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How to Buy Used Tanning Beds [Everything You Must Know]

Commercial Tanning Bed

Do you want to buy used tanning beds? If YES, here is everything you must know about tanning beds; where to buy them, pros and cons, and factors to consider.

The act of tanning has many benefits that the majority of people can attest to, but this beauty regime also comes with some downsides that need to be taken into account.

Nonetheless, if you are in the market to buy a tanning system and your budget is too small for a new model, or you just love a bargain, then you might consider buying a used tanning bed.

Many salons in the United States trade in perfectly good older models that are quite stylish. If you find a used commercial tanning bed that works, but it looks a little worse-for-wear, there are products on the market to resurface and paint them up.

Pros of Buying Used Tanning Beds 

As humans, we always want everything to be new and shiny, but for tanning beds, used ones can have more advantages than we think. Read on!

  1. First and foremost, used tanning beds are a lot cheaper than buying new beds. The cost of new tanning bed might be too high for our immediate budget. Howbeit, if you’re on a very tight budget or just can’t afford to buy a new one straight away, then buying a used one can be very ideal.
  2. Tanning beds are mostly not like other types of equipment that wear out. Note that good bed maintenance requires taking care of the acrylics, changing the tanning lamps and keeping it safe from mineral oils, etc. This means that most of the used tanning beds you buy will be of good value.
  3. Have it in mind that if the used tanning bed is still functioning after hours and hours of usage, it’s a win-win. With technological advancements and competition in this era, not all products are the same as their predecessors. It usually is difficult to find genuine products that have high reliability, but if you find someone who’s willing to sell it to you, the value and price can be classic.
  4. If you’re looking to start a new tanning salon, then you might want to consider buying used tanning beds. Most startups have very limited resources, and with a used tanning bed, you can save on starting cost, as long as there is the availability of equipment. Once your business is up and running, you can then choose to buy new ones.
  5. Note that tanning beds have great lifespan with excellent price depreciation. A year-old tanning bed will cost you half the price of a new one with almost the same quality.

Cons of Buying Used Tanning Beds

Even though used tanning beds are preferable to buy, buying the right one is a sophisticated deal. Just like you have to look both ways before crossing a street, you have to consider the disadvantages too.

  • When someone is selling a used tanning system at an incredibly low price, just remember that the seller has a reason for putting it up for sale.

The seller may be moving, bought it and hardly ever used it, it’s just plain old, or, more likely, their sun tan unit no longer functions like it once did. Note that when buying a used tanning bed, the transaction invariably includes an “as is” deal with no guarantee; meaning you cannot return it if you find it doesn’t work as advertised when you get it home.

  • A very important feature of a tanning unit is its lamps. If you buy a used tanning unit, you will not know how well the lamps will perform and whether or not they will expire soon and burn out.

Note that if you have to replace the lamps or any other parts, then your discounted price is no longer a bargain. And it could prove difficult or impossible to find a technician, electrician, or a handyman in your neighbourhood who is trained to repair or service tanning units.

  • Purchasing a new tanning unit has many more benefits than a used unit with a cheap price tag and possibly many defects.

You can find many opportunities online for a used tanning bed from authorized retailers or from factory-direct manufacturers of tanning systems. Note that a new tanning bed can give you the peace of mind that you are investing in a top-rate unit that comes with a warranty, but a used tanning bed rarely comes with adequate warranty in case of faults and issues.

6 Factors to Consider When Buying Used Tanning Beds 

One of the best reasons to buy a used tanning bed is that you can save a lot of money. Most new tanning beds cost thousands of dollars but if you know what to look for, you can find a good bed for maybe half the original price of a new bed. Here are a few factors to consider when buying a used tanning bed.

Before buying a used tanning bed, it is advisable you find out if there has been a manufacturer recall on the unit. Always ensure the tanning bed isn’t so old that you can’t find bulbs or replacement parts. Even if you see a “used tanning bed for sale” ad in the classifieds, try out the unit before you decide to buy. This is because you don’t want to be the recipient of a faulty equipment. It is safer to buy a used tanning bed from a retailer.

Another key fact to keep in mind is product name, especially if you buy from a retailer. A used Wolff tanning bed from a dealer can be a great value if you get a reasonable price. A product like Wolff will last for years, and you can be sure to find replacement parts and bulbs from the same source.

