vacuums

Eureka SuctionSeal AS1101A

Falls short on overall cleaning performance. Also, falls over a lot.

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Introduction

On paper, the Eureka SuctionSeal AS1101A is a great vacuum. It's only $135, has a ton of useful features, and does a great job getting dirt out of short pile carpet. But unless you're a janitor at Dunder Mifflin, you're not vacuuming on paper. In the real world, the SuctionSeal still does a great job getting dirt out of short pile carpet, but it's also totally ineffective on hardwood floors when used as directed. It's also about as easy to handle as a greased raccoon. In our tests, the top heavy Eureka took more pratfalls than Chevy Chase, stubbing toes and dropping attachments in the process. Unless you live on a single level that's covered in berber and devoid of furniture, we'd recommend you keep shopping. If you're still intrigued, just make sure to wear steel-toed boots.

Design & Usability

If you've ever tried to carry more than one cat up a flight of stairs, you know what it's like to use this vacuum.

The Eureka SuctionSeal AS1101A was obviously designed by the marketing department. Handles are in the wrong place, and it's extremely heavy to drag up and down stairs. It's also easy to inadvertently hit multiple foot pedals in a single try. Because of the way this cleaner is designed, all 20 pounds of it must be carried wherever it goes. There are no handles on the front of the cleaner, so cleaning a flight of stairs or even lifting the vacuum over a threshold puts a lot of strain on one's lower back.

The 28 foot power cord is a rare bright spot in a tunnel of mediocrity. Tweet It

To make matters worse, all controls are foot controls. They're also pretty close together, so unless you're an accomplished pedal organist, you'll probably get them confused and retract the cord instead of unlocking the vacuum from the upright position. Speaking of which, the 28 foot power cord is plenty long enough and easily retracts back into the cleaner. It's a rare bright spot in a tunnel of mediocrity.

The extension hose will reach about nine feet away from the body of the cleaner if you pull it gingerly. Can you guess what happens if you use too much force? That's right! It hits the floor like the DJ just put on an Usher remix. The bagless Eureka SuctionSeal AS1101A's dirt holder is easy to remove and opens at the bottom to keep dirt from flying up into the face of the user, another small comfort. There's also a HEPA filter behind the dirt holder, plus a washable prefilter at the top of the dirt holder.

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Features & Performance

Does one thing really, really well. Otherwise, this vacuum is a letdown.

On board, there's a crevice tool and upholstery brush in a caddy that attaches to the back of the vacuum. Coincidentally, that flimsy plastic caddy is right where an ideal leverage point for a second handle would be, but if you try to grab onto the caddy it'll immediately come loose from the vacuum, which will then fall on your feet. There's a reason we wear personal protective equipment in the lab. The fun doesn't stop there. Right above the dirt holder, there's a turbine powered upholstery brush. It's held on by a magnet, and will clatter to the floor if you look at it the wrong way.

Ironically, it did a fine job with both pet hair and debris. Tweet It

It's a shame that Eureka put the SuctionSeal cyclonic technology in such a lousy package, because it seems quite promising. Short carpet cleaning was truly excellent, but even when properly adjusted the cleaner head didn't get low enough to effectively clean high pile carpet or wood floors. Despite that hard-to-store upholstery brush, it did a fine job with pet hair. It also had no problems with debris, such as noodles, rice, and coins.

Conclusion

Falls short on overall cleaning performance. Also, falls over a lot.

Think of the Eureka SuctionSeal AS1101A like a Formula 1 car: It does one thing really, really well, but falls short on almost every other measure. Just as you couldn't easily parallel park a car that won the Monaco Gran Prix, you can't easily lift the Eureka SuctionSeal up a flight of stairs—even though it has some of the best short pile carpet cleaning we've ever seen. Unless your job is to clean empty, carpeted office buildings, another vacuum is probably a better choice—even if it isn't as technically proficient.

Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
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Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

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