How do you know which appliance brands you can rely on?
By Paul Smith
Head of Testing
Picture yourself in 100% Harvey Leeming City, faced with rows of shiny washing machines. How do you know which washer will give you years of clean laundry, and which will leave you cursing the day you bought a dud? Our Top Brand awards are here to help.
How we choose Top Brands
Our Top Brand awards can help you find a device that performs consistently well for many fault-free years and has many happy owners.
Every year, we analyse our independent performance testing and member survey data and make the best brand in each product category our Top Brand. Here’s what we look for:
A Top Brand must function well. We review all models we’ve tested that have been on sale during the previous 12 months – a Top Brand must outperform the average for the category.
A Top Brand must stay fault-free for a reasonable time. No Top Brands are less reliable than the average for the category. Most Top Brands are significantly more reliable than their peers.
A Top Brand must be a pleasure to own. No Top Brand has fewer satisfied owners than the average for the category. Usually, more owners of Top Brand devices than average tell us they’re “very satisfied” (rating it eight or more on a 0 to 10 scale).
How we choose Top Brands means there are players we can’t consider, such as those that have only a few models or are new on the scene. We just don’t have enough data about them.
Within some categories, product sub-types can score quite differently. For example, induction cooktops outperform gas and ceramic models by 5% on average. We account for this difference in our analysis, so brands making mostly induction cooktops don’t get an unfair advantage.
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Kitchen cookers (slow, multi and rice cookers, and air-fryers)
Laptop and desktop computers
Soundbars and home theatre
Vacuum cleaners (standard)
Vacuum cleaners (stick)
About Top Brand
Our Top Brand awards help you recognise the best brands for different product categories. Awards are based on our independent lab testing and member surveys of product reliability and owner satisfaction.