5 Reasons To Avoid Buying Used Pool Tables

Avoid buying used pool tables

If you’re considering buying a used pool table you’ll want to carefully research your options. Many people automatically assume that buying a used pool table will save them a lot of money, however, that simply isn’t true.

Used pool tables that are in the best condition will most likely be from family and friends whom you can trust. You can at least get the most honest answers and information about your table before committing to the decision to make it yours.

The rest of the used pool tables end up on Kijiji, Craigslist, or in the classified section of your local newspaper. It’s these places that you want to be careful about what you’re buying. 

When you add up the potential costs incurred with a used table, most people find that there isn’t much difference from buying one new.

buying a new vs used pool table

When does it make sense to buy a used pool table?

If you’re looking for an antique pool table, or something really specific it may make sense to buy used. Otherwise, you’re looking for that diamond in the rough, that barely exists in newspapers or online classifieds.

Consider the fact that you can get a Legacy billiard table brand new for $2000, with warranty, delivery and accessories. It doesn’t make sense to buy used when you will still need to front the cost of delivery and installation, potentially repair damages and you’re stuck without warranty.

If you truly find that one in a million table that a few hundred bucks AND in good condition, then make sure you grab it. It doesn’t happen often.

Damage and repairs

You need to check your used pool table for any damage that it’s sustained during the first part of its life. When you get your billiard table home, you want to be able to play free of distortion.

Damaged cloth

If the playing area is scratched, you need to replace the felt. The cloth should be replaced every 2-3 years if you play frequently and every 10 years for those that don’t play at all. Cloth prices can range from $200-$1100 plus labour which can be anywhere from $200-$500.

Unsteady frame

There may also be damage to the frame that may affect the stability of the table. To be honest, if you lean on the table and it sways, you need to move on to your next option. Pool tables should have an extremely stable frame to support the slate that sits on top.

What to look for in a used pool table

Chipped, broken or distorted rail cushions

You want to make sure the rail cushions that surround the playing area are intact and undamaged. The rubber should last for the life of the billiard table but the condition that you receive it in can depend on how the table was treated.

If the table was stored in extreme temperatures, the rubber is prone to drying up and cracking. This would distort the way the balls bounce and should be replaced.

Replacing the rubber could cost upwards of $1200 as this type of job is pretty major and most shops don’t so this on-site.


It’s easy to tell whether the pool table pockets are dried up and cracked, which can happen without maintenance. Make sure the pockets don’t have holes or you may end up needing to replace them to avoid balls falling to the ground whenever someone sinks a ball.



You can check the cues by rolling them along with the pool table. Most cues that have seen some wear and tear become warped or need to have the tips replaced. You can get a decent cue for around $50.


Make sure the balls aren’t cracked or chipped, as this will affect the trueness of your shots. Keep in mind that billiard balls can come in different sizes and are made from different composites. When you replace one ball, make sure you get the same type of replacement ball.


When you buy a used table, you’re not getting a warranty that guarantees your table from damage or defects. Once you’ve handed that cash over, you pretty much own the table plus all of its defects.

When you purchase a table brand new, you’re getting a lifetime guarantee on all defective parts. Whatever isn’t right with the table can be sent to the dealer for replacement.

Delivery costs

You may be thinking this is a minor detail and that you can call up 6 of your biggest buddies to move a pool table but it’s not that simple. Pool tables need to be disassembled because of the excessive weight of the slate that makes up the playing surface.

some professionals do this for a living. To get your pool table safely from one destination to another you should be hiring a professional to move your table and set it up correctly. There is an art to putting together a pool table so the surface plays true.

When you buy a new pool table, your delivery and assembly are included in your final price. This way you have the peace of mind of leaving it to the professionals to set your billiard table up correctly.


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