If you're trawling the sales for a hot deal on a new oven, don't be misled into buying a dud. An oven is arguably the most important appliance in your kitchen, and often the most expensive, so you'll want to make sure you choose a top scorer.
We test and review wall ovens to help you avoid buyer's remorse. If you're making a shopping shortlist, be sure to remove these five low-performing models from Omega, Haier, Beko and Bosch.
"None of these ovens are terrible – they all received scores in the low 70s – but they're not great, either," says CHOICE's kitchen expert Fiona Mair.
"If you're on the market for a new oven, you'd be better spending your money on a similarly-priced oven that scored well in all our tests."
Hot oven buying tips
According to Fiona, most ovens cook well, but it's the ease of use that separates the average from the outstanding. She recommends checking the controls, shelf design and internal surfaces instore.
"Make sure the controls are clearly labelled and easy to understand," she says. "Try pulling the shelves and trays in and out to see if they run smoothly and that there are stoppers to prevent spills.
Make sure the controls are clearly labelled and easy to understandFiona Mair, CHOICE kitchen expert
"Finally, check the visibility through the door and look for awkward gaps in the door or internal surfaces that will be tricky to clean."
Also, look for an oven that has the accessories you need. Fiona recommends at least two shelves, a baking tray that slides into the shelf supports, and a grill rack.
Lowest scoring ovens in our tests
- CHOICE Expert Rating: 71%
- Price: $1099*
The lowest-scoring oven in our test, the Bosch HBF133BS0A didn't exactly wow our experts – but it's not a dud either. We just think there are better ovens for the price.
It did get excellent scores for low-temperature baking, so it'll turn out lovely meringues. But its high-temperature cooking score was less than stellar at 50%, which means pizza without the crispy base (truly a culinary crime).
The Bosch oven has catalytic liners, but only on the back wall, which means you'll still need to scrape and scrub the ceiling, walls and floor of the oven to keep it clean – which kind of defeats the purpose of having catalytic liners. (Not sure what catalytic liners are? Read more: What is a pyrolytic (self-cleaning) oven?)
It's not really a pleasure to operate either, with our experts noting that the controls were only OK to use, the manual temperature dial may not be accurate, and the function symbols are small.
It doesn't have telescopic runners, and the shelves move out loosely, plus the door can slam shut when almost closed – all things that can add up to a ruined roast or a crummy cake.
Read the full Bosch HBF133BS0A review.
- CHOICE Expert Rating: 73%
- Price: $895*
Scoring a lukewarm 66% for ease of use, this Beko BBO60S1PB oven won't set your world on fire – but it might burn your souffle. It performed well when baking at low temperatures and roasting, but was less than impressive at grilling and baking over multiple shelves.
The shelves have a raised bar at the front that can make it tricky to slide heavy dishes in and out, and its telescopic runners can be fiddly to remove and clean. Plus the oven door and glass has a gap that's perfect for trapping condensation and spills. All of these add up to an oven that's likely to be full of spills, splatters and baked-on bits.
Two redeeming features of the oven are its visibility (you can easily see the food cooking inside, but also all the mess), and its pyrolytic function – yes, it does clean itself – although a self-cleaning feature might just be a necessity for an oven so prone to mess-making.
Read the full Beko BBO60S1PB review.
- CHOICE Expert Rating: 74%
- Price: $599*
Although the Omega OO640X is the cheapest wall oven we've tested at $599, it's also one of the lowest scoring.
The cooking performance is fine, but it's the ease of use that really lets it down. The oven controls are confusing, the manual timer isn't accurate, and the gap between the door and the glass can make cleaning a nightmare.
Even worse, the oven shelf can tilt under a heavy load and the tray has no stoppers, both of which make it more prone to dangerous accidents.
This oven isn't redeemed by flashy features either – in fact, it has very few oven functions and doesn't even come with a grill rack.
Read the full Omega OO640X review.
- CHOICE Expert Rating: 74%
- Price: $849*
Catering a dinner party in the $849 Beko BBO60S0MB oven is a recipe for disaster.
There's no temperature grading, so it's difficult to set an accurate temperature. And visibility of food on the top shelf is poor, making it impossible to check on your food without opening the door and letting the heat out.
Although its shelves have stoppers, they don't prevent the shelves from being pulled out accidentally. Plus, the shelves have a raised bar at the front and back that can make sliding heavy dishes out difficult. Sounds like ample opportunity for your culinary masterpiece to end up on the kitchen floor.
Read the full Beko BBO60S0MB review.
- CHOICE Expert Rating: 74%
- Price: $1199*
A rating of 74% isn't exactly terrible, but when you're paying nearly $1200 for an oven, it's reasonable to expect better performance. This Haier oven managed a pretty good performance score of 81%, but was let down by its so-so ease of use.
Our expert testers found the oven controls difficult to use initially, and found that the touch controls have a delayed reaction. Also, you'll need to decipher the symbols on the controls to figure out how to use it – and they're not particularly self-explanatory.
On the upside, the Haier has a pyrolytic cleaning function, so once you've figured out how to use the thing, at least cleaning will be a breeze.
Read the full Haier HWO60S11TPX1 review.
*Retail price paid by CHOICE at time of purchase.