Most refurbished laptops are simply returned as wrong item ordered by the original purchaser and can no longer be sold as new. However many laptops have a much worse fate thrust upon them rendering them well beyond being reconditioned in any fashion.
Thanks to one of our technicians, Kyle, who used to work as a laptop tech for one of the major computer manufacturers we get an inside look at the basic process of the laptop reconditioned process otherwise known as when can you not refurbish laptop computers by those who are interested.
Several years ago I was a technician in the laptop repair division of one of the major computer manufactures production facilities. This was where the laptops were assembled and shipped off to market by huge trucks. In other words this is where the laptops were born. Interestingly enough this is also where they came as a last resort for warranty repair or to be factory refurbished, reconditioned, or to simply die.
How does a laptop actually die? Well let me give you an example. This is far and away different than finding a great deal marked laptop reconditioned by the way. Say the laptop owner had purchased some form of additional accidental damage warranty coverage when they had originally bought the laptop. Then after a few months or so the laptop was accidentally left on the top of the trunk of the owner’s car as they pulled out of a parking lot and into a busy street.
Let’s say the laptop was then ran over by a few vehicles before the owner could get to it. This is not a pretty site and it actually has happened more than once. Let’s say another owner accidentally dropped their laptop down an elevator shaft from twenty stories up. Well this actually happened as well. I have seen plenty of laptops which have fallen off of boats or fallen into a swimming pool as well. Luckily for the owner they had bought the additional warranty coverage because this type of damage is definitely not covered under a standard warranty. Not by a long shot.
Severely damaged laptops such as the ones mentioned above were obviously beyond being refurbished or reconditioned that’s for sure. So they wind up back at the factory where they will be looked at by a tech and then usually the tech recommends that the laptop simply be replaced.
Under the provisions of the accidental damage type of warranty the owner would have made the various arrangements with a phone tech support department to have the laptop sent back to the factory to be repaired under the accidental warranty coverage. As a technician I can tell you that not every issue can be fixed and not every issue is even worth fixing.
In many instances the overall level of damage means that it would be less time consuming and more cost effective to simply replace these damaged laptops. In the above examples there is no question that the laptops could not be refurbished but even in less dramatic instances some issues are not repairable. The effort to troubleshoot and replace the plastics, the screen, the drives, and possibly every component in essence is not worth it. Ultimately the customer would be best served to just have the laptop replaced.
Other than the birth and occasional death of a laptop computer the factory is the place where refurbished laptops are thoroughly tested and passed through quality control to be offered for sale in the marketplace. A laptop reconditioned or a refurbished laptop is typically a very straight forward process. There will be testing involved to assure that the laptops components function properly and replaced if necessary and usually the reconditioned process will include the re-imaging of the hard drive with the original factory image.
In most cases when a laptop is purchased new and then returned to the store within the return time frame it cannot be placed back out for sale as new. This creates a market for shoppers to get a nearly new computer at a greatly reduced price. Most refurbished laptops for sale will have the warranty still offered on them.
I have always said that refurbished laptops for sale are actually the better buy not only from a price point but because the components have actually gone through all of the quality control checks twice being once when they were first manufactured and then again after they were returned to be refurbished. Obviously for these reasons the items marked laptop reconditioned can be pretty exciting deals.