Reconditioned Equipment: A Viable Alternative to Buying Brand-New

20180807_094711Maintaining an up-to-date plant of modern equipment and components that can meet your production demands is what every facility hopes to achieve.  Fully functioning systems that work properly and are in good condition not only keep your operators happy, but they also minimize maintenance costs. If you are in the position to expand your operation, or need to replace any units within the process, purchasing new equipment is often the first solution that comes to mind.  New equipment can be costly though, so it isn’t a realistic option for every company.  Even if it is, it’s not always fiscally sensible.  If you have existing equipment that needs repair or upgrading, you can consider having the unit refurbished.  But if you need additional equipment and you don’t have the capital to buy it brand-new, a third option is to purchase reconditioned equipment.


Reconditioned equipment (also known as refurbished, revamped, etc.) can allow you to get equipment at a fraction of the cost with virtually the same peak working condition as brand new equipment.  Unlike used equipment, which is generally just cleaned up and sold “as is”, refurbished equipment involves taking existing equipment and revamping it to offset the effects of the wear and tear it has endured from years of service.  The degree to which a machine is reconditioned can vary widely depending on who is performing the refurbishment and what guidelines they follow.  A typical reconditioning includes replacing broken parts and upgrading various components to optimize the unit’s performance.

Here we’ll breakdown the benefits of purchasing reconditioned equipment and talk about some instances when refurbished units might not be the right choice for you. 


Time constraints can often impede the purchase of new equipment.   And when you are manufacturing a product that is of very high value, every day of downtime can negatively impact your profitability.  In the case of most refurbished items, they are available and ready to ship immediately.  So, if you need equipment with a small lead time, reconditioned equipment can help to significantly shorten the delivery schedule over the procurement of new equipment which can take weeks or even months depending on the scope of supply. 



Budget constraints are a major driver in determining what type of equipment you can procure for your operation.  While price can vary depending on the complexity of the unit and the amount of reconditioning required, in general a refurbished piece of equipment can save you anywhere from 30-50% off the price of a newly fabricated one.  Additionally, you may be able to afford higher quality equipment with upgraded features than you would have been able to if you were purchasing a new reactor or filter/dryer. 


Quality Guarantee

There is often a misconception of product quality when it comes to refurbished equipment.  Sometimes there is concern that the vessel will not perform at peak efficiency, but the truth is this equipment option can help keep your daily operations running the same way new equipment can.  Many companies (like De Dietrich Process Systems) offer the same warranty and sales support on refurbished equipment as new units.  This serves as a guarantee that the “like-new” equipment you are receiving will run as you expect it to.  Our refurbishment program tests the reconditioned systems against our new equipment standards, guaranteeing that the equipment is the same quality as a new unit coming off the production line.  This enables us to “factory re-certify” the equipment, ensuring quality standards have been met. 


Environmental Impact

Reconditioning vessels is a great way to be environmentally friendly.  Whether you are on the buying or selling side, they offer a green alternative to disposing a large machine that still has life in it.  Plus, it saves steel and other resources needed to manufacture a new unit. 


Drawbacks of Refurbished Equipment

It is important to note that reconditioning is not always practical; there are some drawbacks to utilizing existing equipment.  For example, it can be somewhat limiting as to how much you can customize the vessel for a specific application (alterations and upgrades can be made but essentially you need to be able to live with somebody else's design decisions).  If you have a highly specialized process and very specific design criteria, you are a better candidate for new equipment that gives you more flexibility with design and customization.  Although upgrades are usually made to the equipment during the refurbishment process, chances are that the original unit is old.  Even at “like-new” condition, you are still going to be dealing with an older design that may have limitations as to what can be done to enhance its performance and functionality.  Additionally, reconditioned equipment that’s for sale usually falls in the “standard range” with respect to sizes and specifications.  If you require an uncommon size or have extreme temperature or pressure requirements, you may not be able to find a refurbished vessel in stock that meets the needs of your process.  And even if you are in the market for a standard piece of equipment, the inventory available is hit or miss, as it is based on supply.


The demand for reconditioned equipment continually grows as companies become more cost conscious and more discerning with their capital expenditures.  Although shiny, brand-new equipment is pleasing to the eye and (usually) comes in perfect working order with minimal upfront maintenance costs, it’s not always the most economically practical.  Refurbished equipment is an appealing alternative that allows businesses to affordably procure new equipment and expand their operation, all while modernizing its features and capabilities.

De Dietrich Process Systems offers two types of services to meet the supply and demand for the pharmaceutical and chemical industries reconditioned equipment needs:

  1. We’ll purchase your old or used equipment you no longer want and give you cash for your vessel. Read about our Reactor Buyback Program for additional information and to see if you have a vessel that might qualify for the program.  We also buy back some filter/dryers, though it is dependent on market demand and equipment qualifications are made on a case-by-case basis.
  2. We sell a range of glass-lined vessels and filter/dryers that are factory re-certified and affordably priced. The equipment is in stock and ready to ship. For more information visit our Reconditioned Equipment page.  

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