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Hot dogs and hamburgers cooking on a grill.

September is a great time to save on a variety of items across multiple categories. There are three main reasons you'll find so many ways to save: Labor Day, back-to-school shopping, and the seasonal shift from summer to fall.

All of these factors lead retailers to drop their prices on these 15 products, among others. There are opportunities to save on outdoor items like grills, lawn mowers, and leaf blowers, as well as discounts on tech, including cell phones, printers, and wireless routers. Add to that price drops on freezers, air purifiers, and cooking appliances, and you can make upgrades across your whole home for less. Plus, you'll often see sales on other large appliances, mattresses, and even apparel and home goods this month.

Consumer Reports tracks the prices of the products we test to determine the times of year they will most likely be at their best discounts. To learn more about what goes on sale and when, check out our calendar of deals.

Grills

Labor Day is the last chance of the year to find grills on sale, though these sales are often available for a week or two after the holiday weekend. Retailers are looking to make room in their warehouses as the outdoor cooking season draws to a close. And with a few months left until it's too cold to barbecue often (at least in some parts of the country), you might as well make the most of the fall grilling season. So whether you want a new charcoal, gas, pellet, or kamado grill, keep an eye out for sales this month. 

More on Shopping and Saving

Grill prices can range from as little as $100 to more than $3,000, depending on what you want. CR tests grills to fit every cooking style and budget, from portable models you can take camping or tailgating to larger grills designed to feed an extended family. We produce ratings of more than 150 grills to suit both first-time buyers and seasoned grill masters searching for a replacement or an upgrade.

There are three main types of grills to choose from, and each has pros and cons when it comes to cost, ease of use, cleanup, and, most important, how it cooks food. So you’ll want to review our grill buying guide if you’re not sure whether you’d be happiest with a charcoal grillgas grill, or pellet grill

Broil King Kamado Grill
The deal:
 $750 at Amazon, $790 at Lowe’s
CR’s test results: Broil King Keg 911470 Grill
Kamado grills aren’t for the novice griller, but if you’re ready to step up your game, this typically $900 model is more than $100 off at Amazon and Lowe’s. CR’s testers found it to be very easy to use and clean but note that the built-in temperature gauge stopped working during testing.

Smartphones

If your current smartphone isn't that current anymore and you’re finally ready to get your hands on something newer, September 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 fall season kicks off with early discounts as carriers and retailers prepare for new phones.

You're especially in luck if you're an Apple fan, because the brand typically unveils its new devices in September. As a result, prices on the previous year’s models begin to drop this month.

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

Google Pixel 4
The deal: $549 at Amazon
CR's test results: Google Pixel 4
This $250 discount on both the black and white models of the Google phone is a great reason to finally replace your old smartphone. The 64GB Pixel 4 scored well in virtually every test we put it through, but at 20.5 hours, the battery life is just average, according to our testers.

Samsung Galaxy S10
The deal:
$700 at Amazon and Best Buy
CR's test results: Samsung Galaxy S10
The S10 usually starts at $900, but it's $150 off at these two retailers right now. It's one of the best smartphones CR has tested, and features a stunning bezeless screen, an impressive rear camera, a fast processor, and a longer battery life than you'll get with most other phones.

Printers

For those with a printer on your back-to-school shopping list, you may be able to find a good deal on a top model this month. There are plenty of options to choose from, whether you need a printer that can scan and fax or just want something basic to print occasionally.

There are two main types of printers: laser and inkjet. Some may be able to make copies or offer wireless printing over WiFi. CR's buying guide can give you a more in-depth look at the different options and the best models so that you'll be ready to buy when the printer you want goes on sale.

Brother All-in-One Monochrome Printer
The deal:
$270 at Amazon and B&H Photo
CR's test results: Brother MFC-L5700DW printer
This printer is one of the top-tested models, and it usually sells for $320-$350, making this discount especially enticing. B&H Photo is currently out of stock, but should have more units soon, at the same sale price as Amazon. Printing 23.1 pages per minute, it's one of the faster printers CR has tested, and it faxes, photocopies, and autofeeds documents when scanning. However, it is larger and will take up more room than other models, and may be best suited if you have a dedicated home office with ample space.

