Juicer Buyer’s Guide
What is a Juicer and Why Do I Need One?
Juicing is an important part of many people’s lives these days, mostly for the health benefits that are there for the taking. There are though, a few things to think about before you rush out and purchase a juicer because you will want to receive top value for your money. Hopefully, this Juicer Buyer’s Guide will help you to think about some of the key aspects you will need to consider before buying a juice machine. However, if you are not a person who likes to spend time in the kitchen but prefers convenience above all else, maybe this is not the best purchase for you. If on the other hand, you are committed to making a difference to your health and lifestyle, purchasing a juicer could be one of the most rewarding experiences you are likely to have.
What is a Juicer and Why Do I Need One?
There are many different types of juicers available, but essentially, they do the same thing. A juice machine extracts the juice out of fruit and vegetables so that you can drink the juice and discard the pulp which is left behind. Fruit and vegetable juices are filled with natural vitamins, minerals and antioxidants which have significant health benefits in an increasingly toxic environment. Natural juices you make yourself are also free from preservatives and other additives which are found in store bought juice. If you are health conscious then be sure to purchase a juicer machine that leaves more fiber in the juice.
How Does a Juice Machine work?
Juicers extract juice from fruit and vegetables. Different types of juicers do this in various ways ranging from spinning and grinding, through to hand squeezing. Often, the fruits and vegetables have to be chopped into small pieces prior to juicing, in order for the juicing process to be effective. Other juicers will happily accept whole fruits and vegetables before turning out the juice.
How Do I Choose a Juicer?
There are a number of factors to consider when selecting a juicer and some of these are explored below. The main things to take into account include the type of juicer, what type of juice you want to produce (fiber rich or fine juice), noise level, price, cleaning, type of preparation required, type of motor, durability as well as materials and components used. One thing which purchasers often don’t consider, but should, is the size of your kitchen. juice machines tend to be largish items and can be used daily. If your kitchen is very small, this could be a something you keep in mind during your research.
Types of juicers
The main types of juicers include:
Centrifugal – A centrifugal juicer works by forcing the vegetable or fruit onto centralized rotating blades. This basically and carefully grates the produce and then throws it outwards onto a spinning mesh screen(turning at a thousands of revolutions per minute). The juice penetrates the screen while the pulp is retained. The pulp ultimately slips up the beveled screen and gets forced over the top and into a container. The is exactly how the pulp is separated from the juice. It has a very high removal rate and the large mesh screen makes the juicing of pulpy fruit very easy and effortless. Nonetheless, exceptionally pulpy (i.e. bananas) and really soft fruits do a lot better by simply tossing them into a blender.
Masticating – In a masticating juicer, the vegetables and fruit are completely compressed in the auger. Then the juice moves through a small mesh screen in the bottom, meanwhile the pulp is forced forward where it is ejected at the far end. This is the best type of machine if you plan to use leafy green vegetables.
Kitchen Blender -This is ideal for delicate or very soft fruits that are highly pulpy such as bananas, raspberries and blueberries.
Citrus – For an excellent amount of juice extraction for all citrus fruits, the citrus juicer is essentially an electrically powered reamer used to semi-automatically ream-out citrus fruits efficiently.
Each type of juicer machine has its disadvantages and advantages, if you would like to juice all types of vegetables and fruits efficiently, you might find you actually need multiple types of juicer machines. If you fall in love with juicing, you might finish up with more than one juicer as well.
Construction Materials & Components
It’s important that any juice extractor has easily obtainable replacement parts if necessary. If not, it is possible your juicer could become obsolete in the event of an unexpected breakdown. The juicer should be well made and sturdy, any plastic parts should always be made of a durable plastic that will hold up to the use it will receive. Stainless steel is always good for the outer shell and a general rule of thumb is that all parts and components should be of a good quality.
Motor Power and Output
This is an important consideration. If you put items in the juicer and it slows down, then the motor is not powerful enough. A weak motor could wear out quickly. For a centrifugal juicer, you should be looking for a multi-speed model, with a top RPM of between 12,000 and 23,000 with a minimum of 6,000 RPMs. The motor should support these speeds without strain. A masticating juicer will have powerful motor, but because of the different extraction method, not require anywhere near this level of speed, 80 – 100 RPM will be fine.
Ease of Use and Cleaning
Juicing should be a pleasant activity as you actively participate in the rituals of good health. If using and cleaning your juicer leaves you feeling stressed, the experience is counter-productive. A complex juicer will have lots of parts which will require cleaning so you should check to see if they are dishwasher safe prior to purchase. If you don’t mind the clean-up, this won’t be an issue so either hand cleaning or dishwasher cleaning will be OK. Read through the instructions for use before you buy so you can get a feel for how easy (or difficult) the juicer might be to use. Contact the manufacturer and ask questions if necessary, so that you know you are buying a juicer which you will easily be able to use.
Durability – Length of Warranty
A little research can go a long way when it comes to durability, so read as many reviews as possible and check for the juicer’s track record. Again, contacting the manufacturer can often be a worthwhile exercise. The more expensive juicers tend to be better made with less shortcuts taken with parts and materials, so from this perspective, will always be a better buy. You should always check the overall durability of the machine by asking, can the plastic be easily broken? Are there any pieces which might look as though they will come off? Is the plastic a hard plastic? Will it withstand the high temperatures and abuse that a dishwasher will give it? Any kitchen appliance which costs more than $100 should come with a decent warranty and the longer the better.
Centrifugal juicers have been described as sounding like a jet plane taking off. While this is an exaggeration, they are very noisy because of their powerful, high speed motor. If you live in a situation where neighbours are very close, as can happen in some apartment buildings, juicing in the mornings could be a problem. Your neighbors might not appreciate your juicing efforts in the early hours of the morning, which is always going to be a good time to juice. Hand press juicers won’t make any noise at all, while masticating juicers are a lot less noisy than centrifugal juicers due to the lower speed of the motor.
Juicers can range in price from under $100 to in excess of $500 and the adage that you receive what you pay for is particularly true when it comes to juicer machines. Budget is always an important consideration, which is why you need to be sure about what you are buying and why you are buying it. As with most things, the mid price range is generally suitable enough to take you above the quality and durability issues associated with low priced juicers, yet still provide an acceptable level of quality at a price which is more affordable.
Hamilton Beach 67650
Z-Star Manual Juicer
So the question is, which is right model for my needs?
The decision of which machine to purchase will come down to your budget and the types of fruit or vegetables you plan to juice. Read the individual reviews on this site and look at the comparisons to find the most appropriate model. I’ve only listed the models with the best reviews so you know, based on hundreds of other users feedback, that you will be getting a quality juicer.
Hopefully, this information can help you to make a reasonably well informed buying decision and set you on the road to successful juicing. It is a healthy and interesting undertaking and you can have a lot of fun experimenting with different combinations of fruits and vegetables, for both nutrition and taste. Happy juicing!
Video: Centrifugal vs Masticating