6
   

Do you trust Consumer Report's best buys?

 
 
Reply Sun 23 Jun, 2013 05:17 pm
We're looking for a new dishwasher so I picked up a Consumer Reports about appliances.

Their "best buy" is on sale near our house but I decided to check out the reviews online and they weren't nearly as glowing.

Plus, the CR report says that you "trade down" with this model from a stainless interior to a plastic interior. Looking up the model online all the sites show it as having a stainless interior.

We bought our washing machine based on Consumer Reports and we don't like it much at all. That might be just because it's a front load machine and we've since learned about the problems (all of which we've experienced) with front load washers.

So -- do you rely on Consumer Reports?

Have you had good luck with their "best buys"?

Thanks!
  • Topic Stats
  • Top Replies
  • Link to this Topic
Type: Question • Score: 6 • Views: 2,853 • Replies: 13
No top replies

 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Sun 23 Jun, 2013 05:29 pm
@boomerang,
I've had the best luck talking to my neighbourhood appliance repair guy. His recommendations have been right on.

He's keeping an ancient washer and dryer alive. If I'd listened to him, I'd still have a harvest gold dishwasher Laughing
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Sun 23 Jun, 2013 05:39 pm
@ehBeth,
We have a neighborhood chain saw repair guy but that's about it.

Mr. B does most of our repairs. He's very good at it but he prefers to buy things that don't need repairs.

Several of my friends have recommended Bosch dishwashers and the CR best buy is a Bosch. The thing that hangs me up is that they run anywhere from $600 to about 2500 so when they say Bosch they could mean just about anything.
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Sun 23 Jun, 2013 05:40 pm
@boomerang,
CI got a new dishwasher recently.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Sun 23 Jun, 2013 05:47 pm
@ehBeth,
The bottom line according to my appliance guy is the fewer features the better and the less plastic the better. He's also not a fan of stainless.

It's interesting - because of business he gets from Sears/Costco and some other company, he would make $ on every appliance sale he sends their way - free money without having to work- but he still would rather do honest repair work. He's recommending I replace my "new" dishwasher with a refurbished old one - says it will last longer with less repair work over all.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Sun 23 Jun, 2013 06:55 pm
@boomerang,
I think consumer reports is pretty good, but you better check how it's rated in each catagory and decide if that applies to you. If you read up on a particular type car, for instance, you might find it has great visibility, a convenient dash, and is very comfortable. Did they rate the durability of the paint? If not, it might fall off before it's paid for.
engineer
 
  2  
Reply Sun 23 Jun, 2013 06:57 pm
@boomerang,
I subscribe to CR and usually at least look at what they have to say. I like that they are completely independent, have a testing lab where they test the products they buy and they don't accept advertising or sell the use of their name. CR was the first organization to tell Detroit that the Japanese were making better cars than them, they have had cars pulled from the road for safety reasons, debunked the value of fancy, high dollar vacuums and shown that air purifiers that claim to magically clean the air without a fan don't work at all. That said, some of the recommendations for appliances and cars are based on an annual survey of their readers, so it might not reflect your experience.
mckenzie
 
  1  
Reply Sun 23 Jun, 2013 08:00 pm
@engineer,
We subscribe to Consumer Reports, too, and always use it as a place to begin our search, but then we go on to consider online reviews of products.

For example, when we were considering buying a new lawn mower this spring, I looked at the top 10 self-propelled mowers in CR. Honda has four models in the top 10 and Toro has five. I compared them, printed out the info and then researched from there. We had decided on a Honda, but fortunately the old Ariens didn't need a new motor and was repairable for a reasonable cost, thank goodness.

(Boomerang, a few years go, we did buy the top CR rated front loader washer. It functions well and is a good, solid machine, but top rated or not, I detest it. It does save on water costs, Mr. M's goal, but it's too high-maintenance for me, and I don't believe it gets things, such as towels, as clean as the old top loader.)
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 24 Jun, 2013 07:45 am
@ehBeth,
I don't have a problem buying reconditioned things as long as I can test them out. In the case of a dishwasher I think I'll go with new since they're such a pain to install.

I've been reading about the benefit of a stainless interior and it looks like most people agree that it's a better option in that their quieter, hotter and have a shorter drying time. These things aren't major selling points for me so I don't really care what the interior is made from.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 24 Jun, 2013 07:46 am
@roger,
Good point!

