I have several laminate floors in my house and find them quite hard to keep clean, especially in the kitchen and the conservatory. I am also very hygiene conscious and like to make sure that I give everything a good clean to get rid of any germs. In the past I had used a traditional mop and bucket using boiling water and a small amount of bleach or floor cleaner which would do the job but I found I was doing it quite often to make sure it was really clean.
A friend had one of these Vax V085 steam cleaners and had paid £70 for it which was far too expensive for me, but I looked on Ebay and purchased a nearly new one for £22 which I thought was a brilliant price. It didn't have the original box as the previous owner had thrown it away but as I collected it from their house this didn't matter. It did however still have the instruction manual which I needed to read before using it.
The steam cleaner itself is 29cm tall, 26cm wide and 40cm deep and weighs 4.5 kilograms so it is quite light and easy to use. It has an 8 metre cable which I find is sufficient for my use as I will just plug it in the room which I am cleaning. The colour coordinated wheels are quite large enabling you to pull the steamer over carpets and rugs easily. It has 1600 watt of power which I find is powerful enough to give me a satisfactory clean.
It is quite simple to use with two large buttons at the front, an on off button which has a red light indicating that it is switched on, and the other which is a yellow light indicating that the steamer is ready for use. After about 10 minutes this light will go out and you know that the steamer is now ready to use. This is quite a long time to wait if you are sitting waiting but I will usually just switch it on and then go and do something else (but just making sure I remember I have switched it on and don't get tied up with something else in the house!) It can hold 1.4 litres of water which is supposed to last for 40 minutes continuous cleaning, however I have never used it for that long. I would say that it takes me around ten to fifteen minutes to clean the kitchen and conservatory floor and even if I also use it to clean the bathroom and toilet floor it has never ran out of steam on me. You should always fill the steamer before you plug it in for safety reasons. To remove the cover of the water tank you press it down and then turn it anti clockwise. When you have filled it with up to 1.4 litres of water you just replace the cover and turn it clockwise tightly. If you find that you need to refill it when you are using it, you just switch it off and take the plug out and then either release the steam switch on the steam gun or just let it cool down completely.
It comes complete with 12 accessories some of which are stored inside the actual steamer so at first you may think that some are missing. These accessories are very comprehensive and there is everything that you would possibly need. They are easy to remove and to change to a different cleaning tools.
* 2 x extension tubes
* 1 x Floor nozzle
* 1 x Large cleaning cloth
* 1 x Terry cover
* 1 x Small brush-metal bristles
* 1 x Small brush-plastic bristles
* 1 x Jet nozzle attachment
* 1 x 2-in-1 attachment
* 1 x Accessory adapter
* 1 x Concentration nozzle
* 1 x Measuring beaker
* 1 x Instruction manual
I find that the jet nozzle attachment is particularly useful to clean my bathroom as it does a brilliant job cleaning the tiles and grouting and I also use this for cleaning my inside window frames as our double glazing isn't very good and we tend to get a build up of black mould around the edges and corners. If I use the steamer for this it seems to take longer to come back again as the steamer does really blast the steam right into the corners. The bristle brushes are good if you need that extra bit of help to get rid of any stains or stubborn marks and these combined with the high pressure can really eliminate most things. There is a chunky handle on the top which makes it easy to carry round and as it is lightweight it is comfortable to hold while you are using it for higher or hard to reach areas. It does give out a humming noise and also a hissing noise when the steam is being delivered but it is not really noisy at all.
Vax recommend that in order to prolong the life of your steamer you should use a descaler every six months which I have done once as we tend to get a lot of limescale in our water. To do this you need to switch it off and remove the plug from the plug socket, then empty any remaining water. You then fill the tank with 1 litre of warm water and add one or two descaling tablets and leave for about 30 minutes and them empty it out.
It could cause some confusion as it really does look just like a mini vacuum cleaner but it doesn't suck anything up although the pressure of the blast of steam moves any bits and dissolves dust away from the area you are working on.
I think that this steam cleaner is a brilliant tool as I am confident that I am eliminating as many germs as possible which is especially important to me in the kitchen area and eveything looks spotless. It cleans everything to a very high standard and produces a good shine on surfaces. I think that it is quite expensive if you pay the full price which ranges from £55 to £75 but if you can pick a nearly new one up from Ebay I think it is a fabulous bargain.
Vax are a very well known and trusted brand and on the instructions provide you with an email address and telephone numbers for technical assistance.
Vax V-085 steam cleaner
The V-085 is a small, portable, compact steam cleaner made by the established manufacturer, Vax. The product is simple to operate and has a space saving method of storing the 12 accessories and extensions provided. I purchased the product from Tesco for the price tag of £80.
