During initial testing of the Calphalon XL 9-speed blender last summer, we discovered a defective blade assembly that could pose a serious safety risk to consumers. The $130 blender landed on our Don't Buy: Safety Problem list, and was later recalled by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. As part of the recall, Calphalon promised a free repair kit to all owners of the defective product. We’ve since received our repair kit and retested the blender, subjecting it to our standard durability test. Our verdict: the Calphalon XL 9-speed blender is safe for consumers, though there are better blenders on the market.
The Calphalon repair kit includes a replacement blade, identified by a white drive wheel, and instructions. There's also a prepaid return label for the old blade and an order form for a free gift—a Calphalon nonstick panini pan. We passed on the free gift, but found the new blade easy to install. More importantly, it stood up to our tough durability test, which involves crushing seven ice cubes 45 times to simulate long-term use.
The Calphalon blender was also very good at making smoothies, frozen drinks, and purees, and its touchpad controls are fairly easy to use. The blender is also relatively quiet. However, there are about 20 models in our blender Ratings with higher overall scores, including the dozen blenders that make our current recommended list. Still, Calphalon deserves credit for moving swiftly to correct this problem and keep its customers safe.