11 Black Friday ‘deals’ that are a waste of money

Money off isn’t money saved if you end up with a product that’s a dud. But every year, we find Black Friday ‘deals’ on products we wouldn’t recommend at any price.

Which? product recommendations are made by our experts after rigorous, independent lab testing.

We sort the good from the bad so that you can trust a Which? Best Buy or Don’t Buy recommendation, no matter how they’re dressed up in the sales.

Visit our Best Black Friday deals page for hand-picked deals on products we’ve tested.

DeLonghi Active CTLA2003W toaster (sale price: £30)

Why avoid? Uneven browning means any chance of a good breakfast from this appliance is toast.

The six different settings on this toaster provide you with six different ways to make unevenly toasted bread.

One side of our test toast was consistently underdone in our tests, while the other was marked with spots of over-browning. Whether you take your toast out quickly or leave it for longer, this toaster makes it hard to get it the way you actually like it.

We’ve found Best Buy toasters that are cheaper than this toaster, so it’s definitely one to avoid.

We saw this toaster for sale at Sonic Direct. It was £40 before going on sale.

Graco Logico L car seat (sale price: £40)

Why avoid? This car seat scored poorly in our side-crash test, exposing children to risk of injury.

Some things aren’t worth compromising on, and a good child car seat is one of them. We go further than the minimum legal requirements for safety in our child car seat testing, and while this one meets the legal safety requirements, we wouldn’t recommend it.

The back is removable (to convert it into a backless booster seat), but we found it did poorly in our side-crash test whether or not the back was attached.

We’ve seen this Don’t Buy child car seat on sale at Amazon. Its pre-sale price was £50.

Maxi Cosi Beryl car seat (sale price, £270)

Why avoid? In our crash tests, we found this car seat doesn’t fully protect a passenger of 15-25 kg (around ages three to seven) from a side crash.

Not only did we find it unrecommendable because of to its insufficient protection for some ages, but our car seat experts found it awkward to install and too easy to use incorrectly.

Its sizing isn’t quite right, meaning children weighing 25kg (the upper limit of the group two range), are slightly oversized for the seat, which also leaves them exposed.

This car seat meets the legal safety requirements, but we think no parent should risk buying it.

We saw it on sale at Little Angels Prams. Before sales, it was sold for £319.

Hisense 50A7100FTUK TV (sale price: £249)

Hisense 50A7100FTUK

why avoid: It’s one of the worst televisions we’ve ever tested; it renders the world drab and judgment.

Our TV expert didn’t hold back when reviewing this terrible TV, describing the 50A7100FTUK as ‘absolutely abysmal’.

Poor motion control ruins the action, with shaky visuals and still scenes are marred by dark contrast and a color palette that’s skewed too red.

The sound is also dull and undynamic, leaving you dependent on using a separate sound bar to bring the audio to life.

We spotted this TV for sale at Argos on clearance among its other TVs. Its typical price is £349.

Fusion5 T90B+ Pro laptop (sale price: £160)

why avoid: A fusion of terrible performance and short-lived security support make this laptop best avoided.

Yes, it’s cheap at this price, but there’s no shortage of even cheaper models that are more than acceptable than this.

It becomes sluggish if you run multiple tasks at the same time and is terrible for video calling: your face and voice are rendered out of sync.

You’ll be plugged into the hands more than with other laptops too, as the battery only lasts for between three 3.5 hours when it’s fresh.

This laptop also loses software support in 2025, meaning it won’t receive essential updates to keep you secure from emergent threats for much longer.

We found it on sale at Amazon, where it was listed at around £200 before it was reduced for Black Friday.

Google Pixel 4 XL phone (sale price: £651)

Why avoid? Security support for this phone has run out

This is a cracking phone, but unfortunately it’s no longer guaranteed to receive essential security support. With internet-connected devices, you need to be kept safe from emerging threats that exploit your device. Without this guarantee, your ‘new’ phone is vulnerable to tomorrow’s threats.

It’s unexpected to make any tech purchase, no matter how good a deal is, when you’ll be open to exploits compromising the privacy and security of your device.

Which? is calling for the government to push ahead with legislation requiring brands to state at the point of sale how long you can expect your phone to receive security updates.

We found this out-of-support mobile phone for sale at Argos in the clearance section.

Motorola Edge 20 128GB phone (sale price: £379)

Why avoid? Hello Moto, goodbye security support. In August 2023, we expect this phone to go unsupported by vital security updates.

This is a decent phone but Motorola only guarantees two years of security patches, meaning that it’s currently promised to be kept safe from software vulnerabilities until August 2023. This turns a tempting deal into a complete stinker.

Expired security support isn’t the sort of thing worth shrugging off, so we’d give this deal a miss.

We’ve seen this in John Lewis’s Black Friday sale. Our research puts its typical price at around £415.

Hisense HV651D60UK dishwasher (sale price: £379)

Why avoid? This dishwasher’s filters need cleaning more than once a week.

Generally, we want our dishwashers to do our chores, not provide us with new ones. Cleaning the filters at the bottom of your dishwasher is inevitable, but we rarely see filters that need cleaning so much — with this dishwasher, we estimate you’d need to do it after every third cycle.

It earned bottom marks for quietness too – don’t expect any muffling of crockery clutters and beeps from this appliance. This dishwasher kicks up a ruckus you can hear from the next room.

We saw this high-maintenance dishwasher for sale at AO, down from £399.

Hoover HBFUP 130 NKE freezer (sale price: £289)

why avoid: We were left cold by this freezer’s poor energy efficiency, inconsistent temperature control and slow freezing times.

This freezer takes its sweet time to freeze your food, leaving your goods less fresh than they should be. Worse, its thermostat is inaccurate. At its maximum setting, it didn’t keep a consistent -18°C, but instead fluctuated.

It launched with an F energy rating and we reckon it will cost an extra £44.37 a year to run under the current iteration of the Energy Price Guarantee. The operating cost of this energy-guzzling freezer will increase next April, and all for substandard results.

Currys had this inferior freezer on sale, down from an original price of £369.

Amica FDR2213C Retro fridge freezer (sale price: £399)

Amica FDR2213C Retro

Why avoid? Taking chill to absurd levels, this fridge freezer is so slow to refrigerate your food that it will lose freshness.

Our expert reviewer described this fridge freezer as ‘exceptionally slow to chill’ — and Amica’s recommended thermostat settings are way off, leaving you responsible for working out the best setting for yourself.

For energy efficiency, it was A+ rated before March 2021, but with the new energy rating standards, it’s an F. It’s simply too energy intensive for its size, making you spend more on your bills than is necessary.

Our experts caught this on sale at AO. It was originally £479.

Currys Essentials CUR48W22 fridge (sale price: £109)

Why avoid? A fridge that energy inefficient is never essential.

Slow to chill and energy inefficient, this cheap fridge is something of a value trap, enticing you with low upfront cost and stinging you with bad performance and high operating costs for years to come.

Poor lighting means it’s pretty dark inside too, leaving you poking around in the dimness for your food.

This fridge is on sale at Currys. It originally retailed at £159.

Shop with Which? this Black Friday

Our expert reviews can help make sense of the sales noise on Black Friday by weeding out the ‘deals’ that seem too good to be true.

Sign up to Which? to gain access to thousands of product reviews written by our experts after intensive lab testing.

Our advice will help you verify good deals and expose bad deals, and, if you end up lumbered with a dud, our advice can help get the product return you’re entitled to.

Check out our guidance to help you navigate the sales.

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