Thread Number: 44078  /  Tag: Brand New Vacuum Cleaners
Shark Navigator Lift-Away Speed Pet with Zero-M (ZU561)
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Post# 459109   1/2/2023 at 19:26 by niclonnic (Bonney Lake, WA)        

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I bought this vacuum on Black Friday for only $150, and gave it as a Christmas present to my mom yesterday, for her small one-bedroom apartment. She had been wanting this particular machine for quite a while, and was pleasantly surprised to get it. Although she doesn't have pets, I have a dog that I tend to bring over every time my sister and I visit, so I think the "Pet" moniker is fair for this situation.

The biggest selling point of this vacuum is a self-cleaning "Zero-M" brushroll which actively removes wrapped hair from itself as you vacuum. My mom wanted this vacuum for that very feature because she's tired of constantly cutting her brown hair off of her Hoover Air Steerable's brushroll.

Unboxing and setup was simple and straightforward; the vacuum arrived in a plain brown box with another colorful box inside of it (I refer to this phenomenon as "boxception"). There were several parts that simply needed to be snapped together.

I gave the vacuum a test run that night, and we were very impressed with it!

Here are the pros:

  • The noise level is pleasant! Not too loud, not too quiet, just right for an apartment.
  • Very strong suction in a lightweight design.
  • Nicely designed with a trendy color (Red Peony).
  • Has a sealed system with a HEPA filter. So far, it filters just as advertised, as I haven't had an allergic reaction yet.
  • Zero-M brushroll works just as claimed; hardly any hair remains on it after one use.
  • Does an excellent job on both carpets and hard floors.
  • Nice assortment of attachments: crevice tool, wide pet upholstery tool and 2-in-1 pet multi-tool with removable rubber bristles.
  • Hose is always ready to go. On the Hoover, the hose had to be connected to a port on the vacuum for tool mode, and removed in order to go back to floor mode. With the Shark, the wand detaches at the push of a button, similar to Dyson.
  • Dust cup is easy to empty, as the dirt falls right out when the door is opened. No need to pull anything out by hand.
  • Primary separator stays clean of dust.

Now for the cons:

  • Because the suction is SO STRONG (even with the suction valve on the handle open), the vacuum cannot be used on small area rugs; it glues itself down to the rug and won't move.
  • Vacuum is a little hard to push on a low-pile area rug.
  • The Lift-Away part of the vacuum is rather bulky, so it won't be able to go under low furniture as well as the Hoover does.
  • Hard floor setting (position I on the power switch) merely makes the brushroll run at a low speed; it can't be turned off completely (besides putting the vacuum upright), unlike the Hoover.
  • Dust cup is rather small, so it'll have to be emptied more often.
  • Lacks any kind of cyclonic separation (in typical Shark fashion), so the filters are going to get soiled quickly. Fortunately, said filters are in plain sight whenever the dust cup is removed.
  • Stingy tool storage design; the vacuum has room for only one attachment, so the other two will have to be stashed loosely in the closet.
  • Cord is rather short at 25 feet.

So far, this has been a very nice vacuum to use. I haven't tried the Lift-Away feature yet, though. Sorry about the messy apartment in the pics; my mom hasn't had much free time these days.

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