I like to keep a clean house, especially in the kitchen area, but when a small spill happens, such as a knocked over box of a well known breakfast cereal, leaving many crumbs and such all over the work top, I find getting out the vacuum cleaner a bit of a hassle.
So, when it comes to these small spills, I tend to find that getting out a smaller vac, or more commonly known as a hand held vacuum cleaner, as it saves time and effort, making the entire cleaning process a lot less hassle.
I have used a few hand held vacs over the years, some being bought so that they fit in with the style of the room that it is going to be housed in, usually the kitchen, but some of them I have bought due to the fact that they simply look the part.
It is one particular vac I have used that was bought for the latter; the looks; rather than the fact that it suited the style of my kitchen, and this you will understand when you I tell you that my kitchen is mainly black, with white goods and dashes of silver mixed in, yet this vac has a colour that simply doesn't fit into those colours, yet I still went and bought it.
The vac that is attached to my kitchen wall is in fact the Electrolux ZB 4106WD Rapido which is quite easily recognisable due to the rather fetching colour of the dust container.
Firstly, let's take a look at it...
It's a good size, being about 155mm wide by 450mm high and a mere 140mm deep.
It comes in two sections, sort of, with two cleaning nozzles, two filters, a charging cradle and a charger lead.
The first section, or the rear end where the motor is, this is where the power happens. On here you have the on/off button on the top with a little light behind it which lets you know when there is a charge going to the unit. In front of the on/off switch there is the dust container release button which, as the name suggests, releases the dust container so that it can be emptied.
On the sides of this rear unit there are several little holes which act as a vent for the motor so that it stays cool when it's working away.
The handle, or more the grip, is right at the back and is surrounded by a sturdy silver plastic casing, with a black outer casing which gives it more stability and style.
Then there's the front section, or the dust container, which is that rather nice shade of blue and has a mouth shaped hole at the far end which acts as the vacs suction area, dragging the dust and debris into the small container.
Inside the dust container you'll find the two filters, which you can actually see through the semi transparent blue plastic, these filters stop any of the dust/debris and even small amount of liquids from getting near the motor.
The entire unit weighs just over a kilo, which is light enough for most people, plus, to help in using this on certain surfaces, there is a tiny wheel on the front of this vac, just below the open mouth.
What about the power..?
The power comes from the rechargeable 7.5volt battery which, although may not be the most powerful of batteries, can handle most small spillages.
To charge the battery up you simply place the vac into the cradle, clipping it
A little light comes on to let you know that the vac is securely in the cradle and charging.
From a flat battery it does take at least 16 hours to fully charge, which sounds a long time but once fully charged it's then just a matter of keeping the vac on charge when you're not using it, which saves having to wait the 16 hours again.
How do you use it..?
To use this you simply take it out of the cradle which is a matter of lifting it out of the cradle with a little 'upwards' motion.
Then it's a matter of pressing the on/off button, which is comfortably positioned right where you thumb can easily reach.
You then aim the front 'suction area' at the spill and suck up the mess. The little wheel on the front helps you manoeuvre the vac around any type of surface, including cloth.
The suction area, which looks like a gaping mouth is at an angle, which should be placed downwards onto the area you want to clean so that the suction works correctly.
And emptying it..?
This is a matter of pressing the small button in the top of the unit, just in front of the on/off button, then gently pulling the front section away. You will then see the filters, those being the dust filter and the liquid collector, which you have to remove with a little twist and tug. You then empty the dust/debris into a bin and, if you want to, you can wash out the container in water, but make sure that it is dry before using it again.
Then it's a matter of cleaning the filter and the liquid collector, which can both be cleaned with water, and replacing them back into the end of the container and then slotting the whole thing back onto the rear motor section, ready for using once more.
Just remember, make sure that everything has dried properly before putting it all back together so that no damage occurs.
When I first looked at it, with it sat on what I now know is the cradle, I initially thought that this was one strange looking hand held vac with a rather large opening for sucking things up with. But, after closer inspection, I realised that the 'suction area' wasn't as big as I though and the entire vac didn't look that 'daft'.
It looks quite 'funky' with its blue transparent coloured front and holes in the back end making it look like the grills on a posh sports car that those over paid footballers drive into walls for fun.
It looks like the designers at Electrolux worked a little bit of overtime in coming up with this look, hoping that it would stand out above some other more bland hand held vac that offer the same power to suction ratio; trying to make people buy this for the looks alone... which to be honest was one of the reasons that I looked at it.
I like the fact that it can suck up small liquid spills without damaging the vac itself, usually the motor if it gets slightly moist, due to the special filer that sits in the end of the container. This is a bonus, especially at breakfast times in my house with the kids always seeming to be in a hurry to get out, except on school days?
It's not the most powerful of hand held vac so don't be disappointed when it doesn't suck up the clump of dog hair that has stuck itself to the carpet and has a really good grip on the pile. It is designed for small spills such as sugar, flakes, salt... etc, so basically small grainy type material usually spilt in the kitchen area.
The container may not hold that much 'mess' but as it is easy to empty and it is only really used for those small messes, this should be adequate.
The two nozzles that come with this unit; the crevice nozzle, for getting into tighter spaces, and a wet vacuuming nozzle for mopping up small liquid spills; are easy to connect and really do help get into places that the wide mouth can't get any where near.
As I said, the rechargeable battery offers 7.2volts of power which, although not something that could suck an apple through a hose pipe, it is ample enough to clear a few flakes of corn from the breakfast bar.
It doesn't require a bag so there's no extra cost once you've bought this vac.
I like the fact that under the charging cradle there is a handy little space where you can wrap away any excess cable so that there's no wire hanging about, making it look neater and a little safer. This cradle can be either sat on a table top or, if there's somewhere you want to permanently place it, it can be screwed to a wall using the screws provided.
What is the price of this miniature vac..?
This one sells for about the £40.00 region which, in the scale of hand held vacs, is not too bad indeed.
I have seen this on sale at an array of prices, some higher than £40.00, with some lower too, so do shop around to find the best deal before parting with your cash.
In all, if you're the type of person that makes small spills in the house then something like this will come in very handy indeed. But if you're small spills resemble something like Lake Windermere after three weeks of rain then you'd better look for something more powerful with a lot more room to hold the 'dust'.
Electrolux ZB4106WD Rapido Wet & Dry Handheld Vacuum Cleaner / This Electrolux ZB4106WD Rapido Wet & Dry Handheld Vacuum Cleaner is a perfect vacuum cleaner specially designed to make light work of little vacuuming tasks / It features 7.2 V of power along with wheels for easier handling.Type cleaners: handFiltration Type: Bagless Vacuuming: wet dry Filter Type: Washable permanent filter Vacuum cleaner accessories: crevice nozzlePower Source: CordlessPower vacuum (V): 7.26 Number of batteries: 6 Operating time (minutes): 11Wheels for easier handling 78dB Noise: 78 db Washable filter Charging indicator Start & Stop function Crevice tool brush Color: Turquoise / Short name: Electrolux ZB4106WD