Thank God for the Internet..

And product reviews. Seriously, how did people used to do buy anything before product reviews? Word of mouth?

electrolux from costcoA little background…

We need a vacuum.  The tiny cheapo one I got from walmart for my 13’x16′ NYC apartment 5 years ago is just not going to cut it (yes, I said 13′ x 16′!!).  Among other things, it perpetually emits a wet dog smell – not exactly the desired effect  when “cleaning”. I’m not kidding, we need to “Oust” after vacuuming!

So I just took a gander over to to see what was available. I know I want a canister and not an upright, so when I saw the Electrolux Oxygen Ultra Canister Vacuum I thought it might be the ticket.

Its got a washable HEPA filter, tons of attachments and Electrolux is supposedly a good name. But as an extra cautionary step, I headed over to to read the user reviews for it.

And wow, its a good thing I did!

Overall, it got just 2 out of 5 stars, and that’s with a total of 26 reviews so its obviously not just one isolated bad review here or there.  But most persuasive was the very first review I read that truly demonstrates the passionate hatred that this vacuum seems to engender amongst its owners:

 Listen, maybe because I am a man, and in our society men have been stereotyped as helpless boobs who couldn’t make a bowl of cereal without the help of a wife/mom/fairy godmother, I should be not the person to review this product. But since my wife likes this vacuum, and because as such I cannot smash into a million pieces with a fungo bat, I have to write this review to get even with the Electrolux Oxygen Ultra, an object that is now my sworn enemy, from now until the end of eternity.

I hate this vacuum. Every moment I use it is a chance to ruminate on how much I hate it. Seriously. I vacuum around the house saying to myself, “I hate this vacuum. You know what? This is a really terrible vacuum. I don’t think I like this vacuum. Oh wait, did I just suck up the dog?”

Phew! I definitely dodged a bullet there. So I guess this is going to take a little more research than I had originally thought (doesn’t it always?)  In the meantime, do any of you have a vacuum that you like and would recommend?  I should mention that we don’t really have carpets, so a good hardwood floor attachment is necessary and suction powerful enough to suck up our dog is not desirable :)

21 Responses to “Thank God for the Internet..”

  1. That review is hysterical!!

    Sorry, I can’t help you with the vacuum as we have a Dirt Devil upright. Maybe a Roomba? :)

  2. I’m happy with my new S 251 Miele Plus, and it got good reviews (part of the reason I purchased it.) The only complaints I have are:

    1) I would get a model with the “inside” electric cord for the power rug attachment. The outside cord causes the hose to not always swivel properly. Minor annoyance.
    2) Furniture and crevice tool attachments are on board. The brush attachment is provided, but does not ride on the vacuum. Personally, I use the brush the most, so this is a bit of an inconvenience.

    BTW…I read somewhere that the brand name “Electrolux” that is out there now is NOT the same Electrolux that your Mom has. (My mom has two!) I don’t remember where I read that, but check it out… (In case you were going towards Electrolux because of the name and reputation.) Good luck and happy sucking!

  3. P.S. My vacuum gets stinky too. (I DO however have a dog, and sometimes he IS wet.) I feed the vacuum a couple mothballs when it get like that. Granted, mothballs aren’t a very sexy scent, but it beats the stinky smell!

  4. I love my Dyson. I hug it when no one is looking.

    I’m kidding about hugging it. Just to clarify…

  5. Ok seriously. I you can NOT go wrong with a Dyson. I believe they even have canister ones now. I know that they are expensive but OMG they will change how you feel about vacuuming. Seriously, my husband now ENJOYS doing it. It’s like a thrill (and totally disgusting) to see how much STUFF we can get to fill the container. LOL The first time we brought it home we had just (like a day before) vacuumed with another vac right before it died the day before. So….we get the Dyson home and are SURE that there is no way it will pick up that much stuff. WRONG. This thing just has..well…for lack of better words…SUCTION. It finds stuff to suck up that you had no clue was there.

    Oh and the only major compliant that I could ever find from people about Dysons was that they don’t have a front headlight like some other vacuums do. *laugh* We have overhead lights in the house so I wasn’t so worried. :)

  6. I actually have the electrolux vacuum (the harmony which is the step down from the oxygen-it doesn’t have the fancy powered carpet attachment). I like my vacuum which I picked because it does hard wood well, I just have some area rugs which i use the air propelled carpet attachment for. It has powerful suction, but that is adjustable so if you are vacuuming near a rug or the dog you can lower the suction if desired. I like that it has bags and I don’t have to empty a dusty dirty cannister – the bag even has a cardboard “lid” which you close after removing from the vacuum.

    regarding some of the complaints – I have found generic and electrolux bags for it at the Home Depot, I’ve had mine two years with nothing breaking, and I chose it for the canister benefits-it seems most americans are used to and prefer uprights.

