Vax’s Dual Power Pro is a relatively affordable carpet shampooer, offering lots of Vax’s high-tech cleaning features for under £200. It packs in a serious 1200W motor, Vax’s innovative rotating carpet scrubbers, and dual wash/rinse action. Even the spot-cleaning tool gets a rotating scrubber to really lift those stains.
Delivering excellent carpet cleaning and efficient stain removal, the scrubbing action and rinse function work very well. Yet, operationally, this Vax has a few niggles. It can easily over-saturate carpets and hard floors, the head is difficult to clean out, and the SpinScrub tool is drippy. If you can live with those caveats, the Dual Power Pro represents great value.
Vax’s carpet shampooers have never failed to hit the mark at Trusted Reviews. The Dual Power Pro looks set to continue that trend. Coming to you for around £200, the W85-PP-T offers many of Vax’s top-end carpet shampoo features at a relatively affordable price. That includes separate washing and rinsing functions, auto-mix wash solution, and a powerful 1200W motor.
The main floor head means business, with a combination of a rotating brush bar and Vax’s rotating scrubbing brushes to agitate dirt and cleaning solution. The brushes and vacuum slot along the front provide a nicely wide 33cm cleaning path. The wider the cleaning width, the less strokes you’ll have to make to cover a room. The trade-off is often increased weight and decreased manoeuvrability – but, thankfully, this Vax remains a nippy mover.
The head itself is fairly light and rolls on two large wheels. The front allows the vacuum slot to rest on the carpet. In the box you’ll find a neat rubber squeegee that clips onto the vacuum slot. This gives the Dual Power Pro an ability that very few carpet cleaners can boast – hard-floor scrubbing.
Out of the box a few pieces need clipping together, but it’s all very nicely made and fits together well. The handle is clipped on via a tool-free turn-buckle design, allowing you to pop that off for easier storage. Dry, the Dual Power Pro weighs in at a fairly chunky 8.7kg without the hose.
The clean water tank is large, taking a little over 3 litres of warm tap water. The separate cleaning solution tank neatly swallows one of Vax’s two supplied 250ml bottles of cleaning solution. A dial on the front switches between cleaning and rinsing – essentially working with or without the cleaning solution mixed in.
Rinsing should further aid cleaning performance, but you do need to remember to set that dial correctly. Sooner or later, you’ll clean a room in rinse mode wondering why there isn’t much dirt coming up. We did. Twice.
Fully loaded with clean water and solution, the weight is touching 12kg without the hose attached. Clearly, this is no featherweight shampooer. The cable measures a handy 8 metres long, so should get around most rooms without having to swap power outlet sockets.
Unusually, the dirty tank isn’t a great deal smaller than the clean tank at about 2.5 litres. Be cautious of re-filling the clean tank without emptying the waste, however; the whole cleaner begins to weigh about the same as a small car.
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Filling and emptying containers is very easy, and everything clips on/off with ease. There’s one small gauze fluff filter in the waste tank that will need a quick rinse each refill for best performance. The V-shaped vacuum channel clips off the front of the floor head for easy rinsing – although there’s no easy way to take the brush assembly apart for cleaning.
Vax Dual Power Pro – Accessories
The Dual Power Pro hose is super-flexible and stretches out to almost 2.5 metres for good reach up stairs. The hose attachment to the machine is behind a pull-down flap below the waste tank.
Both of the supplied tools clip onto the hose handle. The basic upholstery tool is light and manoeuvrable, and its single row of brushes is plenty stiff enough for effective manual scrubbing. The spray delivers a healthy but not excessive amount of fluid, and the vacuum slot along the front edge pulls up dirty liquid with ease.
For altogether tougher spot cleaning you can use Vax’s SpinScrub tool. This gadget uses the same spray and adds a single, slow rotating scrubbing brush. It’s a bit too aggressive for delicate upholstery, but having used this tool before we can vouch for its effectiveness on carpet spills and old stains alike.
Hard-floor cleaning isn’t something you see very often on carpet shampooers. The Dual Power Pro adds this to its repertoire thanks to a clip-on rubber squeegee. The scrubbing action of the floor head is the same as with carpets, but the squeegee softens the cleaner’s action on hard surfaces and aids sucking up moisture.
Vax supplies two 250ml bottles of its standard Ultra+ cleaning solution. It’s an effective cleaner but doesn’t exactly tickle the nose with a fragrant bouquet. It smells just like carpet cleaner chemicals, frankly, but at least the odour doesn’t hang around too long after the clean.
