Written on: 15/04/2011
Vax S5 Steam Cleaner.
This little machine is marvellous. It comes with loads of accessories to enable you to clean the smallest area up to carpets and upholstery. The instructions are fairly basic but easy to follow. Maybe a little more information could be included to explain things like how close you hold the nozzle to the object to be cleaned and how long you hold it there for and what results you might be able to achieve etc. Probably just for first time users of a steam machine! The machine carries all but the carpet cleaning head and extension tubes so it is all very handy and not heavy. It is also on wheels so easy to pull around and has a very long plug cable. Once filled up, using the included measuring jug and funnel, and switched on, it takes about 8 minutes to heat up. A green for go light comes on, you unlock the safety catch on the nozzle, squeeze the trigger and the steam comes out. Each accessory twists on and off so you can change them easily. There is a dial to vary the amount of steam but it usually lasts a good half hour. There is no water gauge on the machine but this has not been a problem. Once it stops steaming, the water is gone!
I have been trying to use all of the accessories in different areas of my home just to see what results I can achieve. I started on my hob and using the brushes and detail nozzle I was able to remove the grease which had built up around the rings. I believe with further applications I may be able to remove the really bad burnt marks which have been there forever! I also used the scraper tool on the glass on the inside of the door but went back to the brushes as they were more effective to remove the splashes of grease on there. I think the scraper is more for the grill/oven racks but have not tried it on that yet. I then tried the carpet cleaning tool which you attach to the extension tubes so you are standing upright, like using a hoover. I did find the extension tubes to be a little bendy as they are plastic, so don't push down too hard! I used it on a couple of small marks and they did fade a bit. Our carpet is fairly new so doesn't need much cleaning but I did notice that it was dry almost immediately after using the cleaner on it. The carpet cleaning head uses a cloth over it but you take this off for hard floors. I used it on laminate flooring and it is so quick to clean the floor. It is obviously wet afterwards just as it would be had you mopped it - but this is much less hard work! Moving on to the window head I tried it on the conservatory windows. They came up a dream! It was so easy to run the head down the windows - no cleaners, sprays, vinegar, newspaper etc! I just wiped them down after with some kitchen towel and they were smear free. Up in the bathroom I used the concentration nozzle around the taps. It blasted out some nasty limescale and then I just rinsed it away. Window head back on again to do the shower screen and again it came up well, clearing most of the water marks. Finally I used the grout brush and this was absolutely brilliant. It gets all the orangey limescale/shampoo/shower gel bits out so easily, just by brushing it past. Beware if you have painted tiles though as the steam is quite powerful! The steam cleaner also comes with cloths for upholstery which fit over the window cleaning head but this is the only thing I have not used.
Once finished with the machine you just turn it off and release the remaining steam from the trigger. Let it cool down and empty out any remaining water. I guess it would be nice to have some kind of cord storage but with so many accessories on board, there is really no room for them to fit one!
All in all it is a great little machine, which helps you do those horrid jobs like cleaning windows and makes light work of it.