Should You Buy Used Rifle Scopes? – [ANSWERED]

In the gun world it seems as if everyone has an opinion when it comes to buying new or buying used.

There are many gun owners out there who refuse to buy anything used, while there are many who could care less.

This is for both guns and gun accessories alike.

Like should you buy used rifle scopes, for example?

Now, with all the opinions rolling around it’s hard to know what to do, especially if you are new to the gun world.

For arguments sake, lets say for the main purchase, the gun, go brand new.

But what about the accessories? Surely buying those couldn’t hurt used.

More specifically what about one of the most popular gun accessories, the rifle scope?

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Should you buy a used rifle scope?

Throughout this article here are a couple of questions we will discuss:

  • Why Do People Prefer New?
  • Why Do People Buy Used?
  • What Is The Price Difference Between New And Used Scopes?
  • What Should You Look For When Buying A Used Rifle Scope?
  • Where Can You Find A Used Rifle Scope For Sale?

Hopefully by the end of this, you will have a pretty good grasp on whether or not you should buy used rifle scopes. Cause it really depends on your personal preference.

Why Do People Prefer New?

There are many reasons why gun owners prefer buying new, over used rifle scopes. But in general most of those reasons can be boiled down to one simple idea:

Peace of mind.

They love the peace of mind that they are getting something new, that has never been used and is almost guaranteed to have nothing broken or wrong with it.

I say ALMOST because sometimes items can be damaged during shipping or have some manufacturer defect.

However, if you receive a scope that should be working and isn’t, in most cases the manufacturer will replace the faulty one with a new one.

New guns often come with warranties.

Gun warranties protect certain parts of the scope for a certain time length, so you don’t have to worry about your scope breaking in a couple of months and being out a couple of hundred bucks.

One less thing to worry about.

On top of piece of mind though, people generally like new things.

They like knowing no one else has used what they are buying.

They like knowing that this piece of equipment is theirs and theirs alone.

They like that the life of the scope will depend on THEIR upkeep, and not partially depend on how someone else took care of it.

And for some people, they simply like having something brand new.

Why Do People Buy Used?

Just like there are many reasons why people buy new, there are many reasons why people buy used. The biggest reason is cost.

Plain and simple when you come across a used rifle scope for sale, it is going to be less expensive than its new counterpart.

Also, in connection with cost, a lot of people do not like paying the higher prices for new rifle scopes.

Some gun enthusiasts simply do not want to pay a premium just because it is new.

Another reason people buy used is because they know the person who is selling the scope.

A friend or a co-worker is selling the piece and it’s an easy, simple transaction between themselves and someone they trust.

Gun owners also do not mind buying used if they can look at the scope themselves and feel it is in good condition.

To them as long as the scope is in good, working order, what else matters?

What Is The Price Difference Between New And Used Scopes?

Depending on where you buy a used rifle scope, the savings can be large or small.

If you can snag it on ebay or another auction site often times you can pay a greatly discounted rate for a used scope. Say 10-50% off. Sometimes even more.

The discount really depends on what scope you are buying and where you are buying it at.

However, it is almost guaranteed you will get a used rifle scope for less than a new one. At least that much can be said.

What Should You Look For When Buying A Used Rifle Scope?

When looking at used rifle scopes for sale, there are a couple of things you should check before purchasing on.

Doing so will help increase your chances of making a good buy.

1. Look in the scope

This may seem obvious, but when we say look in the scope, we mean REALLY look in it. There are several things for you to look for:

  • Does the picture come in clear and bright, or is it more dull and dim? Clear and bright are what you are looking for.
  • Are the cross hairs vivid or worn? If worn, stay away.
  • If there is an illumination function on the scope, make sure it actually works.

2. Check all the moveable and removable parts

Parts that are meant to turn, or are screwed in should be examined closely.

You want to make sure the screws are stripped or that the turrets on the scope move the way they should. Nothing should stick or be difficult to move.

3. Check who makes the scope

Knowing who makes the scope will give you a lot of information.

If it is a company that is known for making high quality optics, or has a good reputation for ones that last a long time, the used scope is more likely to be a keeper.

This is not a foolproof method of course, but doing some research on the company can give you some great insight.

4. Check the warranty

This is a huge one among gun owners who have purchased used items.

Many rifles scopes come with lifetime warranties that are transferable upon ownership. Some warranties are great, others not so much.

When you find a scope with a great warranty, a lot of the concerns you may have buying used will no longer be relevant.

Always, always, always check for a warranty!

Where Can I Find A Used Rifle Scope For Sale?

You can buy used scopes at many places.

Major online websites like eBay and Amazon offer many used scopes.

Sites like or are also great places to buy used rifle scopes.

You can also go in to your local gun shop and find used scopes there.

Gun shows have people selling used items all the time, and you can be sure to score one there.

The options are endless.

There are just as many places to buy a new scope, as there are to buy a used one.

Final Thoughts – Should you buy a used rifle scope?

Or fork out the money for a new one?

We have come to the conclusion that it all comes down to preference….sorry we don’t have an exact answer for you.

Personally, if you can find a used scope that you feel is a good deal and is in good condition, we say go for it!

Even better if you can find a used scope that has a lifetime warranty with it.

However, if buying something used makes you a little squeamish then go with the new scope.

We have reviewed some of the best rifle scopes, so whether you buy new or used rifle scopes, it is better to feel confident with your buy, then to settle for something because you feel you should.

Either way, as long as you have done your research you should be happy with the rifle scope you choose, even if it’s used.

Stay safe and happy shooting!