Best July 4th Sales on Appliances

Independence Day weekend is a good time to find discounts on refrigerators, washers and dryers, and other large appliances

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Illustrations of a washing machine and vacuum cleaners in a pattern Illustration: Lacey Browne/Consumer Reports, iStock

If you’re in need of a new appliance, July 4th weekend is typically a great time to find one at a discount. But if you’re considering an upgrade just to take advantage of a sale, you may want to hold off.

This year, because of residual pandemic-related inventory problems, Independence Day sales aren’t nearly as abundant as in years past, and the discounts we are seeing are not as impressive, either. In 2020, heightened demand for large appliances led to many items going out of stock and others taking weeks, if not months, longer to ship. Discounts became sparse—or nonexistent—because retailers had no need to discount inventory that was already selling steadily at full price. And while inventory levels are slowly rebounding, the discounts we’re seeing aren’t that deep or plentiful. If you can wait, you may be able to score bigger savings later in the year, or in 2022. (Check out CR’s advice on how to shop for a large appliance now.)

But if you need to replace a broken appliance, there are still ways to save. Consumer Reports is tracking prices on all the top appliances, and we’re seeing some good offers for refrigerators, ranges, and vacuums. To help you find the best blend of quality and affordability, we look at the results of our lab tests and member surveys, as well as the prices at major retailers, to determine when a sale really is a great deal.

For more on the products here and many others, check out the ratings for all the appliances and home and garden gear we test at Consumer Reports.

Refrigerators

Frigidaire Top-Freezer Refrigerator

Frigidaire makes some of the best top-freezers in our ratings, and this Frigidaire FFHT1425VV is no exception. It offers strong performance in our tests, doing particularly well in our energy-efficiency test. Frigidaire top-freezers also tend to be quite reliable, according to data from our member surveys. This model comes in a stainless steel finish and features the ability to add an icemaker (sold separately for about $120).

CR’s test results: Frigidaire FFHT1425VV refrigerator

LG French-Door Refrigerator

If you have your sights set on a new French-door fridge this summer, this LG LRFXC2416S is one of the best deals you’re going to find. This 36-inch model performs exceptionally well in our tests. In fact, its only real flaw is that it isn’t very energy-efficient. It comes in a stainless steel finish and offers a ton of features, including a through-the-door water/ice dispenser, a second icemaker that creates LG’s large Craft Ice ice balls for cocktails and beverages, uniquely adjustable shelves that can raise and lower without removing food, a built-in water filter, and spillproof shelves.

CR’s test results: LG LRFXC2416S refrigerator

LG Side-by-Side Refrigerator

We spotted a handful of side-by-sides on sale, but this LG LSXS26326S had the winning combination of the lowest price and the best performance in our lab tests. It receives high marks in all our tests, including temperature uniformity, ease of use, and energy efficiency. It features a stainless steel finish, a through-the-door water/ice dispenser, an icemaker, a built-in water filter, and digital controls.

CR’s test results: LG LSXS26326S refrigerator

LG Side-by-Side Refrigerator

This LG is a true side-by-side refrigerator, but its door-in-door compartment makes the fridge side look like a French-door model. In our labs, this 36-inch-wide LG gets high marks in every test, including thermostat control, noise, and ease of use. LG side-by-sides also did well when it comes to reliability and satisfaction in our owner surveys. In terms of features, you’ll find the standard external water/ice dispenser and digital controls, as well as the not-so-standard dual evaporators.

CR’s test results: LG LSXS26366S refrigerator

LG Top-Freezer Refrigerator

This LG fridge is one of the most stylish top-freezers out there. The 33-inch-wide model comes in a stainless steel finish with recessed door handles and features an icemaker, digital controls, and spillproof shelves. In our tests, this model performs exceptionally well for energy efficiency and noise, as well as thermostat control. It does fall fairly short in our tests for temperature uniformity and ease of use. Despite these shortcomings, LG top-freezers did well in our member surveys for predicted reliability and owner satisfaction.

