So, your fridge has finally packed in. You’ve arrived home to a fishy smell and seen that the light in the fridge has gone off and those salmon fillets you bought yesterday have already gone bad. Or maybe it’s your washing machine. You can no longer get the door open and your clothes are locked in a watery prison. You need to replace your old appliance with a new, preferably upgraded model, fast.
But, it’s getting close to Christmas and all the appliances you’ve looked at are way out of your price range. What do you do? Stick to canned goods and long life milk? Wash the kids’ soccer kits in the tub?
Thankfully, there’s a better solution. One that doesn’t require living on breadcrumbs for the foreseeable future.
You can buy a graded appliance for way, way less than the regular retail price.
What Does ‘Graded’ Mean?
Graded appliances are those that are new or unused, but cannot be sold at their full retail price. This could be for a number of reasons. Minor cosmetic flaws, damaged packaging or being ex display can all result in an appliance being labelled ‘graded’. There are different levels of grading, which will impact the price of the appliance. Graded appliances are also sometimes referred to as ‘scratch and dent’ appliances.
Grade A appliances are in pretty much perfect condition. These are the appliances that either come with damaged packaging, but no damage to the appliance itself; or extremely minor superficial flaws to the sides or back. This usually isn’t a problem, as the flaws aren’t noticeable, or in a place that won’t be seen once the appliance is installed.
Grade B appliances also might have some minor cosmetic damage. This could be to the front of the appliance, as well as the sides or back. Often these flaws can be easily covered up or disguised.
Grade C appliances may have signs of use, or more cosmetic damage than grade B appliances.
M Grade appliances have arrived straight from the manufacturer. They may have received some cosmetic damage in the factory or during transit, which has been reworked.
Graded appliances come fully tested and are guaranteed to be in full working order. They come with manufacturer warranties, so you are protected if something does go wrong.
Graded vs New – Spot the Difference
With a graded appliance, you can expect its performance, overall look and lifespan to be much the same as a new, unmarked model. Graded appliances are just as reliable as new ones. They receive thorough inspection and testing in order to meet comprehensive standards before they can be sold. Really, there are very few things that set them apart.
Missing or damaged packaging
Due to a problem when the appliance was packaged up in the factory, or during transit, the box it came in may be damaged. Or it may no longer be in its original packaging. The appliance itself is no different from a brand new one that came in a pristine box. You would think then, that you could still sell it for its full price. Fortunately for you, an appliance in perfect condition but with damaged packaging is still eligible for a hefty discount.
Little scuffs, dents and scratches can knock hundreds off of a new appliance in full working condition. But, if the dent is at the side of the machine and you’re planning on installing it between your dishwasher and the wall, no one will ever know!
Most of these minor cosmetic flaws, even the ones on the front of the appliance will be practically invisible to the untrained eye. And who’s going to be inspecting every inch of your new washing machine anyway? If you’re really bothered, all you need is a cheap touch up kit from the nearest hardware store to make those marks disappear.
Ex display model
The purpose of an appliance showroom is to…well…show the appliances. There might be nothing wrong with the appliance apart from it’s been sat out of its box for a few weeks. Ex display models are a great way to get a brand new appliance at a discount price.
When you’re shopping for discount appliances, you’ll be stunned at just how much you could save by buying graded. 60 percent off a new dishwasher? That beats buying brand new any day.