If you’re in the market for a new computer, phone, or tablet, you might be feeling a little wide-eyed at the prices of brand-new gadgets. Luckily, there are some alternatives if you’re willing to branch out into the realm of refurbished devices.
Today, we’re looking at Walmart Restored, Walmart’s program for refurbishing and selling high-quality electronics.
Walmart Restored is a program designed to get high-quality electronics into the hands of customers at an affordable price, all while keeping electronics out of landfills all over the world.
By paying skilled professionals to repair, inspect, and test refurbished electronics, Walmart’s Restored program guarantees that the refurbished electronics you buy from Walmart both look and function as well as a new device.
All refurbished items sold through the Walmart Restored program are backed by a 90-day return or replace policy, meaning that you can shop with confidence.
The goal of the Walmart Restored program is to prolong the life of quality devices, reduce waste, and provide customers with affordable options when shopping for devices that are often quite expensive.
Restored Items Sold By Walmart
The following is a list of items you can find through Walmart’s Restored program…
- Cell phones
- Audio equipment
- Video games
- Large and small appliances
- Outdoor appliances
- Home security equipment
When you browse devices on Walmart.com, refurbished devices will list the words “refurbished” or “restored” in their product description.
For example, here is a refurbished Samsung Galaxy Note currently for sale on Walmart.com for just $224.77.
What Does “Refurbished” Mean?
A refurbished item is an item that has been pre-owned and used, then repaired, inspected, and tested by industry-leading technicians.
Unlike a used item, refurbished items have been restored to their original working state and are guaranteed to function like an equivalent new device. In some cases, refurbished items may have decreased battery capacity, as noted in some product descriptions on Walmart.com
Refurbished items and certified refurbished items are similar, but there are some important differences.
A certified refurbished item has been restored, inspected, and tested by the manufacturer that first produced the device. This guarantees the highest level of refurbishment quality in accordance with manufacturer standards.
Unfortunately, while Walmart’s restored products are inspected and tested by professionals, they are not certified by the manufacturer and therefore cannot be called “certified restored.”
Here is an example description of one of Walmart’s refurbished products, citing that the product was not restored by the manufacturer…
Places like Best Buy and Apple are known as reliable sources for certified refurbished electronics.
How To Save Big When Buying Refurbished Items
Whether you’re buying a Walmart Restored device or shopping for certified refurbished items elsewhere, buying a restored device can save you a lot of money when it comes time to upgrade your phone or computer.
For example, a brand-new Samsung Galaxy Note will run you about $1,200 in 2023, while a restored version can be found on Walmart.com for well under $250.
Apple currently values their iPhone 11 at about $400, while a refurbished iPhone 11 on Walmart.com costs just $254.99.
A brand-new Apple iPhone 12 costs $899 on Walmart.com, while a refurbished iPhone 12 is priced at just $496.97.
The best time to consider buying a refurbished item is when you need to upgrade your device but either don’t want to or can’t afford to pay full price for a new item. Buying refurbished can be a great way to get access to newer phones, computers, TVs, and more for a fraction of the price of what you would pay for a new equivalent.
Walmart’s Warranty & Return Policy On Refurbished Items
According to Walmart.com, “Walmart Restored items can be returned or replaced for free within 90 days of purchase.”
To initiate a return of a restored Walmart product, click here. Because Walmart doesn’t sell refurbished items through their brick-and-mortar stores, returns of restored items must be handled through the online returns process. This can make returning your refurbished item more difficult should anything go wrong.
While manufacturer-restored phones are generally warrantied for up to one year, Walmart’s refurbished phones and devices do not come with an additional warranty. Instead, you can return or exchange your phone for free within 90 days (about three months).
After those 90 days have passed, you will not be able to return your phone or seek a replacement. Walmart does not sell extended warranties for refurbished items.
If you need help returning a refurbished item to Walmart, contact their customer service line at 1-800-925-6278.
Returning To Walmart vs. Walmart Marketplace
It’s important to keep in mind that not all refurbished devices sold on Walmart.com are sold directly by Walmart. Instead, many are sold by approved third-party sellers through Walmart Marketplace. Walmart only approves a select number of sellers to sell refurbished devices through their website, which helps them ensure that these sellers are trustworthy.
However, if you want to play it safe, it’s best to look for restored items that are labeled as “sold and shipped by Walmart.com.” This will make your returns process easier should anything go wrong with your device, and it will also help guarantee the overall quality of your item.
To shop specifically for restored items being sold directly by Walmart, click here and scroll down to where it says “Retailer” on the left side of the page. Click the down arrow to expand the menu, then check the box next to where it says “Walmart.”
For example, this restored Apple iPhone X is currently for sale on Walmart.com for $219.95 and comes directly from Walmart.
You can tell because it says “Sold and shipped by Walmart.com” in the product description…
If you see any name other than “Walmart.com” in this section, then you know that your device is being sold by a third-party seller.
Is Buying Refurbished A Good Idea?
Let’s be real–buying refurbished items from Walmart can be a bit of a gamble. There are many different factors to consider and certain risks you’ll be taking when shopping with Walmart Restored.
But that doesn’t mean that buying from Walmart Restored should be avoided all together.
Here’s a list of ways to ensure that you’ll have a good experience buying a refurbished item…
- Shop exclusively for items being “sold and shipped by Walmart.com”
- Examine your device closely and carefully when you first receive it, and initiate a returns request ASAP if anything seems out of place
- Compare the price of your refurbished device to devices from other sellers outside of Walmart.com before purchasing to make sure you’re getting the best price possible for the quality (sometimes other reputable sellers offer lower prices on refurbished items)
- Consider whether you can afford to purchase a new or certified restored item instead
This Reddit user decided against buying a refurbished laptop from Walmart because the items they were looking at were not being sold by Walmart directly…
They cited negative reviews of the third-party companies selling refurbished laptop through Walmart.com.
For example, here’s a review from last April for a restored MacBook Air currently for sale on Walmart.com for $239.97…
Overall, the product has a 3.3 out of 5-star review, which is not great when compared to the reviews for a new MacBook Air.
This user suggests that buying an item that’s been refurbished by the manufacturer is a better idea than buying from a third-party seller…
That said, there are also some stories of Walmart customers being happy with their Walmart Restored purchases…
Our advice? Stick to items sold directly by Walmart, or look elsewhere before resorting to a third-party seller.
Is refurbished better than used?
Yes. Refurbished items have been repaired, inspected, and tested by industry professionals or manufacturers. Used items are sold in whatever state they were in when the original owner ceased use of the item.
Do refurbished items come with accessories?
Most of the time, yes. Refurbished devices sold by Walmart can be assumed to come with the same accessories as a new item, unless noted in the product description.