-cost item could turn out to be expensive in terms of utility bills.
If possible, check the internal temperature of both the freezer and the fridge. In order to keep food from spoiling, these temps should be 0°F and 38°F, respectively.
Once a repugnant odor becomes imbedded in an appliance, it’s exceedingly difficult to get rid of the smell, so take a good whiff before you buy.
To test for a tight seal, insert a piece of paper between the closed door and the unit. There should be resistance as you attempt to remove the paper. If not, check to see if the problem can be remedied by tightening the hinges, or move on.