CR’s test results: LG LTCS24223S refrigerator

Whirlpool Top-Freezer Refrigerator

It’s rare to find a good-quality top-freezer for less than $500, which makes this stainless-steel Whirlpool WRT112CZJZ a steal. It’s a top performer in our tests, receiving high marks for its temperature uniformity, thermostat control, and low noise output. The only drawback is that it’s on the small side at just 24 inches wide. Still, if you want an affordable fridge that’s built to last, this deal is a no-brainer.

CR’s test results: Whirlpool WRT112CZJZ refrigerator

Freezers

Frigidaire Chest Freezer

This Frigidaire freezer matches the GE freezers test-for-test on temperature control and uniformity, meaning it keeps food safely frozen. It’s 50 inches wide, not quite as big as the GE below. This freezer doesn’t perform as well as others in our power-outage test, so if you live in an area that has frequent brownouts or blackouts, look elsewhere. It earns middling scores for noise, and the annual cost to run it is $35. Appliances Connection says shipping times may be longer than normal because pandemic-related problems have contributed to slower freezer production.

CR’s test results: Frigidaire FFFC13M4TW freezer

GE Chest Freezer

At a little over 6 feet wide, this is a big freezer. And with a usable capacity of 21.5 cubic feet, it holds far more than any of our other recommended chest freezers. Performance in our tests for temperature control and uniformity is superb, meaning the freezer hits its set temperature of 0° F and maintains it uniformly inside. It also holds up in our power outage test. This freezer runs quietly, and we expect its annual energy cost to be $45 based on the average price of electricity at the time of testing. It has bright LED lights inside, which, given its size, is helpful for finding what you’re looking for.

CR’s test results: GE FCM22DLWW freezer

Ranges

LG Double-Oven Gas Range

If you want every last bell and whistle, this LG is the gas range to get. You get two ovens, both with convection, five surface burners, a built-in griddle, integrated WiFi, and even onboard diagnostics to help simplify repairs. 

CR’s test results: LG LDG4313ST gas range

LG Smoothtop Single-Oven Electric Range

It’s rare that you find a range with so many features at this price. This LG has multiple expanding burners, an abundance of oven rack positions, and even WiFi connectivity, which allows you to adjust oven temperature remotely from a smartphone. 

CR’s test results: LG LREL6321S electric range

Samsung Smoothtop Single-Oven Electric Range

It’s tough to find a range with so many features at this price, particularly one that performs as well as this Samsung. In addition to strong performance in our tests, this model has two high-powered burners, a rarity in this price range, as well as a convection oven. Best of all, you’ll score it for around $250 off the regular price, which is the lowest price we’ve seen on it in the past year or so.

CR’s test results: Samsung NE59M4320SS electric range

Whirlpool Smoothtop Double-Oven Electric Range

This feature-packed double-oven range offers plenty for the money, even when it’s not on sale. The range has five burners, and it offers strong performance in our tests, particularly on top of the stove. It has convection in both ovens, two high-power burners, and a Frozen Bake feature that lets you skip preheating for foods cooked straight from the freezer, such as pizza.

CR’s test results: Whirlpool WGE745C0FS electric range

Dishwashers

Kenmore 24-Inch Dishwasher

Kenmore earned a middle-of-the-pack rating in brand reliability in our member survey. This dishwasher needs 145 minutes to get the job done, on the longer side of models we’ve tested, but it is superb at drying. The controls sit on the top edge of the door, so they’re hidden when the door is closed, just like the brand badge, for a look that’s clean and sleek whether you choose a stainless, black, or white finish.

CR’s test results: Kenmore 14573 dishwasher

Kenmore 24-Inch Dishwasher

If you prefer having the controls on the front of your dishwasher, consider this Kenmore model instead of the one above. This one gives impressive performance in CR’s tests when it comes to washing, and its score is almost as high for drying. However, its normal wash cycle, at 150 minutes, is a few minutes longer than the other model’s. And you may find yourself short of space to place your silverware.

