Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Black & Decker 18 Volt Cordless Pivot Vac Review
While I was in Guatemala, housework was the last thing on my mind. Sure, I knew I would be coming home to a HUGE mess after leaving teenagers in charge. For the most part, I was correct.
When I was asked to review the Black & Decker 18 Volt Cordless Pivot Vac, I have to admit I was excited. I personally have owned many Black & Decker items over the years and have always been pleased with the quality and durability of their products. I'll be honest, one of my first Black & Decker items in the late 80's early 90's was a Dustbuster that looked exactly like the one in the photo above. I can remember recharging it every night, and using it on a daily basis for quick touch-ups. It was great for vacuuming up pet hair, dry cat food, or even my infant son's spilled Cheerios.
Flash forward a few years and Black and Decker is still making these hand held cordless vacs. The box arrived the day we came back from our trip. It must have been Fate, lol. I have to admit, even though I was extremely curious, I was also suffering serious jet lag and was in no way wanting to start cleaning house.
Finally, by the weekend, my curiosity got the best of me and I had to check it out. The first thing I noticed was that it was heavier than my old Dustbuster. I was a little concerned that my arm would tire out faster using a heavier machine, but it really wasn't that bad at all. I've had multiple surgeries on my right arm, so it tends to tire more easily if I am carrying something heavy, doing a super scrubbing job, or overuse it cleaning or on the computer. My arm did get a little tired out vacuuming out the car, but that was because I didn't stop to take a break and probably should have. Hubby used it easily to finish my car and then go on to his own, all while ooohing and aaahing about how great this vacuum gets into nooks, crannies, and crevices.
The tip is much narrower than the old Dustbuster, so I was able to get into smaller spaces. And the dirt compartment was easy to empty, plus it was clear so I could see right into it. I am still missing my diamond anniversary band from a few years ago, somehow I think it ended up on the floor and got pushed into a corner, and was finally vacuumed up in the process. I must have searched everywhere for that thing, but realized I might have tossed it out when I tossed out the full vacuum bags that my machine uses. With the Black & Decker 18 Volt Cordless Pivot Vac I can actually SEE what I have vacuumed up, so no more $500 wedding bands going into the garbage can.
To me, a vacuum is not a vacuum unless it has sufficient suction, or SS as I call it. Hubby thinks I am nuts, but if it doesn't pass the suction test then it doesn't stay-period. If you have ever tried to vacuum up cat hair embedded into upholstery you will know what I mean. My cats like to lounge on the back of my sofa, and since they are members of the family, I let them sit there and gaze out the windows. But when you have friends coming over, you certainly don't want to have them go home covered in cat hair. Using this Cordless Pivot Vac, I was able to vacuum up all the fur on the sofa without a problem. I don't find the vacuum very loud either, hubby works nights and sleeps during the day. I was able to vacuum in the next room over and he didn't wake up, which was pretty good considering my other vacuum makes a noise similar to jet engines readying for takeoff.
In addition to doing a great job, I like the fact that it folds in half for convenient storage and has 3 stage filtration which keeps the dust from going into the air. One thing about cleaning that I hate is the dust. I am allergic to dust mites and often end up cleaning a little bit and having to stop and take a Claritin to continue because if I don't I end up a weeping, sneezing mess. Included with my cordless vac was a crevice tool and upholstery brush, and the great thing is that the filter can be cleaned in my dishwasher!
Overall, my opinion on the Black & Decker 18 Volt Cordless Pivot Vac is that it really is a great product. The Dustbuster has evolved, and come a long way since I first had one back in the 80's. The only drawback for me personally, due to my arm injuries, is the weight of the hand vac. But for someone who doesn't have hand or arm issues like I do, I don't see any problem. This is a great little machine to have on hand for quick touch ups or daily use between regular vacuuming. I tend to vacuum once or twice a week, and this has really helped cut down on the dust and dirt if I use it daily in between regular vacuuming. Plus, with its narrow edge I am able to get into tighter spaces than my big vacuum can-and able to do a better job cleaning. As far as the price goes, I've seen them in the range of $55-70 depending on where you shop. While not cheap, it is well worth the money spent in time saved cleaning and the great job it does. It works as well as my full sized machine, but I have the added benefit of not having to worry about a cord to plug in, and I love the fact that it is so portable and can go anywhere. It really is what I consider an essential household helper and doesn't disappoint in any way. Thanks to Black & Decker for giving me the opportunity to review such a great product!
*note, I had some photos of hubby at work cleaning the stairs and the car with this awesome vac but the virus on my computer is not allowing my camera to load any more pics on it, saying it does not recognize the drive. Rather than use my own pics (which I prefer to do) I am going to use photos from the Black & Decker website so I don't hold up this review further!
Disclosure: I was provided with a Black & Decker Cordless Pivot Vac free of charge for the purpose of reviewing the product. All of the opinions above are my own, based upon my usage of the product in my home during the last several weeks and my current and prior experience as a consumer of Black & Decker products.