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Which? first look: Vax Platinum Power Max carpet cleaner

Vax says that its new carpet cleaner is better than a Rug Doctor. We've taken it for a spin to bring you our first impressions

Vax has launched a new carpet cleaner, which it claims is better than the leading rental option and will leave your carpets dry in under an hour.

The Vax Platinum Power Max costs £250, and or a limited period if you buy it direct from Vax you’ll get a free steam cleaner, too.

It also comes with an impressive six-year guarantee and a package of accessories that includes a mini scrub brush, pre-treatment wand and hard-floor attachment. But will this Vax carpet washer get your carpets sparkling again?

We tried out this Vax at home to see whether it could meet the challenge of sprucing up grimy carpets. Get our first impressions in the full Vax Platinum Power Max first look review.

Vax Platinum Power Max – what you get

The Platinum Power Max comes with half a dozen accessories for all sorts of cleaning challenges. If you have a home in need of a deep clean, carpeted stairs, hard floors or even upholstery you want to give a new lease of life, this model should tick most of your boxes.

Bundled accessories include:

  • 4.6-metre hose for reaching awkward areas such as stairs
  • SpinScrub hose attachment for stubborn stains and cleaning stairs
  • Upholstery cleaning accessory
  • Pre-treatment wand to loosen up tough stains
  • Hard-floor attachment for non-carpeted areas

Two 250ml bottles of Platinum cleaning solution and a 250ml bottle of pre-treatment solution are also included to get you started.

For the all-important job of cleaning carpets, Vax says that its spin-scrub brushes rotate in different directions to help loosen and lift ground-in dirt. This model also has a ‘Quickclean’ mode, which does a lighter wash and is claimed to leave your carpets dry in less than an hour. If you favour the little-and-often approach to cleaning, or have children or pets – or simply hate having to wait hours for your carpets to dry, this could be handy.

This Vax costs £250, which is a pretty average price for a carpet washer – we’ve seen models for as little as £50 right up to more than £400. It makes some bold claims, though, including a direct challenge to the ‘leading rental brand’ – Rug Doctor. We’ve tested several Rug Doctor carpet cleaners, including a model similar to the ones you can rent. Check our carpet cleaner reviews to see how older Vax carpet cleaners compare with Rug Doctor models.


Vax steam cleaner reviews – find out if a free Vax steam mop is worth having


Carpet cleaners – what to look out for

Beyond cleaning ability, a good carpet cleaner should be easy to use, not too heavy and, most importantly, not leave your carpets soaking.

The worst carpet cleaners struggle to suck up dirty water from your carpets after washing, leaving them waterlogged for hours on end. Others struggle to remove stains, leaving you with a brighter carpet overall but some unsightly leftover patches.

This Vax also claims to kill 93% of bacteria when used with the Platinum cleaning solution. This claim is difficult to test, but it’s worth bearing in mind that the best way to avoid bacteria being left behind is to opt for a model that leaves carpets as dry as possible after cleaning.

Our carpet cleaner reviews reveal the models worth buying and the ones to avoid.

Why pay more for a carpet cleaner?

Carpet cleaners have to manage the tricky trinity of washing and rinsing carpets, before sucking up dirty water back into the machine, all in a few sweeps.

This means you need good scrubbing action to remove ground-in dirt and stains, and powerful suction to get dirty water out of the carpets afterwards.

While there are cheaper models available, our tests have shown it can be difficult to get a really effective carpet cleaner on a tight budget. However, paying more isn’t always a guarantee of quality, as we’ve also found pricey Don’t Buys. Your best bet may be to look for an older Best Buy that has come down in price over time.

Discover the models to avoid in our round-up of Don’t Buy carpet cleaners, and look out for bargains with our Best Buy carpet cleaners.

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