Oh I am sure they do make sure it works okay after refurbishing. They like "charge it up" all the way, turn it on, page through a few things or even just make sure it comes up and they can use the on screen keyboard at first, power it off and stick it in a box. To some degree it makes sense, especially for a refurb product that sells for $69, there isn't much money to be made selling it and every dollar of QA and refurb work is a $ less they are making. In some ways refurbs might make more money, but they have to replace whatever might be wrong in it or has more then light wear, then at least a quick check to make sure it works and then packaging and shipping.
My new one works great, but I am pretty sure it is a new unit and not a refurb. If it is a refurb it is deffinitely like new (my iPad 2 refurb is identical to a new unit cosmetically on the outside).
Ay any rate, good look and hopefully you weren't as frustrated and demoralized as I was by my "cheap gadget"...but reading is probably my main passion in life (outside of wife/kids, but my reading never nags me or talks back...yet at least)...so any distruption to that is intensely frustrating. Now that my nook ST works perfectly, it is wonderful.