Poor design of Oreck XL vacuum meets poor company/customer service :(
COOKEVILLE, TENNESSEE -- From the day I purchased the Oreck XL2200RS from my local Oreck dealer about 2 years ago, I was surprised by the difficulty of using the vacuum, which is nearly impossible to push, and the hassle of having the belt come off and have to be completely replaced about once a month. Now the belt hardly lasts to vacuum the house, and these supplies go for a premium cost! The man who originally sold me the vacuum said the company gets lots of complaints about the belt not staying on (after I bought it and used the original extra belt). I made do. But when the belt comes off, the vacuum literally spits dirt and debris into the air! I was injured at work and now suffer with RSD in my left wrist and arm, and I can't change the belts. The outer bag ripped when I vacuumed under my bed (very thin fabric) and the new manager said I need their most expensive bags--last visit, 3 bags, 3 belts, over $60.
Now, he said I am vacuuming "wrong" since the vacuum can't be pushed forward and backward, especially if going over an area rug or from one little elevation to another within the house. He demonstrated the way I should go sideways around the edges of the area rugs--no info on actually vacuuming the rugs... So last night my husband changed the belt which he had just put on 3 days earlier, and I got through half of the living room today before it was off, again. I tried to write this up and send the comment from the website, but it would not send. I called the customer service number listed in Tennessee.
The first woman told me I need to purchase a part to raise the vacuum off the floor so I can vacuum the area rugs (I told her I wasn't paying anything else--that the rugs were 8x10 low pile and were not the issue). She said because of the enormous 120 pound suction, the vacuum just sucks it up and that makes the belt come off. Oh. So this vacuum can't be used across elevations from tile to rug, can't be used to vacuum over low area rugs, and can't be used under beds or furniture? What is all that power good for? She said she was sorry I was unhappy. I asked to speak with her supervisor. When she came on, she wanted to know if I had replaced the beater bar? If I had taken the vacuum in for all its maintenance? If it was still under warranty? If I understood it is the consumer's job to replace all these things, just like any other vacuum?
That sent me reeling. I mean, I have had several vacuum cleaners in my life, and only bought this one after giving up an Electrolux that needed a new hose for the power bar attachment. How I wish I had fixed that vacuum. I have never had a vacuum that breaks down as often as this. I have never been told it is the user's fault for the kind of carpet or area rugs or the way she vacuums. It isn't. The fault lies with this lemon of a product and the failure of the company to stand behind it. I was told I didn't buy it DIRECT because I bought it from my local Oreck store instead of the infomercial. Excuse me. The receipt I have shows I purchased it at the Oreck Clean Home Center. I was told I had to take it in for service. Maybe the company would pay for this, if my warranty is in effect. The truth is, I don't want service. This vacuum is not designed well and will never come close to the hype they give it. It is a money pit. If you or anyone you know is even thinking of buying this, just know you are better off with a vacuum that you get at your local discount store that costs under $100 and you know will last you very well for probably 5 years. And I am going to look at the Dyson. I don't know which vacuum I will get next, but you can bet it won't be an Oreck--like the saying goes, "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me!" This company will never get another penny from me. Save yourself the disappointment and the money--don't buy this defective product at any cost.