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Tuesday, December 2. 2008
The other day, News Junkie linked (in jest) to the Dyson, a $400 upright vacuum cleaner. From the page:
Dyson Telescopic Reach™
The reason it costs so much is because it also acts as an animal pest control device, hence the name. Stick the long Telescopic Reach™ tube into a mouse hole and it'll snake along inside the wall, sucking up mice, rats, ticks, termites, and other assorted wall critters. The reviews say it works pretty well although you have to keep the canister emptied or the frantic clawing from the trapped mice tends to get on one's nerves.
If you'd like to buy a normal kickass vacuum cleaner (and not go around killing innocent wall mice in the process), this is the one:
But wait! What about those pesky cobwebs up in the corners of the ceiling?
The canister pops off the chassis and becomes a hand-held portable. Pretty slick, eh? How they did it is very clever. It's one of those things that as soon as you see it you think, "How come everybody doesn't do it this way?"
Mine's a few years old and they've updated the line. The new one looks like this. It appears to be identical except for color. If you shop around, search for "Bissell Lift-Off".
More pics & info on this clever appliance below the fold.
It has all the usual attachments, like a brush, scooper, extension tube and crevice tool. Along with the hose they all snap into the back of the unit.
And you know how the usual upright, even on its lowest setting, barely scrapes the carpet? When you lower this thing all the way down it almost rips up the fibers. And you know that spot in the middle that a normal upright misses, so you end up going over everything twice? This unit not only has an extra-wide head, but the brush is continuous all the way across so one sweep does it.
The unit also lays down completely flat for sweeping under beds, and the power cord has this nifty 'quick-release' thing where you can have it plugged in and going in about 10 seconds.
Here's how easy it is to empty:
Posted by Dr. Mercury in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 11:08 | Comments (16) | Trackbacks (0)
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My beef is about the bagless feature that seems to be the default on uprights. I have a Dirt Devil that does a fine job but has a filter shaped like a cylinder and it sits inside the dirt collector. When it is time to empty it I wind up taking the thing outside because it makes such a mess. Granted I have pet hair to clean up, but the old canister vac had a disposable bag that made emptying easy.
I know what ya mean. It was a lot less messy in the old days just tossing those paper bags away. While the chamber slips out of the Bissell easily enough, you've still got to dump it somewhere. You can do that part carefully enough, but it's the next time you throw something away that gets you. That's when you innocently toss something on the top of the debris and get a faceful of dust for your efforts.
FWIW, a big part of the drive away from bags is all the dust the old vacs spewed back into the room. The new vacs advertise the filtration system as a plus. The foam filter's easy enough to clean, just wash it out and let it dry.
I LIVE IN WEST MI., BISSELL IS KIND OF A DIRTY WORD HERE FOR ANYONE WHO HAS A MEMORY THAT LAST'S MORE THAN FOUR YEARS. BISSELL PACKED THEIR MANUFACTURING OFF TO MEXICO AND PUT HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE OUT OF WORK.
Well, this is the time of year that I find the wee furry critters like to relocate for the winter (typically into my attic). I find any number of various traps quite effective at keeping their indoor numbers reasonably under control. Pain in the arse to climb up there and place the traps but not much more a pain in the arse than running a frickin' vacuum cleaner. I loathe those things (and YES, as a modern, sensitive, metro male I do use them and irons and ironing boards and frickin' washing machines and all that other crap - it's enough to make a man wanna go all Jeremiah Johnson, lemme tellya).
Trap the critter, be sure its donefer, and toss it in the trash. Or, better yet, have a snort or two and leave it where the Better-Two-Thirds will find it unexpectedly.
Yes, as well as man's work bringing home the bacon, and still the best mom in the world (in the kid's eyes at least). Superwoman. Humble too.
Bagless vacuums save money. End of story.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyclonic_separation. This is why Dysons are worth the money. Also, if you are old you might not see the dust left by the crummier vac, but you will feel the animal hair that only the Dyson will get. Deprived men with no pets and short haired females can probably get by with Bissell.
With all due respect, my goldfish might take exception to your insinuation that all "pets" have fur. :)
Ah yes, the goldfish days! My house was cleaner then and they are soothing and beautiful. Unfortunately one child insisted they could not live without an African aquatic albino frog who lived in the tank castle, whence he would issue like a warlord, grab some hapless victim and eat them down to the skeleton. Soon the fish were all gone. Mr genocide lived on a few more months then died (fish food agreeing less well with him than live prey). We have stuck to mammals since. We call them one thing out in the street, but at home they are summononed by their real names "Here Sigmund....or get over here Active therapeutic agent".
Vacuums of obscene expense and the shaggy critters that make them necessary are considered mental health expenses in our den.
Actually, we are just cruel enough we might try that mouse trick for taking the fall haul away from feline. Would minimize scratches by deprived huntress.
They all have filters, and all the filters need to be cleaned or replaced regularly. Quoting one manufacturer:
"Washable HEPA filter - $39.99 - For optimum performance, change your filters every 6 months."
Were you really spending over $80/year on Vacuum-cleaner bags?
Honest cross my heart true story.
When living in LA I dated for a time, a stewardess who had a roommate and a large German Sheppard. They would go on their flights, mostly overnights and return. The one with the German Shep would police the apartment for droppings and finding one would cover it in corn flakes. After a day or so she would use her very expensive Hoover upright to vacuum up the residue-do. Well finally the poor ols machine ceased to function.
She packed it up and took it to a repair man who upon opening it was somewhat repulsed and refused to work on the machine. She just bout another one and continued her cornflakes a la doggy do routine.
I only dated the other stew a couple of time thinking anyone who would put up with that behavior wasn't worth the boffing I was getting.
I wouldn't suggest the Dyson or the Bisell for vacuuming up goldfish. That's a job for a shopvac.
I just figured out how you can make a million dollars. I was thinking that much of it depends on how long the goldfish has been dead, or, indeed, whether it's actually dead at all. Tired of constantly cleaning golfish poop out of your tank? A quick shopvac later and you have a beautiful terrarium.
Picturing vacuuming inside an aquarium, I started thinking about how scummy the water gets when you scrub down the sides. Ah-ha! What the aquatic pet world needs is a small water vacuum cleaner that you'd vacuum the sides with. It would take the scum and dump it into a bucket. The deluxe model would also have an inlet hose that you'd stick in a bucket of fresh water so the tank level stays the same.
A small factory in Singapore, a healthy advertising budget and you're on your way.
I also have this Bissell model, also a couple of years old. The only problem I have with it is that we have a "log" haired Black-Coat Retriever, and cream-coloured carpets!!
I have only repleaced the HEPA filter once, but the
filter shaped like a cylinder and it sits inside the dirt collector
MUST be cleaned after every use, or suction decreases dramatically!
I'm looking to replace my Dirt Devil and was dreaming of a Dyson. However wouldn't the Dyson do the same to carpet and kittens as it does to vermon? Think I'll lool over the Bissell.
The only thing the Bissell really has going for it is the dual-purpose role. Like millions of people, my parents had two vacuums, a Hoover and an Electrolux, cluttering up the laundry room floor their whole lives, just cuz you need both types. If you already have a cannister type, then go for one of the heavy-duty uprights. If you don't, and want to nail two birds with one stone, the Bissell's the way to go.
As I mentioned in the post, it doesn't have any kind of mega-suction, but the way the floor brush digs into the carpet may actually do more good than mere vacuum power.