Should I Buy a Used Mouse?


The king of headshots, the mouse is the go-to tool for any hardcore PC gamer. 

A gaming mouse is a must if you want to compete.

But gaming mice can get very expensive very quickly. 

So why not buy a used mouse instead? 

I know you have your worries: What if a used mouse is dead on arrival? What if a used mouse is broken or missing parts? And, perhaps most importantly considering our post-COVID world, is a used mouse safe to use? Can they be cleaned? 

I know, some of these are quite scary. 

But, having bought multiple used Razer mice over the years, I know first hand that buying a used gaming mouse is a great option to take if you want to save a little money when assembling a gaming rig on a budget. 

Plus, if you’re anything like me, hunting for a bargain is always great fun! 

So, Should I buy a used mouse? Yes, you should buy a used mouse. So long as you are willing to give the used mouse a deep clean, and you follow my buying tips, you should absolutely buy a used mouse. You can easily save as much as 54% when buying a used high-end mouse. Plus, used mice are pretty much indestructible, making them a safe bet when buying used.  

In this article:

  • Your question: “Should I buy a used mouse”, will be answered in more depth
  • You’ll discover where you can buy a used mouse
  • You’ll learn the difference between a refurbished and used mouse
  • I’ll show you a list of tips to help you confidently buy a used mouse
  • Finally, you’ll get a conclusion and a look at what you can do next

Now you’re ready to dive into the first section, let’s get started!

But first, a quick note… 

As I’m from Wales in the UK, I sometimes talk about prices in UK pounds. 

The reason for this is simple:

I wanted to be as authentic as possible by using my own experience of buying used PC parts here in the UK.

UK prices can be easily converted to US dollars. 

The price in US dollars and UK pounds are pretty much the same cost after taking into account UK VAT Tax. So £100 is roughly equal to $100.

Always check the wires before buying. You don’t wan it unraveling on you, do you?

Why you should consider buying a used mouse 

Buying a used mouse… Saves you money

Probably the biggest motivator to buy a used mouse instead of a new mouse is because you can save a lot of money.

In fact, while looking through eBay, I discovered a super example that shows exactly how much money you can save.

Let’s take a look:

Razer Naga Trinity

Razer makes fantastic PC gaming accessories. From glitzy RGB keyboards to hair-trigger-precise high DPI mice, Razer is on top of all the games, nevermind just their game. 

And no Razer accessory illustrates this better than the Razer Naga Trinity. 

This mouse comes packing everything you’d expect from a pro-level mouse. 16,000 DPI precision optical sensor. Full RGB lighting for the top and sides. Plus, it’s ergonomic and easy on the hand and eye. 

But the Naga Trinity doesn’t stop there. Oh no… The Trinity also includes 3 interchangeable side plates that offer different button combinations for different types of games. And if that wasn’t enough, these side buttons also use keyboard standard mechanical switches. 

Suffice to say, this mouse is one of the best out there. 

But with an RRP of $99, it’s also one of the most expensive. Though the Trinity can be found cheaper on Amazon from time to time. 

But it doesn’t have to be this expensive. 

Having trawled through some listings on eBay, I eventually found a Razer Naga Trinity that had sold for only $45! That includes postage and packaging. 

That’s an astonishing saving of $54! Or to put it another way, it’s a saving of 54.5% over the new version.

Buying a used mouse is literally keeping cash in your pocket.

Buying a used mouse… Helps save the environment 

Won’t somebody please think of the beige boxes!

If you’ve read some of my other used PC component articles (You can check them out here), you probably know I harp on about saving the environment, protecting trees ( Though I do use a paper notebook. My bad), and decreasing the use of plastic. 

Gaming, like many many other product based hobbies, is not good for the environment. PCs guzzle electricity like 1980s muscle cars chug gasoline. And there are mountains of discarded PC components that would make Mt. Rushmore look like a rather small anthill.  

Now, your primary motivator for buying used is most likely financial. As with the Razer Naga Trinity above, who wouldn’t want to save 50% plus on the price of a peripheral?

I know I would. 

But, our hobby, that we love and cherish and throw hard-earned cash into, is directly contributing to the slow death of our planet. 

But it’s not all bad. You can make a difference. 

Buying used components is just one such way you can make a difference. 

Whether it’s a used CPU, a used GPU, or a used mouse. Going used stops yet another electronic device rotting away in landfill. But it also saves on the energy needed to create yet another new component.  

Buying a used mouse and other used PC components means you’ll be doing your bit to help preserve our beautiful oasis in the blackness for future generations. 

Buying a used mouse… Lets you buy a better mouse for the same money.

For example, say you have a gaming mouse budget of $100.

You could buy a Naga Trinity for $45 and pocket the $55. Great!

Or you could skip past the Trinity and buy an even better mouse. One that would be outside of your budget if bought new, but inside your budget if bought used.

For example, you could level-up your mouse experience and opt for a used Razer Viper ultimate for $90 on eBay. 

So for your $100 budget, you’re buying a $150 dollar mouse for $60 less. 

Buying a used mouse… Lets you buy better computer components for a given budget. 

