Should You Buy a New or Used Office Chair?
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Should You Buy a New or Used Office Chair?

|Dec 1, 2021

If you spend a lot of time seated on an office chair, you have probably heard about the importance of choosing an ergonomic chair

These chairs are specially designed to allow your body to assume a safe seated posture that prevents strain to your muscles and joints while you are seated, which can lead to aches and pains over time. 

Unfortunately, the best ergonomic office chairs are often very expensive, which is why many people often opt for a second hand office chair as a more affordable alternative. 

Before you make your decision and head out looking for used office chairs near you, here are a few things to consider.

What to Consider When Buying a Used Office Chair

What to Consider When Buying a Used Office Chair

Because the need for second hand office furniture is growing, more companies are offering used alternatives, which means you may be bombarded with several options. Here are a few things to take into consideration before buying a used office chair. 

1. The Secondhand Chair Must Be in Good Condition

When selecting a secondhand chair, you must not simply check the features of the chair. While this is important, it is just as essential to check the chair's condition and components. Refurbished chairs must have mechanical parts that are in perfect working order. 

A chair with rickety wheels can potentially damage your flooring or break in a short space of time, so it isn’t advisable to choose chairs with parts that are in poor condition. It is important to note that high-end chairs have been built to last for decades, so if you are investing in a high-end secondhand chair, never settle for damaged parts or damaged chairs.

2. Be Sure to Choose a Chair That Suits Your Needs

Be Sure to Choose a Chair That Suits Your Needs

Affordability and quality must not be the only factors that influence your choice when choosing a second hand office chair. Even though a chair is used, it is still going to be your office companion for several hours a day, for several years. 

Ensure that the chair is the right size for you. This means that you must be able to sit in it comfortably. Check that the lumbar support is positioned correctly, supporting the small of your back that is located behind your waist region. 

Additionally, it must be height adjustable to allow you to be at eye level with your computer monitor. If you have a standing desk, you may require a tall chair that lets you alternate between sitting and standing without having to move your desk and chair up and down. 

If you are of a larger stature, be sure to consider the load capacity of the chair. Whatever your needs are, they must not be neglected when you buy a used office chair because you are still going to spend a great deal of time seated on your chair. 

Another factor to consider is your décor. If you choose a home office chair, be sure to match your used chair to your home office design, ensuring that it fits in, not just physically, but also aesthetically. 

Make a list of all the things you need from your office chair, and when you go to pick out your chair, be sure to take it with you.

3. Consider Customizing Your Used Chair

Consider Customizing Your Used Chair

Just because you are buying a chair secondhand or second hand office furniture, it does not mean that you have to take it as it is. Because many manufacturers are beginning to sell used office chairs, users can have more features added to their chairs. 

If you need an additional headrest to relieve neck pain, you can request this feature as an extra. Be sure to always keep your needs in mind, this is your home office chair, after all, so it needs to be as comfortable and supportive as you need it to be. 

4. Be Sure to Research

Watch Out for Counterfeit Chairs

Many people tend to approach secondhand furniture shopping without doing any prior research. Like thrift shopping, they treat it as a means to get a good bargain, often forgetting that they may be bombarded with options. 

The benefit of buying refurbished office chairs is that there are plenty of reviews online that can help you determine whether the chair is, in fact, a good buy. Be sure to look at customer reports regarding the chair's durability, so you can easily tell whether your chair is going to last. 

Before viewing second hand office chairs, print out a list of specifications for that particular chair and be sure to check that each of them is in working order. 

5. Watch Out for Counterfeit Chairs

Test the Chair Before Buying It

Sadly, many scammers use the secondhand approach as bait to reel in unsuspecting victims. They market a chair as a genuine high-end ergonomic office chair when in reality, it is, in fact, a fake chair. 

The trouble with buying counterfeit chairs is that they are often made using cheaper materials, so their mechanisms can break easily. This material and seat can become worn and damaged over time.

This is why you must always do the research before investing in a used office chair because it can help you quickly and easily tell a fake product apart from the real deal. 

6. Test the Chair Before Buying It

A chair may tick all the right boxes, but often, the proof is in the pudding. The best way to tell if a chair is indeed suitable for you is to actually sit on it. This can give you an idea of how comfortable it is, whether it suits your body shape and stature, and whether the seating and backrest are in good condition. 

An excellent method to help you make your decision is to take a list of the manufacturer's specifications with you, along with your own list of requirements, and go through each one, testing out the parts and determining whether it is indeed what you are looking for. 

7. Consider the Return Policy

The Pros and Cons of Buying a Used Office Chair

One of the most important things to check for when purchasing used office chairs is the return policy. If you take your chair home and a few days later, a mechanism breaks, you must be able to return it. 

