Kirby Sentria

January 31, 2013

vacuum referral art ready for blog

Make:

Kirby

Model:

Sentria

Upright:

x

Canister:

Weight:

23lbs

Cord length:

25’

Available at:

kirby.com

Sentria

Uses:

Residential: yes     Commercial: yes     Heavy Duty: yes

It’s probably been 15 years or more since I last used a Kirby vacuum cleaner so I was really interested to see what has changed in their machines. The first thing I noticed about the Sentria was that it is a machine that screams, I’m big, I’m tough, and I’m rough enough to take anything you can throw at me. At 23 pounds of practically indestructible metal construction I expected it to be very cumbersome and hard to push around. Well, thanks to a feature called TechDrive power assist that was not the case.  TechDrive power assist,  is sort of a self-propel system that comes standard. It is activated by a foot switch and when engaged it makes the Sentria considerably easier to push around than when not engaged.

Without a doubt Kirby has given this vacuum all the suction power you will ever need. You can actually see it lifting the carpet as you vacuum, which creates better air flow, thus allowing for a more thorough job. I used it on quite a few different carpet styles including commercial, and in wide open areas I really liked the way the Sentria performed. When I had to maneuver around furniture though, the machines bulk did become an issue. Vacuuming around desk legs, chairs, tables, and the like was quite a bit more difficult than with some lighter weight machines.

If you have ever read my reviews before you know I place high marks on how well the attachments on any vacuum cleaner work. On the Sentria I found the attachments to work far better than on most other vacuum cleaners. The downside here was hooking them up. I like to be able to just plug the attachment hose into the machine, maybe flip a switch, and go. With the Kirby it was not quite so easy. You have to go through 4 steps (none of which are hard) that took me probably 60- 90 seconds. So if you only have to do it once, no big deal. If however you are like me and use your machine multiple times a day, and hook up the attachments frequently each time, this gets to be an issue.

There are a whole bunch of other features to the Sentria that I didn’t use so I can’t comment on but they included: hardwood floor cleaner, blower (like in leaf), carpet shampooer, ability to fill up things like air mattresses. One feature I did try was using it to vacuum stairs. The handle comes off and the cleaning head becomes the perfect size for stairs. Again it was a simple process to remove the handle but it did take a minute or so to do.

So, as far as how well the Kirby Sentria picked the dirt up from the carpet, and the fact that it will pretty much never wear out I give it very high marks. On the issue of ease of use though, I’m not quite so impressed. If you only use your vacuum cleaner maybe every couple of weeks, you may find the inconveniences not worth worrying about; but if you use it daily,and ease of use is an important factor, I would recommend trying the Sentria out for a few days before purchasing it.

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Riccar SupraLite

February 3, 2012

Make:

Riccar

Model:

Supralite 1A

Upright:

x

Canister:

Weight:

8 lbs.

Cord length:

30’

Available at:

Danny’s Vacuum Shop

1 Padre Pkwy.

Rohnert Park Ca. 94928

707-584-0225

 Uses:

 Residential: yes   Commercial: yes   Heavy Duty:no

 

 Summary:

Anyone who hates lugging a heavy vacuum cleaner out of the closet and then fighting to push it across the carpet might want to take a good look at the Riccar, SupraLite models. At only eight pounds these machines are very easy to carry and push, but boy do they pack a punch.

When it comes to lightweight vacuum cleaners there are many makes and models to choose from in today’s market. The SupraLite 1A is the most basic model in the series and works great for basic carpet vacuuming. The 5.5 amp motor gives plenty of power to pick up every type of household debris that you may throw in its way.  I’ve used almost every vacuum you can imagine and the amount of air this machine moves and the suction power it has is really impressive. Sand, pet hair, dust, etc. were no problem, and even though it does not have an edge brush I got the dust right up to the wall with no problem. Now that said, if you are vacuuming behind a dresser or bed where the dust is really built up along the wall, you will have to hook up a vacuum with an edge tool.

Being the most basic model the 1A does not have all the fancy features of the more expensive models, but I found nothing that took away the machines performance. The rubber handle grip was comfortable and easy to hold and the 30’ cord allowed me a pretty good cleaning radius. It laid all the way down flat so going under furniture was easy, and the bag is one of the biggest vacuum bags on the market. I found the big bag to be important because with the power of this cleaner a normal size bag would be constantly filling up. There is no HEPA or other fancy filters on this machine, but if you use the genuine Riccar bags it should give you all the filtration you need. The power switch is on the base so you have to turn it on with your foot rather than flipping a switch on the handle (I didn’t find this at all inconvenient). There is a headlight that worked fine but I didn’t notice it to be anything out of the ordinary.

