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How Long Should A Copier Last?

Whether it’s a stand-alone multi-function copier, a combination of laser printers/copiers or a simple scanner with a copying feature, modern copier technology represents some amazing engineering and copying capability.

Today’s advanced copier equipment can do quite a lot. But, no matter how well a copier is made, it’s just a matter of time before it simply doesn’t make any more sense to have it. This can be helped by obsolescence, as well as improvements made by competitive copiers.

And, of course, there’s the inevitable malfunction. Even the best copier is going to require repair or servicing eventually. 


Before we look at the numerous variables that contribute to the lifespan of the average copier, let’s look at the reasons why copiers are invested into so heavily—even in today’s “paperless” world. 

Paper Still Rules the Workplace

As much as the internet and mobile devices have worked together to make data available to more people more securely, there is still the need for paper-based information transmission at the base level.

For many businesses, office memos, sales presentations, contracts, training documents and physical records are still daily requirements, meaning today’s copier works just as hard as it ever has, if not harder.

Granting this, the need for copiers — especially those that can do more than just copy — is not predictable.

Profitability Hinges on Communication

A lot of business processes would literally grind to a halt without copiers. Copier downtime is a major obstacle to the pace of meetings, presentations, and overall business productivity, which is why copier manufacturers are investing so much time, money, and energy in R&D to make their copiers last as long as possible.


There are two main criteria that will definitively answer the question, “Is this copier too old?”. They are: 

How much they used the copier. Most copier manufacturers have a baseline for how many hours they can expect their machines to operate effectively throughout their lifespan. Even the manufacturers of copiers know that nothing endures forever. A copier that has seen minimal use over a two-year period will be in much better shape and will have a lot more ‘life’ left than a copier that ran almost constantly in the same time period, from 9-5 each weekday.

If it meets the continuing demand for copying and printing. As companies grow and scale, their copying and printing needs will naturally change. So, for a company that has experienced significant growth, a mid-range copier might not be adequate. Even a fairly new copier can be considered ‘behind the times’ if it can not perform against the company’s demanding needs or the individual who owns or leases it.

Looking at these two criteria for any given copier, we can determine with some degree of certainty whether the time has come or not, or whether it has a few more years of usage.

A good average to use when estimating the performance life of a modern copier is five years, taking into account all of the variables that impact commercial copier lifespans. That is to say, most copiers can be expected to work well for five years with moderate use and increasing printing demands.

However, this estimate increases if we look at the class of higher-range copiers and multifunction printers that are more efficient than their counterparts of mid- or lower-ranges. Some premium copiers can still be expected to be workhorses of office productivity as much as 10 years after their date of manufacture. This is because they can perform more copying and printing activities faster, without too much wear and tear on components with precision.

Another key factor contributing to the longer lifespan of the copier is who provides it. Copier technicians using the correct replacement parts, best maintenance practices and specialized tools will do more to keep the copier running smoothly.

By Geraoma - Own work, Public Domain,
By Geraoma – Own work, Public Domain,

Are You Looking for Copy Machine Rental or Repair Service Near Concord, California?       

Office Machine Specialists has been servicing and selling office equipment since 1995. A family run business that has dedicated our efforts to providing the best equipment options and after-sales service to our clients. Our goal is to ask the right questions and guide our customers to make smart decisions about new machine leases and purchases.  We were servicing copiers long before the internet was a viable resource, and have transitioned to the digital workflow environment of color printing, scanning, account control and fleet management. With over 20 years in the industry, we have extensive experience with many brands and consider OMS to be a valuable resource to any organization. Contact us for all of your copier needs here!