Most helpful critical review
156 of 173 people found the following review helpful
on February 5, 2012
I research purchases--to death! It took hours of research and reading reviews before I settled on this unit. And since I relied so much on what others had to say, I felt I needed to return the favor.
After half a dozen uses, I am very disappointed in the performance.
I wanted a unit that was light, but powerful enough to keep up with 3 dogs and TONS of hair on both carpet and hard surfaces. It had to be bagged, because no matter what the manufacturers say, there is no way the hair of 3 dogs is going to just drop out of a canister into the trash.
Here's my principle objection, the unit has no suction. The brush roll does the work--what I mean by that is that the unit depends on the brushes to pickup hair and have it be suck off the rolls by a very small area of suction, the diameter of a hose(it actually is the hose, read on). So, how does it pick up other debris and dirt that may not get flicked up into the suction by the brush roll? I don't know.
With the vacuum running, if I hold my hand under the unit (I turned off the brush roll so I didn't scratch my hand), there is no suction. If I remove the bottom plate, you can stick your fingers into area of suction (the "hose" opening) and tell that, right there, there is good suction. Is that the "patented Wind Tunnel technology," I don't know. Put the bottom plate back on and there is none. Whatever the technology, I'm not a fan. BTW, have checked for clogs and to ensure the belt is in place.
I had used the unit 3 or 4 times before I took it onto a hard surface where it is definitely a non-performer. With the brush roller disengaged, and the aforementioned absence of suction, it failed to vacuum the hard surface (vinyl flooring). That's when I turned it over and started inspecting.
Another reviewer mentioned the path the debris has to travel to reach the bag as a potential failure point -- after being "sucked" into the unit, the debris actually travels a path through the hose, including a tight turn at the top of the hose hanger, into the bag. The hose itself has GREAT suction, what you would expect (and should get) from the main unit.
A final point is with respect to the brush roll...as I'm vacuuming, I find that as I push forward, the brush roll sometimes will momentarily stop turning, presumably because of the downward pressure exerted by the forward push (you can watch the brush roll through the clear cover). I'm an average size woman, no extra muscles here!
I actually purchased the unit at Home Depot, because I knew that I didn't want to have to deal with returning it to Amazon, were I not happy. Much easier to drive to Home Depot for the return.
1. Long cord.
2. Ability to turn off brush roll for hard surfaces, if only there was suction.
3. Good hose suction
1. It's all cheap plastic -- like so many products these days. It's only a matter of time before something breaks or cracks.
2. Short hose
3. Only one extension wand for hose
4. With the brush roll off, the suction...well, sucks.
5. Hose extension wand keeps falling out of it's little snap in holder.
6. Brushes stop turning sometimes
Consider these points
1. I knew this unit didn't have the cord winder feature, but I didn't think I'd mind not having it. But after a few weeks of use, I've decided I miss that feature.
2. Keep your old vacuum's dust brush, if you use one.