It was on for about four minutes when black smoke started coming out, then a second later it burst into flames right there on the bench in my kitchen.
Lucky I was in the kitchen when the flames started, if I had of stepped away for just a minute my house would have burnt down.
I grabbed my cotton rug off the floor, picked up the flaming airfryer and run with it throwing it out the front door into the yard, turning back to look in my kitchen there was still three fires going, two along the floor where i ran with the unit and one on the kitchen benchtop, all melted burning plastic.
Once I extinguished those i went back outside to see the air fryer still on fire, i had to put the hose on it for a few minutes to stop it burning.
It has been sent back to Phillips for investigation and has been reported to the Australian house hold goods authority.
It was a petrifying experience and still haunts me each time I use the new air fryer (NOT a Philips), i don't leave it alone now and I even pull the plug out of the socket when its not in use.
For the few weeks i used the XXL air fryer I actually found it quite annoying to use compared to the slightly smaller XL Philips air fryer I had upgraded from (which was my second Philips, the digital controls died, and they had already been repaired once under warranty). Due to the make of this new model the unit it would put oil into the little gap inside the top of where the handle sits in the basket and oil would come out of the basket around the lip it was very annoying as you would have to fold a paper towel and keep sticking it inside the gap until it soaked up the oil. If you didn't do that you would get oil running down the outside of the basket. I actually though "this is going to be Very annoying for the new few years while i use this new machine" but it catching fire to itself saved me from that!
Since this experience i have used:
1. Kmart 3.2Litre digital air fryer ($59) which was great, used for about 6 months however it was slightly to small for the size meals i was cooking and the non stick came off pretty quickly (which is not an issue now due to the Air fryer silicone matts I purchased from Amazon (more about that below). I still have this machine as a spare as it works perfectly, the digitals are bright and responsive, the handle is attached very good, its small and easy to move. You cant really fit a whole chicken but you can cook a few chops or a small batch of chips. Mine is 1300watts which is great in a 3.2l size.
2. Aldi 5litre digital air fryer ($89.00) 1500watts. It did cook really well albeit a bit slower than the Kmart, however the handle broke off the basket after a few months and the digital display was very unresponsive, it ended up failing and wouldn't let me change temperature. The non stick lasted a little longer than the Kmart one but still wore off after a few months. 5.5litre can fit a very small chicken (1 kilo), a good amount of chips, a very small pork roast (1kilo), lots of vegan foods with the Philips duel layer accessory (which i still use in all the air fryers).
3. Innsky Air fryer 5.5litre $90. Its exactly the same size as the Aldi one, the draws are identical and can be swapped between them, which makes sense why this one after only 3 months had the exact same issue with the handle braking off in the exact same place as the Aldi (They must be made in the same factory), the plastic housing. It did cook amazingly though as it was 1700watts in a 5.5litre unit. The watts really make a huge difference in cooking time. You dont want a 5.5 litre less than 1700watts.
4.Mistral digital airfryer $99 10litres from woolworths, I returned this before even using it as it had no capture basket, there is a basket that you put your food in with the holes, then there should be another basket that holds all the oil which you can pull out and tip the oil out (once cooled into a container) or put on the bench to remove the food or into the sink to wash easily. This machine and many I've noticed do not have this capture basket, if you see how much oil comes out of all the food you cook you would avoid these types of machines. How ridiculous not to have a basket to catch all the oil, it will just go all over the bottom of the air fryer and leak out. Make sure what ever you purchase has two baskets. Sold and slotted.
5.Kmart 7litre digital air fryer 1800watts, my newest air fryer (as of August 2021) I love this one. It's big but i can fit a 2kg chicken into it. I use it to puff my pork rinds (different to crackle but it cooks that too).
The digital display is bright & very responsive, it is located on top of the unit which is great as it doesn't get all steamy when you open the draw but also has a remaining time and current temperature display at the top front of the unit which is easy to read. The basket is attached very well to the handle, in the same way as my 3.2litre Kmart air fryer, if you go onto there website and look at how it is attached compared to the Innsky or most others it is a large bolt through with a metal housing, not plastic with small screws through it. The basket is also easy to pull out and place onto the bench for turning food over, also easy to wash. I let the oil cool, tip it into an old vinegar bottle, wipe out with paper towel and then put it in the sink with the slotted basket inside to wash. That way you don't get lots of oil clogging up your sink.
I have had 3x Philips air fryers over the past 10 or so years until the new one caught fire. The smaller versions seem to cook much better. The best chips I ever made (from scratch) was in the original small Philips, as I bought the larger more expensive units they never cooked them crispy. I would keep that in mind when your purchasing your air fryer, you might want to go for the biggest one just encase you ever want to cook a lot at once, or have visitors but if you don't usually cook a lot at once try sticking with a smaller air fryer, you can cook your food much faster in the smaller sizes (with high watts as per advised above). However if you make larger meals or want to cook whole chickens, large frozen chips then you'll need about a 7litre with at least 1800watts.
You can get awesome reusable silicone mats to fit into you air fryer which i highly recommend, if you type into Amazon the following:
"Reusable Air Fryer Liners, 9-Inch Round Silicone Air Fryer Liners"
The seller is "Shadowgallery" they are the ones I use. You get a pack of two.
I cut one of the above to fit my 3.2litre Kmart airfryer too.
They are thicker than some other stores, i got some from Amazon which i returned as they where to thin.
The ones above fit perfectly in the Aldi round basket 5litre airfyer and in the Innsky5.5 litre air fryer.
Its a little too small for the 7l Kmart air fryer so I got the same brand in square 8.5" mat's for that
"Reusable Air Fryer Liners, 8.5inch Square Silicone Air Fryer Liners"
If you go for the Kmart version which i highly recommend then you could get a 7litre $119 or the 3.2litre $59, just don't forget the silicone matts, it will save your nonstick and make washing up much easier.
In the end I do love the air fryers, they are fast and so much easier than a large oven.
I have found that the cheaper ones (which i would never have used if my Philips didn't catch fire, but needed one fast so i could cook and grabbed one from Kmart), cook exactly the same if not better than the Philips, they are also a lot easier to clean than the Philips as the draws pull all the way out and you can put them directly into the sink without leaving a track along the bottom of your air fryer which is hard to clean around. I would never pay extra for a Philips air fryer again. Your paying extra for what? slightly better non stick and the name, but now with the reusable silicone air fryer matt's the non stick doesn't matter.
I have recently purchased an "instant pot" if you put "Instant Pot Duo Nova Electric Multi-Use Pressure Cooker" into the search on Amazon you can check out my review on that wonderful machine. It has reduced my use of the air fryer but i still love my air fryer. They do different things, one dries out food and fries the other cooks with moister and gives the most perfect tender roast chicken (finished off in the air fryer) you can also make your own vegan coconut yoghurt/porridge/ cook rice & grains, steam, slow cook and pressure cook all in one fantastic pot. I just love this machine too.
Instead of the Philips you could a 7Litre Kmart air fryer, the silicone matts and a 5.7l Instant Pot and still have change.
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