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Are cordless appliances worth it? Which to buy and which to skip

KitchenAid Cordless Variable Speed Hand Blender
(Image credit: KitchenAid)

Ever since cordless vacuum cleaners came to town, a range of alternative appliances have been cutting to cord, so to speak. Cordless appliances boast added convenience by providing the same performance without an annoying cable getting in the way, but do they actually deliver on this promise? After six years of product testing, I can tell you that the designs are very hit and miss, depending on the type of appliance. So which should you buy? Here is the truth about cordless appliances.   

Dyson cordless vacuum cleaner

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Cordless vacuum cleaners: Worth buying

Cordless vacuums: Pros and cons

Pros:
Lightweight
Maneuverable  
Convenient 

Cons:
Small bin capacity
Limited battery life
Typically not as strong as corded models  

Cordless vacuum cleaners are easily the most popular cordless appliance, and for good reason. You don’t realize how annoying it is to drag a cable behind you and find new plug sockets in each room, until it’s gone. Not only that, cordless vacuum cleaners have a much more lightweight design as well compared to corded models, making them more maneuverable and quick to use. 

Cordless vacuum cleaners were originally designed for picking up small spills. However, they’ve proved to be so popular that people now want designs which provide enough power and time to cover the whole house. These have come a long way since they were first introduced and are definitely worth your investment.

KitchenAid Cordless 7 Speed Hand Mixer

(Image credit: KitchenAid)

Cordless hand mixers and hand blenders: Worth buying 

Cordless hand mixers: Pros and cons

Pros:
Can easily navigate around a large mixing bowl 
Convenient 
Good for everyday tasks 

Cons:
May struggle with recipes which require more work and power 
You might run out of battery mid-mix 

I was skeptical of cordless hand mixers and blenders when they were first introduced, but was pleasantly surprised once I started using them. The lack of a cord means you can easily navigate around a bowl and have freedom to work from wherever you want in the kitchen. With my corded hand mixer, I had to work over my stovetop as the length of the cable held me back to the plug point. I had no such problem with a cordless model. 

Power was a concern, but these designs tend to provide enough for everyday jobs. If you beat tougher recipes or mixes which require a lot of work, such as fruit cake, then a corded mixer might be better. Otherwise, I was converted.    

Cuisinart EvolutionX Cordless Mini Chopper

(Image credit: Cuisinart)

Cordless mini choppers: Worth buying

Cordless mini choppers: Pros and cons

Pros:
Convenient 
Easier to store 
Less messy to use 

Cons:
Might struggle on very tough ingredients, such as nuts 

When it comes to mini choppers, which usually  feature a compact design, you wouldn’t think losing the cord would make much of a difference in terms of convenience, but it actually does. You no longer have to carry ingredients across your kitchen to the chopper, making a mess in the process. You can prep and go, chucking your fruit and veg straight in. 

These appliances are designed to handle smaller chopping jobs, such as onions or pureeing hummus. That’s why they’re still more than capable when using battery power. However, if you're using it to chop harder ingredients, such as nuts, you may find it struggles more than a corded model.

Cuisinart EvolutionX Cordless Compact Blender

(Image credit: Cuisinart)

Cordless personal blenders: Mostly not worth it 

Cordless blenders: Pros and cons

Pros:
You can place it anywhere 
Good for soft fruit smoothies 

Cons:
Not as powerful as corded models
Runs out of battery quickly 
Struggles with tougher ingredients 

I had high hopes for cordless personal blenders when I first tried one, but I was unfortunately disappointed. It jammed easily and when it did run, it didn’t completely blend tougher ingredients such as leafy greens and couldn’t pulverize raspberry seeds. It was fine for a quick soft fruit smoothie, but I wasn’t happy with the performance otherwise. The battery drained very quickly too. 

Blending ingredients requires a lot of power, depending on what you’re using. For this reason, cordless personal blenders aren’t quite there yet. They claim convenience, but you might be left with a lumpy smoothie. Only buy one if you predominantly drink soft fruit smoothies.   

Cordless Iron

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Cordless Irons: Not worth it 

Cordless irons: Pros and cons

Pros:
Easy to maneuver 
More lightweight than corded models

Cons:
Adds time to ironing 
Can be more bulky to store
Results aren’t as good as corded 
Still need to plug in the base 

You might think a cordless iron sounds like a great idea. After all, the cord can hold you back from getting the best angles as you iron. A cord can also create a tripping hazard or cordon off part of the room. Cordless irons essentially charge on a base, and once ready you can use it until it needs charging again. While these are great for the first or second sweep, they soon lose heat and become counterproductive.

When testing one, I found myself becoming increasingly impatient from repeatedly charging it. Plus, ironing a simple shirt took much longer than it should have. In a nutshell, that’s why cordless irons are a waste of money in my opinion. 

Katie Mortram

Katie looks after everything homes-related, from kitchen appliances to gardening tools. She also covers smart home products too, so is the best point of contact for any household advice! She has tested and reviewed kitchen appliances for over 6 years, so she knows what to look for when finding the best. Her favorite thing to test has to be stand mixers as she loves to bake in her spare time.