CR’s test results; Kenmore 14523 dishwasher

Washing Machines

GE Top-Load Agitator Washing Machine

This GE top-loader has an average score in washing performance, meaning it can handle most loads, but for tougher stains, pretreating will help. And typical of agitator washers, it’s rough on fabrics and relatively noisy. Where this top-loader really stands out is speed. It took just 35 minutes to do a load in our tests—half the time of some. And it uses less water than many in our ratings—13.5 gallons in our tests—meaning it’s not using lots of water to quickly clean your laundry. GE agitator top-loaders earned a Good rating in predicted reliability but only a Fair rating in satisfaction. This washer is out of stock at multiple retailers, but these two still have a modest discount.

CR’s test results: GE GTW465ASNWW washer

LG Agitator Top-Load Washer

LG’s first agitator top-loader is a winner in so many ways. Washing and water efficiency are top-notch. It’s also highly energy-efficient; though its wash time is relatively long (70 minutes), it extracts more water, which makes for shorter dry times. With a fairly roomy claimed capacity of 4.8 cubic feet, it can handle relatively large loads, including a king-size comforter. It’s not the quietest machine, though, and gentleness on fabrics is only fair.

CR’s test results: LG WT7305CW washer

Dryers

LG Gas-Powered Clothes Dryer

This Energy Star certified LG dryer ranks high in drying performance and low on noise. Though CR didn’t test this model, we expect it to perform similarly to the LG DLGX3701W gas dryer in our ratings. This model features custom programs and a moisture sensor but no WiFi or steam option. LG gas dryers earned top scores for owner satisfaction and reliability in CR’s member survey.

CR’s test results: LG DLG3401W dryer

Maytag Electric Clothes Dryer

This loaded Maytag is one of the quietest models—it could lull a baby to sleep—and offers superior drying performance, comparable to the MEDB955FW. This model, recommended by CR, has a stainless steel drum, custom programs, a drying rack, a moisture sensor, and a steam option. It’s Energy Star certified.

CR’s test results: Maytag MEDB955FC dryer

Vacuums and Robotic Vacuums

Eufy RoboVac 30C Robotic Vacuum

This powerful and quiet robotic vacuum usually sells for $250, but right now it’s available for just $10 more than we saw on Black Friday. If you buy it on Amazon, be sure to select the on-page coupon to get the discount. The slim model can fit under most furniture, and it does a great job of picking up debris but requires a longer-than-most run time to get the job done. Plus, it can talk to Alexa and Google Assistant to start cleaning cycles with voice commands.

CR’s test results: Eufy RoboVac 30C robotic vacuum

iRobot Roomba e5 Robotic Vacuum

This high-scoring model usually costs $350. At $300, it’s not quite a steal, but it’s still a good deal, and we haven’t seen it dip any lower since the holiday season. This Roomba isn’t as “smart” as iRobot’s more advanced Roomba i7+ and S9+, but it performs well cleaning carpet and bare floors. It’s also a champ at navigating a room, then returning to its base for recharging. It has a convenient carrying handle. If you prefer a model with a remote, you’ll have to look elsewhere.

CR’s test results: iRobot Roomba e5 robotic vacuum

Samsung Jet 90 Stick Vacuum

The cordless Samsung Jet 90 stick vac gets high scores in all of CR’s tests. This is a huge markdown that comes very close to the best price we’ve seen; the model was on sale for $450 during Black Friday last year. Our test engineers like that the digital display allows you to check the power level, the battery life, and any maintenance issues. And it has a sleek and solid stand. In CR’s tests it runs for about 44 minutes per charge on low power and 10 minutes on high power.

CR’s test results: Samsung Jet 90 Complete VS20R9046T3/AA stick vacuum