Reviewed by David Savage
Vacuuming is something that we all have to do, at home and in the car, otherwise your floors and carpets would just collect dust and dirt, ceilings would be home to a multitude of spider’s homes and sofas would probably be full of crumbs. This means that a good vacuum cleaner is required, and this usually means a corded vacuum cleaner as they offer more power.
I have always gone for a corded vacuum cleaner as I felt that the battery life on a cordless one wouldn’t be great and that they just wouldn’t have enough power to pick up anything other than light crumbs. That is until I used the Vax Blade 2 Max cordless vacuum cleaner.
The Vax Blade 2 Max is a 40v cordless stick vacuum cleaner, currently selling for £199 (was £249) and comes with a FREE Vax toolkit – an extra set of cleaning tools to make the Blade 2 MAX much more versatile, worth over £50. It is also a handheld cleaner, making it a very versatile cleaner for in the home, car, garage etc.
So what do you get with the Vax Blade2 MAX? In the box is:
- Vax Blade 2 MAX 40v Stick Vacuum Cleaner (handheld unit, removable bin, reach wand and powered head)
- Crevice Tool
- Tool Caddy
- Wall Mount
- User Guide
It also comes with a FREE Vax toolkit, this consists of:
- Flexible Crevice Tool
- Tough Dirt Tool
- Textile Tool
- Stretch Hose
- Storage Bag
So, after it arrived, I quickly unpacked it and put it on to charge. Like all electrical items that have a battery, whilst they do come with some charge in them, it is best to fully charge them first. So I plugged in the unit and left it alone for 3 hours, the recommended charge time. Whilst it was charging (charging is indicated by four lights on the main handheld unit and switch off when fully charged), I took the opportunity to fix the wall mount to the wall to make it easy to store the vacuum (and charge) when not in use. As the Blade 2 MAX isn’t self-supporting, it isn’t able to stand upright on its own. In one of my hallway cupboards I do have power sockets, so it was the ideal place for it, easy to access, mount upright on the wall and could be charged without having to remove it from the cupboard.
A 3 hour charge gives up to 45 minutes of use depending on what power settings you are using (45 minutes is based on standard power mode on hard floor, with floor brush switched off).
Once charged I was ready to go (or at least as ready as I could be for vacuuming the house). As previously mentioned, it can be used as a stick or small handheld vacuum and as I was going to vacuum the carpets, I put it into stick mode by attaching the bin, reach wand and powered head. The vacuum cleaner has two modes that can easily be switched using your thumb on the handle of the main unit – standard and boost mode. You can also select whether you want to use the powered head on or off. I found that the standard mode was fine for light vacuuming such as just picking up dropped sausage roll crumbs from the kids and on the vinyl flooring (with the brushbar off). The boost mode with the brushbar on, was best for everyday vacuuming of the carpets (you can clearly hear the difference in power between the different modes).
Vacuuming in stick mode is very easy. The vacuum is lightweight at 3.1kg, with most of the weight in the main unit (handle end). It is easily manoeuvrable, gets close to the edges and can be lowered enough to get under bits of furniture. The Blade 2 MAX is also equipped with a DustTracker on the powered head with LED lights that illuminate the space in front of it so that you can see any dirt on the carpet.
Due to the lightweight, in stick mode is also very easy to vacuum any spiderwebs from the ceilings or any dust from the tops of curtains.
I vacuumed all the carpets, ceilings and curtain tops in my home using the high-performance boost mode and even when the battery started to ebb there was no loss of suction.
Next was to try it in the handheld mode. To convert from stick to handheld mode you just press the button and release the reach wand and powered head. This again is easy to use, lightweight and using the variety of tools was great for the sofa and skirting boards.
Whilst it has a 45-minute runtime in the most basic mode, 20-25 minutes was much more realistic for switching between different power modes and options. This was enough to vacuum my home without exhausting the battery completely and needing a charge.
Emptying all the collected dirt is simple. Just push down on the button in the centre of the dirt bin, tilt and lift to remove the dirt bin and then open the lock on the base to empty the contents into the bin. Lock back in place and click the bin back into the main handle.
As with all vacuum cleaners there is some maintenance required to keep them in perfect working condition. The Blade 2 MAX is no exception, but it has been made as simple and quick as possible – you wouldn’t want to spend £200 on a new vacuum cleaner and not look after it.
The filter needs cleaning occasionally and this is found within the dirt bin. Just remove the dirt bin, push the opposite end from the emptying lid to gain access to the filter and then pull the filter out, run it under the tap and let dry for 24 hours before replacing.
If you have anyone in the house with long hair the brushbar will also need to have any trapped hair removed. Just use a coin to unlock the brushbar compartment, pull out the brushbar, cut along the hair in a straight line with scissors and pull out. Then insert the brush back in and lock with a coin. It takes a couple of minutes and ensures that the suction remains in tip-top working order.
I love the Vax Blade 2 MAX vacuum cleaner. It has a lot of power with no loss of suction and doesn’t run out before cleaning my home (2 bedrooms, lounge, large hallway and kitchen). The varying power options makes it very versatile in switching between different floor coverings (carpets, vinyl and rugs). Cleaning high up is effortless as the vacuum is so lightweight (all the weight is in the main unit which is held in your hand). Without a cord, it isn’t cumbersome to use and the need to be close to a plug socket is removed.
At £200, including a FREE toolkit, it isn’t the cheapest vacuum and is nowhere near the most expensive but is of very good quality and cleaning power. It does the job extremely well.
For more information or to buy, visit www.vax.co.uk.