Consumer NZ unveils poor-performing products

Consumer NZ unveils a plethora of poor-performing products. File Photo.

From carpet washers that leave exceedingly damp floors, to the coffee machine that makes a terrible brew, there are a few products that Consumer NZ is urging New Zealanders to avoid.

Consumer’s team of expert testers put hundreds of products through their paces every year.

“The products we are naming here are best avoided, even if they are being sold at a knock-down price,” says Consumer test team leader James le Page.

Kitchen appliances

Consumer testers give products an overall score out of 100.

Of the 54 fridges they’ve tested, only two scored 50 or less.

“We are singling out a Haier model as particularly bad,” says James.

“It scored a measly 50, and cost $1,309.

“In fact, the top-performing fridge was almost $100 cheaper.”

The test experts found the Haier fridge-freezer was poor at minimising temperature fluctuations. 

Meanwhile, Consumer’s annual reliability and satisfaction survey found that owners of Haier fridges are the least happy with their appliance.

The poorest-performing espresso machine fared even worse, receiving a score of just 38 for its coffee-making abilities.

“A Sunbeam Café Barista model received the dubious pleasure of lowest-scoring espresso machine.

“We found it made a terrible tasting brew.”

Cleaning appliances

The right gadget can lighten the load when it comes to household chores.

Yet, Consumer’s testers have named a washing machine, a heat-pump dryer and a carpet shampooer that all fall firmly into the do-not-buy category.

“A Westinghouse top-loader we tested was poor at dirt removal, which let’s face it, is problematic,” says James.

Consumer found people who own Westinghouse appliances report more faults than average, which has led to Westinghouse washing machines receiving terrible reliability ratings.

And although Consumer is a general fan of heat-pump dryers, a Beko model had the worst drying performance of the 21 machines tested.

“The Beko dryer had a very long dry cycle time, and our surveying revealed that owners of Beko dryers were not satisfied with their choice,” says James.

Finally, it’s the carpet washer.

A good carpet washer will breathe new life into your carpet.

However, a poor performer can make your carpet too wet, leaving it vulnerable to mould.

“The worst carpet washer we tested, a Sauber model, didn’t clean or remove stains well, and left the carpet damp for a long time too.

“Although it was easy to use, and one of the cheapest models we tested, it was a poor performer.”

You can find out more about the other poor-performing products Consumer does not recommend on its website.

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