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Philips Airfryer vs Tefal Actifry - which one should you buy?

See how the Tefal Actifry and Philips Airfryer compare, and get our expert verdict on which one will make the tastiest chips, and last the longest.

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If you're looking for an air fryer you've probably come across the Philips Airfryer and Tefal Actifry, as these two brands are big news in the world of low-fat fryers. But which brand makes the better fryers, and are there other brands you should be considering? Read on to find out.

In this article:

Every year, we test air fryers from all the major brands, including Philips Airfryers, the Tefal Actifry range, Breville Halo and brands such as Delonghi, Russell Hobbs and Salter. Our independent lab tests challenge the fryers to produce tasty golden chips and succulent chicken, so we can bring you our recommendations of the best models.

We also surveyed Which? members to find out what those who own an air fryer thought of their appliance, and how long it lasted before developing any issues. This unique data means we can tell you which brands are likely to last, and the ones to avoid.

Read on to find out more about how the Actifry and Airfryer compare, and if there are other brands you should be considering. Just want to see which air fryer came out on top in our tests? Head to our list of the best air fryers.

Actifry vs Airfryer - features compared 

Tefal was the first brand to launch a low-fat fryer - the Actifry - around 10 years ago, closely followed by Philips with its Airfryer. Both brands have released a number of versions since then. New models usually have minor changes like a different capacity or extra features. More recent launches claim to be faster than ever at cooking your food.

Tefal Actifry models cost from £100 to just under £250. A higher price will get you a larger capacity for cooking – up to 1.5kg – and more advanced features, such as the extra cooking layer of the Tefal Actifry 2 in 1. Some new models have smart capabilities, so they can be controlled with an app on your smartphone.

Philips has fewer models in the AirFryer range and prices start a little higher, at around £150. The largest model in the 2017 range has a 1.2kg capacity, meaning you won’t get quite as many chips cooked in a batch as with the largest Tefal.

Both brands' fryers use air that's heated and blasted around the inside of the appliance, along with a small amount of oil, to cook food. Actifry models have a paddle that turns food as it cooks. Does this produce better results? Check our air fryer reviews to find out.

Tefal Actifry vs Philips Airfryer - which brand is rated better? 

As well as buying the fryer that makes the tastiest food and is quick and easy to use, you'll want to know it will continue to churn out chips for years to come.

In the table below we've brought together all our expert air fryer knowledge to give you the definitive verdict on which brand is best, including:

  • Average test score - how well each brand's products perform in our tough tests.
  • How reliable it is - which brands last for longest without developing problems, based on feedback from owners.
  • How owners rate it - owners tell us if they are happy with their product, and whether they would recommend it to others.
  • Overall verdict - we sum up the pros and cons of each brand to help you choose.

Only logged-in Which? members can see our Actifry and Airfryer verdicts in the table below. If you’re not yet a member, join Which? to get instant access.

Air fryer brands rated
Preview: air fryer brands rated
Brand Average test score Reliability rating How owners rate this brand Overview of our verdict
70% 70% Our top pick: The best air fryers we've tested are all from this brand. They produce top-quality food, including golden chips and perfectly cooked chicken, and are a breeze to use.
60% 66% These air fryers offer five-star reliability, and an impressive 90% of models remained fault-free after five years, according to owners. When it comes to cooking chips and other food, though, we've found other brands that do a better job and are easier to use.


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Choosing the best brand of air fryer 

As the table above shows, one popular air fryer brand impressed in our tests, and comes out of our member survey with a good reliability rating and customer score.

But what about the lesser-known brands? While we don't have enough data to report individually on brands such as Breville, Delonghi and Salter, our feedback on smaller air fryer brands suggests that overall they are also quite reliable. 

Some of these brands offer much cheaper air fryers, some costing as little as £60. There's no point paying less for a product that is next to useless though, and our tests have revealed that some cheaper air fryers are truly terrible, with one scoring a pitiful 34%.

Check our air fryer reviews to see which models offer the best value.

Are air fryers generally reliable? 

Overall, air fryers are reliable compared with small appliances, such as toasters or kettles, and other kitchen gadgets, such as bread makers and coffee machines. On average, more than 88% of air fryers remained fault-free for five years.

43% of Which? members surveyed told us they’d expect an air fryer to keep cooking for five years, while 18% said that they’d expect it to last for 10 years.

Most common air fryer problems 

We asked Which? members about the issues they’d encountered with their air fryers, and the biggest problems were down to smaller parts breaking. The top three most frequent faults were:

  • 29% - Broken paddle
  • 24% - Broken parts, such as buttons, power cord, handle or timer
  • 22% - Stopped working or complete failure

The good news is that parts such as a broken paddle can usually be replaced, so that if this problem occurs, it doesn't mean the end of your fryer. Tefal sells spare Actrifry paddles from around £6.50.

Best and worst air fryers 

To help you choose an air fryer, we've rounded up the best models from Philips and Tefal, as well as a Don't Buy you should avoid.

Top Philips and Tefal airfryers, and one to avoid


This is one of the best air fryers around for making crispy chips. It's quick and easy to use although it's not the easiest to clean. Unlike with most other air fryers we've tested, you don't need to stir frequently during cooking to get a nice plate of chips.


This is the best air fryer we tested in 2017 - it makes cooking chips quick and easy. Unlike most other air fryers we tested, you can leave it to cook without stirring the chips yourself, and they turn out great.


This air fryer is shockingly bad at cooking chips - the results are an unappetising mix of half-raw and half-burnt, even with regular stirring. It's awkward to use, too.


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