You won’t be short when it comes to choices in upright bagless vacuum cleaners with really powerful suction, and over the past week we’ve had the pleasure of spending some time with the Vax Air Lift Pet Max. If you’re looking for an alternative to Dyson, then this is certainly well worth your consideration, especially if you are a pet owner too!
There’s plenty to enjoy and we found this out over the course of our time getting hands-on, also a few drawbacks, but first let’s take a look at what you get inside the Vax Air Lift U84-AL-Pme box.
What’s Inside The Box – The photo above shows you exactly what you’ll see inside the box once open, also below you can see the components unpacked.
During our unboxing, we found a fur n fluff tool, a 3 in 1 tool, turbo tool, and of course the main Vax upright vacuum. The tools make it clear right away, this vacuum is ideal for those with pets.
Powerful Tools – You can see a close up photo of the included tools below. Each, designed totally different for various cleaning tasks at home and of course with pets in-mind too!
Pet Owners Rejoice – In terms of houses with pets, you will be able to remove pet hair from surfaces above the floor and embedded dirt much easier than many other vacuums. We found the Vax Air Lift Pet Max a breeze with cleaning what a Yorkshire Terrier left on sofas, stairs, and even his pet bed thanks to the TurboTool that attaches to the hose.
The combination of fast rotating brushes and powerful suction made removing fur and pet hair much easier. While we didn’t try this, it’s worth noting this tool is ideal for cars too, if you take your pets out in the car. The additional Fur and Fluff tool aids in making the Vax Air Lift U84-AL-Pme a complete cleaning solution for those with pets.
Extra Thought Taken With Packaging – Vax has made sure the Air Lift Pet Max is packaged well and this includes stopping certain parts from moving around. You can see this in the photos above and below, such as the piece of card that stops the vacuum from swivelling during transit after purchase, one of the features to making vacuuming easier.
This seems like such a simple thing to include within our review, but so many times in the past we’ve reviewed products that are packaged poorly and can get damaged during delivery.
Excellent Portability – You won’t be short on power with this Vax Air upright and enjoy the lift-out cylinder that helps you reach areas other vacuums might not reach. We used the portable lift-out cylinder easily with many above the floor surfaces around the home and on the stairs, which is aided by an extra long power cable that’s completely self contained within this portable unit. This feature is also very useful for cleaning the insides of a car, as you don’t need to take the full machine and can instead enjoy using a lightweight carry cylinder.
You can see how easy unclipping the portable lift-out cylinder is within the photos above and below. It takes seconds to lift out and then carry on cleaning with less weight.
The steerable technology found on this Vax vacuum will let you navigate the many obstacles found in homes with kids or pets, also around furniture with ease, and to clean under certain furniture like modern sofas with a full recliner function.
Topping off the feature list is AAAA performance ratings for emissions, carpet pick-up, hardfloor pick-up, and energy use. This is great to know, especially when you see how much power the Pet Max U84-AL-Pme has thanks to its multi-cyclonic technology that had no loss of suction during our tests.
Many homes have hardwood flooring / laminate downstairs and carpet upstairs, or in certain areas, and this means vacuum cleaners today need to be good at both floor types. The Pet Max U84-AL-Pme excelled in this area and can be adjusted to either floor type pretty easy, as seen within the photo below. You just slide to the correct floor type.
We’ve used plenty of Dyson’s over the years and they’ve become known for performance, although not every shopper wants a Dyson, in fact some people do all they can to avoid them. This Vax really is a real alternative to Dyson and shines when it comes to ease of use, performance, and the lift out portable unit is a truly innovative feature that will be a no brainer for many, especially if they have pets too.
The Vax price also beats Dyson in terms of features and price point, so if you’re looking for an alternative then seriously consider this option.
After using the Vax Air Lift Steerable for some time, the lighter design is welcomed when compared to the weight of some traditional vacuums we’ve used in the past. If you have a big home to clean, then you will really benefit from the compact design and lighter weight. Another feature we noticed was the soft touch materials and shape of the handle, again designed with comfort in mind during prolonged use.
The power cord is very long and we fully utilised this during our review, which allowed us to reach well into other rooms and cleaning a vast amount of space before changing power sockets. The power cord obviously caused no problems on stairs and the hose is pretty long, but this isn’t always enough in many homes and a big complaint is vacuuming all the stairs, which was easily possible thanks to the portable lift-out cylinder.
You won’t need to worry about stresses on your hand/wrist when using the Vax Steerable cleaner, as a traditional floor cleaner. This is thanks to the unit being easy to manoeuvre and the handle tilting in whatever direction you choose, which is one of the main design points.
When cleaning floors, you might want to disconnect the hose and then attach cleaning tools. We removed the handle, aka cleaning wand, and attached it to the hose and other tools also, which allowed us to reach areas like underneath deep furniture and ceiling corners.
If you find the need for more tools/accessories, then these are available for this Vax and can be found on popular websites like Amazon.
The design of this Vax makes it much easier to access places where you may need to clear a blockage, we’ve all had them, and also when needing to clean filters. You can see how easy it’s to clean the cylinder filters in the photos below.
While the features of this vacuum give you much more than some Dyson models at the same price point, it’s still not an inexpensive vacuum at the time of publication. This price is understood when seeing the build quality and great design first hand, or by seeing how Vax stand by their up to 6 year machine guarantee.
Pros – Really long power cable, amazing suction, very good at getting pet hair off hard floors/carpet, useful attachments, buttons placed well and handle comfortable over long use. MOST IMPORTANT is the detachable cylinder, it’s hard to detail just how useful this is in real world tests for both stairs and car.
Cons – the cable won’t retract on a button (needs winding up), and the main machine is heavy to lift (not sure why you need to though thanks to the lift out function).