Buying scratch and dent washers, dryers and stoves through Lowes can save you a lot of money when moving into a new house or when you just need to update the one you are currently living in. Like other huge hardware stores like BJ’s, Costco’s, Sears and Home Depot, Lowes carries a huge collection of low priced items. However, there are a few things to know in order to get yourself the best deals possible. In this article you’ll find information on what to look for when shopping scratch and dent as well as some tips to get yourself the best prices.
What is Scratch and Dent Shopping?
‘Scratch and Dent’ is the name commonly given to factory seconds that are sold through retailers. Factory seconds are typically damaged or faulty in a minor way, usually cosmetic.
Since these products aren’t deemed to be in good enough condition to be sold as new they are instead discounted and sold through scratch and dent appliance or white good retailers.
Functionality Damage vs. Cosmetic Damage
The vast majority of factory second white goods only have some form of cosmetic damage. This is usually scratches in the paint, dents or holes in the casing or even just damaged packaging. However, some will have more major damage, such as broken shelves (in fridges), faulty buttons, damaged displays or missing parts. It’s a good idea before you go shopping for factory second washers, dryers or stoves to set yourself a guideline for what sort of damage you are willing to accept and what sort of discount you are looking for. Although more significantly damaged models may be cheaper, it might not be worth the frustration of having an appliance that is missing features or parts.
How Much Can You Save on Factory Second White Goods?
You may be wondering whether having a damaged product is really worth it, are the savings really enough? The good news is that often the answer is a resounding yes! Lowes advertises up to 75% off their scratch and dent appliances, however discounts are usually in the 25-50% range, depending on the severity of the damage. 25% off a fridge for a slight scratch on the side can be a pretty good bargain, especially if that side is just going to be hidden against a wall anyway.
Getting Better Prices When Shopping for Factory Seconds
Although the discounts advertised on scratch and dent products can already seem like a good deal that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to save even more! It is quite possible to get an extra 5% or 10% off the retail price if you take the time to talk to customer service representatives. Lowes staff are often quite happy to provide an extra discount if it will help move stock quickly. They are usually authorized to give a small discount on the spot without needing to ask a manager as well. In order to get these discounts there are a few things you should do:
1. Ask! You are never going to have a chance at an extra discount if you are too afraid to ask for it.
2. Inspect for more damage than is listed. Sometimes staff might have missed an extra scratch or dent when inspecting the damaged unit.
3. Buy multiple items at once. If you buy your washer, dryer, stove and other appliances all in the one place staff can sometimes be convinced to provide an overall discount on the bundle. Having fewer but larger sales saves the business money in the long run so retailers are often happy to encourage this.
What to Avoid When Buying Factory Seconds
Not all factory seconds are good deals. Be careful to avoid units that look like they have been dropped or that have dents large enough to impact the inner machinery, especially on fridges. Although these units might work fine when you first get them the damage sustained can lead to issues in the future. Expensive repair work can quickly negate any initial savings. A fridge with a broken ice maker might not cause too many problems (unless you are desperate for ice) but a fridge with a dented coolant pipe may spring a leak or run inefficiently.
The biggest tip overall is to remember that long term savings should always take priority over short terms ones. If you think a certain Lowes scratch and dent washer, dryer or stove is going need to be replaced in a year then it probably isn’t worth the buying. However, if you can save a couple hundred dollars on an appliance now simply because the paint is scratched then it should be considered a great bargain.