Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Product Review: Breville Blender (BBL600XL Ikon 750-Watt 51-Ounce)

I'm still on the road visiting family and friends for the holidays so I thought I would post this product review that has been on my mind for awhile. My goal is to hopefully recieve comments about how you perceive your experience with the blender. I've decided that the blender qualifies as "The most frustrating kitchen tool known to man". Make no bones about it, the blender really frustrates me and I kinda want to know if I'm the only one. Maybe it's all operator error and I can rectify this situation with practice.

For years I have put up with inferior blenders that wouldn't chop ice, blend smoothies, make margaritas, etc. I've dealt with every inconvenience, such as blenders that break, leak, and my favorite of all....spew smoke when their little motors can't keep up with the task. I would say as an adult I've went through at least six blenders all in the $50 price range. In fact, if I come across a recipe that says "get out your blender" then I just start rolling my eyes. Why? Because I know I'm going to have a fight with the darn blender and it's probably going to win.

Let's make a long story short. About six months ago I decided that I would no longer buy $50 blenders. Obviously these inferior blenders were the problem, right? After all, an expensive blender carrying the "Breville" brand name would be like the King of All Blenders. So, I splurged and got a pretty good deal on the Breville blender pictured above. It was real pretty and I was real impressed with the design. My hopes were set real high.

I made a smoothie from Ellie Krieger's new book and the blender whizzed it up with no problem. Ice cubes, no problem. Frozen fruit, no problem. Nuts, no problem. Awesome power, sleek design, but wait a minute....what is that stuff coming out from the bottom of the blender? Oh, how nice! My brand new blender sure does whip it up good, but it leaks like mad. The only way to avoid the leaking is to tighten the bottom with the force of two grown men. If you tighten it too much, then it leaks even more! If the seal is wet it leaks! Good grief, it's like rocket science!
Best of all, the pitcher is made out of glass and if you drop it, it breaks! Good news is that you can order a new glass pitcher for the low price of $40, fun stuff, right?

Brand new Breville blender (bought on sale, using employee discount $119.99)
Replacement glass pitcher (mailed from factory) $40.00
Total blender price for six month's use $159.99

Notes/Results: FRUSTRATING!! As far as blending goes this blender really blends it up. I have complete confidence in it's blending abilities. I would give it five stars based on it's blending ablities and swear by it's ability to blend almost anything. However, tightening up the bottom to the glass pitcher is like guesswork. Is it tight enough or is it too tight? Is the seal wet, did I wipe it off? Is it going to leak? Should I get out the towels? Should I test the blender with water first or should I risk losing my recipe all over the counter? Ugh! I really dislike guessing games like that. Another thing I can't take is hassle. I have no patience. I don't even know how to rate this one. Yes, it blends well, but it's still a hassle to mess with which makes it comparable to every other blender out there on the market.

I've decided that blenders deserve to be coined the worst kitchen appliance on the market. Do you agree?

26 comments:

  1. I hear you. Blenders just have way too many parts for me and they are a pain to clean. They also freak me out because I have burnt out one before - when I was a student - and it traumatized me to the point that I am actually afraid to make certain things with blenders now. Also, the ones I've had don't always blend things very well and part of sauces or whatever often collect in the very bottom and don't mix in well.

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  2. I've only owned 2 Osterizer blenders and both were work horses but my present one, some 25 yrs old, is on it's last legs.

    Think I'm going to look for a used Osterizer at the garage sales this summer.

    My food processor bit the dust last year and I bought a new Cuisinart and I hate it. It does not work as well as my Regal La Machine FP did. I'm looking for a used La Machine food processor on Ebay.

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  3. LOL, this post was funny. Believe it or not I dont have a blender. It is rare that I drink anything other than tea, water or diet coke. Plus I hate cleaning. There is so much clean up involved i making a simple drink, and that kinda turns me off.

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  4. I feel your frustration. I avoid my blender at all costs as well. Usually, I just end up using my food processor. Now THAT is an appliance that I can trust.

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  5. My osterizer works fine. of course, I'm on my third one in 20 years (I expect my appliances to last forever). Maybe an immersion blender? I look at those longingly....but I did laugh about the frustrations.

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  6. I don't use my blender often! Great post, Kim! Happy new year!

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  7. I am a fan of Breville but I have heard some complaints about the blenders. Mine is an Oster Beehive and I am pretty happy with it. The only time I notice any leakage is if I put the carafe with contents in the fridge for a while. So very slowy.
    Having worked in housewares, blenders are only second to toasters in returns. Hard to find that perfect one!
    KA makes a metal carafe one, if that is what you need. I just protect my glass one with great paranoia. Haven't had it knocked over yet, and it has been about 9 years. Whew!
    Also, Waring Pro has a good rep. But expensive and our model in our bar does not have a removable bottom. No leaking but I only use it for drinks. I wouldn't want to make savoury food in it.
    Great to be able to compare - great idea Kim!

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  8. I hardly ever use ours, but it was a cheapy. With the exception of frozen adult beverages, just about anything else I would make in a blender, I'd rather make with my food processor.

    For $160 my blender had better fill it's own self up with ice, mix and alcohol and BRING me a drink!

