Is the Gtech AirRAM vac better than a Dyson?This lightweight vac makes heavyweight claims
26 April 2012
Gtech claims its new cordless vacuum cleaner - the AirRAM - will out-perform the UK's leading mains-powered vacuums, while using 95% less electricity.
Mains-powered vacuum cleaners typically contain electric motors ranging from 1400W to 2400W, but a bigger motor does not necessarily equal better cleaning performance.
Here at Which? we've seen several high-powered vacuums that are so poor at cleaning we've been forced to label them as Don't Buys - find out more in our vacuum reviews.
The new AirRAM from Gtech, which is available exclusively in John Lewis, is at the opposite end of the scale - boasting a low-power 100W electric motor - yet it claims to rival the cleaning power of the most popular vacuum manufacturers such as Dyson.
Vacuum cleaner revolution?
In the 1980s, James Dyson revolutionised the world of vacuums and vacuum cleaning by introducing cyclone technology. Since then, while this patented technology has evolved, and other manufacturers have developed competing bagless vacuums, there has not been a breakthrough of similar groundbreaking proportions.
Gtech says that after nearly three decades, that moment has come. The Worcester-based company claims its AirRAM is unique as it uses a tiny amount of electricity compared to other leading machines, compresses dirt into dust free bales for easy emptying and delivers unrivalled cleaning performance.
How the Gtech AirRAM works
The AirRAM has two small compartments located within the vacuum head. Because the vac only has to suck the dirt 5cm from where it is collected into the compartment, it doesn't need much power. To help remove the dirt from the floor, the AirRAM's brush bars 'agitate and loosen' the dirt.
The fluff and grime vacuumed is not just deposited into these compartments, but compressed into bales. These little parcels of dirt, which Gtech say will be dust free, can then be simply tipped out into the bin.
The bales look very small but thanks to the compression technology, Gtech claims the AirRAM has 'the same dirt capacity as a Dyson DC24' - which we've measured as 1.1 litres.
Super quick to charge
As the AirRAM is a cordless vacuum cleaner, it will need to be charged before use. Gtech says the vac will work for 40 minutes without losing suction, and there is a clear 'battery remaining' indicator to show how much charge is left.
Gtech says the AirRAM is takes just four hours to charge, which is very impressive compared to other stick vacuums we've tried out. These typically took between 16 and 24 hours, and lasted about half as long.
The AirRAM makes some impressive promises, but some need to be taken with a pinch of salt.
Which? vacuum expert Adrian Porter said: 'Gtech's claim that the AirRAM will save you £252 over five years is based on the assumption that you vacuum for three hours a week, every week. This seems to be towards the high-end of the scale. However, we are looking forward to trying out the AirRAM to see how well it cleans and how well the compression technology works.'
We will take the AirRAM for a spin and report our findings back by 8 May in our stick vacuum cleaners first look reviews. Make sure you bookmark it and come back to read our hands-on first look review.