Furthermore, when you buy an ergonomic chair from a secondhand store online, accepting a chair with no return policy or a return policy of two to three days is incredibly risky. This is because you need a few days to test the chair to tell whether it is in perfect working order. 

Pros and Cons of Buying a Used Office Chair

  • icon checkIt is more affordable.
  • icon checkYou can add on additional features and customize the chair, which you may not have been able to afford with a brand-new office chair.
  • icon checkOften, minor assembly is required.
  • icon checkBuying second hand is a great way to support the environment.
  • icon checkWhen you buy second hand, you often have more options available to you, as the chairs are more affordable.
  • icon checkYou can bargain with the seller to get a better price on your chair.
  • icon timesUsed office chairs aren’t as safe as new chairs.
  • icon timesA second hand chair does not provide the same life span that a new chair does.
  • icon timesThey are often low-quality.
  • icon timesIt is a lot easier to buy a chair that does not suit your needs because secondhand options are often very limited.
  • icon timesSecondhand furniture often does not come with a warranty.
  • icon timesYou may have a really hard time finding specific models.
  • icon timesBuying second hand often requires physically testing out the chair, which makes the process of selecting a chair time-consuming.

However, if you are happy with having no return policy, keep in mind that you are responsible for repairing your office chair if something goes wrong. 

The Pros and Cons of Buying a Used Office Chair

Are you still on the fence? It may be helpful to look at the advantages and disadvantages of buying a secondhand chair.

Still not sure whether to buy a new or used office chair? In the next section, we compare used vs. new office chairs to help you decide which is best for you. 

New vs. Used Office Chair

New vs. Used Office Chair

In the fight between a new and a used office chair, the new office chair wins more often than not. This is because, with a new office chair, you get the assurance that your chair is going to last for a long time. 

Durability is not a trait to be taken lightly because a chair that is in poor condition can potentially collapse, especially if it has been refurbished using cheaper parts, causing you pain and injury. 

Additionally, it becomes a lot harder to shop for secondhand chairs online because you cannot be sure of what you are getting. Many online vendors do not offer good return policies on their secondhand chairs. 

Another reason why you may want to invest in a new office chair is that prolonged time on an office chair can cause its seating to flatten or become damaged over time. This can leave you feeling sore after spending eight hours seated on an uncomfortable chair. 

The Verdict

While buying a used chair may save you money and allow you to get more bang for your buck, it can cost you money long-term. Second hand office chairs often do not last as long as new office chairs, so you may find yourself having to buy a new chair after a few short years. 

Additionally, you may have no way to tell whether a used chair has been refurbished with genuine or cheap parts, so you may be better off investing in a new chair. 

What to Do If Cost Is Your Driving Factor

More often than not, when people buy second hand furniture, they don't want to compromise on quality and aesthetics, but cannot afford high-end, modern furniture. Fortunately, there are other options for people who find themselves in this position. 

Autonomous has a fantastic range of modern ergonomic office chairs and modern adjustable desks to suit your budget and taste. The great thing about buying furniture from Autonomous is that you always get a warranty and a money-back guarantee, so you know that you are covered if anything goes wrong. 

Additionally, you get all the features of high-end office chairs at a much lower price, which is excellent, especially if you are shopping for several employees at once. 

Autonomous’ Top Seller: The Autonomous Chair Ultra

Consider the Return Policy of used office chairs

Our top-of-the-range chair is the Autonomous Chair Ultra. This chair has an astounding number of features packed into a modern, stylish office chair available in a range of color choices. It is also environmentally friendly and is made from eco-friendly materials, so you are not harming the environment when you choose this product. 

Other Autonomous chairs that are worth a mention are the Autonomous Chair Ergo and the Autonomous Chair Recline. They are some of the more affordable options, but like the Autonomous Chair Ultra, they do not compromise on ergonomic features. 

These products have been designed to be durable, long-lasting, and highly supportive, so if you choose an Autonomous Chair, it is sure to last for a long time. 

If you decide to buy a used chair and come across an Autonomous Chair from Autonomous in your search, we advise buying it because these chairs have been built to last. 

Final Thoughts

Buying used office chairs is a growing trend, and more and more manufacturers and retailers are beginning to offer second hand office chairs in their showrooms and online stores. While we recommend buying a new office chair, circumstances may arise that make buying second hand a more favorable option. 

In this case, be sure to conduct your research before heading out to make a purchase. Do not neglect your specific needs when you choose an office chair. Draw up a list of requirements and print out the specifications of the office chair you are interested in, so you can check to see that everything is in working order and suitable for you before you make your choice.

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