Kirby Sentria Vacuum System

Kirby Sentria Vacuum System

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Good, Bad and Very Ugly...

Sep 11, 2007 (Updated Sep 17, 2007)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review
  • User Rating: Excellent

  • Ease of Use:
  • Durability:
  • Ease of Cleaning:
  • Style:

Pros:Powerfull, versitile, multi-function.

Cons:Heavy, high price.

The Bottom Line: Buy the thing as an investment item and have it put in a child's name to make the "life time" warrenty last. Be sure to USE it!


The Kirby does 90% of what they claim.

It comes with several useful attachments; Crack and crevice, T tool, Wall brush, duster brush, hard floor tool, and plumbers too/dog groomer. (I've yet to find a dog that will let the thing near them and I really doubt the plumber tools utility. The pressure the thing pushes isn't enough to blow up most balloons.) And the Zip Brush that they "throw in for FREE!" if you buy the Kirby "RIGHT NOW!"

The most useful attachment is the "surface" tool or "T" tool. The next most useful is the "Zip brush" that is used for the shampooing of furniture. The hose is 7 feet long with swivels at both ends. (I'd advise finding a non destructive oil/lube for the swivels as they tend to stick. {Linseed oil? Grape seed oil?})

The shampoo/suds-o-gun is fair to middling. You might have to make sure the straw in the liquid container is firmly in place and adjust the air flow untill it works right.

The cord is 32 feet long and tangles easily if you have it in handheld mode. It stores nicely on the handle in upright mode.

The bags and belts are expensive and are not covered under the rebuild warrenty; neither is the cord. The LED bulbs are not covered and are probably expensive also. The full rebuild coverage seems to be genuine but look out for hidden fees. They might charge a pick up fee.

The shampooer is interchangable with the power head and does a fair job as a light shampooer. It's mostly easy to use. I'm not sure about it's deep cleaning power as they push the "Dry Foam" system. I suppose if you get new carpet/get the old deep cleaned and use the whole system regularly, you never have to worry about deep cleaning.

The power head really does vibrate the floor all around it. It realy does pick up ALOT of dirt. And it does clean your matress.

I would like to see the powerhead used on a brand new mattress to see if the thing is just picking up left over foam dust. But, the dust mites they tell you about ARE real.

What may or may not be real is the Oprah connection. My manager told Jeannie that Oprah had a whole show on the kirby and gave one out to each of her audience members. I can only find how Oprah did a show on house cleaning and says you should vacuum your matress and pillows. The Kirby isn't mentioned that I can find.


I've just spent a week as a Kirby "Dealer".

I worked 15 hour plus days.

I answered an ad promissing $510 a week.

(Too good to be true, yes, so I went in with an open mind and an open eye. I really needed a job. The add said "Start Immediately".)

I went through the "training".

(The training is really just practicing the "demo". The real cult like behavior begins at the morning meetings. Each day starts with every one getting up and singing the Kirby anthem "I've got that Ol'fassion spirit deep in my heart! Up in my head! All over me!" then comes the cheer/chant. The most POSSITIVE! people huddle together and clap and yell "Money is a friend of mine! I can make it ANY TIME! If I double every day! I can make it really PAY!"

I kinda liked it 'cause I'm a nice possitive kinda

The Very, Very Ugly:

The "company" is staffed with hard charging agressive greedy liars.

Each branch is an independent distributor, so you're NOT dealing directly with Kirby.

The company is structured in a manner much like a pyramid sceme.

Each "employee" is ALSO an independent dealer directly beholden to the distributor.

You have to pay all of your own expences, taxes, health care, etc.

You have all of the costs of a small business with NONE of the rewards.

They tell all new "hires" that the job is simple and all you have to do is present 15 "shows" a week.

They tell you they have pre-qualified leads.

They lied.

They DO NOT tell you that what they call a pre-qualified lead is when you walk around knocking on doors and accosting folks in their homes.

They do not tell you that it is nearly impossible to do 15 shows a week.

You are VERY LUCKY if you can get into two houses a day.

They say the Kirby sells itself.

(It does...Sort of...)

They tell you to lie.

Read that again.

Yes they tell you to lie.

(I'm only paid $20 to do the show.

I only get a check mark by my name when one sales.

This is ONLY for the big contest.)

They tell you to scare the people.

(Not that the pic of the dust mite alone wouldn't do the job. Or the fact that the crap on the display pad will do the trick.)

They tell you to have the people put one of the "dirt pads" (test filters) over their faces when you do the matress test.

And put one over your face too.

(Mostly to keep them from seeing you smirk at them. One of the managers pointed out how he's glad for that otherwise the people would see him laughing at them.)

They tell you to scare the folks into washing their hands after they touch the pads.

(That stuff really IS in a well used matress so I always wash my hands any way.)

They tell you to scare folks with children.

They pulled an article out of "Pregnancy" magazine that had a pic of a Kirby on it.

(Jacksonville/Orenge Park, Florida branch.)

They told us to show people the article and tell them that the magazine says to use the Kirby for cleaning before the baby arrives and since the Kirby will save time, you'll have more time with you baby later.

No one I showed the article to even bothered to read it.

The article was a bout getting the husbands to share the house hold chores.

NO WHERE was Kirby mentioned.

Sales, they say, is a transfer of emotion.

It's more important to sell your self.

You ask questions and make your pitch.

All the questions are devised with neuro-lingistic programming in mind.

(Most of the answers to the questions are "yes" or are framed in a possitive way.


Did you know this conditon was in your home?

Can you see how well the Kirby works?

Do you want this dirt in your house or do you want the Kirby to take it out to the trash?

