I feed my Shark Macaroni and Cheese!
Written: Feb 16, 2005 (Updated Feb 16, 2005)
a Very Helpful Review
by the Epinions community
I wish that I could say that this is the best product and everyone should run out and purchase one and cleaning will be without effort. Unfortunately, this is another product that is a great idea, definitely fun, but like everything else, has its limits. It is important to distinguish that this is a sweeper not a vacuum. The sweeper can be used on the carpet but that is an added feature more than anything.
I was lucky to receive this as a gift from my parents. This is really a luxury item for me; I probably would never have spent the money on a sweeper when a broom does the job. My mom thought that this would be nice because it would pick up large crumbs and moist items like my kids leave behind and it has certainly come in handy for that.
Assembly is very simple; you just insert the poles and place the handle on top then let it charge for 20 hours. The instructions strongly recommend a full 20 hours of charging before the first use.
The box says As Seen on TV but I have never seen the sweeper before. I wish that I had seen the demonstration so I would know what to expect from the product. I read the instructions carefully before beginning so that I would have an idea of the uses, what situations to avoid, and what to expect from the battery.
There were common warnings that most appliances have such as indoor use only, and keep away from liquids. The instructions did advise that the battery could leak which is something to keep in mind if you store it on carpet. The shark is not designed to pick up string, fabric, frayed carpet, or liquids.
The sweeper runs on a Ni-Cd battery pack. The battery pack XB617U is the only battery that you can put in it which must be purchased from the manufacturer. When the battery is charged, the light on the unit will be solid green. It will change to solid red when 70% of the battery life is used, and flashing red when it needs to be charged. When charging from a dead battery, it must charge or at least one hour before it will turn on. The battery does not have a memory so can be put back on the charger after each use if you desire. The instructions recommend letting the battery completely drain and then fully recharge once a month to ensure a long battery life.
I complained about the battery a lot when I first got the sweeper. The sweeper needed to be recharged each day which seemed excessive to me. I finally ended up keeping it on the charger on a regular basis. The stronger the charge is, the better the performance of the sweeper. The battery also stays stronger longer if it is not used on carpet.
I have been using the sweeper 4 times a daily for three months and the battery is strong. A concern I have is the manufacturer estimates the life of the battery to be 6 months to a year based on using the product only 4 times a week. Im afraid this gadget is going to be very short lived!
Another reason that I complain about the battery is because the main selling feature of this item is that it is cordless however the sweeper is always on the cord when not in use which is over 90 percent of the time.
I have had difficulty finding a place to store this because we dont have outlets in closets. Where ever are you suppose to plug this in and leave it and it not look ugly? Lets also not forget that the directions indicate that the battery could leak which would probably be in the location that you store it.
Having a cordless sweeper is very nice. I can go anywhere with this sweeper that I normally would a broom. I dont think that I would want to fuss with plugging in a cord to do something as small as a bathroom. Cordless also makes cleaning quick and handy. When we are done with supper I grab the Shark because it only takes a second to clean up the crumbs. It also does a better job than a vacuum sometimes for jobs like picking up a broken cracker on the carpet.
This is very simple to use. Simply push it forward like you would a vacuum. The sweeper cleans in the forward motion so pulling it back is not required. The hand piece swivels very well so you do not have to go in straight lines. If you are sweeping under a table the handle is instrumental at going around the legs without effort. The cleaning path is 13 inches. The roller on the bottom is similar to a vacuums roller. It also has a little spinning brush like a buffer on each of the sides.
One of the benefits of the shark is that it can pick up an assortment of items. It can pick up moist items such as macaroni, hard items such as candy, and very small things such as dust and hair. The only thing that is difficult to pick up is perfectly flat things such as a piece of a wrapper or a piece of paper. If the item is too big it just does not go into the sweeper. A piece of dog food is the largest item that it has eaten, and it struggled a little on that. If you were to get something like a sock the sweeper would automatically shut down and the sock can be easily removed. You would want to avoid hard things like screws which could damage the plastic.
The items that are picked up are deposited in the dust pan located in the front. It is small so will need to be dumped frequently. To empty, you just slide the container out and dump it into a trash can. There is a little clear window that allows you to see how much is in the pan. I make a habit of emptying it on a regular basis because the sweeper performs better when it is empty. The sweeper is so light that you do not have to bend over. I typically pick the sweeper up, pull the cartridge out, dump, and reinsert in just a matter of seconds.
I usually take a minute to clean off the roller at that time. Hair gets tightly wrapped around the roller. A better time to clean it would probably be when the battery is dead to avoid risk of injury.
Since this is a sweeper, its main task is to sweep on smooth floors such as tile, vinyl, or wood flooring. It can be used on the carpet but is designed more for picking up crumbs on carpet, not for every day use or thoroughly cleaning the carpet. I believe the appliance will last a lot longer if it not used on carpet as much.
The sweeper has three speeds. The lowest speed is for flat surfaces; the slower speed is better at picking things up. The second speed is for carpet. You can definitely hear the sweeper labor more when on the carpet. The third speed is called Turbo and is full power. I usually run it on Turbo which does a better job cleaning for my jobs but does use more battery life. The sweeper does make some noise when it is running, but it's not nearly as loud as a vacuum. I use the sweeper when people are sleeping and it does not wake them.
The sweeper is designed to get under furniture and against walls. I find that it does not necessarily do a good job at getting under furniture. It does get along walls nicely as long as you can put it directly against it.
I use the sweeper a lot, however I always use a broom before I mop. I have found that the sweeper misses too many things in corners and crevasses that need to be removed before mopping. This sweeper does not come with attachments of any kind.
Since this gadget is so fun and easy to use you may be able to get your kids to help out with the sweeping if they are old enough.
I usually use the sweeper for my son's room because there are always pieces that are left out that go up in the sweeper. You can retrieve the battle ship marker immediately out of the tray without digging. I would not attempt to get a tiny piece out of a vacuum bag. Another reason I use the sweeper in his room is because I do not have to worry about the Shark being destroyed by Lego pieces.
I have found that this is also less stressful on your body. When using a broom you need to bend over to get the crumbs. With the Shark there is never a need to bend over. It is also very light and pushing it is much easier than a vacuum. The only problem that I have with that is I burn less calories cleaning the floor now
but theres still mopping.
I guess technically they have a warranty, but it's not much to brag about. There is a 1 year Limited Warranty on workmanship or defects under normal use which does not include any damage from shipping or wear or repair to non-durable parts such as dust cups, brushes, belts. You must have a receipt with the proof of purchase date on it (good luck finding that in a year) and pay to ship it to them and include $16.95 to ship it back.
Overall I think the sweeper is fun and handy. It is lightweight and can be used in any room regardless of what flooring you have. It is great at picking up things that normally are too big for a vacuum.
The drawbacks are pretty big ones. The product runs around $60-$80 which is pretty high especially if you dont have need to sweep often. The battery longevity is absolutely terrible. The constant need to have this plugged in makes for inconvenient storage.
I think this would be a great gadget if you have small messes to pick up on a regular basis or a lot of tile or wood floors. If you have a lot of sweeping to do, Shark might be the answer for you.
94 Main Mill Street, Door 16
Plattsburgh, NY 12901
Read all 10 Reviews
Write a Review
Amount Paid (US$): Gift