The product out of the box looks fairly modern and classy. The thing which I first noticed was the compact size of the product, which was good for hard to reach places. The dimensions of the product are 26x29x40cm (WxHxD) and it weighs just under 5kg when it is unfilled. This made it a great sized portable steam cleaner which was relatively easy to carry. There are two LED lights to the front of the handle which are yellow and red in colour, the yellow one telling you when the steam is ready for operation. There is an ergonomically designed grey plastic handle attached to the top of the product for easy carrying. There is a dark coloured plastic panel to the front of the product which actually lifts up, allowing you to store all of the accessories inside. To the very front is a long knurled pipe which is where the steam is ejected from, at the end of this there is a mechanism where you can slot on the different attachments. There is a large black dial to the back of the product allowing you to fill the water tank, leading to two plastic wheels on either side at the back. The tank on the product can store up to 1.4 litres however no funnel is provided meaning the product is quite hard to fill with water. The device is 1600 watts in power and can operates with a standard UK plug.
The product comes with 12 accessories you can use for a variety of tasks in hard to reach places. I've found the water once fully filled in the tank lasts about an hour before needing more water which was a decent amount of time. The product includes extension pipes which can extend the front pipe house where the steam comes out of quite considerably. This is great for ceilings and high places. You get one cleaning cloth, a measuring beaker, a high powered nozzle attachment, a cover, two small brushes and all manner of different sized accessories to tackle many jobs. There is also a fairly good instruction manual written in good English which is useful if you're unsure what a particular accessory is supposed to do. The liftable dark coloured plastic panel to the front is a great touch as it allows you to store the accessories on board the product. This is a great space saving mechanism even though the device itself is light and compact already.
The operation of the product has remained sound even after many, many uses. I have noticed no overheating problems or short circuiting problems. The product still lasts around an hour before needing refilled with water. That said, I have experienced that the wheels have become slightly defected in that they wobble and have become slightly loose. Certain attachments do not fit tightly to the hose and are very prone to falling off, this is not the case with all of them but definitely some do this. I've also noticed some steam comes out at the base of the hose as opposed to the ending which would lead me to believe there is some leakage somewhere. Overall, the durability has been ok as it is still operational but it certainly has a few durability issues which I feel need addressing.
Ease of Use
The product is easy to use. You have to wait a few minutes after filling the product to wait until the product is ready to use. This is indicated by the LED light changing from red to yellow meaning the product is good to go. As mentioned the product lasts about an hour before needing refilled which is fair. Filling the tank is a little difficult, not funnel is provided meaning you need full concentration and patience to fill the tank without water dripping everywhere. The light weight and compact design mean the device is easy to transport and I've found it get into all corners, cracks and difficult to reach places very easily. I've done radiators, ceilings, bathroom tiles and so on very easily which I largely contribute to the compact size of the V-085. I find even with its diminutive size, it does remove a lot of dirt and grime effectively. The noise of the product was quite low but it probably could be made quieter.
I paid £80 for the product from Tesco making it a middle of the range steam cleaner in terms of price. I have seen the product advertised at just £64 on Amazon UK and cheap second hand models on eBay. I think £80 in hindsight of the problems I experienced to be a bit too much but certainly if you can get it cheaper elsewhere, then it could be a fair investment. The fact that Tesco, Amazon UK, eBay and certain online electrical retailers sell the Vax V-085 mean it is freely available to purchase online.
As mentioned the product does suffer from a fair few problems which I feel need to be addressed to justify the £80 I paid for it from Tesco. The product developed loose wobbling wheels over time, I found steam leaking from the bottom of the hose and certain accessories fall off too easily from the hose. I think a funnel or something similar should be implemented so that the water tank is easily fillable which would stop water running everywhere. There is a power cord included but there is no way to wrap or retract it into the product which I think is a simple error which could be easily corrected. Even though the product lasts for about an hour before needing refilled i would like to see some water level measurement system or some warning LED light when you are running out of water. As it remains the only way you can determine if you are out of water is by weighing the product or waiting till it runs dry.
To conclude my Vax V-085 was an attractive and compact steam cleaner which removed grime successfully in a lot of difficult to reach places. The choice of accessories was good as well as it being easy to operate and use. However there were some glaring problems I found with the product which were a letdown in light of the £80 price tag from Tesco. The wheels became loose, the tank in the middle of the product was hard to fill, certain accessories fell off too easily, steam escaped from the bottom of the hose and there was no way to identify how much water was left or a way to wrap the power cord around the product. The product did do what a steam cleaner is supposed to do and the size was compact, but I can't help feel the product had too many problems and I would have expected better from a well known manufacturer such as Vax. If you can get the product cheap then I would recommend it, if you have to pay full price for it however, then stay clear of it. Thanks for reading my review.
© Revo9 (2011)
*Note, I am both a member of Ciao and Dooyoo.co.uk under the same username of Revo9*
In my home I love to have the windows and garden very clean and sometimes it is difficult to make sure everything really is clean so I decided to invest some money for a steam cleaner.
When I was doing some research into various models and types of steam cleaners the one which jumped out at me was a Vax machine. I have used this brand of machine before with vacuum cleaners and carpet cleaners. They always seem to be a decent brand and I went for the Vax V-085 steam cleaner.
