Buying an X-ray Machine — Price Tags Don’t Tell the Whole Story

The price of your new or upgraded X-ray machine is a big consideration that impacts the finances and operation of your medical practice, urgent care facility, or hospital.

Southwest X-Ray understands.

We also understand the phenomenon of sticker shock, but a higher-than-expected initial price is often directly related to quality, ultimately translating into long-term value. In our experience, a machine that lasts longer and has fewer repair costs more than makes up for the slightly higher upfront price.

With an eye towards supporting you in your patient care mission, we urge you to consider a few factors beyond an X-ray machine’s initial price tag when it comes time to purchase or upgrade.

An X-ray machine is suspended over a patient table, and there is a wall mounted X-ray machine in this radiology room. When purchasing an X-ray machine, price is important, but it isn't the only factor.

Less Expensive Equipment May Not Meet Your (Or Your Patients’) Needs

The most important point first: Less expensive equipment may not meet your needs.

Medical practitioners and radiologists alike know that patients’ health depends on the right information. Making a decision about a new X-ray machine requires consideration of how the equipment will perform.

Lower-end technology usually means lower-quality images. Poor image quality can lead to inferior information when making diagnoses, and could lead to a lower quality of care over time.

First, consider whether the equipment you’re looking at will meet the needs of your practitioners as they care for their patients. Don’t let a high initial price keep you from offering the best care possible.

Check FDA Regulations on X-Ray Machines

Being fined or forced to upgrade due to the constantly changing FDA regulations that govern all X-ray and radiography equipment will quickly add on to the price of your X-ray machine.

It’s important to think long term since many of the low-end machines are steadily marching towards obsolescence.

Even worse, they may not even remain effective to the end of your financing term.

Make sure you’re considering whether the equipment you’re interested in purchasing meets the current codes and is likely to fall within future guidelines as forecast by current regulatory trends.

Nothing adds to the price of your X-ray machine like fines and mandatory upgrades — except for frequent maintenance and repair costs.

Maintenance and Repair for Imaging Equipment Isn’t Cheap

An initial investment in quality will save you a lot of money on the price of your X-ray machine.

Unreliable equipment, while perhaps initially less expensive, can wind up costing substantially more over time because of maintenance-related problems, including:

  • Loss of revenue while equipment is down and radiology services cannot be provided
  • Price of repair to get your X-ray machine back online
  • Frequent repairs and maintenance needs
  • Possible fines for safety violations related to poorly functioning equipment

If You Buy Used X-Ray Equipment, Buy From a Reputable Dealer

One of the keys to avoiding this spiralling cycle of expense is to invest in the right equipment and to ensure you’re buying from a trusted source.

If purchasing new equipment isn’t feasible, purchasing a used X-ray machine can be an option for saving on the initial price, but be sure you’re purchasing from a reputable dealer who will stand behind their products and help you be sure everything is in top shape.

Above all else, make sure you test your equipment. It’s critical that the machine is functioning properly at the time of purchase. Small issues could potentially lead to larger and costlier issues over time, so test it rigorously and be sure you and your techs are satisfied with the available functionality before making a final decision.

Southwest X-Ray Is Ready to Help

Having been in the business of supporting the medical community for a considerable period of time, we understand budgetary constraints and concerns when it comes to the price of your X-ray equipment.

Investing a little more initially often reduces expenses in the long run and correlates directly with improved patient care.

Let us help you find the right solution at the right price — contact Southwest X-Ray today.


Shad Merchant

Shad Merchant is an industry veteran with experience in every aspect of the X-ray and imaging industry, having spent over 20 years assisting small medical practices, massive hospital systems, and everyone in between, all over the world, to find the right imaging solution for their needs. Contact him at to learn more about what equipment is right for you.

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