Your beloved piece of restaurant equipment has gone caput; your budget is lean, so that’s a hard pill to swallow. Nonetheless, you do the calculations. Then, you do them again. But the numbers don’t lie. Now comes the question restaurant owners and operators ask themselves all the time – do I purchase new or used restaurant equipment?
Used equipment may seem the better option upfront, but it’s a high risk down the line. With new equipment, you know exactly what you’re getting.
What to Consider Before Purchasing New Restaurant Equipment
Before you set out to purchase new or used equipment, ask yourself these 3 vital questions:
This question will help you outline your goals and priorities which will always put you on the right decision-making track. For example, can you trust used equipment for your business model? Or how pressed are you for time to get this new restaurant equipment?
Is this new restaurant equipment something that will come in direct contact with food? The foodservice industry has strict safety guidelines, and you don’t want to purchase a part or a whole piece of equipment that will violate FDA standards. With new equipment, you can ensure that it’s safe and up to code. With used equipment, maybe not.
3, Can you trust the restaurant equipment is durable and long-lasting?
Foodservice equipment gets a lot of wear and tear. If you go the used route, it’s going to come with a history of bangs and bruises. When getting new equipment, the purchase of a warranty guarantees if any issues arise, you can have them resolved with little or absolutely no cost to you.
6 Benefits of New Restaurant Equipment
Now, you know what to ask before purchasing new or used equipment. You’ve decided to go the new route. Congratulations, you made the best choice! With new restaurant equipment, you can look forward to these 6 amazing benefits:
Wear and tear? No. Frequent costly maintenance? Not when it’s new! Like any machine, the more your restaurant equipment is run, the more maintenance it’ll need as parts wear out. Moreover, when you buy used restaurant equipment, there’s a good chance you’ll have to call a service company more frequently than you would with a new unit. Not to mention, your required replacement parts might not be readily available. The sheer cost savings down the line with new equipment should make you jump for joy. Another advantage of new restaurant equipment is that your food preparation won’t be competing with the years and years of flavorful food preparation that came before.
Warranties are worth the investment. With new restaurant equipment, the manufacturer’s warranty adds an extra layer of protection from one year to a lifetime that covers equipment malfunctions and damages. That’s considerable peace of mind that can mean huge savings down the line.
The restaurant equipment industry is consistently on the cusp of product innovation. With newer technology comes updated and more efficient machinery and equipment. Additionally, as technology develops, regulations aren’t typically far behind. This means that the used equipment you are eyeing could be outdated in terms of health and safety regulations as well as by industry standards.
When you buy new commercial restaurant equipment, you’re getting what you came for. Not a substitute, not a compromise, not a different piece altogether, but what you want. When you choose the custom route, you get something made specifically for your business challenges and needs.
We touched this in point No. 1. Having just rolled off the manufacturing line, there is no previous history that’ll cause your new restaurant equipment to malfunction months or years down the line. You are guaranteed the lifespan of the product upon purchase. If something does go awry, then you’ve got the warranty to replace or repair the damaged parts.
Time is money. Every moment you spend researching used equipment replacements for your pizza oven, or your freezer, or your cold food table, is time that you were unable to serve your customers or time that your staff could not work as efficiently. Both scenarios leave money on the table. With new restaurant equipment, you get in, get what you need, get out, and return to business as usual.
The Truth About Used Equipment
Let us paint one last picture for you as to the advantages of buying new vs. used restaurant equipment. When you’re looking for used equipment, you’re going to auctions digging through old equipment that is strewn about or you’re going to a used equipment supply company that can claim their equipment is refurbished, but really the company just replaced a few gaskets and gave it a wipe down. In both scenarios, you just don’t know what you’re getting, and it could be much later that you find out the used equipment you purchased is extremely worn out and beyond repair.
Choosing this route takes significant research if you aren’t a seasoned pro who really understands the mechanics of each piece and knows what to look for. This person must also understand all the costs associated with buying used restaurant equipment such as the service fees, repairs, opportunity costs, and other related business costs in order to make more informed decisions. For example, if you purchased a used walk-in freezer and it didn’t maintain its temperature, you’re not only out the expenses of the repair, but you also need to replace the food that was in there as well.
Our word of advice: if you purchase used equipment, purchase pieces with the lowest impact on your daily operations if they were to malfunction. This restaurant equipment includes hand sinks, prep sinks, smallware, tables, shelves, dunnage racks, etc.
Stanford Sonoma has several restaurant clients across the foodservice spectrum. When they come to us looking for new equipment it’s because of a trust factor. Our clients know they’re always getting top-quality products, speedy service, and equipment that last years to come. Because the alternative is scary – trusting your business on the equipment you don’t know has been maintained, or how long it was in use, or even where it came from.