July may be sizzling hot, but prices on some items cool off this time of year. In July, you’ll find markdowns on a number of products, including appliances, humidifiers, and sunscreen. It could also be a great time to join a gym.

Consumer Reports tracks the prices of the products we test, so we can tell you, month by month, what to buy on deep discount. If you’re in the market for these items, we have shopping tips and advice to help you find the best deals.

To see more items on sale in July—and the rest of the year—check out our Calendar of Deals.


Refrigerators go on sale in July, so if you need a new one, this is a good time to go shopping. You’ll find that they come in many styles, brands, and features, and yes, they can be expensive. Even a basic model can cost more than $1,000, and fancy fridges can come with a much higher price. If you decide to look for a refrigerator this month, here are some tips to keep in mind:

Pay attention to Energy Star ratings.  President Donald Trump’s proposed budget cuts could do away with the Energy Star program. For now, though, this rating can help you to consider not only the price tag of the refrigerator but also the cost of all that cooling.

Consider cutting back on extra features. Refrigerators come with all sorts of features these days, including hidden cameras that snap photos of your groceries that you can access on your phone while grocery shopping.

But the most requested feature buyers look for is an in-door ice and water dispenser. Opting for this, however, may not be such a good idea. We found that models with dispensers typically require the most repairs, use the most energy, and sacrifice storage space.

To find the refrigerator that best suits your needs, check out our ratings and buying guide.

This month, be sure to also look for deals on other major appliances, including washing machinesdryersdishwashersrangescooktops and wall ovens, freezers, and built-in microwaves.


Humidity can be bad for everything from a piano that you may have in your living room to the sheets on your bed, which can feel damp if you don’t have air conditioning. In addition to being uncomfortable, levels of humidity above 50 percent can also breed dust mites, mildew, and mold, which may worsen allergies and asthma. Our dehumidifier buying guide and ratings show that the best dehumidifiers aren't necessarily the highest priced models.

Consider where you will place it. Of course, you’ll want the dehumidifier to be located where humidity can do the most damage. But there are other concerns to think about, such as noise. Our noise measurements from 4 feet away usually range from about 55 to 67 decibels for the models we test. That's about the difference between the sound of a loud conversation and the din of street traffic.


If the summer weather is inspiring you to fix a leaky roof, you’re in luck. You’ll find deep discounts this month on the materials you’ll need.

Suppliers sell roofing by the square, or 100-square-foot area. To estimate how much you'll need, multiply the overall length and width of each roof section in feet to determine its area and add 10 percent to allow for waste. Keep an extra bundle of shingles for minor repairs—after a heavy storm, for example. Check out our roofing buying guide for more tips.


Deep discounts on sunscreen continue this month, and there probably isn’t a better time to be protecting your skin. Sales began in April and will last through August, so make sure to stock up whenever you see a good deal.

Keep in mind that not all sunscreens work as advertised. Read our recommendations on more than a dozen sunscreens that protect against both UVA and UVB radiation before making your purchase.

Gym Memberships

Gyms tend to empty out this time of year as people go on vacation or enjoy the great outdoors. That means there’s a chance you can snag a good deal on gym membership, says Josh Leve, founder of the Association of Fitness Studios.

Try before you buy. Most gyms will give you a one-week, no-commitment pass, and studios will offer you at least once class for free. Visit during the hours that you plan on working out so that you know what to expect.

Negotiate. Once you’re ready to commit, ask to speak with a manager rather than a salesperson so that you can negotiate a price. Ask her whether she’ll consider giving you a free month or waiving the membership fee if you pay upfront for an annual membership.

Amazon Prime Day Items

Amazon’s annual attempt at Christmas in July is scheduled for July 11 this year. On this day, Amazon offers deals on thousands of items across almost every department and category the retailer offers.

Sign up for a trial. If you don’t currently pay the $99 annual fee for Amazon Prime, you can sign up for a 30-day free trial and still enjoy the savings. Just be sure to cancel before the trial period is over or you will be charged the membership fee.

Download the Amazon shopping app. It lets you sort and track upcoming deals in product categories and add deals you’re interested in to your wish list. The app will notify you when the products you like go on sale.