Are you looking for a good quality food dehydrator that will do its job well once you’ve done yours? One that you can load, set, and leave alone without any worries about performance?
Once you’ve done the work of slicing and preparing the food for the dryer, the machine should take over and finish the process without any hassle, right?
Of course, to get an advanced shelf-tray model that’s going to perform at a higher level also means stepping up the price point.
On the higher end of the price range, the Tribest Sedona SD-P9000 offers an advanced, digitally controlled dehydration system.
Tribest Sedona SD-P9000 Digitally Controlled Food Dehydrator, available on Amazon
It boasts an elegant package with a see-through glass door, and claims unsurpassed performance due to its digital dehydrating technology with accurate temperature control.
So, do these bold claims match the actual performance of this model? Let’s take a closer look to find out.
The Sedona SD-P9000 is built with the latest systems in advanced technology to efficiently and easily dehydrate raw, whole foods.
The simple, effective design makes operation easy with clearly marked controls and a bright LED digital display on the front panel.
The variable thermostat provides overheat protection and maintains the ideal temperature for optimum dehydration, while the digital timer can be set for worry-free operation for up to 99 hours.
The quiet dual-fan system provides an energy-efficient option to dehydrate with all 9 trays, or just half of them may be used for processing smaller batches.
And, it distributes heated air evenly and accurately for both large and small batches.
Engineered to maximize efficiency and ease of use, it also features a compact design for both countertop use and storage.
Features and Benefits
The Sedona offers a total of 600 watts of power, using two independent 300-watt fans, two heating coils, and two heat sensors, all of which are digitally controlled and can operate either simultaneously or individually.
The variable temperature mode can be set for either Fahrenheit or Celsius so you don’t have to do the math conversion, and it ranges from 85 to 155°F.
The Sedona includes 9 BPA-free open plastic trays, and each tray has a usable drying surface of approximately 13 by 15 inches for a total capacity of just over 12 square feet.
And, you can use the included BPA-free plastic closed tray/divider for making fruit leather, or simply to close off half of the unit for greater efficiency when drying smaller batches.
The built-in programmable timer can be set up to 99 hours, and it will automatically turn off once your desired length of time has been reached.
The large LED digital display makes it easy to read, so you can effortlessly see the temperature and timer settings, even in a dark environment. And all of the control buttons are clearly marked for easy operation.
The well-designed display panel with convenient “on/off” switch is located on the front panel, so it’s simple to operate regardless of the setup location.
The clear glass door allows you to monitor progress without opening the unit. And, you’ll enjoy the front-mounted, pull-down design, which makes it easy and efficient to load and check trays.
When the door is open, the automatic “pause & resume” function makes it simple for anyone to check batches or add a tray – you never have to worry about resetting the time. This is a unique feature that you don’t see with many models.
The detachable power cord is another handy feature that helps to simplify cleanup and storage.
And if you like to leave your dehydrator running at night, it has a specially designed night mode feature that saves energy and reduces noise even further by reducing the fan speed.
A debris-catching closed tray makes cleanup easy and problem free.
It also features a well-written manual with clear instructions, and some good recipes for crackers and flatbreads.
Finally, it comes with a 5-year manufacturer’s warranty.
The SD-P9000 measures 17 by 15 by 20 inches and weighs 23.5 pounds.
Each of the 9 trays measures approximately 12 by 13 inches for an overall capacity of 12 square feet.
Wash the trays and screens in warm soapy water, and wipe down the interior and exterior of the housing unit with a damp cloth.
We’ve read through the reviews shared by shoppers on Amazon to find the most common positive features and drawbacks of the Sedona – here’s a summary for your consideration.
• The most often repeated positive comments from happy shoppers are about the easy operation of the Tribest Sedona. They like the well thought out design, saying it’s user-friendly with unobstructed access to the digital controls, and that the controls themselves and the clear display are laid out well for simple and efficient operation.
• Another positive feature is the aesthetics. The SD-P9000’s attractive design and clear glass door give it a sleek, attractive appearance. And by all accounts, the dual fans run very quietly – so it has a welcome presence in the kitchen and doesn’t need to be banished to the shed.
• The load versatility is another positive point. Many customers report enjoying the flexibility of its half-load capacity, and the resulting energy savings. It seems the heat distribution remains even and drying times are consistent whether it’s used at full capacity or just 50%.
• Its overall efficiency is also favorable, with no excessive heating of the room around the dryer, reasonable electricity consumption, and uniform drying on all surfaces.
• Unfortunately, the Sedona also has some issues, with the most common being about the temperature. Using independent thermometers, users recorded temperatures significantly lower than the highest setting on the dial. This results in longer drying times and spotty results.
• There are also numerous complaints of the unit quitting after relatively light and short-term usage, with heating coils and fans being the main problem. Problems were often noted to persist, even after an exchange.
• This leads us to customer service. To take advantage of the warranty, you must register your product within 10 days of purchase and keep the original packaging for return shipping, which you have to pay for. And there are waaay too many complaints about the dodgy after-sales service – i.e. it’s almost impossible to reach anyone, reps make promises to customers that aren’t kept, and there’s no follow-up on the part of Tribest.
• And did I mention you have to pay for shipping an insured, very large and heavy box to enjoy the full benefits of the warranty? Yes, you do.
For full warranty coverage, you must register your purchase with Tribest within 10 days. And, you must retain the original packaging for returns. It actually sounds like a good idea to retain all documentation for any future communications, so keep this in mind if the need arises.
Give it air – don’t push your dryer against the back wall since it needs an inch or two of airspace to draw air, circulate, and vent properly.
Special Features May Come at a Price
While the Tribest Sedona SD-P9000 Food Dehydrator is an attractive dryer with some unique features and appealing design, it seems those good ideas are compromised by sometimes faulty operation and less than stellar customer service.
- Included Accessories
- Build Quality
Pretty, with great potential, but ultimately the Sedona stands as unreliable. There’s much better value for your shopping dollar available in other high-end food dehydrators.
The necessary quality control that would insure a working unit is shipped to all customers, with all of the parts needed for setup and operation, is simply missing.
And either the production, or the components themselves, are second rate. A disturbing number of inoperable units have been received by customers (source: Amazon’s Tribest Sedona SD-P9000 review pages). Of course, the above-mentioned and much-needed quality control could have caught this.
And finally, customer service devalues this model significantly. For a food dehydrator in this price range, returns and exchanges should be shipped on the manufacturer’s dime – especially when faulty operation can be associated directly with factory quality control (or the lack thereof) – with no hassles or hardship.
That’s not the case at present. I would suggest taking a look at one of Excalibur’s options in this price range instead, before choosing this model. However, if it has special features that you are particularly excited by and the potential drawbacks may bother you, you may still want to give it a shot.
About Lorna Kring
Recently retired as a costume specialist in the TV and film industry, Lorna now enjoys blogging on contemporary lifestyle themes. A bit daft about the garden, she’s particularly obsessed with organic tomatoes and herbs, and delights in breaking bread with family and friends.