Lab renovation is always exciting. You finally get all of that upgraded equipment you’ve been looking for, your employees have enough space to move around, and productivity is on its way up. There’s just one thing: what do you do with all of the old stuff? Whether it’s old casework, equipment, or even just flasks and beakers, some of it needs to go. So where can all of your old laboratory equipment and furniture go? We’ve got some ideas!

But before we get to that, it’s important to make sure you sort out the good from the bad. There are a few ways to get rid of used laboratory equipment, but no one wants something that doesn’t work or is corroded. Make sure you go through the casework, furniture, and other equipment you’re trying to get rid of and separate what is legitimately usable from what’s seen a bit too much wear. If you wouldn’t use it in a pinch, or if it simply doesn’t work anymore and can’t be scrapped for parts, expose of it safely.

Anything that doesn’t make the cut can go to the trash, recycling if possible, or the scrap yard. In the case of machines or elements that have dealt with toxins, you may have to seek a professional to properly remove it for you.

Anything that was deemed “good enough” to be used again, could go to any of these four options:

#1 Relocate it to another part of your building – If you have leftover casework that wasn’t corroded and is in good working condition, you might have another spot where you can use it. Maybe someone needs extra storage in their office, or maybe the employee break room needs a bit more counter space. Make sure you consider all of the possibilities around the building too. Anything you can use in the space outside your lab can save you a lot of money. Remember, equipment that’s seen better days and is just going to be used as a table or as a storage cabinet can always be repainted for an easy, fresh look!

#2 Alert other departments – If you can’t use it, check and see if someone else could use it. If your company has multiple labs, it’s possible they might need some of your old lab equipment to help them get by until their next renovation. Repurposing your old equipment for other applications in the company is a great way to save money and increase productivity. That small backup incubator you no longer need could come in handy for another lab that only has one.

#3 Sell it – If you don’t need the used equipment, and no one in other department has a use for it, considering selling it! This is a great way to get outdated equipment off of your hands and make a little bit of money for the company too. There are a variety of places out there that function to buy and sell old and used laboratory equipment. In some cases, you may even be able to get your new lab manufacturer to take some of it off your hands. Just make sure to reach out to a few different companies so you know you’re getting the best price. Also note that these companies might be a little pickier than you. Some of the furniture you thought was perfectly usable might not make the buyer’s cut.

#5 Donate – Finally, if you have a laboratory with a health or medical application, you could consider donating some of that old, but still functioning equipment, to charities around the world. Third world countries have a tough time getting their hands on some of the laboratory amenities we take for granted, and there are plenty of organizations out there who work to help them.

Donation isn’t only reserved for medical and health laboratory applications, they’re simply the most popular. If you have equipment that you think someone could really benefit from, there’s likely someone you can donate to or an organization that will coordinate it for you.

Old laboratory equipment generally tends to be worth more than we think it is. Casework is usually built from stainless steel, even old machines sport high-tech components, and laboratory furniture is extremely durable. If you can repurpose some of that used equipment, whether it’s to make your office a bit more organized or to help out a laboratory in need, you’ll be saving someone a lot of money.

If you have more questions about what to do with your old lab equipment, or if you just have a general lab renovation question, give Multi-Lab a call! We’re one of Michigan’s top lab manufacturers and we offer custom lab equipment and installation across the nation. Call our office at 616-846-6990 or contact us online today!