Product Type: Electrolux vacuums
Newest Review: ... looks quite modern being white in colour with some grey writing on it and is reasonably small for an upright. You can adju... more
A Brilliant Bargain Upright Vacuum!
Member Name: Nar2
Date: 06/08/07, updated on 16/01/08 (2020 review reads)
Advantages: Synthetic bag seals the dirt in, lots of suction, lightweight, easy to use, HEPA filter.
Disadvantages: No bag indicator, hard to find synthetic bags and Argos only sell paper bags.
** Nar's Quick Skip Product Spec **
* 1700 watts motor, fixed power, slightly noisy.
* 4 litre dust capacity, material bag for optimum dust sealage - and it works!
* HEPA filtration - Applies to motor exhaust for clean expelled air.
* Three tools; upholstery brush, combo dusting tool, crevice and extension pipe.
* Multi height floor adjustment dial.
* 6 meter power cord length, weight of 5.9kg.
* Argos & Comet price: £49-97 plus £5-99 for a pack of synthetic dust bags.
* 111cm height by 33cm width by 31diameter.
Not only did my cousin manage to prang my last Electrolux cylinder cleaner burning out the motor, broke off parts on my old LG upright cleaner she went one better by breaking the hinges off the Dyson DC01 I had lovingly restored to good effect. Armed with the decision to pay out for more parts on my original DC01 (don't ask!) including a new bin and a new neck, the decision has come to turf the DC01 once and for all and look for an upright cleaner suitable to replace it. For a flat which has three bedrooms and with her long hair, the question of a cylinder was therefore out of the question, unless she intended to clean the roller bars to rid the bristles of her clogged hair and I know she won't!
At £50 then there isn't much one can buy these days when it comes to looking for an upright vacuum cleaner and although I had previously seen the same LG upright I had bought many years ago in a second hand store, it was too expensive at its private marked up price than the £40 I had shelled out the first time around at Argos. And it was then, that I had thought of Argos and I spotted the Powerlite, by Electrolux as an upright sitting amongst lower budget brands at a very low purchase price.
** Setting Up & Design **
The Electrolux Powerlite upright is a simple white and grey looking upright which doesn't have many rough angles or sides, looking quite modern despite it being the lowest model out of a three model range from Electrolux. Housed primarily in white the decals and design labelling is easy and clear to see and fixing the tools onto the back (as well as taking off) is simplicity in itself. Only one item needs to be fixed onto the cleaner when purchased in a flat pack box; and that's the handle with the use of a cross head/Phillips screwdriver. The handle and overall design mirrors my old LG upright right down to the looped handle which on this model is slightly more rectangular, similar in feel and easier to steer as a result. The on switch is located in the middle half of the upright just by the right hand side and feels in its location, like most things on this model, similar to my LG upright.
Perhaps what attracted me over other budget brands at Argos is the fact that this Electrolux has a white material fabric disposable dust bag which ensures no dust leakage and similar to Miele & Sebo dust bags. Perhaps at long last Electrolux is catching onto the idea that material electrostatic bags are better in the long run for consumers who have allergies as opposed to paper bags which can burst upon contact when taking out of the vacuum. And its easy enough to do with the way the bin door comes open easily at the front, taking the bag and pushing down the lock to release the bag. In so many respects one does notice the difference automatically between bagless and bagged vacuums, with very little dust viewable to the eye the moment the bag is grabbed and sealed up as opposed to a bin. And with four litres which is double the capacity of most Dyson and bagless 2 litre bins, the bags can take a bit more than their capacity suggests. One bag since new has so far lasted two months!
** In Use **
Similar to my LG in terms of the design the Powerlite feels very similar but the only difference is that the Electrolux lacks is an auto adjusting floor head and in this respect there is a height adjustment dial which is made of tough plastic but doesn't move with ease of use unless the cleaner is put into the upright position. In use, it feels too stiff and liable to break off so it's better to change position for a closer sweep and pick up for each floor covering; only 3 modes are available but this should be fine for most carpets and floors. For most general cleaning tasks on carpet, I leave it at the third position for general sweeping and find that the large 12" floor head gets everything the first time around, coupled with edge brushing on each side, the Powerlite is powerful and efficient, if not somewhat noisier down to its 1700 watt motor power.