Sticking with the example above, say you have the same $100 budget for a gaming mouse. Well instead of spending all that on a used mouse, you could buy the Naga Trinity for $45 then use the $55 dollars to buy a better GPU or CPU. 

Where can I buy a mouse?

Ohhh, look at this pretty doggy. Don’t be fooled! Behind those Disney-like eyes is a mouse destroyer! Check the mouse you want to buy for teeth marks!

This is my list of the best shops and websites to buy used and refurbished mice. If you can think of anywhere else that I could add to this list, let me know in the comments. 

Websites 

Shops 

  • UK 
    • CeX – Offers a good 2 year warranty, but you do pay a little extra fee for this. 
    • Game – Sometimes sells used computer components, but not often. Usually sells them cheap.

Difference between a refurbished and a plain used mouse

Be sure to al the buttons are working before buying.

Plain used mice

Used gaming mice are sold by individuals that have decided to upgrade to a newer or “better” mouse. 

There’s usually nothing wrong with the mouse they are selling. It’s just being sold because it’s surplus to requirements.

You’ll find lots of individual sellers, such as gamers, selling their old mice on websites like eBay. 

A used gaming mouse, such as a Razer Naga or a Logitech G600, can often be found at absolute bargain prices. 

However, when buying from an individual the mouse will not come with a warranty and will be sold as seen. 

Refurbished mice 

Refurbished gaming mice are usually sold by businesses not individuals. 

To be considered refurbished, the mouse will undergo a thorough inspection by a trained technician. 

The mouse will first be checked for physical defects such as dents, damaged ports, and markings that have rubbed off. They will also check that the mouse comes with all the accessories it should come with. 

If the mouse passes this first phase of the inspection, it moves on to phase 2. 

In phase 2, the technician will plug the mouse into a PC and test that it is functioning correctly. The test includes checking that the mouse pointer works correctly, that all the buttons work, and that sensitivity can be changed. 

If the mouse works as it should, it’s given a thorough clean, passed as refurbished, and promptly put up for sale. 

Refurbished mice often come with a 1-2 year limited warranty. 

Tips for buying a used or refurbished mouse

Listen to Yoda’s teaching: Clean your mouse, you should. Before using it, you will.

It’s worth noting that these tips are not in order of importance. I have put them all in random order in order (sorry) to emphasize the importance of working through each tip to ensure what you are buying is worth your money. 

Tip 1: See it working

Make sure you know the mouse is working before you buy it. 

Ask the seller to plug it into their PC, which shouldn’t take long to do, and take a photo or video of the mouse working. 

If they refuse to take a video or photo, do not buy the mouse. 

Also, if you can, see the mouse in person. Nothing beats an in-person inspection. 

Tip 2: Is software still available

Most modern gaming mice from big names such as Razer and Logitech use proprietary software to customize what buttons do when they are pressed and to program RGB lighting. 

Check that the mouse you want to buy still works with the manufacturer’s software. Otherwise, you won’t be able to reprogram anything. 

Tip 3: Clean the mouse after you buy it

Big important tip here. Especially if you are reading this and COVID is still rampant. 

Be sure to give the mouse a thorough and deep clean. 

I won’t explain how to do that here. As it really is beyond the scope of the article. 

However, I have embedded a fantastic video from Youtube showing how to properly clean your mouse. 

And again, if you are serious about buying a used mouse, please do watch this video, and please do clean it before using it. 

Tip 4: Does the mouse glide smoothly

As mice age, the little “slidy” feet they have on their underside get a little scuffed which can make the mouse “drag” as you slide it around. 

But don’t let this put you off buying a used mouse. New glide feet for mice can be bought cheaply.  

Just keep the price of buying new mouse feet in mind when buying the mouse. 

Tip 5: Is USB wire in good condition? 

Check that the USB cable coming out of the mouse is in good condition. If the cable is not in good condition, don’t buy the mouse. 

Tip 6: Is the wireless dongle included? Does it have any issues? 

If the mouse is wireless, check that it comes supplied with its wireless dongle. If it doesn’t, don’t buy the mouse. 

If the wireless dongle is included, check that the mouse connects quickly to a PC. If the gaming mouse doesn’t connect quickly, or not at all, it could indicate that the wireless dongle is damaged.   

Tip 7: Are there any scratches/dents on the mouse? 

You may find the odd scratch or dent on a used mouse. After all, they are the tool through which gamers interact with their PCs. 

But if there are large dents or cracks in the case, it could indicate that the muse has been abused. 

The mouse may still work in this state, but it may just be a matter of time before something fails because of the abuse it has sustained. 

Large cracks/dents = Don’t buy.

Tip 8: Are all the extra buttons working

Modern mice come with lots of buttons. Great for usability, bad for clogging up with hand gunk! EWWW!!

Modern gaming mice often come with a plethora of extra buttons that can be programmed to perform different actions across different games. 

This extra functionality is brilliant and a welcome addition from the old school 2 button mouse. 

However, more buttons mean more moving parts and more ways for dirt and dust to entire the mouse’s body and clog things up. 

So, before buying the mouse, be sure that all the buttons are working correctly. 

