Please do not buy this blender unless you want to waste your money on a total piece of junk. I paid almost $40 for this thing. It seemed okay for the first couple of weeks, but then the cutting assembly became increasingly difficult to unscrew from the base. The cutting assembly is wide compared to other blenders. I have a hard time gripping it. The gasket is not very wide. Frequently I screw the cutting assembly on as tight as I can get it and the blender still leaks. After 3 or 4 times of spending an extra 10 minutes cleaning the floors and counters when all I wanted to do was make a smoothie, I have now learned to fill up the blender with a little water first in the sink and see if it leaks before putting anything else in it. I wrote to Hamilton Beach about my problems with this blender. They would not give me a refund on it but sent me a new cutting assembly because they thought something might be wrong with the threads on the old one. It didn't help; the blender still leaks and is difficult to open. Bottom line: Don't waste your money on this product. This is the only Hamilton Beach appliance I have ever bought and it will be the last.
I can agree with Lilikoi 100%. I encounter the same problem with this machine. I, too, have to put water in it first to see if it will leak. If it does, you have to screw it on so tight that it takes so much strength to remove it that I am afraid it will break in my hands (and yes, it is a large and cumbersom base). I, too, wrote to HB from their website and they sent me a new gasket, which didn't help. Then when I called and told them that the new gasket didn't help stop the leak (and I mean BIG leaks), they sent me a new base with blades, which also didn't work. HB's Help Desk does answer the phone, and I'm sure that they try, but the fact still remains that I also am stuck, like Lilikoi, with this waste of my money HB blender with no recourse. MY ONLY RECOURSE was that I BOUGHT A KITCHEAID BLENDER THAT HASN'T LEAKED YET, comes apart with a quick about quarter turn, and doesn't make my smoothies bounce off the lid (also causing mishaps). >>>> DON'T BUY HAMILTON BEACH BLENDERS ! ! ! <<<<
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