The main benefit of buying used treadmills is the money that you save. You’ll spend at least $1,000 on a high-quality new treadmill, which is a lot of money for exercise equipment. When you buy a used treadmill, however, you can expect to get a significant discount – sometimes as much as 50 percent!
While saving money is a big incentive to buy used, there are certain things you need to be aware of before you buy. Before you buy any treadmill (new or used), you need to do your research. That used commercial-quality treadmill you found online may seem like the deal of the century, but it could be a total lemon. The best ways to avoid this are to know what to ask the seller and to learn more about the machine itself.
Buying used is always riskier than buying new but you can reduce your risk by following the following guidelines:
Get Information from the Seller
You should have a list of questions to ask the seller of the used treadmill you are interested in buying. Here are the important questions to ask:
- Why are you selling the treadmill? You want to find out what the motivation is of the owner. Is he selling because he’s moving or doesn’t use it anymore, or is there something wrong with the machine?
- Who used this treadmill – and how often? The more the treadmill was used, the more wear and tear the machine will have and the more likely it will be in need of repairs. You want to look for used treadmills that have as little use as possible.
- Was the treadmill properly maintained? You want to get an idea of how good the owner was with treadmill maintenance. Did he keep it clean and lubricated? And when you go take a look at it in person, does it look like it’s been taken care of – or is it covered in dust and is the deck covered in dirt and grime?
- Was the treadmill ever serviced? It is important to find out the service record of the treadmill. If it’s been fixed many times, this is a good indication that it is a bad machine. If it was fixed only once, you may be getting a machine that is as good as new – particularly if a key component was replaced such as the motor.
By learning about how the treadmill was used and maintained, you will have a better idea of its quality. Avoid used treadmills that have had a lot of use and abuse as they will break down faster. A lot of people buy a new treadmill but rarely use it. It’s best to buy from these types of owners because you’ll get a used treadmill that is practically new but significantly discounted.
Learn More about the Treadmill
While you can learn a lot about the machine by asking questions from the seller, you should do some research on the actual treadmill model. Make sure the model you are considering was manufactured by a reputable company. Only pick used treadmills from companies that you’ve heard of and that you know are high quality.
For example, I would feel confident buying any used Sole Fitness or Smooth Fitness treadmill. These are two well-known manufacturers who have been in the home treadmill business for a long time, and their equipment is backed up with some pretty hefty warranties. These are the types of brands you want to look for in a used treadmill.
Also, stick with used treadmills that are newer. Older models, say ten years or older, could potentially be on their “last legs” and could be in need of maintenance. In addition, newer used models will usually have better engineering behind them and will have more bells and whistles as technology has evolved. This is particularly true when it comes to folding treadmills.
Another way to gauge the quality of a used treadmill is by knowing its original warranty coverage. The treadmill warranty says a lot about the quality of the machine. Low grade treadmills will usually have limited warranties on the motor and only a 90 day warranty on parts and labor. Treadmills with lifetime warranties on the key components such as the motor and frame and three or more years on parts are high-quality machines.
You can save a lot of money buying used treadmills but if you aren’t careful, you could end up with a lemon and lots of headaches. By following the guidelines here, you should be able to find a high-quality used treadmill at a significant discount that will last you years to come.