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How Long Will A Refurbished MacBook Last?

How long will it last is a question we get asked frequently. It’s a more complicated question than you might think. There are a few factors that affect how long the system will “last” and even the definition of “last” can be interpreted in different ways. You could mean how long will the MacBook function for until it stops working, this in itself is not answerable. A MacBook, if prepared with high-quality components, will keep going until you spill something on it or you and the MacBook are struck by lightning. A better way to look at this problem is suitability. How long will it be the right fit for you? Of course, we’re making it very subjective, but we’ve broken down the main factors below to help you pick the right Mac.


The age of a MacBook ultimately dictates what Apple operating system it will support. For instance, if you purchased a MacBook Pro made in 2013, we expect a further three to fours years support for the latest operating system. The longevity of macOS support in Macs is why they hold value so well and a key component to people buying refurbished.

Now you may be thinking about what happens when the macOS is no longer supported. It’s not as bad as you think. All you can’t do is update to the latest version of macOS; your Mac will continue running just as it has been doing until the day it no longer turns on. You’ll have support with all the latest software and applications for years as any major developer includes backwards compatibility for years. Using the MacBook Pro 2013 as an example again, your application support is closer to 8-10 years.


The specification of your Mac is only going to affect performance. Now unless you’re using your Mac for intensive tasks such as making music, editing video, gaming or running a business, the likelihood of you needing performance is low. As time progresses, more powerful consumer computers are sold, and the average user performance increases. As the average user performance improves, developers add new features or improve quality which can take advantage of the power available. If you want to use the new features, you’ll need a Mac capable of doing so.

Picking A Capable Mac

If you are a power user, our best recommendation is that the older the system you purchase the closest to the top specification for its year you will need. A high specification MacBook from 2013 will outperform 2014 or 2015 depending on what configuration it is. Looking for models with an “i7 processor” and “16GB RAM (Memory)” is a telltale sign its high specification.

Why This Doesn’t Matter To Most

If you’re checking emails, watching videos online, writing the odd word document and looking at photos, you aren’t going to need a lot of performance. These tasks are easy for Macs to perform, and the intensity isn’t going to change as time goes on.

Quality Of Components

When shopping refurbished, you can choose from any one of the independent resellers out there or buy directly from Apple themselves.Where you buy from can affect the quality of components if you don’t choose a reputable reseller as they may use low-quality or slower parts during refurbishment. An example of this is hard drives (HDD) vs solid-state drives (SSD). There is no difference in quality but longevity and speed it’s enormous! Here at MacFinder, we fit every system with a solid-state drive. An SSD improves overall system performance and decreases any chance of failure meaning your Mac is faster for longer with better reliability. You’ll find systems with hard-drives are cheaper with more significant capacities, and now you know why. This low-cost approach to components is potentially used elsewhere in the Mac. Picking a credible reseller is essential to ensure you have no regrets in your purchase.

Your Needs

Ultimately it comes down to you, the user, in how long it will last. You may change your needs over time and find you’re ready for an upgrade. Buying refurbished will mean you save a considerable amount on your Mac and the lost value is minimal when you come to sell it on. If you’re unsure what Mac is right for you, then feel free to get in touch as our team. They are always happy to help.