Top toaster brands for 2020
By Alice Williams
Want to buy a toaster from a trusted brand? We reveal the toaster brands that last, make great toast, and are loved by owners.
In 2019, we asked more than 3,600 Which? members all about their toasters. From how long it lasted to how happy they were with it, we gathered the feedback and crunched the numbers to find out which brands make you happy when you get them home.
The results showed big differences between the best and worst brands, so it's worth choosing wisely when you’re buying a new toaster.
Discover how big brands such as Breville, Dualit and Russell Hobbs really perform at breakfast time, how long they last without developing a fault and if owners feel like they’re really worth the money they paid.
Jump straight to:
- Best and worst toaster brands
- Choosing the best toaster brand
- Common toaster faults and how to avoid them
Just after the very best toaster for your budget? Go to our round-up of the best toasters to see which models aced our tests.
Our exclusive research shows which toaster brands come out on top, and which toasters are best left on the shelf.
For each brand, you can see:
- Average test score – how well toasters from this brand do in our tests. Based on all models available online in June 2019.
- How reliable it is – we ask owners if, when and how their toaster malfunctioned, and calculate how reliable each brand is overall.
- How owners rate it – how likely owners are to recommend the brand and their overall satisfaction.
- Our overall verdict – we tell you which brands are worth buying and which should be avoided.
You can see a preview of the best and worst scores below:
Only logged-in Which? members can see which brands came out on top in the table below. If you’re not yet a member, sign up for join Which? to get instant access.
|Preview: best and worst toaster brands|
|Brand||Average test score||Reliability score||How owners rate this brand||Overview of our verdict|
|68%||84%||80%||Customers love these supermarket own-brand toasters – it’s the favourite of all the brands we surveyed. These cheap toasters also offer excellent value for money, although other toaster brands are more reliable.|
|53%||90%||79%||We’re yet to find a Best Buy from this expensive brand, but they’re popular with our survey respondents. They tend to be fairly reliable, although in a couple of instances the pop-up function broke down, so you’ll have to fish your toast out yourself.|
|61%||n/a||79%||We didn’t have enough responses to comment on how reliable these toasters are, but customers are sold – it’s one of the favourite toaster brands. Be careful which model you choose, though, as both a Best Buy and a Don’t Buy toaster have gone through our test lab.|
|62%||89%||77%||This brand hasn’t exactly wowed us in the test lab, but customers we’ve surveyed seem to like them, and they think they’re good value for money despite the high prices. They’re reasonably reliable, with the most common fault being toasting inconsistently after long-term use.|
|64%||89%||77%||This brand makes some outstanding toasters, but there are a couple of duds, too. Customers like its toasters, although feel that they’re maybe not quite worth their high prices, and they do reasonably well for reliability. People hang on to these toasters for longer than average, but a fair few in our survey had developed a fault by the seven-year mark.|
|60%||n/a||77%||The one toaster we’ve tested from this brand didn’t exactly blow us away, but customers are more positive, giving it a higher score than most other brands. It’s also one of the few to get a full five stars for value for money, although we didn’t have enough reliability data to report on how likely they are to develop a fault.|
|66%||92%||76%||This budget brand gets a full five stars for value for money, and it’s not hard to see why – its toasters mostly do well in our tests and they have a good reliability record, too. All the faults we recorded were minor issues that shouldn’t stop you from using your toaster.|
|70%||90%||74%||Top pick overall: you can usually rely on toasters from this brand to ace our tests, and real-life owners seem to like them, too. It’s generally reliable, and although you won’t find its toasters as cheap as most supermarket own-brands, customers still think they’re worth the money they paid.|
|67%||89%||72%||There are plenty of Best Buys to choose from with this brand, but a few clangers, too. Only one in ten in our survey had developed a fault after seven years, although respondents’ previous toasters had only lasted them just over six years, which is less than average.|
|n/a||86%||72%||These toasters aren’t the most reliable you can buy, and nearly one in ten in our survey had developed a fault after seven years of ownership. They’re much cheaper than the average toaster though, and owners think they’re good value.|
|63%||96%||71%||Most reliable: if you want an appliance that lasts, choose a toaster from this brand. Hardly any we surveyed had picked up a fault, plus owners kept them for 10-and-a-half years, on average, before they needed replacing compared with seven years for the average toaster. They’re also seen as good value for money, and although performance does vary, it does have a Best Buy to its name.|
|n/a||87%||70%||These toasters are rarely in shops for long, so we’ve never tested any. Its reliability and customer scores are slightly below average, although they’re cheap enough for owners to think they’re good value.|