Your husband wouldn't mind spending just two dollars a day to help you clean the home, would he?

This gets the average person's mind into a "yes" mode.

Is this bad? Eh...not really...I think we could all use a little bit of perking up in a possitive's just that the kirby folks are using this to an evil end. They are manipulating folks just for profit.)

All the pitches are lies.

(I only need ONE more! To win the big contest and I get to go to the Jags games and have the big screen ask "Jane will you marry me!?" The boss already has it set up and she doesn't know! And ALL I need is JUST ONE MORE! I know you'll help me!

I almost had Jeannie in tears.

I fealt like a complete heel.

I AM a complete heel. I did this for a whole week even though by the second day I knew what was going on. I really could have used the money. I didn't make a second "possitive" sale so no money there. AND I didn't make 15 shows so no money there either. I did a 98 hour week, I did 8 hours on Sunday, and earned NOTHING. Man what an experience though.)

As for how it sells;

The "retail" Price I was told to try to sell it for was $1924.00

If it goes for that price, the distributor takes $1000.

(What his cut is I have no idea.)

The remaining $924 is split with the closer/manager.

(This is called a "possitive sale". They use this $462 ideal to show you what you'll make on a sell. But remember, they lie. They take pains to NOT tell you that it all depends on the credit worthiness of the client. They give you a peice of paper with some fees that they "have to" charge for less than sterling credit. This cuts into your share very quickly. It turns out that the only way to make money on a sell is if the sell is an "A" loan. AND if you can get the person to buy high.)

Back to the $1000.

Since it is a pyramid like sceme, the closer/manager I worked with had NO TROUBLE cutting the price to $1000.

This garnered the sale but made me NO money.

I have no idea what his cut of the $1000 was.

He told me that he made nothing from it either but it kept up the sales numbers.

(They get bonuses and prizes for high sales, so this MAY be true...but, remember, they lie.)

This review I've just wrote started by me reading the first review.

It stinks of marketing.

It sounds like a distributor.

They seem VERY ready to sell at half price.


So what is the ultimate review?

I've cleaned some really nasty-uhm, stuff out of many different people's houses.

The matress test alone has me wanting to sleep in a hammock for the rest of my life.

Is the Kirby worth it?

Yes, but only if you use it. Most people will fall back into their regular (not) cleaning habbits in a short while.

How to buy the Kirby at a good price:

They'll want to come into your home to do the show. This is so they can do all their tricks on you and try to "build value" so you'll be willing to buy high.

But let the dealer do the show any way, you'll want to know how to operate the thing any way. Have him or her (Wemen usually do better at sales) clean every thing you can. They will. They want the sell.

Since you're never sure who you'll get, you can try talking to the dealer. Tell him straight out that you know how this works and ask him not to do the whole scare tactic and lie show. If this works he might just give you the proper demo.

After the demo is over he'll put down what ever offer he was told to show. (Some might not have been shown the paper work yet though.) He'll ask you what's keeping you from buying right now. He'll call his closer and say:

"Hey, Steve! This is Mark! I'm here with Jeannie! She's the Nicest person I've met ALL day! I've pulled ONE HUNDRED PADS! I've done the Kirby Derby AND the salt test! The Kirby burried the dead dirt devil! She was really impressed by the Matress test! Now, Steve I've told her about our really big contest and how we'll take her old vacuum in trade! I've shown her the LOW! $1700 price and how if she puts down ONLY $100 now she can finance the rest for only $61.04. The only thing stopping her is she's concerned that it's not affordable! Is there any thing we can do for her Steve!?"

And he'll really have to say this in this way even if he skipped the dog an pony show for you. And, yes, All the names are the real one's. No protection for the guilty.

I did everything I was supposed to do and durring the closing, I used my "proposal" pitch one last time. All durring the demo I had stopped to catch my breath (I'm an excitable animated fellow...) and said "O.K., just let me practice!" And I'd get down on one knee, take her hand, look deeply into her eyes, and say: "Jane. Will you marry me?"

While we were closing, she was objecting. I slid the contest flyer over to her, she started to whine a bit. I got down on my knee. She said: "Ooooh! Don't do this to me! I'm going to cry!" I looked up Deep into her eyes and gently pouted.

Yes. The dealer will do anything to close a sell.

So My advice?

After he calls in his boss let him give you his offer. If you feal comfotable with the dealer and the price, then pay it.

If you want a really good deal, tell him to make his best cash offer. He'll say $1000 is the lowest he can go.

Tell him $400 and go from there.

(I have no idea how low they're allowed to go.)

At some point he'll say "Either the dirt goes and the Kirby stays, or the Kirby goes and the dirt stays."

If you decide not to buy or if he doesn't come down from $1000 he'll tell the dealer to pack up. He'll leave then.

Here's the important part. If the dealer doesn't pick up the dirt pads, or if he still did his dog and pony show, eh...let it go. Remember, they are liars.

(Their favorite saying about the custumers is: "Buyers are liars" and they really believe this.)

However, if he does pick them up, and didn't do the hard sell, slip him $20 bucks. That'll probobly be the only money he makes that day. Trust me he WILL work hard.

(And just as a favor to me, give the poor man a glass of water! Please!)

If you do get a good deal and you do buy it, while the closer is on the phone, invite the dealer into the kitchen for another glass of water and slip him $50 bucks. He worked hard on the show and will make no money if it sells for $1000 or less.

This is all just my personal experience and advice for dealing with the Kirby folks.

The machine is good and does a good job.

Hope folks will get a really good deal and have a good experience.

-Mark Davis

Jacksonville, Florida

Recommend this product? Yes

Amount Paid (US$): 1924.00

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