Once exceedingly popular, wall-mounted and under-cabinet can openers are rarely found in kitchens. However, they still remain a great choice if you want the convenience of a manual can opener without giving up any drawer or counter space. The Swing-A-Way Wall Can Opener (Est. $11) draws rave reviews from people who grew up with these space-saving models in their kitchens and, in some cases, still use the very same one.
The newer models are compatible with the wall-mount from decades past. However, those who've purchased current versions say quality has declined quite a bit in recent years.
Others note small quirks, like having to tilt cans to engage the cutting teeth, which can lead to a sloppy mess if the can is full to the brim. The magnet that's meant to hold onto the cut lid sometimes becomes dislodged and really only works if you keep it clean. In one very notable case, an Amazon.com user explains: "After about a month I was opening a can and the thing just fell apart as I was cranking it. When I put it back together it no longer worked."
That said, the majority of users do not regret their purchase. "Perfect for arthritis sufferers ... Easy to [take] apart and clean," writes one owner at AceHardware.com. And another, posting to Amazon.com, sums up overall user opinion: "We've had 'Swing-a-Way' can openers for many years and this, though similar, is not as well made. But it does work and I will keep buying them."
The Swing-A-Way Wall Can Opener used to be covered by a five-year warranty. A call to Amco Houseworks (which manufactures the Swing-A-Way brand) reveals they no longer offer an "official" warranty for this model but are willing to replace units for issues of quality, performance and longevity -- within reason.