    I don’t know, maybe there were some bad models, maybe the oxygen has a design flaw. In the future I might look into getting the dyson canister but I like my quiet and lighweight harmony for now.

  7. Ok, I’ll have to look into a Dyson!
    (LOL at hugging it :)

    Kelly & Jean do you have the upright models?

    Kelly, I would love for vacuuming to become fun – i could definitely use the motivation!!!

  8. I use a Miele vacuum… it was a gift, so I can’t really remember the exact type, but it does say ‘naturelle’ on it, is yellow and is a canister vacuum. We don’t vacuum a lot, since we live in a place that requires more broom work, but this thing is light weight and does its job. When I worked in retail the company swore by this company, so we were fairly pleased to have gotten one as a gift.

    Good luck!

  9. Yeah, I have the yellow one. I bought it refurbished on for $249.

    In other news…

  10. We had a Dyson at the Kinko’s I used to work at and I hated it. Didn’t work like I thought it would.

    My mom Oreck is the best I used, so light and powerful. Yeah it needs bags, but it’s worth it.

    And me, I love my Roomba! It makes me smile every time it’s on. It does a great job picking up all the cat hair and crap on my hardwood floors. I’m actually amazed how well it works. And it’s so damn cute!

  11. LOL. Yes, thank God for the Internet. I can’t say I love mine either, so I’ll be reading the comments of others t see what the wisdom of the crowds recommends.

    And no, wet do is not a desirable smell. Awful, in fact.

  12. My mother has this vacuum called a Rainbow that she paid $1,000 to a door-to-door salesman for when I was about 10. She swears she will use this vacuum until it dies and unfortunately it hasn’t yet. The stupid thing’s attachments fall off while you are trying to work, it is heavy, you have to fill the tank with water and then dispose of the disgusting dirt filled water when you are finished. So I feel this man’s pain when he has to use a vacuum that he hates until it dies. It sucks!
    Luckily I grew up and moved out so I don’t have to use hers anymore. I don’t know what to suggest to this gentleman however.

  13. Consumer Reports gave the Eureka The Boss Smart Vac Upright Model 4870 as a Best Buy! It has on board attachments, and it automatically adjusts for bare floor. It has a cover that automatically covers the roller beater brush to prevent damage to floors. I LOVE IT. I bought one for my main level, and upper level. I told my mom about it and she bought one too and loves it. But, be careful, the suction is powerful and it will suck in the dog if not careful LOL. I bought both of mine at Costco and my mom purchased hers at Walmart. Good Luck picking a vacuum. . . it’s a very personal thing.

  14. I do love my Miele canister vac that is about ten years old (maybe more?) now. I bought it after my two previous vacuums broke within a year, and when I had a cat. I think it has three filters—at least one hepa—total. It does use bags, but the little flap keeps everything tidy when you change them. I’ve taken my vacuum in a few times for maintenance, that costs about $40, but otherwise it works beautifully. My only complaint is related to pushing a canister vac around—I find it a lot more challenging than pushing an upright, so if I ever had to replace it I might consider the upright Dyson. Good luck choosing! Oh, and never use your house vacuum to pick up construction dust (like drywall dust) it will kill it—use a shop vac for that stuff! :)

  15. We have the upright “animal” Dyson. What we found between the uprights with Dyson is that the different models aren’t so different in function, they just come with different attachments. However, I like the purple better than the yellow. *laugh* What is your reasoning for wanting the canister over and upright? Just trying to know what you are looking for. :)

  16. We bought a Samsung ‘Quiet Storm’ based on a friend’s recommendation. We’ve had it for 5 years and we love it. It’s on the far right here:
    And that is a MUCH cheaper price than we paid.

  17. I have a Dyson animal as well and LOVE IT! Its really rocked my world in the vacuuming department.

  18. Wow, you guys are the best.. so many great vacuum leads to go on now!!! Thank you!

    Iloveupstate i LOVE that table!! Unfortunately, I have no room left in the house :(

  19. I just love reading your blog and what you have done with the house so far. I wanted to let you know that I have linked you on my blog. Hope you don’t mind.

  20. Your blog is pretty nifty- I’m an interior design student and your way more …put together ?!?! than i am..hahaha.. great job! Anywho.. if your looking for a vacuum cleaner and you don’t mind putting a bit down.. go for the Dyson.. Its amazing…i have a big dog..and a year later its still amazes me on how much dirt it ‘captures’? Its a BEAUTIFUL sight…haha.. You seam a bit like me..i searched forever to get the perfect one.. and now i’m in love with it!!

  21. […] of you may remember this post in October when I solicited your advice for a good vacuum cleaner. Like most things related to cleaning in my life (and making decisions) I procrastinated for quite […]

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