Through the hose however suction is excellent; taking the hose out is easier than my old LG with no need to bend down to the floor to take the hose out. Located at the top half of the upright and looped over the whole body at the back, Electrolux have wisely coloured the back in dark grey so to minimise the look of scratches or bumps should the inevitable design of an upright should fall over. And it will fall over if the hose is pulled out and the upright is treated roughly BUT the difference is that this upright has been designed to incorporate an Anti-Tip mechanism and over Hoover who only fit their mechanism to higher priced uprights, Electrolux now produce all their uprights regardless of price with this application. Therefore when the hose and tools are removed together and used as far as the hose will stretch -sadly it doesn't reach five stairs, maybe only two at a stretch - the Powerlite will not fall over.
Tools fit flush at the back of the upright and the combination tool is the upholstery brush and dusting tool in one, known in the trade as Electrolux's reliable "butterfly" attachment where the tool can be reversed for each cleaning task needed.
One of the aspects I loved about the LG upright is the fact that its thin motor hinge doesn't get in the way of low furniture and the Powerlite is slightly better in this respect. With the fact that the hose has been allocated and fits straight into the extension pipe automatically it seems to be easier to whip out the hose at a moment's notice rather than try and steer the floor head under low furniture. In this respect it is therefore handy to have both applications and be able to use them instantly.
Lifting the Powerlite is also easy to do since it is so lightweight but its all down to its almost all Plastic/PVC construction. Thankfully its a lot lighter and easier to carry than my old Dyson DC01 ever was!!
Six metres of power cord is more than sufficient for this type of bagged upright at the price paid, but at the same time it would have been good here to have a longer cable; there is a cord fix point located on the right hand side of the handle whilst no doubt keeps the cord away from the floor head when the brush is spinning, it cuts the actual length of cord when travelling from the plug.
** Downsides **
Based on the old Harmony Glider, the Powerlite is easy to use generally although the size of it can be awkward to get around smaller furniture. From the way the wheels pivot the cleaner on the floor, it is a similar experience to the Harmony Glider models but the best improvement so far is the fact that the Powerlite only needs two screws on the TOP to be removed rather than the soleplate on the bottom on other vacuums. This means a quick and easy changeover for the vacuum and ensures less stress when putting a new belt on.
There is no bin door bag full indicator which is a major downside, and like my old LG you have to guess when the upright is full simply by feeling the weight of the bag or like most uprights check the hose to see if there is a blockage.
** Bags **
The bags which the Powerlite use (and therefore Electrolux make them, code ES82) are different to your standard high filtration paper bags. Claimed to have 50% extra longevity than paper bags, these newer type bags are material synthetic bags, white in colour and are extremely easy and soft to install as well as release from the machine.
What I do notice about them is that they keep back pet hair smells, particularly when they get full, and at 4 litres capacity I was really surprised that they didn't fill as quickly as brown paper bags do. This is great news for anyone who is on a budget AND has allergies!
However Electrolux really need to improve the availability of these great bags. They mirror Miele vacuum bags although on price you get 5 for £5-99 and an extra motor filter.
** Conclusion **
With a washable HEPA filter cartridge and a further filter which can be washed beside the bag (but both must be dried completely after use) the Powerlite Z2250 series is a great budget priced upright vacuum. It almost ticks all the boxes for efficient cleaning, even if it does use material dust bags. For most consumers on a budget the Powerlite is a very good all rounder with lots of available suction to get all the dust up and since LG no longer sell their bagged upright on the market, other brands such as Hoover should take note! Thanks for reading. İNar2 2007.
** October Update **
Although Argos are selling the Powerlite, the bags which Argos sell are not the longer lasting Synthetic bags but brown 2 stage filter paper bags. Although they aren't as good, they don't last as long as the Synthetic bags and release slightly more odour.
Summary: A cheap but reasonably thought out upright vacuum that won't hurt the purse.
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