Wireless Routers

A good wireless router can help boost your WiFi signal, eliminate any dead spots in your home, and ensure that everyone in the family can stream, play, and otherwise spend time online uninterrupted. Thanks in part to continuing back-to-school sales, September is often a great month to find a new router for less.

There's a lot to consider when choosing a new router, from the size of your home to cybersecurity protections. Start with CR's buying guide, which walks you through all the different factors and features so that you can determine which model is right for you.

Netgear Nighthawk Wireless Router
The deal:
 $140 at Walmart, $160 at Best BuyOffice Depot
CR’s test results: Netgear Nighthawk AC1900 (R7000) wireless router
This model is well-suited to small and midsized homes in need of reliable wireless internet for the coming school year. In addition to solid performance, it delivers the protection of automatic firmware updates and is easy to set up via a smartphone app. 

Air Conditioners

Air conditioners often go on sale in September because they're no longer as in-demand as summer winds down. Get one for less this month to beat the last of the summer heat or just be ready for next year.

You can choose a window unit or a portable AC, and some models may have features such as WiFi connectivity and a companion app. CR has tested and rated 50 models, so be sure to check out our buying guide and recommendations to find the best fit for your home.

Whynter Window Air Conditioner
The deal:
$544 at Amazon, $570 at Staples, $573 at Best Buy, $590 at Wayfair
CR's test results: Whynter ARC-14SH air conditioner
If your home office is too hot to concentrate on work but you don’t have a window suitable for a window unit, we may have the answer. This model is one of the best portable AC units you can get, and it’s at a great discount right now from its original $680. We especially like that it’s quieter than most other portable units we’ve tested. (It’s still on the noisy side, but that’s the price to pay for a cool, comfortable place to work.)

Carpet Cleaners

If you have a lot of carpeting and a house full of kids and pets, buying a carpet cleaner is a good investment, and our data shows they’re often more affordable in September. Homeowners who clean their carpets only occasionally may typically hire a professional carpet cleaner. Though nothing beats the ease and results of a professional clean, that might not be an option right now. But some of the machines we tested come pretty close for less money. 

You may also be able to rent a carpet cleaner, something worth looking into if you don’t plan to deep-clean more than a few times a year. Rental fees typically run about $20 to $30 per day, but these models tend to be heavy and harder to use, and they're not always in the best condition. Keep in mind that rentals might not be available in your area until social distancing requirements are relaxed.

Read CR’s buying guide to get a better idea of what’s out there and what will be best for your needs.

Bissell Pet Pro Carpet Cleaner
The deal:
$267 at Amazon
CR's test results: Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution Pet Pro 1986 carpet cleaner
Typically selling for around $280, this Bissell saw a $13 price drop at Amazon. It's on the noisy side, but it offers better-than-average drying and of course does well with cleaning.

Hoover Carpet Cleaner
The deal:
$99 at Amazon
CR's test results: Hoover Dual Power Max Pet FH51001 carpet cleaner
This carpet cleaner might be a good option, especially for this price. It typically costs $170, but Amazon has it for nearly half that price. CR's testers found that it was effective at both cleaning and drying, and can clean roughly 33 square feet with one full tank, but it is fairly noisy.

Wall Ovens

Whether you’re looking to upgrade your appliances for a kitchen renovation or suddenly find yourself in need of a new oven, September is an excellent time to be on the lookout for sales. This is especially true if you're considering a wall oven, which offers lots of flexibility that you won’t find in a range and may be available at significant discounts this month. Because most wall ovens are electric, they can be installed on just about any wall in your kitchen and at any height, so you won’t have to bend over when pulling out hot, heavy dishes.

If you spend a lot of time cooking, you may want to consider a double oven. Or perhaps you’re in the market for one with a convection mode to reduce cook times, or variable broil to cook with even more precision. 

All of these options are out there, making it paramount to research before you buy. Purchasing any major appliance, especially an oven, is a big decision, and we recommend reading our buying guide and exploring our ratings and recommendations before you choose a model. Doing the research is essential to ensuring you’re satisfied with your new wall oven.

Wall ovens typically range from $850 to upward of $6,000, but keep an eye out for sales at major retailers like Lowe’s, Home Depot, Best Buy, Appliances Connection, AJ Madison, Sears, and Walmart.