0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 24 Jun, 2013 07:49 am
@engineer,
I like that too.

Mr. B, however, doubts that their as independent as they say they are. He thinks they're more like Angies List or Yelp, which rely on customer feedback and have all kinds of ways to swing their averages.
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 24 Jun, 2013 07:59 am
@mckenzie,
That's pretty much how I do my searches too, mckenzie.

I love it when things can be repaired rather than replaced! The "fix it" culture is really starting to take off here, with fix it clinics springing up where you can take just about anything to get repaired. There was an article about it in our paper just the other day: http://www.oregonlive.com/living/index.ssf/2013/06/repair_cafe_movement_to_fix_br.html

We're lucky in that Mr. B can fix just about anything and he's trying to pass that information down to Mo.

I'll never buy another front load washer! I'm pretty sure that it's just the design of the things and not the actual washer that makes me dissatisfied so I'm still trusting Consumer Reports. Mr. B is much more skeptical.
0 Replies
 
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Mon 24 Jun, 2013 11:45 am
@boomerang,
They're pretty open with their methodology. They use surveys for things like long term reliability and service related metrics (how do you rate your cell phone satisfaction for example.) For other things, they have a testing lab. These are my favorite articles. For security door locks, they designed a door ram that would simulate the force of a burglar trying to kick a door open. To test air purifiers, they made a chamber, put the exact same amount of smoke it in each time and tested the time it took to remove the smoke. I think they did a trememdous service in showing that some SUV's with high center of gravities are prone to tip over (See Izusu Trooper). That said, there is no doubt that they sometimes get it wrong. They recommended a shampoo that my wife absolutely detests.
0 Replies
 
firefly
 
  1  
Reply Fri 28 Jun, 2013 05:34 pm
@boomerang,
I have relied on Consumer Reports--almost exclusively--when I've bought appliances, and other items as well, including cars. I've never been disappointed--everything performed as they said it would.

I haven't necessarily bought CR's "Best Buys"--those are determined by value for the money, and price isn't always the most important consideration for me.
And I don't just use their yearly buying guide--I go back and dig up the actual issue where they reported on their tests and ratings, because I want to know exactly what factors they considered when rating the appliance, and how each brand compared on those factors because some of them may be more important to me than others.
For instance, when I looked for a new TV, sound quality was very important for me, so CR's rating on sound mattered. When I bought a new dryer, there were some features I definitely wanted. So, whether their top-rated brands had those features was important, and their "Best Buy" in a dryer matched exactly what I was looking for, and I love my dryer.

I trust CR's independent ratings done by their own testers, and that's why I've always given them such great weight in my own buying decisions. And I find them a good source of unbiased general info about what to look for in an appliance and the pros and cons of various appliance features.

Generally I start with their top-rated 5 or 6 brands, then look at the rating factors that separate each of the brands (or models) from the others, and, if they are all in my price range, I'll then do my own online research on all of them. While I find online customer reviews useful, I've found they generally reflect the Consumer's ratings. Also, in many cases, buyer complaint reviews seemed due to the fact that people just didn't know what they were buying--they expected the product to do something, or have a feature, that it wasn't supposed to have. I'll trust Consumer's ratings over the buyers ratings because I know the standard that Consumer's uses in judging and testing the items.

I wouldn't expect Consumer Reports to tell me if I'd prefer a front loading washer to a top loader, but I'd trust them to advise me about the pros and cons of each type, and to lead me to the best performing model once I made up my mind about which type I wanted.

Right now, I'm also starting to look for a new dishwasher too. I know that things like noise, heat, etc. matter to me in a dishwasher, so CR's top ratings on specific factors like that influence me.

So, yes, I rely on Consumer Reports, and I always rely on them for major purchases--like appliances. And, I can honestly say, CR has never let me down, I've always been very pleased when I've purchased something that's within their top-rated models or brands.





0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

Turkey roasting alternatives? - Question by Banana Breath
Has an appliance ever changed your life? - Question by Banana Breath
Freezer not cold enough - Question by parsons
power outage blew compressor on fridge - Question by annganita
Speed Queen. - Question by Glennn
New dishwasher question - Discussion by chai2
Does size matter? - Question by boomerang
Is a 110V lamp run on 220V ruined? - Question by mpatricksweeney
 
  1. Forums
  2. » Do you trust Consumer Report's best buys?
Copyright © 2020 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.04 seconds on 09/27/2020 at 09:36:13