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Despite being the shortest month of the year, February had some great opportunities to score big savings on purchases big and small. The long weekend encompassing Valentine’s Day and Presidents Day meant major sales on big-ticket items like laptopsmattresses, and large appliances, and many sales continued through the end of the month.

But that’s not all that tends to be available at an impressive discount this time of year. After Samsung unveiled its new lineup for 2020, we saw lots of price drops on their older smartphones. Seasonal winter items such as snow blowers and space heaters also started to become more affordable in February, and you could find sales on outdoor tools to get ready for yardwork when spring arrives.

Here’s what you can find on deep discount in February, according to Consumer Reports' analysts, who track prices all year.

Smartphones

If your current smartphone is anything but “current” and you’re finally ready to get your hands on something newer, February may be a great time to find a recent model at a discount. While Black Friday in November is when you’ll find the widest variety of phones on sale, the final full month of winter has its own opportunities to save, especially on previous-year models.

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In particular, Samsung announced the new Galaxy Z flip-foldable phones and S20s at its keynote on Feb. 11, which means older phones are dropping in price as retailers and carriers prepare for the new inventory. You may find other brands on sale as well, but Samsung is the major player to watch this month.

If you’re looking for Apple iPhone deals, don’t expect a slew of amazing offers from the tech giant this month. You may see some sporadic price drops here and there at various retailers, but because Apple typically unveils its new devices in September and releases them in November, that holiday season tends to be a better time to find savings on the previous year’s models.

Not sure which phone is right for you? Our smartphone buying guide can help you find the perfect option to suit your lifestyle.


Check out our 
calendar of deals to maximize your savings year-round.
 

Tablets

As with smartphones, tablet sales are also prominent this month. Retailers may still be clearing out their leftover holiday inventories, creating plenty of opportunities to get a new tablet for less.

When choosing the best tablet for you, consider what you plan to use it for. If you want to watch Netflix or edit photos, look for something with a larger, higher-quality screen. If you just want to do simpler tasks, such as playing games and browsing the web, you don’t need to spend a ton. Other factors to consider are battery life, storage size (and expansion options), size, weight, and processor power.

To learn more about what will work for you, check out CR’s buying guide and recommended tablets.

String Trimmers

Though we typically see seasonal items go on sale toward the end of when they’d actually be useful, there are often preseason sales to take advantge of as well. If you’re a lawn-care enthusiast, you’ll be happy to know you can usually find good discounts on string trimmers in February.

The ideal string trimmer is able to trim, edge, and cut tall grass with ease, and you can find many top-rated gas and electric models that handle those tasks. We’ve found that electric models tend to be better for smaller properties, but it might be better to avoid cordless options because they tend to be less powerful and less efficient.

It might be good to read our string trimmer buying guide before you buy because there are lots of options. 

Mattresses

You should never pay full price for a mattress. Why? Manufacturers of all the top brands tend to observe major and minor holidays with discounts and special offers, so you rarely have to wait too long for a price drop.

In February, Presidents Day weekend was your best opportunity to find a deal on a new one. If you missed your chance to shop for a deal this month, you may need to wait until Memorial Day if you want more mattress deals to choose from. 

You can find out more about mattress options by reading CR’s buying guide and reviewing our mattress ratings. A good mattress should last you eight to 10 years, so do the research and invest in one that will suit your sleeping style for years to come.

Snow Blowers

The end of the season is a great time to stock up on winter weather gear, and snow blowers are among the most deeply discounted products in February. You can pick one up now and be ready for any late-winter blizzards that might strike. And if none come, you’ll be well-prepared for next winter.

There are many types of snow blowers, and Consumer Reports’ testing has found that size doesn’t always matter. You don’t necessarily need the most powerful model to get the job done, and you can choose among many models to find what will work best in your climate and for your property. You can spend as little as $200 for one that will handle light dustings or well over $1,000 for a model that removes heavier snow.

When choosing a snow blower, look for one that blends competent clearing ability with a smooth, single-lever chute control that sends snow in any direction you want it to go. 

For more details, check out our snow blower buying guide and recommendations

Space Heaters

If you're always cold, live in a drafty house, or want to curb your heating bill without sacrificing comfort, a space heater is just the ticket. They often go on sale in February as retailers prepare to bring out their wares for spring. If you work in an office that never seems to be warm enough or you’re simply sick of arguing about the thermostat at home, a good space heater can make everyone happy and comfortable. And getting one on sale only sweetens the deal.

Perhaps the most exciting news is that the models with the strongest performance in temperature control, safety, and noise typically cost less than $100, so sales will make them a great investment for any budget. 

It might be good to check out the options with our buying guide to find which is best for you before you start shopping.