Should I Buy a Refurbished MacBook?

A refurbished MacBook can be a good option for anyone who wants to save money compared to the cost of a new one. Refurbished options can work like new ones but don’t always have the same warranty or reliability.

This post will explore whether you should buy a refurbished MacBook. I’ll explain why you might want to get one of these laptops and why you might not want to. My goal is to help you make an informed purchasing decision. 

Let’s get started. 

Key Takeaways

  • A refurbished MacBook can give you the same reliable performance as a new one at a lower price. 
  • You should only buy certified refurbished MacBooks if you want a warranty. 
  • If you get a third-party refurbished MacBook, you likely won’t have any coverage or options if the computer stops working. 
  • Refurbished MacBooks can work normally and not have any issues, but they also might come with some problems that a brand-new MacBook won’t have. 

Should I Buy a Refurbished MacBook?

Refurbished MacBooks can be a good option for anyone who wants one of these excellent laptops but doesn’t want to pay full price for one. There are pros and cons to buying a refurbished MacBook, so let’s explore both sides of this question. 

The most significant reason to get a refurbished MacBook is the price. These are always more affordable than purchasing a brand-new MacBook, and those savings can be worth it for anyone to consider a refurbished one. 

Getting an Apple-certified-refurbished MacBook will give you the peace of mind that the computer has been properly fixed up by techs who know what they are doing. It’s the best option for getting a used MacBook. 

You should really only buy a refurbished MacBook directly from Apple and not from a third party. There are third-party options out there, but they might not be as skilled at doing the repairs or offer any sort of warranty on the fixes. 

Apple-certified-refurbished MacBooks will come with some sort of warranty that helps ensure that the computer will last for a while. You can get the MacBook fixed up again if anything happens to it during this warranty period. 

If you purchased a refurbished MacBook from some third party, you should still look for options that offer a warranty. It might not be an Apple warranty, but if a third-party offers a warranty, it shows that they trust in the work they did to refurbish the laptop. 

You might not want to get a refurbished MacBook simply because it’s not new. There is always the potential that a refurbished laptop won’t last as long or be as reliable as a brand-new one. This is a definite disadvantage of buying refurbished. 

Some refurbished MacBooks can work just as well as new ones. But they also might run into operational issues or other problems. Unfortunately, there really isn’t a way to tell if the refurbished option you get will be reliable or not. 

Best Place to Buy a Refurbished MacBook 

The best place to buy a refurbished MacBook, or any other type of refurbished Apple device, is directly through Apple. This will give you the best chance that the MacBook is properly fixed up and basically as good as new. 

You can buy refurbished models from a physical Apple store or visit the Apple store online and search for refurbished options. Some other retailers also offer certified refurbished Macs and MacBooks. 

Be sure that Apple, not a third-party retailer, has fixed the refurbished MacBook your purchase. A third party might offer a lower price, but there’s a good chance the work won’t come with a warranty.

You always want to get some type of warranty to cover any issues that happen with a refurbished MacBook. A properly restored MacBook might not encounter any problems, but it’s always nice to have it covered if they do appear.

Things to Consider When Buying a Refurbished MacBook


The main advantage of getting a refurbished Mac is the appealing cost. If you are ok with an older model, you can save hundreds of dollars by purchasing a used one that has been refurbished.

This is a great way to get all of the amazing features and functions of a MacBook that many people desire, without spending as much money.

Physical Condition

While a refurbished Mac gives you a cheaper price tag, it doesn’t always guarantee brand-new physical condition.

There may be some scratches or dents on the outside of the laptop, but that just comes with buying a used option. Typically, this doesn’t affect how the Mac operates, but it’s good to know about it before you buy.


Another consideration when purchasing a refurbished MacBook is that it may not come with all of the original accessories offered by Apple.

This could mean an aftermarket charging cord or no headphones. That’s not a big deal (there are plenty of aftermarket chargers that are perfectly capable) but it’s important to know about. You aren’t always going to get every accessory you would when buying a new one.

Battery Life

All batteries wear out over time. When you purchase a used Mac, this means that the battery has already been through a number of lifecycles before it’s in your possession.

That doesn’t mean the battery won’t work or last long, it simply means that you might only see 80 percent of the battery life you would on a new computer. It’s a small price to pay for such a discount, but it’s worth taking into consideration.

Useful Tips & Resources

Since a refurbished Mac comes with a little risk, it’s good to properly take care of the device. You won’t be able to get the same warranty or coverage with a refurbished option as you would with a new computer, but that doesn’t mean you can’t protect it.

Getting a quality case to prevent any damage is a good idea. You also need to know how to take care of your battery, as shown in this video:


Here are a few quick answers to some of the most commonly asked questions related to if you should buy a refurbished MacBook. 

Is it worth it to buy a MacBook refurbished? 

If you don’t mind the idea of purchasing a used computer, then buying a refurbished MacBook can be an option worth exploring. Refurbished MacBooks will typically run like new but come at a more affordable price. You should only buy certified refurbished Macs from Apple. 

How long do refurbished MacBooks last? 

There’s no way to tell precisely how long a refurbished MacBook will last. It could work for as long as a brand-new Mac, or it could run into some type of issue and not last as long. It depends on multiple factors, so it is impossible to predict. 

Is Apple refurbished as good as new? 

Apple refurbished is a reliable designation for a used laptop, computer or other devices. You can trust that these products will run well and also come with a warranty, which makes them as good as new. But since they are not brand new, they might not work as well. 

Are second-hand MacBooks good? 

You should only buy second-hand MacBooks that are refurbished directly from Apple. If you purchase a third-party second-hand MacBook, it might not be backed by any type of warranty, so there’s no assurance it will work for a long time. 

Final Thoughts

Buying a refurbished MacBook can be a good option if you want to save some money when getting a laptop. These will cost less than a new one and still give you reliable performance. 

Always choose a certified refurbished MacBook from Apple or a third-party refurbished one that offers a warranty. This will help you cover any issues that occur with the computer when you first own it. 

Have you ever used a refurbished MacBook? Did you have any issues with it? Let me know in the comments below.

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