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  9. Ive had a breville immersion blender.. supposed to be the rolls roye of blenders.. huh.. ended up selling it on eBay!

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  10. Not only do I agree, I've gone through immersion blenders as well as the regular kind. None has done the job, several motors have burned out, I've cut myself cleaning them, and am now using an antique I inherited from my mother. Whenever possible, I substitute my old food processor for the blender. I feel your pain!

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  11. That sucks I was hoping to hear it was wonderful, we have tried several blenders and then gave up on them years ago. We have the magic bullet thingy and it works well for all my blending needs. Something bigger would be nice sometimes though :)

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  12. I had a blender that leaked all over the place too - it wasn't the same one. I won a blender - a high powered one with a 2 horsepower motor - the kind they use to power boats! It works like a dream but it is huge - won't fit under the kitchen cabinets. It is hard to lock everything in place and it won't work until the top is locked - it takes strenght. It can cook soup. It is the Montel Williams blender. And I hate it but love it at the same time.

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  13. Montel Wiliams sells blenders??? I did not know that!

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  14. I, too have an Osterizer at the moment. And we actually use our blender. A LOT. Almost all of our salsas are blender salsas (I'm lazy)...I blend up drinks and purees and soups and smoothies, endless things in it at least a couple times a week. I don't know. I've always dreamed of a big, powerful blender like the Breville, but just can't afford one. I think my Osterizer was in the $20 range. It's not a super powerful thing, but it gets the job done. This one doesn't leak, but the jar is glass (and yes, I've broken a glass blender jar...pain in the rear)....but honestly, I can't live long without a blender! :D

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  15. I love my blender. I have a Kitchen Aid 40 oz beast that pretty much grinds anything I send it's way. I've been without a food processor for sometime (until this Christmas!) and so it has been standing in for a processor in many situations and comes through like a charm. It cleans up quick and I expect it to outlive most of my other kitchen appliences.

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  16. I have yet to find the perfect blender--I think once I get my hands on a Vitamix I will be satisfied!

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  17. Hi Kim,
    I work for Breville and we have passed along your feedback to our design team and will get back to you as soon as we have a solution. Thanks for your contribution and have a great 2010.

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  18. I got a Breville Ikon blender for Christmas & yes, it leaks all over the base! It's very frustrating to spend this much money for a blender & have a big mess every time I use it. I may end up returning it to Bed Bath & Beyond. It blends everything well, but what's the point with you end up with it leaking all over the place? Definitely not happy with this product.

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  19. I, too had the same problem with the Breville leaking all over the sink & base, no matter how it was put together. I returned it to the store and got a replacement - so far it has not leaked once. Maybe that blender is defective. You might try returning it to the store or contact Breville if it is still under warranty. Most of the reviews I read were positive, so I thought I would give it one more chance, and so far it's been great!

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  20. Blenders can be a waste of time, unless you have the right one for the job.

    After many months of research on blenders, I bought a Blendtec Total blender. I was a bit taken back by the high price tag, but nonetheless decided to check it out.

    I bought two jars with my base. I use it daily and absolutely love it. I feel comfortable with letting my children use it (supervised) and we make healthy meals and snacks and smoothies with it.

    There are only two pieces. The jar and the base (and the lid of course). The blade is attached to the jar and no leaks. To clean - just blend warm water and a bit of soap. Done!

    Blendtec is the Kind of blenders and I have absolutely no regrets for spending this much money on a blender. After all, it's to my and my family's health, which is priceless. (and my own sanity and time not unscrewing and pulling apart blender pieces).

    Blend Well!!! Live Well!!!
    April
    Publisher, www.BlendersExpress.com

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  21. And I thought it was only me! Bought a Breville at Future Shop, leaked, took it back and got another one. Still leaks. You cannot tell me that the manufacturer didn't notice this in their testing before delivering to market a piece of crap!

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  22. urgh! we got one of these things for christmas and it basically vomits out the bottom when making smoothies---SO frustrating! We too were sick of cheapie blenders that couldn't do the job. The design on this is the stupidest thing imaginable--clearly not designed by a woman...

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  23. breville blender leaks no matter how you tighten it, very disappointed with this messy aspect, otherwise blends beautifully. Wish they still made the Oster commercial bar mixer, best product ever made and of course it's discontinued because it worked well and had longeity, I still would have it today if I didn't inadvertenly leave a spoon in it and broke the machine.....

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  24. Hi. I just wanted to let you know that I had problems with my Ikon blender leaking, also. I contacted Breville to purchase a replacement seal/base because the base cracked when I tightened it too much while trying to stop the leaking. Well, they replaced the base+seal at no charge. They had me save the jar and the lid, but they gave me a new base and seal. Contact Breville, and I think you will be happier with the product. I was so grateful that they stood behind their product. Good luck.

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  25. Hi. I just wanted to let you know that I had problems with my Ikon blender leaking, also. I contacted Breville to purchase a replacement seal/base because the base cracked when I tightened it too much while trying to stop the leaking. Well, they replaced the base+seal at no charge. They had me save the jar and the lid, but they gave me a new base and seal. Contact Breville, and I think you will be happier with the product. I was so grateful that they stood behind their product. Good luck.

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