Used Pool Tables – A Guide For Buyers

Have you been searching the internet for used pool tables for sale?  You can definitely get your hands on a great pool table off Marketplace or Craigslist.  There are a lot of homeowners out there who need to get rid of old pool tables in a hurry.  Often times home owners are selling their house and the new owner didn’t want the pool table so the pool table just needs to be gone before the sale of the house closes.  Another situation we run into often, as pool table movers, is when new homeowners ‘inherit’ an old pool table and they don’t know what to do with it.

In both of these situations pool table buyers looking for a deal get opportunities to buy pool tables for just a few hundred dollars versus the $5 – $10,000 they can expect to spend on a brand new pool table.

The Potential Problems With Used Pool Tables:

Unfortunately, it is common for these unsuspecting buyers to end up with an expense that is more than what they bargained for.  This is because these fantastic deals can definitely be too good to be true.  Pool table repairs can be costly so it is a good idea to know what to look for when you are shopping around.

Here is a quick guide to help you when looking at used pool tables for sale.  We have moved hundreds of pool tables over the years and we would like for you, the potential buyer to know what to look for in a used pool table.

Rack n Roll Billiards Services

If you have already purchased a used pool table in the Reno, Sparks, Carson City, Tahoe, Truckee or surrounding areas give us a call.  We offer expert services at great rates.  To make a booking, call (775)544-9810.

#1  Check the frame on used pool tables

Does it seem wobbly and unstable?  If so, the low price could definitely be too good to be true.  This is not a super common problem but we have come across tables that customers had purchased off craigslist, that had to be taken to the dump.

There is the possibility that a leg bolt could be loose, but there is also the possibility that the pool table has been damaged to the point that it is not structurally sound.

#2  Ask how old the cloth is

At least half of the tables we move end up needing new felt for a number of reasons.

  • Pool table cloth gets sun damage.
  • Cue chalk is abrasive, it dries the cloth and damages it.
  • Living in a dry climate (like Northern Nevada) dries everything out.
  • Small holes and tears will get worse when felt is re-applied upon installation.

The felt will sometimes look good when visually inspected, but we may find that it is too dry and damaged to remove in one piece and therefore not usable when the table is re-installed.

The pool table cloth might be reusable if it is less than 5 years old (not always, it depends on how well the pool table was taken care of).  Any pool table cloth older than 5 years will probably need to be replaced.

Learn more about pool table re-felting here.

#3 Check the cushions

This is the most overlooked issue when people are looking at used pool tables for sale.  Older pool tables can have dried out cushions that completely mess with your game.  When they are so old that they feel like wood or concrete (rather than rubber) it is time to have new cushions installed, as well as new felt because the old felt has to come off.

These are the cushions (the part where the ball would bounce off of while playing)…

Pool table cushions

To check a used pool tables cushions you can push in on them with your thumb, when you push down, it should feel like firm like rubber.  If it feels hard like wood the cushions are no good.  Another way to check is to roll a billiards ball towards the cushion, it should make a quiet ‘thump’ noise. If the ball hitting the cushion makes a loud ‘BANG’ like you rolled it against a piece of wood then the cushions are ‘dead’ and they will need to be replaced.

#4 Make Sure You Have Enough Space

Last but definitely not least make sure you have enough room for a the size pool table you are looking for.  A standard cue is 58″ long, so to play comfortably you will need about 5 feet of space around each side of the pool table.  If there are a few tight spots it is okay, you can buy pool cues as short as 36″.  Click here to shop short cues.

For a more detailed explanation check out this post.

Final note on used pool table shopping:

Old pool tables are not necessarily bad, in fact, they are often more sturdy and better built than brand new tables.  If you are a newbie at billiards and you are not really sure what you are getting into while looking for a used pool table, we at Rack n Roll Billiards hopes this guide will help you make an informed decision.

While this is not an exhaustive list of the things that can be wrong with a used pool table, they are the issues that pool table movers run into the most often.

9 times out of 10 otherwise great pool tables were ruined by an inexperienced installer.  When spending money on a used pool table it definitely pays off in the long run to have someone who knows what they are doing.  Give us a call if you have purchased a used pool table in the Reno/Sparks/Carson City/Tahoe area.  We offer expert services at great rates.  To make a booking, call (775)544-9810


If you are in the Reno, NV area we strongly suggest that you check on the used pool tables for sale at Consign Furniture.  All of the pre-owned pool tables on their sales floor have been moved and inspected by the experts at Rack n Roll Billiards.

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