KitchenAid Electric Wall Oven
The deal:
$2,250 at Best Buy and Lowe's
CR's test results: KitchenAid KOSE500ESS Wall Oven
This wall oven originally cost $2,500, but two retailers took $250 off the price tag. It's one of the best models CR has tested, and its oven capacity and broiling capabilities are where it really shines.

LG Electric Wall Oven
The deal:
 $1,400 at Best Buy and Sears
CR's test results: LG LWS3063ST Wall Oven
Over $200 in savings on an oven that originally cost $1,800 (and now typically sells for $1,600) makes this highly rated wall oven a good choice if you're in the market. It did exceptionally well in CR's tests when it came to broiling and oven cleaning, and got high marks for baking and oven capacity as well. CR's reliability survey has also returned impressive results from people who own this oven.

Cooktops

If you’re remodeling, a new cooktop can be perfect for your kitchen island, especially if you plan to install an in-wall oven. Cooktops tend to drop in price around Labor Day and into mid-September at least, making this month a great time to buy.

You’ll find gas, electric, and induction cooktops ranging from 21 to 48 inches. Many have five or six burners, but that doesn’t mean you’ll have room to use them all at once. Generally, most 30-inch cooktops have four or five burners, and most 36-inch cooktops have five or six. 

Learn more about the advantages of each cooktop in our buying guide to determine which is the best fit for your home before you start shopping around. Then start your search with CR’s recommended models, which all passed our rigorous tests with flying colors.

KitchenAid 30-Inch Electric Smoothtop
The deal:
$800 at Best Buy and Lowe's
CR's test results: KitchenAid
The typically $1,200 KitchenAid cooktop is one of the more affordable options, especially since it's on sale as part of ongoing Labor Day discounts at two retailers. It performed well when it came to both high heat and low heat cooking, but low-heat cooking performance ranked higher.

Samsung 30-Inch Electric Smoothtop
The deal:
$945 at Appliances Connection
CR's test results: Samsung NZ30K7570RG Cooktop
This cooktop scored really well in CR's tests when it came to both high- and low-heat cooking. It also has a WiFi Connectivity feature that lets you set and monitor your heat from your phone for even more precise cooking. Typically, you'll see this cooktop sell for over $1,300.

Smart Speakers

Smart speakers enable a lot of entertainment and smart home options, and if you've wanted one, September is a great time to get it on sale. They originally were best used as virtual assistants, but now there is a wide world of options that offer impressive sound quality for music playback. 

There are three virtual assistants: Amazon Alexa, Apple's Siri, and Google Assistant. Siri is available only in the Apple HomePod, whereas you can find a variety of brands offering smart speakers that rely on Alexa or Google. These assistants can set reminders and timers, call an Uber, order pizza, answer trivia questions, share news and weather updates, and so much more.

Smart speakers can be especially useful if you have any smart devices in your home, providing voice control for things like lights, thermostats, and even TV control. Just make sure to check compatibility, because not every device works with every smart speaker.

CR has tested 52 different smart speakers for sound quality, versatility, and ease of use, among other factors, to help you choose the best option for your home.

Amazon Echo Plus
The deal:
$75 at Amazon, Best Buy, and Staples
CR's test results: Amazon Echo Plus (2nd gen.)
The Echo Plus offers tone controls that allow you to tweak the speaker to match your listening room. But even if you’re a set-it-and-forget-it type, it’s enjoyable to listen to. You can also pair it with a second Plus (or Amazon’s subwoofer) for stereo sound. And the built-in Alexa and Zigbee smart home hub functionality allows you to use the model to control a wide variety of smart home devices.

Google Home Max
The deal: $199 at Belk
CR’s test results: Google Home Max smart speaker
The Google Home Max ranks among the best-sounding smart speakers available today and can be paired with another Home Max for stereo sound or integrated in a multiroom system featuring other speakers with Chromecast capability. This is the lowest price we’ve seen all year, and if you sign up for Belk’s email newsletter, you may be able to save an extra $10 to $20.

