When you are opening a new restaurant, one of the largest bills you will face is for new catering equipment. The size and complexity of the units that you need, from refrigerators to ovens and deep fat fryers, means that a large chunk of your start up costs will be eaten up almost immediately. It is not surprising, then, that many new restaurateurs will be tempted to buy second hand catering equipment, hoping to save money. Whilst this is acceptable for some items, there are pitfalls which should be considered before deciding on a second hand catering equipment purchase.
Wear And Tear
There is no doubt that some catering equipment will be useable for many years, and if you are on a tight budget it is sensible to buy these items second hand. Prep tables are one example of this. Anything without moving parts and not showing signs of rust or missing parts should be acceptable. The real problems arise when you are buying second hand electrical appliances.
One of the major pitfalls in buying second hand appliances is that you have no warranty with them. Either the warranties have expired, or details of them have been lost. Without a warranty, if a problem develops you are on your own. This can be extremely frustrating, as the likelihood of faults occurring increases the older the item is. You could find yourself spending more on repairs and replacement parts than you would have done on a new appliance. It is an issue that many restaurant start ups face and it is a gamble you need to consider carefully. Buying brand new items may appear to be an expense too far, but remember that these items hold their value well. If your restaurant did fail, you will be able to recoup more of the cost of newer items than a second or third hand ones.
Think Carefully You should think carefully before buying second hand appliances for your kitchen. By all means, save money on items that can’t break down. Even smaller electrical items, which would not break the bank to replace if they broke, can be a good saving if bought second hand. But larger items, such as ovens and refrigeration units might be an investment worth making. Having the peace of mind that comes with a reputable manufacturer warranty is priceless. Sometimes there is damage to second hand equipment that may not be immediately apparent. Do you know that it has not been dropped, or had multiple previous repairs and problems? You should consider all these pitfalls before making a decision.