Would you define yourself as a houseproud domestic goddess or more of a slummy mummy ? I tend to flit between the two - I can often be found baking up a storm in the kitchen, but usually procrastinate when it comes to dealing with the dust bunnies lurking under the sofa and in the corners of the room ! I don't actually mind doing the vacuuming - it's one of the more gratifying household chores because it makes such a difference in a short amount of time - but what I hate is all the hassle of moving the bulky vacuum cleaner around, bouncing off the walls as I try to fit up the stairs and stopping midway as I have to swap sockets. All of the power points in our house seem to have been purposely situated so that you run out of cable before you get across the room/up the stairs/to the end of the hallway with the hoover. It's so frustrating and ends up wasting so much time and energy.
Hoover came to the rescue, sending through their Unplugged Cordless Rechargeable Vacuum Cleaner (Model No. UNP300RS) for us to try out. It's a very sleek, pretty design - which isn't the most important thing but does make you feel good about using it, which is always a good start ! I never usually believe that cordless vacuum cleaners will be as efficient or powerful as the ones plugged into the mains, but the Hoover Unplugged promises to outperform many corded vacuum cleaners on the market today, in terms of suction, power and manouverability.
I was worried about the Hoover Unplugged running out of juice before I'd finished the cleaning, but the 60 minutes of cleaning time (from a full battery charge) that it offers are actually more than sufficient (especially as I wasn't wasting time running from power point to power point or lumbering a heavy machine up and down stairs). The highly visible battery charge gauge allows you to keep an eye on things so you'll know well in advance when you need to put it back on to charge.
It is an absolute joy to use - it's so light (less than 4kg) that even the kids can run upstars with it to hoover their rooms and I don't have to worry about them needing to use the sockets, which always concerns me slightly. It has been designed with hard floors and carpet in mind, with a rotating brush bar that will separate the carpet fibres for a deeper clean when you switch over to carpet mode. It also has a Turbo Boost function when you need a little extra power. It managed to pick up dust bunnies, spilt glitter, dog hair and general dirt and grit with no problem at all. I thought that the small size would mean I'd be constantly stopping to empty it but it has a 1 litre capacity, which takes a while to fill. It's really quick and simple to empty too.
My absolute favourite thing aout it is the flat-to-floor function which means that you can get under the settee and even the beds without having to shift them or fight with the mattresses - bonus !
I discovered a great surprise when I investigated the packaging too - the Unplugged 30V comes with a separate, independently-powered stairs and upholstery tool that isn't in the box. You have to redeem it using the leaflet in the box or online. This extra hand-held unit is ideal for using on the stairs, down between the settee cushions or in the car and is a fabulous extra.
Hoover have put together this video to show off the talents of the Unplugged. I was dubious about a cordless vacuum cleaner being as efficient as a mains-powered one, but this model has made me think again. I initially saw it as a product that I would use from time to time in addition to a larger model, rather than a permanent replacement for a mains-powered machine, but it really is as efficient as its bigger and bulkier competitors.
star rating : 4.5/5
RRP : £249.99 (currently £179.99)
for more information : www.hoover.co.uk
Disclosure : I received the product in order to write an honest review. I was reimbursed for my time, but this did not affect my opinions in any way and I retained complete editorial control.