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Calphalon blender blade breaks in Consumer Reports’ tests

Metal fragment could be accidentally ingested

Published: July 30, 2013 06:00 AM

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When blenders flunk our tough durability test, it’s typically because their motors burn out or their gears fail. But the Calphalon XL 9-speed 1832449, $130, failed for a far more troubling reason: A knife-sharp fragment broke off from the same place on the blade assembly on three separate models. Worse, the broken piece was small enough to hide in a smoothie, shake, and countless other foods and drinks. We’ve rated the Calphalon XL 9-speed 1832449 a Don’t Buy: Safety Risk as a result.

Our durability test involves crushing seven ice cubes 45 times to simulate long-term use. Of the roughly 50 full-size blenders in Consumer Reports’ latest blender Ratings, the Calphalon is the only one to have this problem.

While we’re not aware of any injuries caused by a broken blade from this model, we notified the Consumer Product Safety Commission with our findings. We also contacted Calphalon, which issued the following statement: “The safety of our consumers is our top priority. We take this report seriously. While we received no previous reports of this issue, we will thoroughly investigate this matter. We have full confidence in Calphalon products and stand by our products when used as directed.”

Bottom line. If you already own the Calphalon XL 9-speed 1832449, we suggest you stop using it immediately. Contact the manufacturer at 1-800-809-7267, and ask whether they’re willing to give you a refund. If you’re shopping for a new blender, consider one of the nearly dozen models on our recommended blender list. The Ninja Professional NJ600, $100, is durable and delivers excellent blending.

Remember that any blender must be used safely to avoid injury. Never put your hand inside a blender, especially if it’s plugged in. And instead of washing the blender by hand, add soapy water and run the blender until the container and blades are clean. Then unplug it and rinse the container under the faucet.

—Daniel DiClerico

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