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Vax Air Cordless U86-AL-B Review - Stairs, Pet Hair and Verdict Review


Vax Air Cordless U86-AL-B: How easy is it to use on stairs?

less than 5kg the Air Cordless is comfortably light enough for most
people to physically vacuum each step with the main cleaner head. We
found it was easy to stabilise the cleaner with your other hand under
the main body and the pivoting head made it excellent for stairs with
turns and angles. The rotating brush bar and good suction power make for
very effective cleaning on carpeted stairs in this way.

you can use the hose, wand and 2-in-1 tool for stairs. While the Air
Cordless offers plenty of suction for this type of cleaning, the lack of
brush bar and relatively short hose don’t make it ideal for stairs as
you will still have to carry the main cleaner up step-by-step. The hose
and tools are far better suited to detail cleaning and dusting above
floor level.

If you tend to have a lot of pet hair gathering on the stairs, however, corded machines like the Dyson DC41 Mk2 Animal and Dyson DC54 Animal are better bets.

Vax Air Cordless U86-AL-B: How does it cope with pet hair?

an upright cleaner the Vax Air Cordless is great for pet hair. Not only
does the rotating brush bar and good suction pick up hairs well, the
simple convenience of the cordless design makes for quick and easy clean

As there is no need to unwind cords, plug-in and wind the
cord up again afterwards, you are far more inclined to zip round and
pick up the odd ball of pet-hair tumbleweed on a daily basis. Using the
Air Cordless at home we found the kitchen was generally cleaner all week
thanks to these quick cleaning sessions.

On carpeted floors
liberally covered with pet hair from a collie and a Labrador, the Air
Cordless cleaned the area effectively in less than 10 seconds. Full-size
corded cleaners are undoubtedly quicker in this respect, but not by
much. Remember, though, that the compact 1.05l dustbin will need
emptying fairly frequently.

Using the hose and tools, the Air
Cordless was considerably less effective at picking up pet hairs from
carpets or upholstery. The reduced suction compared to corded models and
lack of any tools with a rotating brush head will always make pet hair
challenging for cleaners used like this.


Should I buy the Vax Air Cordless U86-AL-B?

you like the idea of going cordless and prefer upright vacuum cleaners,
the Vax Air Cordless U86-AL-B is definitely worth considering. During
our testing someone uttered the phrase ‘someday all cleaners will be
this way’ – and it’s true! Like power tools, cordless freedom makes
cleaning much easier.

Its most direct rivals are the Bosch Athlet
(£249) and the Gtech AirRam (£199) and each has their own strengths and
weaknesses. In comparison, the Vax doesn’t clean quite as well as the
Bosch and isn’t as light as the Gtech, but its so-so edge cleaning is
compensated by its good overall performance and the convenience afforded
by the two included batteries.

The other alternative is the DC59
(£280), although its smaller capacity bin and lighter handheld design
means it’s best used as a secondary cleaner – the Vax can, at a pinch,
replace your main cleaner provided you don’t mind emptying fairly regularly.
Overall, all four have their merits, so consider what you care about
most before deciding.


Below average edge
cleaning means we can’t recommend the Vax Air outright, but its
excellent battery life and smart design make it well worth considering.

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