Written by James Hall | 1 Comment | Last Updated: October 17, 2017
The Vax U84-Al-Pe Air Lift Steerable Pet vacuum is a stylish machine that combines the convenience of cylinder vacuums with the efficiency of an upright. It achieves this through a semi-detachable canister, which makes it easy to vacuum stairs and ceilings.
Other features include a HEPA filter, which prevents up to 99% of dirt and dust escaping, and a “steerable” design for extra manoeuvrability. It also comes with a TurboTool for cleaning pet hair on sofas and other above-floor regions.
Despite being a relatively new challenger to the upright throne, the U84-Al-Pe has received excellent reviews from buyers. And the feature set is certainly impressive. But is it worth the money? Is the semi-detachable canister really useful or just a gimmick? And are the advanced features a smokescreen for poor fundamental performance? Let’s find out.
Overview of Vax U84-Al-Pe Air Lift Pet Vacuum Features
- Semi-detachable lightweight canister that makes cleaning stairs and ceilings much more convenient than other upright vacuums.
- A HEPA filter to remove microscopic dust particles and allergens from the air.
- Bagless design
- An easy-to-steer design for easy manoeuvring around furniture and other objects.
- TurboTool for quickly cleaning pet hair and dirt from any surface above the floor. This tool has fast brushes to pick up more hair than a regular hose.
- Multi-cyclonic technology so that suction doesn’t decrease as the canister fills up.
In-Depth Look at the Vax U84-Al-Pe
On paper, the Vax U84-Al-Pe Air Lift vacuum is one of the most impressive uprights in its price range. It has all the features you’d want from a high-quality vacuum – HEPA filter, powerful suction, TurboTool – along with the highly convenient canister design. In this section, we’ll take a closer look at the U84-Al-Pe features to see whether it lives up to the hype.
Appearance and Design
The Vax U84-Al-Pe is a sleek and modern vacuum with an attractive blue/silver colour scheme. In terms of design, the obvious stand-out feature is the canister. We’ll be going into detail about this feature later in the review, but you can see some pictures of how this works below. The steerable design also makes cleaning less of a struggle.
Like most upright vacuum cleaners, the Vax U84-Al-Pe has a relatively small dust capacity of 1.5 litres. This isn’t so small that you’ll need to empty it multiple times during a cleaning session, but the canister is likely to fill up quickly. If this is an issue, you may want to consider cylinder vacuums, as these often have capacities of 4 litres and above.
The U84-Al-Peis is driven by an 800W motor, which isn’t as powerful as other upright vacuums. The U84-Al-Pe still packs a punch when it comes to suction though. In fact, Vax claims that the vacuum provides all the power of a regular Vax Air – but with the bonus of a detachable canister.
To check this, we looked through buyer reviews of the U84-Al-Pe. It seems most people are pleasantly surprised with the suction of the vacuum, with many praising its power in relation to other uprights. As you’d expect from a pet vacuum, reviewers also mention how dog or cat hair doesn’t stand a chance against the U84-Al-Pe.
In addition, the TurboTool is a great feature for getting rid of pet hair and dirt on furniture. This is an area where most upright vacuums struggle, but the U84-Al-Pe handles it with ease. It also comes with a slide setting for changing the height (and hence effective suction power) for various floor types.
Ease of Use
While the Vax can hold its own when it comes to dust capacity and suction power, it really shines when you look at usability features. Here’s an overview of just some of the ways the U84-Al-Pe makes your cleaning life easier:
- The semi-detachable canister is one of the best usability features we’ve seen on an upright vacuum cleaner. By detaching the lightweight canister, you can use the Vax for a variety of tasks, such as cleaning above-floor surfaces, sofas and cars.
- Additionally, the canister is perfect for cleaning stairs, as you don’t need to balance the vacuum on each step.
- The TurboTool is great for removing pet hair and dirt from sofas and other surfaces. Unlike a regular vacuum hose, the TurboTool maintains the power of the vacuum and adds additional rotating brushes.
- The body of the vacuum fully reclines for reaching under furniture.
- A steerable design means you can smoothly vacuum around any object.
It’s important to point out that you don’t have to detach the canister to use the hose or attachments. If you wish, you can use the hose like a regular upright. Reviewers mention that the canister is so lightweight and easy to detach that they nearly always make use of this feature though.
The only thing missing from the Vax, in our opinion, is an internal power cord that winds itself automatically. This is a very minor complaint though.
The Vax U84-Al-Pe Air Lift comes with a HEPA filter. HEPA filters are, along with S-Class, the most effective filters for removing allergens and preventing them being released via the exhaust air. So if you have a dust allergy or asthma, a vacuum such as the U84-Al-Pe could be an excellent option.
With an RRP of £250, the U84-Al-Pe isn’t a cheap vacuum. But considering all the advanced features, HEPA filter, semi-detachable canister and TurboTool, we think it’s worth the money – and more.
In addition, we’ve found that there are often Vax U84-Al-Pe deals available. These can push the price of the model as low as £150 – and for this price it’s almost a no-brainer.
We’ve already mentioned the TurboTool hose attachment, which is great for getting rid of pet hair and dirt. The vacuum also comes with a 3-in-1 tool for other cleaning jobs.
- The Vax U84-Al-Pe Air Lift Pet vacuum comes with a generous 6 year guarantee for extra peace of mind.
- It has an energy efficiency rating of A, which is great for the environment and your electricity bill.
- The cord is 10 metres long, so you can clean large areas of your home without having to change plug socket.
Vax U84-Al-Pe Air Lift Steerable Pet Vacuum Reviews
The Vax U84-Al-Pe Pet upright vacuum cleaner was released in August 2015, but has quickly received a number of positive reviews. Here are some examples of positive comments:
- A reviewer writes that the U84-Al-Pe is easy to put together and that the detachable canister is a great compromise between upright and cylinder vacuums when cleaning stairs.
- Another loves how versatile the U84-Al-Pe is, and praises the excellent suction power.
- A buyer also writes that the suction power is great. She loves how easy it is to steer and how effective the TurboBrush is at collecting dust and hair.
- Another reviewer writes that she has three dogs, yet since buying the U84-Al-Pe there are never any hairs on the floor.
And some negative comments:
- One reviewer writes that the two power buttons, one to turn on the machine and one to switch the brushes off, look almost identical. This can make turning on the vacuum a “lottery” until you remember the function of each button.
- Some reviewers found the vacuum to be quite heavy. This is surprising, as the 6kg weight is fairly standard for many uprights (although there are some lighter models around).
As you might have guessed from this review, we think the Vax U84-Al-Pe Air Lift Steerable Pet vacuum cleaner is an excellent machine. It’s not perfect, but the detachable canister is a highly useful feature if you have lots of stairs or cars to clean. Even without this feature, the combination of strong suction, TurboTool, HEPA filter and easy-to-steer design make the U84-Al-Pe an excellent choice. Click here for the vacuum’s price.