“ Provides customer information and owner manuals for European and US models of the company's vacuum cleaners. „
Not worth the paper they are written on !!!. My son has a Hoover Washing Machine on a maintenance contract. When it broke down they contacted the repair centre and advised on machine error report. Appointment made for service engineer who turned up unaware of error number and with no spares. Engineer advised he would return after he came back off holiday,[ ie two week delay] and no other engineer available. In meantime his wife travelled 12 miles each way to elderly parents after work to do washing. After two weeks,[ upon enquiring on repair status], advised that they were unable to source programmer.
After much chasing up and continued travelling to parents to wash, now advised that 3 year old machine will be replaced. !!!. Catch No1, can not replace as original untill some time after Xmas, but can deliver an inferior model on 20th December. Catch No2, my son will have to pay for delivery, pay for installation of replacement, pay for removal of defunct machine and pay off remaining outstanding maintenance contract.
By the time this farce is concluded my electric/water bills will be over budget, my sons wife wil have tavelled some 350 miles in lousy weather all because of the total incompetance and disregard of a contractual agreements which should have been carried out 7 weeks ago.
NEEDLESS TO SAY I DO NOT RECOMMEND HOOVER PRODUCTS OR THEIR REPAIR SERVICES.
A responce from Hoover would be welcome !!!!.
Before the age of the Internet and when I first lived away from home in a property where I was allowed to choose some household appliances of my own choice, I was in the market for a washing machine and a dishwasher. I wasn't aware of the best brand names because back then I wasn't a reviewer of household appliances and always thought the best was the UK brand names I was brought up with.
** This is a long review based on personal experience and purchasing **
Brought up in a household which featured a large American style "Spacesaver" larder fridge which lasted 10 years, a Keymatic washing machine, two Twin tubs, a Hoover Electron 1100 washer, a Hoover steam iron and then finally the 1300 Ecologic washing machine and hoards of Junior and Senior vacuums later; Hoover was the brand that I thought I could trust. If it was good enough for my family, then Hoover was definitely a brand name to trust. And that's the kind of approach that many consumers used to take which was also reflected in many adverts and reputations behind brand names from the 1960's to the 1980's.
Within in the first years use of the Internet and then becoming involved with part time work with cleaning firms and working for companies involved with floor care, it was through work experience that I realised Hoover the brand name wasn't quite what it made out to be. Their website in 2003 was poorly stocked up and didn't make sense with the information set out in the spec lists, a fact that I pointed out to Hoover by sending them a letter two years later when their website still hadn't been improved.
In 2005 I was incensed enough to write to Hoover UK because their UK website had not updated any of their products in their vacuum cleaner range and some of their images for the rest of their product line up (washing machine, refrigeration and dishwashers) didn't appear. Model numbers were also incorrect and a lack of basic information was evident based on just fleeting vague statements not expected from such a Global company. Their list of shops "which sell Hoover products," and later would come under the umbrella name of "Hoover Centres of Excellence" changed all the time, it was difficult to respond in kind when prices per products changed per seller and sometimes the seller no longer existed. Yet they still appeared on the Hoover UK website with no intention of being taken over.
Hoover responded with a letter who took on some of my points and an updated website was duly processed. However whilst Hoover are well know internationally, it has only been a few years that the Air Miles and history of bad press for this company has only come to light. Put simply, the manufacture and design of Hoover vacuums may well have occurred in the UK initially, but the present company owned by Candy of Italy frankly don't give a damn anymore to sit up and take notice of this historical fact.
Well its now the year 2008 and a few products from Hoover have appeared in catalogues and high street outlets such as Argos. Yet does Hoover UK's website currently show a 2008 model year line up? Of course not, according to Hoover the year is still 2007 and the downloadable PDF brochure available for consumers shows models that were launched in 2006. So if you are a buyer or researching the white Hurricane bagless upright which is selling in Argos and appeared in last season's catalogue, you won't find it on Hoover's UK product line up - yet bizarrely enough you can download a user manual from this site after clicking on the customer service section!
The errors however don't just stop there.
Hoover recently celebrated their 70th Anniversary, but you won't be able to find this on their UK website other than a moving image at the top of the main page which can't be further explored. The same banner, which appeared in December on Hoover's site in Italy has a further link to watch a You Tube video production made by a Hoover collector (not me!) and shows a fair if not interesting line up of how Hoover started and where it has ended up. However, not all of the European countries' Hoover websites that exist offer this video and unbelievably for a country where production of the first domestic vacuum cleaner first began, it begs the question to why the UK site aren't more involved.
Historically and confusingly, Hoover as a company split in the 1980's when the U.S company could not pay out for the tedious and tumulus amounts of free competitions to win brand models and the Air Miles debacle when Hoover wrongly advertised free holidays and Air Miles if products were purchased. Of course what Hoover weren't expecting was the influx of Yuppie generated media advertising hungry consumers queuing up to receive free Air Miles for taking the purchase of a vacuum cleaner or washing machine. The result being that Hoover in the U.S had to split their U.K brand up because they couldn't afford to pay the compensation charges when Hoover U.K were found guilty of false advertising. Hoover U.S decided to part their ways retaining and taking the Hoover brand label back to the U.S thus forcing Hoover Europe to license the very brand name they were born with. Make no doubt about it, the U.S brand felt embarrassed and cheated and Hoover U.K would never forget it. Meanwhile although Hoover U.K did finally pay the money owed to consumers involved, their reputation was tarnished enough to drive future consumers away. Hoover then tried to make subsidiaries of their engineering know how by offering to build the motors and components on several projects, but the most famous being for the ill-fated low riding Sinclair C5 electric-trike which by the time had met the public, it too had received unsavoury press reports.