|59%||88%||69%||We’ve tested more of these toasters than any other brand, with a huge spread of results. Customers aren’t especially sold on it toasters, and reliability is pretty average. One in ten faults were so bad that you’d need a new toaster, though.|
|69%||94%||68%||We’re impressed with the two toasters we’ve reviewed recently from this brand, although our survey respondents are less keen on theirs, and don’t think they’re as good value as other brands. If you’re after a really reliable toaster it’s a great bet, though, as fewer than one in 20 we surveyed developed a fault in seven years of ownership.|
|64%||90%||68%||This brand’s toasters have a wide spread of test results, with some being Best Buys while others are middling under-achievers. Customers aren’t so keen on them, but it's a fairly reliable brand, with survey respondents keeping them for nearly eight years before replacing – nearly a year longer than average.|
|n/a||89%||68%||We’ve never reviewed these toasters, but if our survey respondents are to be believed then it’s a fairly underwhelming brand. Although the toasters are cheap, they didn’t score highly for value for money and they’re liked less than the average brand, too.|
|65%||91%||68%||This brand's toasters often impress us in the test lab and our survey shows that they’re reliable, too, with fewer than one in ten having an issue after seven years of ownership. However, customers aren’t exactly raving about their toasters, and despite being cheaper than average they don’t think they’re the best value for money either.|
|83%||83%||67%||We’ve only tested one of these toasters and it’s a brilliant cheap Best Buy. Our survey respondents don’t love theirs, though, and it’s also the least reliable brand we surveyed, with nearly one in ten toasters developing a fault within their first year.|
|66%||90%||65%||Customers aren’t as keen on these toasters than other brands, although they do think that they’re pretty good value for the price you pay. They have a decent reliability record, however several respondents’ pop-up function stopped working, so you’d have to be careful of singeing your fingers when taking out your toast.|
|52%||n/a||64%||One to avoid: We've only tested one of these toasters and it’s pretty mediocre, which is presumably why customers like their toasters less than every other brand we surveyed. We didn’t have enough data to report on how long they last for fault-free, though.|
Reliability scores and owner ratings are based on an April 2019 survey of 3,684 Which? members who own toasters. The average test score is based on results of all models available online in June 2019, and this table is correct as of June 2019.
Can't see the brands you're interested in? We couldn't report on some brands, as we didn't get enough responses from owners, but for reviews of toasters from brands such as Bodum and KitchenAid, head to our independent toaster reviews.
As the graph shows, some brands are much more likely to develop faults in the first seven years of ownership than others.
Toasters are far from the least reliable appliances in your kitchen, but there’s still a fair few ways that they can fail. Our data shows that the majority of issues occur in the first year of ownership, so hold on to your receipt to take advantage of your warranty.
Our research shows that spending more on a toaster doesn’t necessarily mean it will last longer than average. But you should also be careful with cheaper brands – while one great value supermarket brand makes generally reliable toasters, other cheaper brands languish at the bottom end of the table.
According to our survey, if your toaster does go wrong it’s most likely to be:
Churning out patchy or inconsistent toast is by far the most common fault that affects toasters. Slice fresh bread as evenly as you can so that all the surface area touches the heating elements, and buy a toaster that browns evenly in the first place by choosing one of the best toasters we recommend.
The pop-up function failing to deliver your toast could be due to a jammed lever. Make sure that you don’t have any trapped crumbs in the slots by tipping out your toaster after every few uses.
If the elements stop working then it’s a catastrophic fault, as you won’t be able to use your toaster for its sole function: browning bread. You’ll almost certainly need to replace it, unless you have one of the toasters advertised as being fully repairable, such as the 2 Slot NewGen or the NewGen Vario from Dualit’s Classic range.
How to make your toaster last longer
As well as being a fire risk, the crumbs that get trapped inside your toaster can cause it to malfunction - and potentially attract mice. To prevent this from happening, it’s best to clean out your crumb tray regularly. Look out for the crumb tray score on our toaster reviews to find a model that makes it easy to remove and empty without spilling crumbs all over your worktop.
You should also be careful not to let your toaster get too hot. Allow it to cool down properly if you plan to store it in a cupboard after use, and don’t keep it near your oven or stove. Check in your manual to see if the manufacturer recommends unplugging it from the mains every time you finish toasting.
Ready to buy your new toaster? Head to our toaster reviews to filter by score, price and style.