MSN Money has posted a list of 10 things you shouldn't buy used. Among the obvious items that have a high gross-out quotient (mattresses, for instance) or those that can become a safety issue after they've been used (helmets and car seats), a few high-tech favorites also made the list.
Resist the temptation to buy certain big-ticket items, such as laptops, plasma TVs, DVD players and camcorders, when they're already used, says author Liz Pulliam Weston. She argues that used laptops are a bad idea because they are prone to abuse, and it's tough for buyers browsing laptops on an online auction to know what kind of beat-up junkers people are trying to unload on them. The same can be said of camcorders. Faulty plasma TVs are so expensive to repair that Pulliam Weston recommends that consumers not only get them new, but add an extended warranty to boot. Repair costs are also a factor when considering a used DVD player, she says. The lasers inside DVD players are sensitive to damage, and repairing them can cost as much as buying a new player.
(Thanks to the indispensable LifeHacker for pointing to both these articles.)