So the present website referring to a "Future Generation," shows out of date products which aren't always available on the high street. For the consumer, the research behind a Hoover product may well stop at the fact that models in the shops don't reflect what is available on the website. How confusing! Yet what does this say about the company? How can Hoover ignore the fact that the UK are receiving machines which are bought from this company but yet their website fails to address these new models?
However there have been some improvements to the UK Hoover site. Where in 2005 an online accessory shop did not exist Hoover have now set up a very good accessory shop with payments by credit/debit card such as Mastercard and Visa whilst an online enquiry form beckons the consumer to add their name and address which is compulsory before they can forward their mail to Hoover. The accessory shop features spares which includes most of the models that the UK received in its lifetime; some of the vacuums where spares and accessories are available go by model name and sometimes have photos so that consumers can recognise their model by name. What a pity however that there is no facility to insert a model number - which is standard practise for any other household appliance brand who offer a similar website showing products and spec lists. If that wasn't bad enough Hoover also have a general partnership with an online parts specialist called "e-spares," and no surprise there to find that the same pages and cost prices are the same as the ones Hoover print on their accessory shop.
So is it possible to contact Hoover through a simple email address? Of course not. You have to let the company save your elaborate details as if it makes a difference. What a palaver!
The prices however for the spares shop are horrendously over priced and some of the information for particular models is incorrect. A floor head standard on a cylinder vacuum cleaner appears to be available for the Alyx JC2145 upright vacuum, yet the vacuum in question doesn't have a long extension pipe where this supposed attachment gets stuck to. In short, it's a misleading, cost making exercise to charge more money to the consumer on one hand whilst on the other hand it looks as if Hoover haven't organised the correct info properly. When questioned to why there are misleading information on their site Hoover admitted reasons in the past the company who designed the website was given information to update the site rather than Hoover themselves. Just how lazy are Hoover UK?? It proves another point that Hoover don't bother themselves to take care of their own website despite it being so clearly and colourfully designed - without outside help or shifting the blame.
As for the blurb here on Dooyoo that suggests Hoover supply user manuals for both its European and American models, this is another incorrrect statement and perhaps has been done in error as there are only a handful of models in all their ranges exist where downloadable PDF files exist.
If you need a Hoover spare part its time to do a bit more research and consider outside help. EBay is usually a good source - but for a British company, which was once held in high esteem it shouldn't really be the case that Hoover should be ignored for aftermarket parts. Yet the cost prices which Hoover charge are atrocious.
According to Hoover's UK website it has just launched a cylinder vacuum cleaner known as the "Freemotion" range. Yet there is only a moving banner for this on the Hoover UK website which cannot be explored. In their main frame when clicked on "vacuum cleaners / cylinder cleaners," none of the bagged versions are available to see, yet they are available to buy online whilst the more "clogged up" bagless versions are available to buy at high street outlet names such as Comet, Curry's, Argos, Apollo, John Lewis, Euronics and other companies who deal with household appliances/white goods. The Italian site however had the "Freemotion" promotional videos showing in early December 2007...
Luckily for normal people (i.e. not collectors of the brand) the website is at best easy to get around and navigate due to the fact that sections are easily worded and clearly displayed. Downloads are available in the form of PDF Acrobat sourced brochures for each of Hoover's product segments; the most dated products being the vacuum cleaner range since Candy don't make vacuums, so the latest ranges of everything else made by Hoover show an advancement of design.
For fans of this brand there is only one website where collectors and fans visit regularly for UP TO DATE product info; Hoover's Italian website.
Short of learning Italian, the only plausible reason the Italian site is so well developed and improved is simply because the home company - Candy - are based in Italy. Frankly that's a poor excuse but in reality, it's the only country website for Hoover which can be trusted for up to date images and product info videos.
It is evident then that Hoover UK have no intention of pulling their fingers out of their ears and sadly that is the case where their current website has no improvements made to make a website consumer friendly - particularly for the white good high street shops Hoover sell their products to - to enable consumers to take up an increased purchasing decision based on a company who should be able to deliver a proper website designed to properly inform correct information, safely and comfortably. Products featured in the UK which bear the Hoover name should be streamlined to match the official UK website.
For a company who's old by-word advertising was "Hoover, who Better?" It seems that this phrase is clearly miles away from the truth and reasonably explains why Hoover are locked in a debacle of not being able to properly invest time and money for the consumer, or the so-called "Future Generation." And if a website like Hoover's UK website that shows clear disorganisation and incorrect info, what help can this give when it comes to buying the actual product? No wonder Hoover's reputation isn't as good as it once was. Thanks for reading. ©Nar2 2008
www.hoover.it (Italian site - see the difference!)