How to Buy a Used Photocopier: 4 Essential Tips

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Africa is rising. Businesses are coming up fast. However, owing to the financial challenges that small businesses encounter, buying brand-new office equipment is something that is out of reach for many. The good news is that it is becoming increasingly easier for Africans to purchase one of the most essential tools in modern offices, the photocopier, at a lower price, thanks to a wide selection of used copiers available online.

However, one challenge that many small business owners in Africa face is that of choosing the right copier for their needs. With a number of brands and models to choose from, each with varying features and specifications, there are some things that should be considered before purchasing a used copy machine.

1. What are Your Expected Functions of the Copy Machine?

When looking for used copier machines for sale, assess your expected functions of the machine. First and foremost, you should identify the essential features that you want your copier to include. Buying a used copier and then realizing that it cannot meet your needs can be very frustrating.

African Woman Using Photocopier - BE FORWARD

Most modern photocopier machines are capable of executing other functions apart from just making copies. They can scan and print, others can download, email, and even fax. You may also want to consider whether you want a black and white printer or one that supports color. One thing to note is that a copier that supports advanced functions such as emailing and colour printing will cost you more than one that performs the basic tasks of copying and printing.

2. What is Your Budget?

Used copier machine prices vary from one model to the other. However, there is a basic “unspoken” price range for refurbished copiers, mostly depending on the brand type. For example, for most used copiers, you will pay somewhere between 50 to 70 percent of its brand-new price tag.

Young Businesswomen Using a Copier - BE FORWARD

If you are operating on a shoestring budget, you may opt for a copier that handles the basic functions of copying, printing, and scanning. If you can stretch your budget further, you can invest in a more advanced photocopier machine that can handle more functions. Apart from the brand or available features, there are a number of things that may determine the price of the used copier machine that you want to buy. These include:


Finding out the age of a used copier is not quite simple. Look for the date of manufacture on the area where the serial number of the machine is printed, whether via an image or inspecting the machine itself. If you cannot see the date on that location, you may want to avoid buying the copier, as it may not be authentic.


This point is also related to age. Find out how long the machine was used before it was refurbished. The longer the machine was used the more depreciated it will be, which may result in its price being lowered despite still being in good condition.

Worn Out Parts

Check if the crucial or worn out parts of the machine have been serviced or replaced. The parts that you should give extra attention include the toner, cleaning blades, and drums. If you will have to replace or service the parts yourself, this should also be factored into the purchase price.

3. What is Your Expected Paper Usage Amount and Speed?

Your average paper usage per month can help you determine the kind of used copier that you may go for. When you have determined your current copy volume, increase it by about 30% to create room for scalability. This increase also compensates for the bloated copy volumes that most manufacturers set for their products. If you decide to buy a copier machine that can only handle a small volume of paper, don’t use it to print bulky volumes. As much as a refurbished copier can perform almost as good as a new one, it will malfunction easily if you overwork it.

BE FORWARD Photocopier Packaged - BE FORWARD

Above: Example of a photocopier packaged by BE FORWARD

Look for features such as the size of the copier’s cassette, and separate trays for handling special papers such as those used for printing ID cards. If you will be printing and/or making copies of smaller papers like brochures and leaflets, look for a copier machine that can do that.  The other most important aspect of a copier machine is its speed. A copier machine speed is measured in PPM (pages per minute). This is the number of pages that the machine can create per minute when operating at its highest speed. A copier machine with a speed ranging between 20to 50 PPM is best suited for an office environment.

4. What are Some Recommended Copy Machines?

Now that you have seen the features that used copier machines for sale should come with, here are some models that you can order online. These are powerhouses that are ready to get your office rolling. Any of these can help you increase your ROI!

ImageRUNNER ADVANCE C2000 Series

Canon is to office equipment what Toyota is to affordable cars—Canon manufactures high quality and reliable photocopiers. If you are looking for Canon photocopier machine models, the popular ImageRUNNER ADVANCE C2000 series offers some excellent choices.

Used Canon C2000 Series Photocopier - BE FORWARD

Browse C2000 Series Models Now

These copiers are built to offer outstanding productivity while enhancing the quality of the print. Some of their benefits include a fast output of 20 pages per minute for both colour and black/white documents. They also have bigger paper capacity, are user-friendly, occupy a small space, offer secure document distribution, and more.

ImageRUNNER ADVANCE C3000 Series

Used Canon C3000 Series - BE FORWARD

Browse C3000 Series Models Now

Among some of the features and benefits that you can look forward to with a used Canon C3000 series photocopier include a big HDD, a high-speed operation, high quality colour output, small footprint, and great user-friendliness.

ImageRUNNER ADVANCE C5000 Series

Used Canon C5000 Series Photocopier - BE FORWARD

Browse C5000 Series Models Now

The copiers in the Canon C5000 series boast a number of impressive features that include impeccable print quality, high speed of between 30-50 PPM, great document collaboration, an intuitive user interface, and multiple connectivity functions.

No matter your purpose, if you’re looking for a high-quality used copier for your small business, importing online is a great and affordable option. Order online from the comfort of your home or office, and it will be delivered just about ready to use straight out of the box. Ready to browse through dozens of low-cost, high-quality used photocopier machines and give your business a boost? Tap or click the button below to visit the BE FORWARD Store now.

Browse All Used Copymachine Models

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