Cost-saving exercises are very ‘in’ right now, just ask Marcus Herbert of MoneySavingExpert.com. I’d go as far as saying that for some people it might even be their favourite type of exercise, so when we look at the price of something that may also be available second hand, it can be difficult to justify spending more for something that is, on the surface at least, the same as something used.

As an example lets look at the cost of a new chainsaw, specifically an Echo CS310ES, as seen above. These saws retail for £269, and they’re undoubtedly a bargain for a high-quality saw (far and away superior to anything on offer in a chain store aimed at the weekend DIY-er) that will last a very long time with little maintenance.

Is it stolen?

But you may see one for sale on eBay/Gumtree/Facebook marketplace and think that it’s a good opportunity to save money, but do you know the saws history? The category of ‘Tools’ was the 10th most frequently stolen possession according to a 2013/14 household survey, accounting for 4.8% of incidents. 2-stroke machinery is highly sought after because of how easily it can be moved on or used. This doesn’t include the professional gardeners whose machinery is often stolen from their lock-up or van.

We’ve had customers retelling stories of having their tools stolen 3-5 times per year. And that’s in leafy Surrey, England. Little villages like Fetcham, Effingham, Bookham, all places you would consider to be totally safe!

So how do we know that the second-hand machinery isn’t stolen? Ask yourself ‘why are they selling this?’ because most of us don’t part ways with perfectly good tools, tools that should last decades.

Are you buying someone else’s problem?

Secondly, we have the issue of care; how well that machinery has been looked after, whether the engine has ever been seized due to lack of lubrication, how much life is left in the clutch/guide bar/ pot & piston etc.We cannot be certain that the previous owner has always used the right ratio of fuel to oil (50:1 in this specific machine) and this means we have no idea how long the machine will last.

What do I do if something goes wrong?

Lastly, we have warranty and support. Buying a second-hand chainsaw means you have no warranty or support, where a new one would give you a 5-year service-dependant warranty, that only requires the machine to be serviced once after 2 years. Buying a new machine from us, in our showroom in Effingham, Surrey, is a long term investment in quality.

False economy & high risk

So, whilst a second-hand chainsaw may seem great, it’s usually not. I see second-hand machinery coming through my doors on a weekly basis; ‘I just bought this on eBay, it doesn’t run right’. We might book the machine in, spend an hour stripping and cleaning the carburettor, replace the chain, air filter, sparkplug, recoil rope and diaphragm, and of course we’ve got the saw running beautifully, but the overall cost is now so close to that of a new machine.
That surely this was an exercise in futility?

Call us on 01372 453411 for machinery sales.