12 Essential Checks Before Buying a Refurbished iPhone

young woman casually dressed in jeans with brown bob hairstyle out in the city with smartphone to ear by the Frank Mobile blog

Image Source: @alim-yakubov

Purchasing a refurbished iPhone can be a savvy way to get a high-quality device at a fraction of the price. However, it’s essential to know what to look for to ensure you get a good deal and a reliable phone. Here are the 12 most important things to check before buying a refurbished iPhone.

1. Verify the Seller’s Reputation

Before anything else, ensure you're buying from a reputable seller. Check customer reviews, ratings, and return policies. Trusted sellers, such as certified refurbishers or well-known retailers, provide warranties and have a track record of quality service.

2. Check the Warranty

A warranty offers peace of mind that if something goes wrong, you can get support or a replacement. Ideally, look for a refurbished iPhone with at least a 90-day warranty. Some sellers may offer extended warranties for an additional fee.

3. Inspect the Physical Condition

While some refurbished iPhones look almost new, others might have noticeable wear and tear. Ensure to check for any scratches, dents, or cracks on the screen and body. A seller should provide detailed descriptions of the device’s condition. Most sellers have various categories that they will put devices and smartphones in. That way you know what to expect. If your don't care too much about aesthetics you can land an even better deal. Of course all refurbished phones should be fully functional. 

4. Confirm Battery Health

Battery performance is crucial for any smartphone. When purchasing a refurbished iPhone, ensure the battery retains at least 80% of its original capacity. A healthy battery ensures longer usage times and better overall performance. Some reputable sellers may replace the battery during the refurbishment process, which is an added advantage, providing you with near-new battery life. Always ensure that the battery will be at least 80% to avoid any unexpected issues.

5. Verify Unlock Status

Make sure the iPhone is unlocked or compatible with your carrier. An unlocked iPhone gives you the flexibility to choose or switch carriers without restrictions. Always confirm this status before purchasing. Any professional company selling refurb should not be selling locked phones but you may run the risk of this will private sales or selling on marketplaces — so always ask. 

6. Understand the Repair Process

It's important to know whether the iPhone has OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) parts or third-party components. While OEM parts are generally preferred for their reliability and compatibility, some high-quality third-party parts can also be a viable option. However, understanding the repair process and the quality of parts used is crucial to avoid potential performance issues. 

7. Ensure Proper Functionality

It’s essential to test all the phone’s functions. This includes checking the touchscreen, buttons, cameras, microphone, speakers, and connectivity (Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, cellular). A reputable seller should provide a functional guarantee.

8. Review the Return Policy

A robust return policy is crucial in case the phone doesn’t meet your expectations. Understand the terms and duration of the return policy before making your purchase. Typically, a 14- to 30-day return window is standard.

9. Check the iPhone’s Age and Model

Knowing the iPhone’s model and its release year helps you understand its capabilities and how long it might last. Newer models tend to have better performance, longer software support, and advanced features compared to older ones.

10. Examine Storage Capacity

Assess your storage needs based on how you plan to use the phone. Refurbished iPhones come in various storage capacities, from 64GB to 512GB or more. Choose a capacity that fits your requirements without overspending on unnecessary storage.

11. Confirm No Activation Lock

An iPhone with an Activation Lock (linked to the previous owner's Apple ID) is unusable until the lock is removed. Ask the seller to ensure the device is free of any Activation Lock before purchasing.

12. Test Software Compatibility

Make sure the iPhone can run the latest iOS version or at least a version that supports your essential apps. Software updates ensure you have the latest features, security patches, and app compatibility.

Why Frank Mobile and OzMobiles are Top Choices in Australia

In Australia, Frank Mobile and OzMobiles have established themselves as top choices for purchasing refurbished iPhones. Both companies are known for their rigorous refurbishment processes, ensuring that each device is thoroughly tested and restored to excellent condition. They offer competitive warranties, flexible return policies, and detailed product descriptions, making them reliable sources for high-quality refurbished iPhones.

Frank Mobile stands out with its fun, ethical and straightforward approach to delivering quality products, while OzMobiles is renowned for its extensive selection and customer service. Both brands prioritize customer satisfaction, providing peace of mind with each purchase.

Buying a refurbished iPhone can be an excellent way to save money while still getting a high-quality device. However, it’s crucial to perform these checks to ensure you’re making a wise investment. By following this guide, you can confidently purchase a refurbished iPhone that meets your needs and expectations.