The Bottom Line: I'd be fine with it except the toxic chemical offgassing is a deal breaker
I am very disappointed and concerned about the health safety to this waffle maker. When I first plugged it in, a very strong disturbing toxic smelling odor came from the heating surface. OK, I thought, maybe it needs to break in. We ran it outside for quite a while, but the odor did not dissipate. I've tried using it several times and still no change. Now with increasing scientific evidence about the dangers of Teflon and related no stick coatings in heated cookware (see http://www.ewg.org/reports/pfcworld/), this smell seems like a warning flag to stay away from.
I'm surprised that other reviewers have not commented on the smell. IS everyone just so accustomed to our new chemical stuff stinking so much that no one worries about what their noses are telling them anymore?
All of this is disappointing because the waffle maker otherwise worked okay. I liked the ready indicator light. I found I had to use the browning indicator at the top level (5) probably because we add whole wheat to our waffles. But of course this adds to the concern about offgassing chemicals with more high temperature.
Cleaning was not a problem for us. But then I add a bit of oil to the surface even with non stick surfaces after finding similar problems as others have described with supposedly non stick surfaces still sticking. Making the potential chemical exposures from the non stick miracle coatings all the more ridiculous.