The Vax H85-GA-B10 Gator Cordless handheld vacuum cleaner is a stylish model that’s designed for simplicity. It comes with a 10.8V battery, run-time of 15 minutes and an easy-to-empty design.
Like the recently reviewed, Black+Decker, the H85-GA-B10 is a low-priced handheld vacuum. For this reason, you wouldn’t expect it to compete with £200 models in terms of suction power and accessories. But how does it perform on everyday tasks? And are there better options out there in this price range? Let’s find out.
Overview of Vax H85-GA-B10 Gator Features
- Cordless handheld vacuum cleaner that’s designed for lightweight, easy cleaning.
- Includes Gator “mouth” technology so it’s easy to empty the container without getting your hands dirty.
- The 10.8V battery provides reasonable power for a budget handheld model.
- The battery can last up to 15 minutes on a single charge.
- A crevice tool is built into the Vax H85-GA-B10 Gator for vacuuming those tricky areas.
- Useful as a car vacuum.
- The vacuum comes with a 2 year guarantee from Vax when bought in the UK.
In-Depth Look at the Vax H85-GA-B10 Gator
The Vax H85-GA-B10 Gator cordless handheld vacuum cleaner is certainly an attractive model, and it’s available for a very low price. Price isn’t everything though – so let’s take a closer look at some of the features.
Appearance and Design
As we mentioned, the Vax H85-GA-B10 Gator is an attractive handheld vacuum that doesn’t look like a budget model. It has a modern, sleek appearance with an orange and white colour scheme.
Aside from its appearance, the Vax H85-GA-B10 Gator is lightweight for quick cleaning sessions. It also has a built-in crevice tool, which is perfect for getting into the cracks of sofas or other areas that are hard to reach with a regular vacuum.
Unlike many handheld vacuums, the “Gator Mouth” technology makes it simple to empty the dust container, without accidentally pouring dust and dirt all over your hands. This is a very welcome feature!
Budget handheld vacuums are only meant to be used for short cleaning sessions. It’s still important to buy a model with long enough run-time for your needs though – especially as recharging can take multiple hours.
The H85-GA-B10 has a battery life of up to 15 minutes between charges. This is relatively long for a budget model, and should be enough for most tasks. It also compares favourably with other models in the same price range, such as the Black+Decker Wet and Dry Dustbuster 4.8V which has a run-time of just 8 minutes.
A downside is the vacuum takes a long time to charge. Vax estimates that a full charge takes around 12 hours, so there’s no chance of a quick top-up if it runs out during a cleaning session.
One thing to keep in mind is that a charging base isn’t included with the Vax H85-GA-B10. Instead, it is charged through a standard cable. This isn’t a major problem unless you want to mount the charging platform to a wall.
The 10.8V battery provides more power than other handheld vacuums in this price range. Even so, the H85-GA-B10 isn’t one of the most powerful on the market. It’s great for cleaning up small spills, but whether it provides enough suction power depends on your requirements.
If, for example, you have a pet that sheds lots of hair, then the H85-GA-B10 probably doesn’t have the power to deal with this efficiently. In this case, we recommend looking for a more powerful model (possibly an 18V handheld vacuum – you can read all our handheld reviews here). But for small dry spills, cleaning up mud from the carpet and vacuuming stairs, it’s more than capable.
Ease of Use
The Vax H85-GA-B10 Gator handheld vacuum excels when it comes to usability. Reviewers mention that they haven’t needed to use the manual, as it is intuitive and doesn’t have complicated features. Here are some of the reasons why the H85-GA-B10 is a highly usable vacuum:
- Lightweight design (the H85-GA-B10 only weighs 1.2kg) so you won’t get tired when using it for its full 15 minute run-time.
- It’s easy to empty – just open the container and pour the dust into the bin.
- Cordless model which makes cleaning cars and stairs much easier (if you’re looking for a larger cordless, take a look at our list of our best cordless vacuum cleaners)
- A relatively long lead is provided for recharging.
- The filter is washable which saves money on replacements.
- The 0.3 litre capacity might sound small, and it is, but there are smaller handhelds on the market.
The Vax H85-GA-B10 Gator handheld vacuum cleaner has an RRP of £50, which we think is verging on the expensive side for a vacuum with its features and power.
The good news is that many retailers sell the H85-GA-B10 for considerably less than this – sometimes as much as 50% off. When you get into the £20-30 price range, we think it provides excellent value for money. It’s also a good starter handheld vacuum if you only need it for simple, everyday tasks.
- When dirt is sucked into the H85-GA-B10, it is moved to the top of the dust container before being dropped (similar to cylinder vacuums). This might not sound like an interesting feature, but ensures that the dust doesn’t drop out the container when in use.
- No accessories are included with the vacuum, because the crevice tool is built-in to the design (which means a dusting brush isn’t included).
- The Vax H85-GA-B10 comes with a two year guarantee from the manufacturer for buyers in the UK.
Vax H85-GA-B10 Gator Reviews
The Vax H85-GA-B10 Gator has received largely positive reviews from buyers, and has a high average rating on shopping sites at the time of writing. Here are a selection of positive comments from reviewers:
- A buyer writes that the H85-GA-B10 is great if you’re looking for an entry-level handheld. He likes that the run-time is 15 minutes, and finds this ample time to clean his car. He also adds that it’s easy to use and empty, although he admits it probably struggles with per hair.
- A reviewer writes that the vacuum is ideal for quick jobs in the home. He also uses it in his van to clean up dog hair, and finds that it does an adequate job.
- Another thinks the vacuum is ideal for small jobs, especially picking up dropped food from carpets and tables. She adds that the H85-GA-B10 provides great value for money.
- A buyer writes that it’s a useful model to have as a backup to your primary vacuum. He mentions that it’s a lightweight model that’s great for picking up dropped baby food after their child’s dinner time.
And some negative comments:
- Several reviewers mention they would prefer if the H85-GA-B10 came with a charging plate.
- A reviewer notes that the first charge is 24 hours, which seems a long time for a 15 minute run-time.
- The relatively low suction power is an issue for some reviewers. As we often say with handheld vacuums, however, this is usually due to unrealistic expectations rather than a failure in the vacuum’s design.
The Vax H85-GA-B10 Gator cordless handheld vacuum cleaner is our favourite budget model in this category so far. It’s not the most powerful vacuum, nor does it come with lots of advanced features or accessories. Despite this, it’s a simple, lightweight model that’s great for cleaning up dirt spills, the interior of your car or other small household jobs. And, considering the low price, you can’t really go wrong with this vacuum. To view the price, click here.