ShopSmart Reveals List of "Pricey Stinkers"

Apr 16, 2013, 06:00 ET from ShopSmart

Products That Are Not Worth the Splurge

YONKERS, N.Y., April 16, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Just because a product has a hefty price tag, doesn't always mean it delivers what it claims. The May 2013 issue of ShopSmart, from Consumer Reports, identifies pricey products – including appliances, big and small, electronics and more – whose performance was unimpressive in tests.

The "Pricey Stinkers" list is part of ShopSmart's annual bargain issue which also highlights a broad range of amazing cheap products in food, housewares, electronics and more and features tips on where to shop and save based on a price scan of in-store and online prices for the same items.

"Don't think because you're paying more for a product that it's going to work better than something that costs less," said Lisa Lee Freeman, editor-in-chief of ShopSmart. "Some of the best products we've tested outperform others that are more expensive."

Pricey Products Not Worth the Splurge
By comparing test ratings and costs, ShopSmart discovered that there are quite a few household products that aren't living up to their higher prices. Some of these products failed to deliver on claims and some didn't go above and beyond like their prices would suggest.  Here is a look at some of the pricier products shoppers should skip:

  1. Sherwin-Williams Duration Home Semi-Gloss Paint, $51 per gallon. The glossy finish of this premium-priced paint dulled in scrubbing tests. For a glossy finish that stays put, plus better coverage, the best deal is Ace Royal Interiors Semi-Gloss, $28.
  2. Breville Youbrew BDC600XL, $280. Even with classy looks and impressive brewing, it still landed at the bottom of ShopSmart's ratings. Cleaning the Breville's many parts was a chore. Plus the carafe was really hard to empty.
  3. Sigma SD15 SLR Camera, $929. It got the worst image-quality score of any of the advanced cameras tested, though it was one of the most expensive models that came through the labs.
  4. Culinary Institute of America Masters Collection Cookware, $550. This set named for the famed cooking school was no star in ShopSmart's evenness tests.
  5. Blomberg DWT57500 Dishwasher, $1,000. Efficient energy and water use can't make up for the fact that this high-end brand wasn't great at getting dishes clean- and it's a little noisy.
  6. Rainbow E-Series E2 Vacuum Cleaner, $1,350. It will clean out a wallet, but don't expect it to clean rugs very well, and it's heavy to lug around.

About Consumer Reports:
Consumer Reports is the world's largest independent product-testing organization. Using its more than 50 labs, auto test center, and survey research center, the nonprofit rates thousands of products and services annually. Founded in 1936, Consumer Reports has over 8 million subscribers to its magazine, website, and other publications. Its advocacy division, Consumers Union, works for health reform, food and product safety, financial reform, and other consumer issues in Washington, D.C., the states, and in the marketplace.

About ShopSmart magazine:
Launched in Fall 2006 by Consumer Reports, ShopSmart draws upon the publication's celebrated tradition of accepting no advertisements and providing unbiased product reviews. ShopSmart features product reviews, shopping tips on how to get the most out of products and "best of the best" lists. It's ideal for busy shoppers who place a premium on time. ShopSmart has a newsstand price of $4.99 and is available nationwide at major retailers including Barnes & Noble, Wal-Mart, Borders, Kroger, Safeway and Publix. ShopSmart is available by subscription at  

ShopSmart is available 10 times a year. Subscribe at

SOURCE ShopSmart