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This Vax is great for general housekeeping, but not for deepcleaning your carpets. I bought this from Currys when it was on special offer for £99, I wouldnt recommend buying it at the full price as I think for a little extra you can get better value for money, if that makes any sense! It was easy to assemble when I first bought it, and it is easy to fill and empty. If you dont hoover before you vax you will find the filter gets very clogged up and can be quite difficult to clean. The water tank holds about 3.5 litres which I find does my front room. The hose attachment is definatley a plus point as not all vax come with this, and it is great for cleaning stairs and upholstery. The model is fairly lightweight and moves well. I believe that if you can buy this at the £99 price you will be very pleased.
I bought my Vax Rapide V-027 for £99 - which was on offer as it is normally around £149.
I had used a friends Vax and loved it and decided to buy one myself as I have 3 children and my carpet gets grubby easily.
As the Vax comes boxed you first need to assemble it which I think was relatively easy.
The tank on the front to hold the water is 3.5L and you fill it up with warm tap water and recommended Vax AAA solution which you can pick up from Argos or even supermarkets I think the cheapest place is Wilkinsons.
You need to hoover the floor first so that there are no bits.
You then clip it into place and there are two ways of cleaning.
The first is too use the main part - which is like a hoover. There are two buttons of the front and they both need to be switched to on to work in this position.
You push the hoover squeezing the handle to let out water and then pull back to suck up. There is a rotating brush bar which is supose to deep clean. The water is sucked into the bottom into a tank which then alerts you when it needs emptying, this bit is 2L big. It also has filters in to collect up the fluff and bits.
I did not think this option worked very well at all - it did pick up some dirt but appeared to be streaky and I was not satisfied with the end result.
The 2nd option is the heldheld scrubbing bit that has a hose and clips into the main tank and a valve on the side of the machine - this is for stairs and upholstery or stubborn stains. You need to switch the bottom switch which is the main hoover bit to off and then just press the power button on.
When i first used this I went a bit mad cleaning all sofas and stairs etc - there is a button you press to spray the solution and then you can scrub and it sucks it back into the tank.
I was happy with this bit after an effective finish and attually never used the main cleaning bit ever again and only use this tiny attachment to clean my whole floor!
I have to replace the head quite often as it does break from using so much.
Since then I have also bought another Vax which was equally as rubbish using the main bit and I am currently on look out for a Bissell!!
I've owned this carpet cleaner with upholstery attachment for nearly exactly two years, when purchased it was on offer at £69.99, currently £81.74 (RRP £149.99). The first and probably most important thing I would say about this cleaner is don't pay £149.99 or you may be disappointed. At a lower price this cleaner was a good alternative to me to hiring a carpet cleaner - at the time I was moving out of a rental house and into my own house and so wanted to clean all the carptets myself, and this as I shall explain, the cleaner was able to do successfully, though I have a few reservations about this product, even at a lower price.
What you get:
The Vax VO26 came in quite a compact box. The first task on opening the box is actually to assemble the cleaner. Now call me fussy but for an item with "deluxe" emblazoned on the front of it, but I don't necessarily expect to be struggling with a manual, an alun key and bits before I have even started. Flat pack furniture = yes, hoover = poor show; and though it may well save on shipping it doesn't exactly give you a great start with your cleaner, one of the pieces, a bolt to attach the handle to the body was very fiddly indeed and doesn't give a great build quality.
The cleaner has a 3.5 litre tank in the body for the cleaning solution, and some solution is provided with extra bottles being easily purchased at Argos or Robert Dyas. There is a tank to collect the empty water, which is 2 litres big. There is a rotating power brush at the front for deeper cleaning and this can be switched off if desired and cuts out automatically if you are using the upholstery attachment. The upholstery attachment is a long tube with a tool on the end which is stowed on the handle of the machin, and this attachment has a spray button to pump out water, and can also be used for edges or small areas. The whole thing is fairly bulky to store and once assembled it can't really be unassembled - I've measured and I reckon it takes up about 30cm by 50cm of my very small utility room by the time you have taken into account the tubes and things on the back of the machine.
Using the machine:
Now vacuuming in general is not much fun and using this machine is even less fun. You start by filling the tank (fairly easy though the design isn't great for seeing how much you have put in and the hole to put the water in is in a funny place) with warm water and a cap of the cleaning solution. Once you have filled the tank you put it onto the body of the machine and you are good to go. There are two (water protected) switches, one the brush and one on and off. On switching the machine on you can't miss the fact that it is loud, very loud. It is also heavy and the wheels are not the smoothest - pushing it around is an effort. The manufacturer's description says it lays flat to clean under furniture, well yes, but how many bits of furniture have you got that have 25 cm under them? Not many I would imagine, so this is a poor selling point and not based on reality.
The machine can be pushed along by the average person I would think, and does pick up water well. Ideally you should hoover the area to be cleaned first, the brushes spin well and though tricky to manoeuvre it is ok. The dirty water tank fills up rather quickly and I would say to do one room you need to fiddle with both tanks at least twice, if not three times if your carpets are excessively dirty. Some of my carpets were very dirty, my poor daughter inherited a cream carpet previously owned by a housework shy teenager.
There was a filter on the dirty water tank of a nylon mesh. First time I used the machine this started to disintegrate and I wondered if it was packaging - it fell apart all together on two or three uses. Talking to a friend the same happened to her and she carried on using the machine. Now I don't advise that you do this - but I was time poor when I bought this so carried on regardless - it hasn't seemed to matter. When checking on amazon it seems other users have had this fault too, a more common fault being that the machine cuts out as it thinks the tank is full when it isn't. My machine doesn't cut out at all, ever, so I have to keep a careful eye to see if one tank is full and the other empty. I perhaps should have invoked the manufacturer's 12 month guarantee, but I didn't, and it is still working as well (or as badly) as it did 2 years later, with occassional use these days.
The upholstery tool does work well, however it is not intuitive to fit and the way it is stowed on the machine is frankly pathetic, more bunged on than carefully stowed. The 7.5 metre cable is long enough, but again the way the cable is stored lacks good design.
Does it do the job?
To be fair, yes it cleans. Even the aforementioned dirty cream carpet cleaned up well and I got my deposit back in full (yay!) as I left the rental house immaculate, so worth it to me for that alone. Your carpets won't look professionally cleaned, but near enough. I find that I can use the cleaner from time to time in my home to get rid of children caused mess and stains, with use of a spot cleaner results are fairly good.
It is hard work to use, however, and you have to empty the tank a lot. The rug doctor that I had previously hired was nicer to use, if you have ever hired one you will know that the rug doctor isn't much fun either.
It does clean upholstery well and it works fairly well overall, however I don't think that it will last a long time, the build quality is just not great and neither is the design. In use the bolt I mentioned before has worked its way loose and had to be refitted a couple of times which is highly annoying. Also I think the poor design of the disintegrating filter is pretty inexcusable, though more fool me for not chasing it up.
Overall I would say perhaps buy one, but with reservations. If you are going to spend a fair bit of money you may be able to spend a little more and get a much better machine. I do not have a high opinion of this machine, which is a shame as prior to owning one to me Vax was the name I most associated with carpet cleaners, but I wouldn't buy another. If you are thinking of buying one I would look at one in a shop before going ahead and purchasing so you can see the build quality for yourself. For me in actual fact the machine paid for itself in rental saved and deposit returned, however I am still not overly impressed.
Short name: Vax V-026