Saturday, 26 August 2017

Quality Built to Last with Vorwerk's Kobold VK200

Vorwerk Kobold VK200 Electric Brush ToolThere was a time when, if you bought something, such as a fridge, or a toaster, you would assume it would last for years. In my parent's day, no one expected to replace an electrical appliance. Perhaps perform a repair now and again, but you would anticipate having the same one until it got a bit battered and loved, then replacing it would be a major event. In today's 'consumable' society, everything seems to need replacing every few years and its driving me mad. In the last five years, I have been through three vacuum cleaners, the quality has been that bad. So, in this review I am investigating what you get for your money when you invest in the Kobold VK200, from Vorwerk. An appliance designed to last.

We were sent the Cleaning System to try out, all opinions are my own. 

The Kobold VK200 has something that I have found lacking in other vacuum cleaners in recent years. It has "build quality". As soon as you pick it up, it is obvious that it is made of sterner stuff. It's so sturdy, in fact, that you can stand on it, and it won't break, as shown by the handy demonstrator who came with it. When Vorwerk designed this machine, as with all their appliances, they considered what it needed to do first, before even thinking about the price, so it wasn't built with a budget in mind. It was designed and built to do its job as well as possible and contains a wealth of really clever ideas that make every aspect of that job easier. As you may have noticed, I am a bit of a bargain-hunter, and don't like wasting money, so for me to be completely in love with a product and not be talking about how cheap it is takes some doing. But, it's actually still a bargain. Here's why:

  • It's built to last. This machine could last in excess of 25 years. Consider how many vacuum cleaners you have bought in that time? If, like me, it's hard to remember how many, but at least five or six, at £150 to £200 each, suddenly the price doesn't seem so bad. 
  • It is highly unlikely to breakdown. Have you ever owned a vacuum cleaner that comes with a long guarantee, say five years, which sounds great in theory, until you find it's because it breaks down a lot? A free repair is worth nothing, if you have guests arriving and your carpet resembles the bottom of a hay barn! I'd take product reliability over free engineer visits any day. 
  • It increases the life of your carpets. Vorwerk are so experienced at what they do, that their vacuum cleaners take care of your carpets, increasing their life span by up to 50%, and with carpets being one of the most expensive purchases you will make for your home, this has got to be a money saver. 
  • It is rated Class A for maximum energy efficiency. This one is self-explanatory, less energy spent, more money saved every time you use it. Bargain. 
  • It saves a world of time. These days time is money, and the Kobold VK200 contains a number of features to make vacuuming a whole lot quicker. These include the Carpet to Floor Detection System (where it knows when you change from carpet to hard floor, and adjusts automatically, saving faffing time), and the fastest and simplest bag changing system you can imagine. 

There's a very good reason why the Kobold VK200 isn't bagless, by the way. Vorwerk don't believe that bagless technology is sufficiently advanced enough to perform adequately for their vacuums. One question they asked themselves was; 'how come there is so much dust left behind in the barrel, if the cyclone technology is meant to be so efficient?' 'And; 'Why does it need so many filters, if cyclone technology is so reliable?' So they binned it, in favour of vastly improving the bag system. It's no longer fiddly and messy, you just take the bag, neatly folded, open the flap and slide it in place. When you close the flap, it automatically unfolds, with no further effort required. The Kobold's technology is so superior, that even when its bag is 90% full it still performs better than a bagless vacuum cleaner. That's not the best bit, though, the bag contains a super-efficient HEPA filter, sucking up an impressive 99% of allergy inducing particles from the atmosphere. If you have asthma sufferers in your home, this is especially good news but, even if you don't, cleaner air is not to be sniffed at!  

Close up of the Kobold VK200 bag level indicator


The handy (gigantic!) bag level indicator is great, too, as it tells you how much room is left, rather than just when it's full. The position (right on the front of the machine), and size of it, does make you wonder why they are usually smaller and harder to find on other devices. It's one of those 'obvious, when you think about it' moments! Clearly, the most important aspect of a vacuum cleaner is its ability to clean well. No amount of clever tweaks and improvements can get away from that. Before the demonstrator from Vorwerk arrived, I obviously vacuumed, as you would. I imagined he would notice if I didn't, since it's his job, and I wanted to make a good impression. When he arrived, the first demonstration he did was to use a sheet to show how much more dirt the Kobold picks up. It wasn't pretty. He assured me it does the same in most households he visits, but I still couldn't help thinking it looked like I hadn't vacuumed for months! 

Sheet showing the extra dirt picked up by the VK200

The dirt collected from a small square of carpet I had already vacuumed!

As a back pain sufferer, I have really appreciated some of the other little design touches. There are many other attachments available for this model, which I will be covering in another post, but what I loved is that there is a button to change the attachment at the top, near the handle, so no grovelling on the floor for me, which is inspired and another 'obvious when you think about it' moment! The power switch is also located at the top of the machine, which, surprisingly, isn't always the case with vacuum cleaners. Additionally, the telescopic handle is fully adjustable, meaning I can find the least troublesome posture for my back, whilst still being able to make it short enough for L to use, which is vital for the fair distribution of labour and the resulting pocket money that it creates. The Kobold VK200 is also surprisingly light, considering how robust it is. It's not the lightest machine on the market at around 3kg, but it is very light, taking into account how strong and sturdy it is, and is also very easy to maneovre, thanks to a very efficient pivot joint. The edge to edge cleaning works exceptionally well, too, meaning I don't have to go behind it with an attachment, getting crumbs out of the corners, which saves time and my creaky joints. 

