When Is the Best Time to Buy Small Appliances? Top 5 Times of the Year to Save
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Don't buy a small appliance without reading this expert advice first
Small appliances are the unsung heroes of the kitchen. Your coffee maker ensures you’re bright-eyed in time for your morning meeting. Your toaster cooks your breakfast to warm and crispy perfection. And your air fryer makes it easy to whip up healthy, delicious dinners. You use small appliances every day, so when your favorite blender or food processor is on the fritz, replacing it can be a frustrating experience. That’s why it pays to have the answer to one very important question: When is the best time to buy small appliances?
There’s a best time to buy pretty much anything, so ideally you’ll start looking for a new appliance before your old one dies. That way, you can be strategic about your shopping instead of rushing out to buy the first thing you find. As with the best time to buy a TV and larger household appliances, getting great deals is all about knowing the times of year when stores tend to slash prices.
Reader’s Digest is a trusted source for buying guides—we’ve spoken with some of the top experts on both saving money and shopping for appliances to find out when is the best time to buy small appliances.
When is the best time to buy small kitchen appliances?
What you’ve heard from countless TV ads is true: Black Friday is the best time to get a deal. “Black Friday is absolutely the best time of the year to save, followed by big three-day-shopping weekends like Memorial Day and Labor Day,” says Kristin McGrath, a shopping and trends expert with retail savings site RetailMeNot. “Black Friday is the best time for deals on small appliances, including pressure cookers, like the Instant Pot, and air fryers. Shoppers can generally expect 50% off across the board on similar items.”
When is the best time to buy small appliances such as blenders? Smoothie lovers will want to join the crowds the day after Thanksgiving, because McGrath says Black Friday is when retailers like Walmart, Target, Kohl’s and Macy’s slash prices on top brands such as Nutribullet and Vitamix.
Other small appliances go on sale that day too. “You can find the highly popular KitchenAid mixer discounted by $100 or more during Black Friday sales at stores like Bed Bath & Beyond, Home Depot, Macy’s, Kohl’s and KitchenAid’s website,” McGrath says.
|♦ Best time to buy small kitchen appliances|
What other times of the year do small appliances go on sale?
You know Black Friday offers the biggest and best deals on the broadest selection of, well, everything. But beyond that made-for-consumers holiday, when is the best time to buy small appliances? You can rarely go wrong around holidays.
“July is another good time, thanks to Prime Day and competing sales often referred to as ‘Black Friday in July,'” says Samantha Gordon, deals editor at Consumer Reports. “Otherwise, look for bigger-than-average discounts around holiday weekends [including Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day and Presidents Day] as well as retailer-specific savings events between holidays.”
If you’re looking for a seasonal appliance—say, a small space heater—consider shopping in the off-season. Naturally, prices rise as temps plummet. The opposite is true for portable fans.
When is the best time of the week to buy small appliances?
Go ahead and shop on whichever day suits your schedule. According to Gordon, there isn’t really a cheapest day of the week for buying small appliances.
Still, if you’re trying to compare models, features and prices—especially if you’d like guidance from a salesperson or manager—it’s smartest to avoid brick-and-mortar stores on the weekends. That’s when they’re most likely to be busy, so you may not get the attention you need. While there’s no guarantee, you’re more likely to have a better experience Monday through Thursday.
When is the worst time of year to buy small appliances?
If you’re looking for a new appliance in the spring, you will likely end up paying more. “A team of analysts at Consumer Reports track prices all year long to help people find the best time to buy all kinds of products, including small appliances,” explains Gordon. “What we have found is that March and April are light on holidays, so there tend to be fewer sales, but it doesn’t mean there won’t still be opportunities to save.”
So if you’re thinking about replacing your immersion blender or upgrading to a fancy espresso maker, make sure you purchase it no later than Presidents Day or you could be waiting several months for a major sale.
The average lifespan of small appliances
As much as we love our go-to appliances, they won’t last forever. Knowing how long yours will stick around before it’s time to buy new ones will help you gauge the best time to buy small appliances. Here’s the average lifespan of common appliances in the home:
|Toaster oven||5 to 10 years|
|Toaster||5 to 10 years|
|Air fryer||Up to 5 years with regular use|
|Coffee maker||3 to 5 years|
|Blender||3 to 10 years|
How much do small appliances typically cost?
There’s no typical cost for a small appliance. It truly depends on what type you’re looking for, what features you need and what brands you’re considering, explains Tanya Christian, a home and appliance writer for Consumer Reports.
“In Consumer Reports‘s ratings, we have a toaster for as little as $16 and a toaster oven for as much as $400,” she says. “Even among the same product category, you can find a large range of prices. Speaking in general terms, however, a small kitchen appliance is typically under $150. Additional features often warrant a higher price tag.”
What are other ways to save when buying small appliances?
Shopping expert Trae Bodge says deal sites are a great way to save money on small appliances. “An easy way to do this is to install a browser extension, like the Sidekick from CouponCabin.com, which will automatically alert you to discounts and cash-back offers as you browse online,” she says. “This tool will also run coupons for you at checkout.”
- Bodge also suggests buying used small appliances—but proceed with caution. “If you buy used, you will save a lot, but a used small appliance is not likely to last long unless it’s fairly new,” she says. “If you’re buying used to tide you over, this can be a good strategy. Yard sales can also be good, but ask to plug the item in to make sure it works before purchasing.”
Looking to get small appliances for free? “Look at sites like Freecycle and other community boards for free small appliances. Sometimes people are moving and looking to get rid of things,” says Bodge.
Don’t forget to check out Sam’s Club and Costco for discounted small appliances. (Big-box stores are also great for deals on other must-haves, like outdoor grills.)
Where can you buy small kitchen appliances?
There are many places where you can buy small kitchen appliances. “These appliances are often found at home retailers, department stores and select home improvement stores,” says Christian. “Online retailers such as Amazon and Wayfair also have a large selection of these products. And don’t forget about wholesale clubs. Places like Sam’s, Costco and BJ’s have these items—often at a price that beats typical retailers.”
If you’re looking for holiday sales to save money on small appliances, you can shop pretty much everywhere. “All major retailers have holiday sales,” Gordon says.
Six best small kitchen appliances you can buy right now
There’s nothing like getting a great price on a coveted product, whether that’s a stand mixer, air fryer, blender, toaster, coffee maker or other gadget that makes your life easier. The six below are our picks for the top appliances to shop today.
The right time to buy
Every kitchen needs at least two or three tools that make life easier. But some can be costly, leaving you to wonder, “When is the best time to buy small appliances?”
Fortunately, finding great deals on small appliances is easier than determining the best time to buy a house, the best time to buy a lawnmower or even the best time to buy fine jewelry. In essence, if there’s a holiday, you’re likely to find sales on small appliances. So mark your calendar, and get ready to save.
- Kristin McGrath, shopping and trends expert at RetailMeNot
- Samantha Gordon, deals editor at Consumer Reports
- Tanya Christian, home and appliance writer at Consumer Reports
- Trae Bodge, smart-shopping expert