So you're starting to get serious about getting that juicer you've always talked about, huh? Time to kick the regime into gear and finally get on top of those nutritional habits to turn them into something wonderful!
So now begins the decision process! Now let's not kid ourselves a decision like buying a juicer is definitely going to require a little consideration, but where to start? Whether you are a complete newbie to the world of juicing or a hardened vegetation veteran this quick run down of things to consider when buying a juicer will certainly help get you looking at and thinking about the right things for your (next) juicing machine.
We want to make sure you are as happy as possible whichever way you decide to go so you don't end up with the all too familiar situation of a shiny new piece of kit being banished to the back of the cupboard to gather dust!
Coming in first on our list of things to consider when buying a juicer has to be the primary intended use for your piece of machinery. It goes without saying that no matter what all the other factors may be you want your juicer to be able to do the things you were hoping to use it for!
Essentially this boils down to one question - what are you intending on using your machine for?
If the answer to this is for day to day on-the-go type juice-making of typically juicy fruits and vegetables then you'll most likely be looking for a Centrifugal Juicer. However, if you have in mind the idea of hard veggies, leafy greens such as kale, and wheatgrass, along with further use such as nut butter grinding and pasta extruding then you'll be needing a Masticating Juicer (also known as a Slow Juicer or Cold Press Juicer).
Ease of Operation
Definitely high on the list of considerations is how easy the juicer actually is to use. The biggest cause of juicers being relegated to the forsaken back of the cupboard isn't down to how well they perform, it's simply down to the machine being to cumbersome and difficult to use.
While a flashy big piece of kit with all of its many compartments and various accessories might seem like a step in the right direction to taking your juicing seriously, it might just do more harm than good. Are you realistically going to have the stamina to keep putting together the equivalent of a small car just to make that quick drink? Ok, perhaps we're taking it a little far with that example, granted, but the ease of assembly even before the ingredient preparation is certainly something that shouldn't be considered lightly.
Not only the assembly of your machine but the actual functionality itself is also crucial. If you have big plans for exquisite juices with subtle nuances of flavors then a simple 'on-off' button isn't going to cut it. Strike a nice balance between what you know you need and what you think you might want to try out once you are more familiar with your machine.
Easy to Clean
Of course, after the juicing is complete you'll need to clean your machine! Going hand in hand with the ease of assembly and operation is how easy is it to clean your machine. After all is said and done everyone's favorite part cleaning up! - said no one, ever. No, this one's a biggie too. Obviously the more functions and jobs you do with your juicer the more compartments you will inevitably have but if you can do your best to minimize unnecessary additions in the washing up bowl, then why not.
Make sure the juicer you go for is easy to dismantle and has parts that make for easy washing. Most of the top juicing brands recognize this isn't the most glorious aspect of the job and do try to make our lives easier with the way they make their machines but only you know what you'll be happy putting up with having to clean at the end of the day!
Instead of looking at something you have to do, now let's look at what you get out of it - the juice yield!
One of the most overlooked aspects of buying a new juicer is the amount of juice you can actually extract from your raw material. In general across the best brands when it comes to juicy fruits and vegetables there really isn't that much in it but vary that slightly into the realms of soft fruits and vegetables, leafy greens and wheatgrass the difference in yield can result in significant increases in terms of both cost of ingredients and machine maintenance.
Centrifugal juicers are fine for firmer-fleshed fruits and vegetables but typically start to meet their match at soft fruits and vegetables due to the consistency created. They will also not be able to work with leafy greens, spelt and wheatgrass type ingredients - as such a masticating juicer would be required here.
In general masticating juicers are known to extract more juice from raw materials, leaving a drier remaining pulp once all material has been processed but this typically comes with a trade-off in terms of speed and ease of use.
A less 'functional' property to consider with your juicer. The overall amount of noise created for some might be enough to send them over the edge, you have been warned.
Imagine waking up in the morning knowing you will have to face that obnoxious piercing sound to bring you to your senses just to get a cool refreshing drink? Yeah, it's not pleasant. You just want to go about your business but the whole family has just been woken up along with the neighbors and don't get started on the cat down the street...
The noise level might be the least controllable feature but it shouldn't be overlooked. Generally speaking this is correlated with the price you'll spend. Cheaper range and low-budget juicers will make the most noise with noise decreasing as the price rises, reflecting the increased quality, precision and efficiency of the higher-end juicers. Slow, masticating juicers tend to have lower operating noise, too.
Size & Weight
So how big is this thing actually going to be!? You'd be surprised at the number of people who buy a juicer and then realize all-too-late that the little bit of space they'd created on the side just isn't even enough for the veggies to sit. No, seriously these things need a bit of room. While they certainly aren't fridge/freezer/oven ballpark, they do need their space - not just for the actual piece of kit but space enough to be able to safely prepare your ingredients nearby too.
In terms of weight, remember these things are machines! They can easily weigh a few kilos and some. Not a big deal if they sit on the side all the time, but if you know you'll need to keep reaching down and picking it out of a cupboard everyday, perhaps you might go for something a little less weighty.
Strike a nice compromise between the space you have at your disposal, how portable you need it to be and the amount and types of ingredients you want to be able to put into your juicer at the same time.
No pre-purchase guide would be complete without mentioning the bottom line, and this is no different! Hopefully you realize at this stage that picking a juicer is more than just a 'check out the price tag on this' game. One person's perfect juicer might be a nightmare for someone else, so buying on price alone is a big no-no!
Once you have a decent idea about all the other considerations you'll probably find the juicers you shortlist are more or less in the same price range. There will of course be some variation and this is where you have a little wiggle room but exercise fair judgement, you don't want to potentially lose half the functionality to save 10% against the next choice up.
As a simple rule of thumb, never spend more than you are comfortable with. If it feels wrong, don't go with it - kick back and do more research! Figure out what you really do / don't need and go from there
If you're looking at the top-of-the range anyway then chances are your juicer comes with a long-life or lifetime warranty. It's always essential to make sure there is some kind of warranty in place to protect you against defects or in the unfortunate situation where something breaks.
Generally the cheaper brands offer shorter warranty periods, if at all, or offer replacements for specific parts so this is something to consider in terms of price, too.
There is nothing wrong with a cheaper, budget juicer by any means but be prepared to consider an upgrade if your juicing becomes a more serious endeavor. As an entry level juicer, budget and less known brands to tend to suffice for the vast majority of people's needs and serve as a stepping stone into the world of juicing.
You made it - congratulations! Now you can go about your juicer search knowing you have the most important bases covered. Be sure to refer to this list of considerations when it comes to seeking out your next juicer and you won't be disappointed! Sometimes it's the simplest things that get overlooked and usually price tends to dictate our every move - hopefully with this list we've shown you there's a lot more to it than the upfront outlay if you want to know you are getting the right machine for you.
Thanks for reading - if you would like to see the best juicers and best juicer brands on the market be sure to check out our Juicer Buying Guide for a rundown of the best juicers on the market and the best juicers by brand.
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