Marshall Stanmore II
The deal:
$322 at Amazon, $342 at Best Buy
CR’s test results: Marshall Stanmore II Voice smart speaker
This Amazon Alexa-powered smart speaker is a great choice if you want something unique to enhance your décor. It’s designed to mirror the look of Marshall’s iconic guitar amplifiers. Our testers found the knobs to be well-placed, clearly labeled, and easy to use. The sound quality is less refined than that on rival speakers, with a somewhat boomy bass and a midrange that’s slightly congested, but the unit does provide enough volume to fill a large room. At the time of writing, Amazon had limited inventory. Best Buy’s price is a bit higher, but it did drop $20 in the past week.

Lawn Mowers and Tractors

Having the right tools makes it easier to get any job done, and that’s especially true when it comes to yardwork. A good mower can make quick, easy work of unruly turf, and you may be able to find a good deal on a new machine in early fall.

Prices for lawn mowers range from a hundred bucks to several thousand. Though it’s not necessary to spring for the priciest model on the market, spending just a bit more than the lower end of the price spectrum will get you a higher-quality machine.

You’ll want to research the options to find the best model for your property, whether gas- or battery-powered, push or ride-on mowers. And beyond that, consider factors like size, power, and upkeep. Check out CR's lawn mower and tractor buying guide to learn more about your options and find a suitable mower for your home.

Replacement Windows

September is a good time to invest in replacement windows. This home improvement project can help better insulate your home before the temperatures start to fall. Plus, CR has been tracking window prices for years and our data shows prices tend to dip this month.

Upgrading your windows is not going to be a cheap undertaking, so you may as well take advantage of any opportunity to save on materials. Opting for just replacement windows, as long as your sills and frames are in good condition, is a good start. But if you have to replace everything, the cost will go up. Using Energy Star-certified windows offers another potential way to save on your energy bills. And there may even be local or state rebates or incentives you can take advantage of as well.

But before you can buy new windows, you'll want to do your research. Consult CR's buying guide, which goes over everything from choosing the right windows and materials to finding the right installer. CR has rated 14 different double-hung replacement windows for wind and rain resistance.

Freezers

Stand-alone freezers tend to dip in price a few times a year, including September. But this year, we haven't seen much in the way of savings. More shoppers than usual have been buying freezers to store extra food and reduce the frequency of their shopping trips, and retailers have struggled to keep up with demand.

If you do find a quality freezer available to buy, make sure you look at the shipping options, too, because there are still residual shipping delays and slowdowns. If you need added storage now, you may want to look for curbside pickup or in-store options, or consider purchasing a refrigerator with a larger freezer to expand your food storage sooner.

Check out our buying guide and ratings to find the best freezer for your needs so that you’ll be ready to buy when it’s in stock.

Chainsaws

Need to tackle some tree work? Look for sales on chainsaws in September. A top-rated model can help you clear out brush too thick for electric loppers, fell a tree that’s threatening a roof, slice off dangerous broken tree limbs, or cut a tree into logs for your fireplace this winter.

Chainsaws come in a range of sizes, from small electric models (some with cords, some without) to hefty gas-powered models intended for heavier work. Prices often correlate with engine size for gas saws and voltage for electric saws, along with the length of the cutting bar, the arm of flat metal that guides the chain. 

Finding the right model depends on how—and how often—you plan to use your chainsaw. Check out CR’s chainsaw buying guide and ratings to learn more about the various models.

Air Purifiers

As the weather changes from summer to fall, seasonal allergies can hit hard. An air purifier may be a smart investment if you're sensitive to this shift. They're great if you or someone in your household has asthma or is allergic to airborne allergens like dust or pet dander. 

In addition to looking at the purchase price of a room air purifier, you’ll want to factor in its operating costs. You could spend $150 to $200 per year on filter replacements and electricity.

To reduce those costs, seek out energy-efficient models (check for Energy Star certification) and washable filters. Choosing a large unit and running it at a lower speed will keep the noise down. Use a higher speed to clean a large room quickly.

To understand more about what to look for and how much to pay, check out our air purifier buying guide and ratings.

Leaf Blowers

Leaf blowers are a great time saver in the fall if you have trees on or near your property. They will make quick work of corralling fallen leaves, grass clippings, weeds, and other debris all season and all year long. So you may want to invest in one this month while you can score a good deal. 

Consumer Reports has put more than 50 models, including gas-powered, battery-powered, and corded electric, through rigorous tests to help you find the model that suits your needs. CR’s buying guide will help you learn more so that you can shop with confidence.