Monday, August 29, 2011

No Frills Iron

Not too long ago Judy, over at We May Be Poor, But We Are Happy wrote a post entitled "I am just not a bells and whistles king of girl".  Many of us who write about personal finances and try hard to be frugal identified with her post and funnily enough most of us ended up driving cars with roll-up windows and push-lock doors.

Fewer features = fewer repairs.

This post is not about cars, however, it's about irons. Just over a year ago I bought a deluxe model iron - a Black and Decker model WITH all the bells and whistles:

It had everything - digital display in several languages, self shut off, you name it, it had it. Black and Decker is a good brand too right? It should be for the price I paid. (somewhere in the neighbourhood of $50)

Wrong. Shortly after its warranty expired so did the iron. Within a span of thirty seconds it would voluntarily change its heat setting - up, then down, then off. It made weird sounds and the water would gurgle out of it all over my un-ironed clothing due to shutting itself off and growing cold. I'd quickly try to iron something in 5 seconds before it would switch to another temperature - too late!

So I'm trying an experiment: meet my new NO FRILLS iron which cost me only $7.99, brand new:

I will let you know how long THIS stripped-down iron lasts - I am really hoping it proves that fewer bells and whistles = a longer lasting iron! 


  1. I don't know, I have my doubts...

  2. As a professional seamstress, I go through sewing machines almost every two years. I have purchased expensive machines because I thought they would last longer. I have learned I will strip the bushings in an expensive machine in two years and I will also do this a mid quality machine in two years. I do not buy the cheapest but I do not buy the most expensive either. If it has computer chip I don't buy it! If it is computer anything I don't buy it.

  3. I am curious to see how long it does last. I usually like gadgety things, and on my next car I will want the GPS. Not necessarily the most cost effective thing to do,,, but It is what I want :)

  4. I am not a bells and whistles girl! :) I became a follower of your blog! Erin

  5. Welcome Erin! Glad you popped by:) I am heading off to work now so I'll visit you later!

  6. I'm with you, I try to buy reasonably priced & hope for the best. Even if your $7 iron craps out after a year, at least it was just $7 and not $50!! lol!

  7. Oh, so that's what an iron looks like! Lol! I haven't used one in ages! Will you iron some shirts for me Jane?? Pretty please?

  8. Nice to see another person who buys cars without the gadgets on purpose! I used to have a stripped down Toyota Corolla that was magic. Cheap to run, never ever broke. The old truck was the opposite, every light and button got messed up eventually and they were often impossible to fix.

  9. I bought a 9.00 iron at Walmart two years ago and it is still going strong. No bells no whistles just heat.

    Hope yours lasts. It seems things are made to just break anymore


  10. My iron is somewhere around 15 years old. It doesn't steam any more but I just use a damp tea towel for that. Of course I really don't use it very often, maybe once or twice a year LOL

  11. Bells & whistles, not my thing either. When I was buying my first car, the car salesman tried to convince me I was batty for not going with the "special edition" model with the sun roof and burl interiors and yada yada yada.

    Good luck with your new iron! I have a non-digital Rowenta that's been serving me well for the past 8 years.

  12. Oh no, Jane, I just bought that very same iron (the Black & Decker). It's been awesome so far, but I guess I only have a year to use it? It seems to be the pattern amongst new appliances these days...built to last...only until the warranty runs out.

    I switched to this iron because it was a lot less expensive than the Rowenta's I've had. We use it a lot, so I suppose $50.00 for a year is only .13 a day.


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