Like most lightweight vacuums the SupraLite1A does not come with attachments. Riccar does make a small (about the size of a shoe box) machine though, that is the perfect compliment for uses where attachments are needed.

One warning though before you buy this machine. Most of the carpet I used it on it worked just fine. There are some carpet styles though that it was all but impossible to push it over. The suction is so good that the carpet gets sucked up into the brush bar and you can’t push it. So if you have one, bring a piece of your carpet to the store, or make sure they have a return policy.  The only other real drawback of the 1A was that it is pretty loud. You won’t be able to talk over it or hear the telephone or doorbell. Depending how sensitive you are you may even want to consider ear plugs.

All in all I’m a huge fan of this American made machine for all your residential or commercial needs. I actually own one and have cleaned tens of thousands of square feet with it and it has never let me down yet.

 

Golden  Gate Carpet Cleaning

643 Martin Ave.

Rohnert Park Ca. 94928

707-588-8779

 


Vacuum Review: Oreck XL Platinum Pilot

December 22, 2011

Make:

Oreck

Model:

XL Platinum Pilot

Upright:

x

Canister:

Weight:

10lbs

Cord length:

35’

Available at:

Oreck Stores

Uses

Residential:  x          Commercial:  x          Heavy Duty:

 Summary:

Over the years I have had many chances to use Oreck vacuums and have always been a fan. When there is a job to do and somebody builds a lightweight easy to use machine to do it, I’m all for it. With the XL Platinum Pilot series Oreck has outdone themselves.

As is the tradition of Oreck, the Pilot is a lightweight machine suitable for light residential or daily commercial work. The key to the Pilot is the swivel feature. Any time a vacuums head can pivot, it becomes much easier to maneuver. Going around sofas, table legs, along the edges of the walls, are much easier with a vacuum that turns on a dime. You can also lay the Pilot flat, making cleaning under beds and furniture a breeze.

In the past I have heard people complain that Oreck vacuums tend to clog easily. I use vacuums much more frequently and strenuously than most people and I found nothing in the Pilot that would cause it to clog more than any other Vacuum. The motor is plenty powerful, and the brush bar is more than adequate to tackle all your common dirt, and dust. That combined with the HEPA filtering bag that keeps pollens and other allergens out of the air, add up to well functioning machine. That said, if you have long haired dogs in your house and only vacuum once every few months this or any other vacuum will clog.

Not only will this machine vacuum your carpet but it will also work on your hard surface floors. It has a two speed switch that allows it to work perfectly on wood, tile, linoleum, etc. when set on low speed.

A few other features that scored high with me were: It did a good job of cleaning right up to the wall, and the headlight was the best I’ve ever seen on a vacuum cleaner. The bag is very easy to change, and for a lightweight vacuum it was not as noisy as I expected (lightweight machines tend to be louder than traditional ones). The vacuum does not come with attachments but most Orecks are available with a small attachment vacuum sold with them.

I would give this machine an enthusiastic four out of five stars.


Vacuum Review: Dirt Devil Featherlite

June 15, 2011

Make:

Dirt Devil

Model:

Featherlite

Upright:

x

Canister:

Weight:

12lbs.

Cord length:

25’

Available at:

Danny’s Vacuum Shop

1 Padre Pkwy.

Rohnert Park Ca. 94928

707-584-0225

 

Uses:

Residential: x         Commercial:         Heavy Duty:

 Summary:

 

Over the course of the last few years a number of people have asked me why I never review any vacuums that cost less than $150. My answer has always been the same; “because they don’t make one that works”. As of today I’m glad to say that Dirt Devil has proven me wrong. The 12 pound Featherlite rings the register at less than half of that at a whopping $70. Now, my answer to the sub $150 vacuum is, buy two of these, one for upstairs and one for downstairs. It comes in bagged or bagless models but this review is for the model requiring a bag.

Given the price tag of the Featherlite, this is not a machine with solid metal parts, HEPA filtration, a Xenon headlight, and all the other bells and whistles made to last 30+ years. What it does have though is a 12 amp motor that provides great suction on most common household carpet. I used it on a low pile carpet, and an average cut pile carpet, with very good results on both. Make sure you buy extra bags because the way this machine picks up they fill up fast. It was very easy to push, maneuvered just fine around furniture, and is quite a bit quieter than most real light weight machines. I also liked the way it cleaned right up close to the wall, especially with the front edge. It has on-board attachments that work just fine, although I always recommend getting a 10’ – 12’ hose to use them with.

Basic, simple, and under $100 this is the perfect machine for things like: leaving upstairs, a son or daughter leaving for college, an RV, or even a small office. A very enthusiastic four out of five stars here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                            

 

 

Golden Gate Carpet Cleaning

 643 Martin Ave. #3Rohnert Park, Ca. 94928 – 707-588-8879