The cleaner is a very odd type of blue for the colour it is kind of a light blue but it can appear like a grey colour as well. The cleaner is designed in a way which makes it easy to use and store away for later usage.
There are wheels which are huge and can travel over carpets very easily and they are the same colour as the main machine and you have a great and sturdy handle to carry the steamer around with you. The plug which you disconnect to put the water inside is huge and it can take forever to twist around but eventually it unplugs and you can pour the water inside. This has a very good safety feature for me which adds to the good parts to the cleaner.
There are two big buttons on the front to turn the device on and there are lights to indicate when the item is steaming up and when the item is ready. The device weighs 4.5kg which is kind of light considering the amount of jobs it can be used for.
When I got this item I never realised how many accessories you are provided with. In the booklet you're given this whole range of items ranging from extension hoses to attach to the end and even little brushes. The brushes are for when you need to steam and area which needs a bit of elbow grease applied as well.
There is one issue in regards to the accessories you will find some are missing and this is because on the front of the device there is a black plastic section. At first this appears to be a see through section to view the water levels but it actually stores away some of the items. They are locked into position and you can remove them and place them back neatly so you never lose them.
I did actually ring up the helpline and looked very foolish when they informed me that this was where the missing items were kept. The tank is the next part of the item which needs to be discussed. It holds 1.4 litres of water which is good but there are other steamers out there which hold more. It can take up to 20-25 minutes to get a decent amount of steam to work when you fill the steamer to the top.
I have found the steam lasts for about 40 minutes even though the booklet tries to indicate it can last 50 minutes and that has never happened for me and I have used this item well over 20 times now.
The actual device is 1600w and when it comes to cleaning it does some jobs excellently but other jobs it sadly does rather poorly. When it comes to laminate flooring I sometimes use a normal wood cleaner but recently I have tried with a steamer. I have this connection I can use provided with the device and even the cloth as well which attaches to the end. I just power up the steam and glide it across the floor.
This enables me to retrieve some much dirt of the laminate flooring whilst cleaning with the cloth and also kills any germs which might be lurking around as well. I would not perhaps advise this for everyone because it might leave your laminate floor damaged if you leave the steamer to work one area for an extended amount of time.
It does clean my windows and bathroom brilliantly and you just need to use a small amount of steam and it is done and you get so many accessories you can have the hose itself reach ceilings and difficult locations.
What this machine fails with in my view has to be the back garden. I have some problems when it comes to excessive dirt from my dogs and sadly this machine just waters down the mud rather then remove it completely.
It can be a great item for people to use for various jobs and some people use steamers to remove bacteria from the gardens and try to use it on shoes (have seen this a few times) and I have found it pretty easy to use.
There is a booklet inside which told me to always empty the product completely of water after use because the plug can actually set itself into the machine and never come lose. This has happened to me before in the past with a much cheaper steamer I owned.
The amount of accessories is tremendous and I never knew you got so many and you do have a fair amount of steam. I think the time it takes for the steam to form is quite a long time and that is one of the bad points about this item.
In terms of size you can store this product underneath the stairs in your home because it is 26cm in width, 29cm in height and 40cm in depth. This item is a great little device and the price can range from £50-£75 which is kind of high for most people but it does offer you the ability to kill germs whilst cleaning.
You do have 12 accessories with this machine which is excellent and I have to point out the cable length is 8 metres which is long but not only that it does not rewind so it can be complicated when you need to store the main cable.
I think the information on how to clean carpets could be clearer as this can seem more complicated than it actually is. In terms of support you get from Vax with help they are first class so that should also be noted as well.
I would rate this machine as 8 out of 10 and would recommend it for people who want nice and clean bathrooms and kitchens as it offers great cleaning and for a reasonable price.
Perfect for smaller living spaces, the Vax V-085BU Compact Steam Cleaner is an efficient cleaning machine, designed to turn cleaning up into one of the least taxing households tasks! This powerful 1600W compact Steam cleaner has an 11-minute heating time which then gives out high-temperature Steam that facilitates removal of household dirt from working surfaces and cooking tiles / This machine can also efficiently remove dirt from windows and mirrors without any use of other chemical products / Easily remove even tough spills or accidents like chewing gum, grease, soap marks or solid dirt from surfaces without using any chemical solvents with the Steam generated from the Vax V-085BU Compact Steam Cleaner / The Vax V-085BU Compact Steam Cleaner has plenty more strings to its bow, including a concentration nozzle, brush attachment, jet nozzle, 2-in-1 combi-attachment in addition to extension tubes / With its cool/grey exterior, this Steam cleaner will help you deal with one of life's more mundane tasks! Characteristics Type Compact Steam cleaner Power (Watts) 1600 Bag volume or reservoir (litre) 1.4-litre water tank Ergonomy Telescopic tube Yes (extension tubes) Cable length 8 metres Others Colours Grey/Grey Included accessories Concentration nozzle, brush attachment, jet nozzle, 2-in-1 combi-attachment, extension tubes Weight (Kg) 4.5 kg / Short name: Vax V-085