Demonstrating the Kobold VK200's telescopic handle


One last very important point I wanted to make was about the support that comes with this appliance. It comes with a five year guarantee, but you also get before-sales support too. When you are investing in something that you are going to be using for a long time, it's important that you make the right decision, based on your, and your household's, needs. This is why I can't recommend booking a demonstration enough. I am generally very anti-social and do most of my shopping online, but the demonstration offered for this product is not a sales pitch, it's a walk-through of everything the Kobold VK200 system can do. I am probably not the only person who has appliances in their home that they don't know all the functions of. My microwave is a mystery to me, beyond reheat and defrost, and even the laptop I'm typing this on still has functions I have no idea about after a year of owning it! 

The front of the Kobold VK200


The demonstrator will make sure that you know everything that the cleaning system does, and how to use it properly. This way, you get the most out of your investment, as well as making sure you only buy the attachments that you need. My demonstrator, Peter, was lovely, and clearly genuinely loved the product. He just wanted to tell me everything about it, and show me all it's most exciting features. It wasn't about sales, more education and information and I can't tell you how useful it was. I don't think I would ever have got to grips with everything it does without his input, and he can also talk to you about payment plans, or even working for the company, to earn your machine. Even if you are a little bit curious, I highly recommend booking a demonstration, it really is fascinating seeing all the different innovative design elements in action. I hope I've converted you to the joy of innovation and invention, but if you're wondering what else this system has to offer, pop back in a week or so, to find out about all the attachments, you'll be amazed! 

I was astounded to discover all the amazing innovations that make this vacuum stand out from the crowd. Read more in our review.

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24 comments

  1. What a fantastic review. We are in the market for a new vacuum so will have to check this one out!

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  2. That vacuum does look like it's been built too last! And you're so right, I noticed too that appliances don't seem to last as long as the old ones. I wonder why. At the moment our VAC is still alright, but once that packs up will look into this one :)

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  3. I love this brand we have a mini vac of there's which is fantastic and a must for cleaning I up after my messy son has eaten.

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  4. You are so right, everything breaks after a few years. I'm tired of it! A brand that lasts is worth the money.

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  5. Wow this looks like such a well deserved efficient vacuum cleaner I think I need one of these in my life!

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  6. My gadgets are definitely keeping secrets that only The Teenager can decipher, unfortunately I don't think a vacuum cleaner's ones would be quite as alluring so A Peter would be a welcome alternative!
    I've often wondered what is so special about The Bagless One but its secrets have yet to be disclosed to me even though I'm on my second (or is it third?) one.
    My current Bagless One is not as good as its predecessor even though it has A Ball, as far as I can work out, this means that it keeps falling over when I'm pulling it along and it won't stand back up when I try to make it (maybe what it means, is that it's Got Balls?)
    As I have pets (two dogs and two humans), much vacuuming is required in my house so a reliable, efficient, hard wearing, long lasting vacuum cleaner that actually does clean up to the edges sounds just the job when I'm in the market for my next one. Just got to start my spiel to my fella off with the money saving energy efficiency, built to last not breakdown and increasing the life of the carpets because whenever I start saying to him "I've been thinking" or "you know what we need?" he says "how much?"!

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  7. This sounds great! We have a dyson but it's really not very good!! I'm looking for a new one and this sounds fab!

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  8. I'm fed up of constantly having to replace appliances to and as you rightly said,in our parents days things were built to last. This vacuum looks like it's been made to last and I do love how you described the simplicity of it...and thankyou for showing us what was picked up just after youd hoovered yourself,I would love to see a small patch of mine,especially with the cat & dogs hair-my carer goes mad! I wonder if I'd be able to quickly hoover a room myself as you know how severe my back problems are...sounds fab

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  9. It is great that the product will last and that they improved the bag system to make it more efficient! x

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  10. This sounds so good! Love the fact it is designed to last for so long! Save lots of money in the long run :) X

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  11. What a great review. It sounds like such a high quality product. It's amazing how much dirt you hoovered up from a spot you'd already gone over before with your old hoover. This sounds like such a perfect hoover. x

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  12. Looks very nifty. Wish I could afford it!

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  13. Oooh I love reading a good vacuum cleaner review : ) This looks great!

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  14. It's nice to have a product that is built to last and not going to fall apart easily. Looks like it gets a great amount of dirt up too!

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  15. This looks fab! Sounds really good. Also a great review too.

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  16. It looks great! It's not so often that you get products to last these days! :)

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  17. This looks a brilliant product - I struggle with my vacuum cleaner so will definitely take a closer look at this. Kaz

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  18. OMG, this is a blast from the past. I had a Vorwerk years ago and it did last a very long time

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  19. This looks amazing! My vacuum cleaner is a top brand cordless but really has been a huge let down. As an asthma sufferer this one sounds fab! x

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  20. Ooh I've never heard of this but it looks good :)

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  21. Wow!!! That looks amazing!! Think I need one of these in my life :)

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  22. This is a fantastic review. I'm always trying (and failing) to find the perfect vacuum cleaner so I'll have to give this a try :)

    Louise x

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