The accessories list is complete with a little drawstring bag to store your hose and tools.
Vax Dual Power Pro – How does it clean carpets?
That 1200W motor, brush bar and row of mechanical scrubbing brushes running together like cogs do make a racket. Measuring a whopping 90dB in use, the Dual Power Pro is seriously noisy. If you were a cleaning professional using the Vax every day, you’d need to use ear defenders.
Following Vax’s instructions, both in the manual and its handy YouTube videos, you push forward slowly while squeezing the trigger to dispense cleaning fluid. You then draw back over the carpet to scrub and withdraw the dirty water. If you want to engage the rinsing feature, you repeat the same action with the dial on the tank set to rinse.
In practise, we suggest you actually need to push forward a little quicker than Vax’s video suggests. This shampooer dumps a lot of water with each squeeze of the trigger in both wash and rinse modes. Moving a little quicker will reduce the chance of your carpet really flooding with liquid. It will also allow you to clean further on a single tank.
Drawing back slowly sees plenty of dirty water rushing up the V-shaped suction channel. If you have put down a lot of cleaning fluid or rinse water, you’ll definitely need to go back over the same area a few times to vacuum up the moisture.
Thankfully, the Vax’s vacuuming power is well up to the task and leaves your carpets only damp – not wet. Moreover, very few loose fibres were pulled from the carpet despite the brush bar and rotating scrubber action. This machine will be fine to use for more than just a one-off spring clean.
Using a semi-brisk forward action and slow back, stains, surface grime and deep-down dirt were washed from the carpet with ease. With good-looking results on a light-coloured hallway carpet, we tackled an old rug with plenty of stains and ground-in grime. A few passes with just the wash action and the rug was looking like new.
However, on a few back-strokes we noted that the floor head wasn’t sitting perfectly flat to the floor. The front of the floor head itself is quite light and, occasionally, the action of pulling backwards would raise the front edge from the carpet. Very little moisture was sucked up on those runs. This may improve over time as the wheel bearing loosens, but its worth noting.
The light floor head and the multiple brushes do stop the machine sticking down to the floor, though. That makes it very easy to move around. It steers well and there’s very little resistance, making for a nicely relaxed operation all round.
On the tough wine test, things started badly… until we realised we’d forgotten to switch back from rinse to wash mode. Back on track with cleaning fluid, the Vax did a good job of clearing most of the spill in a single forward/back run. It really started to get to the crux of the stain by the second pass.
We went over the area with the same process a few more times and the stain reduced with each wash. A minute of cleaning later and it was gone, save for the very faintest hint of pinky-red colour.
Such scenarios are the forte of the SpinScrub tool, but it takes a little getting used to. You have to hold it quite flat to the carpet to ensure the brushes agitate the pile. In addition, there’s a minor design flaw in the spray nozzle. Press the trigger and some of the spray hits the scrubber housing, causing drips and, sooner or later, a wet hand.
That said, a couple of squirts of cleaning fluid, some scrubbing and a rinse and the red wine stain was gone completely. The tool’s vacuuming credentials were also top-notch, removing plenty of moisture and ensuring the carpet was left only damp.
Vax Dual Power Pro – How does it clean hard floors?
Moving to a flooring with riven ceramic tiles, the Vax’s cleaning performance didn’t disappoint. In the middle of muddy dog paw season, the brushes did a great job of cleaning and buffing the surface, including getting mud from the tile grouting grooves.
It’s hard floor abilities aren’t without a couple of caveats, though. The clip-on nature of the squeegee means that if you hit an obstacle such as a table, step or appliance, it unclips and falls off. Moreover, the serious volume of solution that the Dual Power Pro puts down is extremely evident on hard floors. The excess simply runs out either side of the line you’re cleaning.
Hard floors certainly require some trial and error to get your forward/washing speed correct to avoid flooding the area. Thankfully, the Vax’s excellent vacuuming power comes into play and you can chase down runs and puddles with ease.
Why buy the Vax Dual Power Pro?
Great cleaning power at a great value price, Vax’s Dual Power Pro is a very effective carpet, hard floor and spot stain cleaner.
You need to get used to its quirks, though. It dumps a serious amount of cleaning fluid and rinse water with each press of the trigger; it’s a noisy beast; the SpinScrub tools is drippy and the floor head is a complete pain to clean out.
However, despite its mass it moves easily and the stain-busting SpinScrub tool is great for spills and serious spot cleaning.
Effective, powerful and great value – Vax’s Dual Power Pro take some getting used to but delivers great cleaning results.