Buying things brand new means paying a premium. Research shows that within a month of when you drive a brand new car off a dealership lot, it loses roughly 10% of the value it had brand new. That value will go down sharply over the first few years due to age and use.
If you take an honest and objective view of the items you purchase, you will likely quickly acknowledge that the same is true for almost all consumer goods. A brand new home may be the only exception, as real estate tends to appreciate in value with age, provided that the quality of the building is decent.
Secondhand shopping is a popular way to save money
Most all other consumer goods will drop in value both because they lose the prestige of being new and because their functional lifespan decreases with use. Consumers can purchase secondhand items for a fraction of the initial cost of the same product new. From household appliances to vehicles and baby supplies, all sorts of expensive consumer goods can be had at a much better rate while in nearly new condition if purchased secondhand.
Unfortunately, when you buy something secondhand, whether through a direct network such as Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist or the local resale shop, there is always the risk that the item could be part of a product recall.
Owners may not know about the recall or may not care about it
When you purchase a new product, you make decisions about its use, price and safety. For many larger items, you will file a registration with the manufacturer. If the item is later subject to recall, you will either receive notification directly from the manufacturer or see flyers posted at retailers that previously sold the recalled items. When you buy secondhand, you may not receive any notification.
Stores selling new items will pull recalled items from their shelves. However, resellers and resale shops may not do the same thing. Either due to laziness and choosing not to check or simply not caring about passing on a potentially defective product if they can make a few dollars off of it, people will sell secondhand items that have been part of a major safety-related recall.
If a product fails and injures you, you have rights as a consumer
Just because you purchase an item secondhand or used doesn’t innately mean that the manufacturer isn’t still responsible for a faulty or recalled product.
Although the ideal product liability claim comes from someone who purchased directly from a major retailer or the manufacturer themselves, even those who purchase used items may be able to bring a claim against a company. This is true if you wind up injured or suffer severe property damage as a result of a product failure related to the recall and not simply to aging or standard wear and tear.