Always make sure you get all of the original documentation that came with the bed too, especially the receipt from the original purchase of the bed. This is very crucial so that you can prove ownership and make sure you are getting the proper replacement parts.

It is also advisable you ask for the owner’s manual if possible. This is pertinent in case you need to make any repairs in the future. Since tanning beds are changing so frequently and models can vary so much from one another, it is important that you have the owner’s manual that came with the tanning bed you are purchasing.

1. Number of Hours on the Tanning Bed

If the supposed tanning bed has a digital timer, most of them tend to have an “Hour counter”. If the bed has an hour counter, turn on the bed and pull up the hour display. 

Note that the hour counter will tell you how many hours the bed was turned on and in use. Tanning beds and booths with a few hundred hours, like 200-300 hours would pass as low use. Most tanning lamps are rated for 1,000 hours or more, but getting a bed with a few hundred hours can be a wonderful deal.

2. Tanning Light and Bulb Conditions

Note that the condition of the tanning lamps and the number of hours the lamps were used is a very important factor to consider when buying used tanning beds.

Tanning lamps can be a big expense so take a close look at the lamps. Take your time to check the brand of tanning lamps, are the lamps original to the bed and are they the correct brand of lamps for the bed or are they a cheaper replacement.

In addition, check to see if all of the lamps light are up and working properly. Most tanning lamps are rated for 1,000 hours or more, so if the hours are low you will have plenty of tanning power left.

3. Acrylics Condition and Care

The acrylics on tanning beds are very expensive and it is important that they are in good condition and that they have been taken care of properly. Acrylics are what make the tanning bed a tanning bed and not a suicide mission. The acrylics are a thin layer of glass between you and the UV tubes.

That is all that is keeping you from facing hell. Therefore, when buying a used tanning bed, it is advisable you take a look at the acrylics and ask the seller more about it. How the seller has previously used the tanning bed will tell you a lot about the condition of the acrylics.

Using mineral oils and being exposed to dust and dirt degrades acrylics. Note that most acrylics have an average lifespan of 1,000 hours after which they have to be replaced.

Acrylics that have been used up to around this amount of time are not really a problem, but be sure of it before you buy. You can ask the seller to get them replaced before you buy them or quote a lower price based on how used up the acrylics really are.

4. General Condition of the Tanning Bed

Take your time to check the general condition of the used tanning bed or booth. Check to see if the plastic cover is in good shape and without cracks. Check to see where the previous owners have had the bed stored. Was the area clean and free of moisture? Was it in a garage or kept in a house? A bed used in a clean and dry environment will be a better performer.

5. Is the Tanning Bed Commercial or Residential?

Have it in mind that tanning beds are manufactured as different products depending on whether they’re to be used commercially or residentially. Even though residential tanning beds are lighter and require less space, commercial tanning beds have options for faster tanning and non-stop usage.

That is why is necessary you ask the seller about the kind of its make and what purpose it has been used for. What you intend to buy the used tanning bed for should also be considered since you might require a commercial tanning bed for your salon or otherwise.

6. Check for Proper Electrical Requirements

You should also note that tanning beds pull a lot of amperage so it is very important to have the proper electrical requirements. If the previous owners did not have the proper electrical, then the tanning bed or booth could have possible electrical issues, or may develop them.

Best Places to Buy Used Tanning Beds

After going through the information above, it is time to figure out if used tanning bed is the right deal for you. If the items needed to get the bed up and running are almost the same as getting a new bed, then you might as well buy a new one.

On the other hand if you can get a used bed in good condition for a few hundred and put in a little bit of money for repairs, then it may be a great find. Note that the best time to buy a used tanning bed is at the end of the tanning season.

Purchase a used tanning bed in the spring or summertime for the best price. Sellers are more motivated to sell tanning equipment at this time because tanners can just go outside. Nonetheless, below are the best places to buy used tanning beds in the United States:

  • Tanning Salons
  • Websites like EBay, Amazon etc.
  • Local Newspapers
  • Authorized retailers
  • Factory-direct manufacturers


In summary, used tanning beds are rarely available but if you find a seller with genuine reasons to sell it, research it. These used tanning beds will be lighter on your budget and save you some extra cash. Most of the times, you’ll be lucky enough to find a really good deal for good quality products. Do not forget to research and bargain before you finally settle.