If a few of them feel sticky, you may have to take a screwdriver, open the case of the mouse, and give the button mechanisms a good clean. 

This can be quite technical though and each mouse will open a different way. 

So if you are in any doubt at all about the buttons, do not buy.

Tip 9: Are the buttons in good condition?

The sands of time can be quite abrasive, slowly grinding down the edges of buttons, and removing symbols imprinted on the mouse. 

Keep this in mind when buying as any worn keys will not be easy to replace. 

Tip 10: Are the lights working properly 

If the mouse comes with RGB lighting, check that all the lights actually work. 

Tip 11: Does the mouse come in the original box?

Buying used mice, or used anything, in their original box is always a good idea. 

Why? 

It usually indicates that the previous owner looked after their kit as they knew that one day they would upgrade and sell. 

Also, the original box helps protect the item in postage. 

Whenever possible, buy used that comes with the original box. 

Tip 12: Does the mouse come with all accessories

These days, modern gaming mice come with many accessories. 

From side panels that change button layouts like the Razer Naga Trinity, to extra weights to customize the “inertia”. 

The problem is, many of these extras can go missing, especially if the original owner didn’t use them.

For example, and there’s a pro tip here, I always try to make my mouse as light as possible. The lighter the mouse the less energy and time it takes to accelerate and decelerate and the more accurate and quicker you can be. 

Think of it like the difference between an F1 car and truck. 

So, when I get a new mouse, I make it as light as possible by removing extra weights. An Unfortunate byproduct of this process is that extra weights often mysteriously disappear. 

So be sure to ask the seller if the mouse comes with all the accessories. 

Tip 13: Check battery compartment for damage/evidence of leaking batteries

A red mouse, with a scroll wheel. ‘Nuff said, really.

If the mouse is wireless, it will need batteries to work. 

Check the battery compartment. Is everything ok? Is there any sign of corrosion? If there is, it may be a sign of neglect. Do not buy it. 

Tip 14: Check on/off switches work

A wireless mouse will usually come with an on/off switch. Check that it’s working. 

Tip 15: Compare to new mouse prices

Before committing to buying a used or refurbished mouse, check the price of a new version of the same mouse. 

You may find that the new mouse is selling for the same amount as the used version. 

This will not often be the case as used mice usually sell for far less cash than their new counterparts.

However, sometimes, especially on days such as Black Friday, new mice will sell for less than their used counterparts. 

So always compare the used price to the new price. You may not be getting as much of a bargain as you thought you were. 

Tip 16: Paypal offers buyer protection: use it

Do not pay in cash. You get buyer protection by using Paypal. If there is a problem with the mouse, you can inform Paypal and you’ll get your money back. 

Tip 17: Check warranties before buying refurbished

Buying refurbished will mean you get a limited warranty. This is great, but be sure you are not paying too much. 

Some sellers add a massive price premium for the “security’ of a warranty. 

Be sure you’re not paying over the odds for a warranty by checking the price of the same mouse when new. 

If possible, also check the price of the mouse when it is just plain used, to get an idea of the difference in price. 

Tip 18: Watch the postage and packaging (P&P)

If you buy a new mouse from a website like Amazon, chances are you’ll get free P&P. 

However, when buying used, you will have to pay for P&P. 

This usually costs around £3 or $3 if you are buying the mouse from within your own country. 

So take the cost of P&P into account when buying used. 

Conclusion

Some mice come with built in lights. Make sure they are working before buying.

I honestly believe that buying a used or refurbished gaming mouse is a fantastic way to get some high-quality pro-level gamer gear for your gaming set-up, without paying out large amounts of cash. 

The money you save by buying a used mouse instead of a new mouse can be either saved or spent on a better mouse. 

Alternatively, the saved cash can be spent on better PC components such as a better CPU, GPU, or RAM.

Also, it’s worth remembering that buying used saves another chunk of plastic from rotting away in landfill. 

So, the answer to the question, “Should you buy a used mouse” is clear: 

You should absolutely buy a used gaming mouse. 

What’s next?

Can I buy other used refurbished parts? Yes. GPUs, CPUs, motherboards, Blu-ray drives, you name it I’ve bought it used and built a system out of it. I’ve never had any failure or problems. 

What about used fans and cases? Yes, you can buy used fans and cases. You can also buy used CPU cooling solutions. 

What about the PSU? I have bought used PSUs in the past and they have worked absolutely fine. However, PSUs degrade over time. Their power output drops by about 5% every year. So, an old PSU will supply less power than a new PSU. That being said, if you buy a very powerful old PSU, it should easily have enough power to power even the most power-hungry modern components.  

I’d like to build my own gaming PC from used parts, how would I do that? Ah, you are in luck, I wrote a “how to create a gaming PC from used parts” a few months back. You can take a look at it here.

Nick Sinclair

Having played games since the golden age of the Commodore 64, Nick finally took the plunge and studied Creative Game Design in university. After 3 years of "Study", Nick co-founded a games company where he soon discovered his true calling: writing about games. 11 years later Nick writes about a tower of topics, but gaming is always stacked neatly at the top.

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