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Poor design of Oreck XL vacuum meets poor company/customer service :(
Posted by on
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.
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Alain on 03/08/2011:
Along with Dyson, I've seen some good reviews on Hoover, Bissell, and Eureka models, as well.
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Company That Does Not Stand Behind Its Product
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In September 2009, I purchased an Oreck shampooer brand new for $399 in Evansville, Indiana. After the first use, I took it back because there was no suction. They told me the shampoo bottle was in wrong and took in back, did something to it, and returned it to me. Two weeks later, I relocated to Florida. I used the shampooer for the second time, it gushed water everywhere. I called Oreck Corporate and they said in a round-about way that they do not support their products and I would have to have it serviced locally. They gave me the name of the nearest store over an hour away. I took the shampooer there. The assistant manager claims they do not carry that product because it is a bad product, but it was the O-rings leaking. He fixed it, and I took it home. Once again, I went to use the shampooer and it gushed water everywhere (causing me to rent a rug doctor to clean up the mess). I returned it to the store an hour away (again). They said they had to ship it somewhere to be fixed.

When it was finally repaired, a month later, I was swamped at work and asked that they ship it to me. The Assistant Manager said he would. Two months later, still not shampooer, so I called and the Assistant Manager claimed it was mis-shipped and he would find it. This was August. It is now January 2011 and I still do not have my shampooer after numerous attempts and unreturned phone calls from this Lady Lake, Florida store. Today, I finally receive a call from the GM saying the shampooer had never left that store and claiming the Assistant Manager did not know what I was talking about - asserting me as a liar. We shall see if it is actually there this weekend.

I will never buy another product from Oreck again. I will share this on Facebook, create a website, twitter, tell my family, and link it in because I have never been treated so poorly by a company before. Oreck - since you don't want to honor your supposed 30-day guarantee (because that is when I began complaining), you have lost a customer for life and I will make sure you lose some more.
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karleebarlee on 01/10/2011:
Eek, I would say your bigger complaint is with that store that was fixing it. Someone there should take responsibility for whatever it was exactly that caused them to fail to return the shampooer to you.
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They Lost My Vacuum Cleaner
Posted by on
Rating: 1/51
ST. CHARLES, ILLINOIS -- I brought a vacuum in for repair. Salesman convinced me to purchase a new one, and they would give me credit $100 for old one. I took this deal (shouldn't have but it did), because mine was really in good shape.
He was going to destroy my trade in!! I paid $800 for that thing.
So I asked him if I could have it. He said yes. I asked him if he could fix it, he said yes. So I left the vacuum to be repaired and went home with my new one.
They never called me to tell me it was finished with repair. I lost track of time and didn't pick it up for five months.
Now here is the problem. When I picked it up, I did not get my vacuum. I got someone elses. I knew because it was in bad shape AND more so it did not match the serial number that was on my repair receipt.
I called many times, they claim that the one that I have was a newer model so I made out on this deal. He could not find mine, he said it must have been given to someone else.
I called the 800 number, she told me it should never have been repaired because it was a trade in. HOWEVER their salesman let me have it and accepted the job of repairing it. Plus she claims it was destroyed, they the salesperson did not understand that it was to be repaird. I was flabbergasted. Now they are lying. How did he not know, he wrote me up a repair receipt.

The salesman refunded me the repair cost and I left them the vacuum. Now whatever the story behind this is, the problem is that they lost my vacuum cleaner and offered no reasonable solution to me the customer. Honestly Oreck Company, I feel we pay way too much for these vacuums so that your people can ignore serial numbers and not give people reasonable solutions when you screw up. For the amount of money we spend on your products we should get top quality customer service. What did I learn from this, as other people have said, their service is terrible, they are not worth the money we pay. I could have gone to Target and bought a vacuum for a lot cheaper. I will never recommend one of these items, nor will I ever buy another one again. I will not take another item to them for service, I will take it somewhere else.

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Very Disgusted customer
Posted by on
Rating: 1/51
COOKEVILLE, TENNESSEE -- I am upset because I purchased this vacuum and spent over $300 for it and it should have had all the features compared to the cheaper vacuums. It worked fine until I got new carpeting which it was somewhat higher than my old carpeting and I went to use the vacuum and I couldn't push it, The brushes were too low, and they have no adjustment on it to raise them. So I called a Oreck dealership and the guy said yes, they are aware of it and they made up an attachment to put on the bottom and for us to come up and buy it. So we did, needless to say, that didn't work, it is still very hard to push. I wrote to Oreck Corp. and they had no intentions of resolving it, all they said was we have some vacuums out now and that I could go in and trade it in for an upgrade. I told them they should have put on the box that it only could be used on certain heights of carpeting. I told them they should make it right with the customers that had this problem with this vacuum but all they said was that the vacuum was not defective. I told them that I didn't say it was defective I said it doesn't work on my new carpeting. They don't give a crap and I called them a bunch of idiots!!!!! Stay away from this company and don't buy any of their products, they don't back them up.
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trmn8r on 11/04/2012:
You called them a bunch of idiots? Sounds harsh under the circumstances.

Here's the way I look at this. I'm big on doing research before I buy an appliance. So I would read a bunch of reviews. I assume this deficiency would show up there if it is a consequence of the design. I found only a few reviews on Amazon, and it is mentioned it is hard to push and the back wheels are very small.

When something is designed in a way that it doesn't work in all conditions you want to use it in, it's time to get one that does. It stinks, but these things happen.
Aunt Dahlia on 11/04/2012:
Seriously? There is a $300. 00 vacuum that doesn't adjust? The adapter is probably just a snap on thing with larger wheels. Thanks for the post!
FoDaddy19 on 11/04/2012:
I fail to see how Oreck could've known that your new carpet would be incompatible with your vacuum or how it would even be their problem either. It's similar to a situation like say you by a new car, you get it home only to find it doesn't fit in your garage, using your logic, this would be the car manufacturer's fault. So you can see where blaming Oreck for this problem is sorta preposterous. What do you now is exercise some personal responsibility and purchase a new vacuum that better suits your needs. I get that this isn't the sort of thing that you think about when getting new carpet, but you can't realistically blame Oreck either, since you selected the new carpet yourself.
Vinnie11 on 11/04/2012:
I'm not really sure what Oreck COULD have done to help you. They sold you something that worked quite well for you until you made a change.
Doug on 02/04/2013:
Same problem here. Hard to push on new carpet, and now the rollers have failed and now have to replace the roller assembly. I bought this for their name I thought meant quality and an American Company which I find very hard these days to buy from due to poor quality. Your right on them not want to do anything which means their company is not doing well and will probably go out of business soon. So sad to see another American company fail due to poor quality and customer relations. Their warranty is also the worst, only one year which by itself says stay away. The warranty is what backs up a companies quality. My mistake.
Cathie on 06/16/2013:
As a professional housecleaner, I have used Oreck and it is my favorite. When you have problems pushing, simply lower the handle to change the angle so you are not pushing it into the carpet. On low nap area rugs you may have to change the direction that you are vacuuming in. Going against the grain of the carpet or rug can make it harder. So go WITH the grain whenever possible.
jeff on 06/18/2013:
I can't believe some of these comments. Apparently some people don't expect too much from the products they buy, especially a $300 vacuum. Are we supposed to buy a new one to fit the carpet we buy? That's absurd. Unless you buy some shag from the '70s good vacuums should accommodate most carpet piles. Additionally, why should one need to bend over in some ridiculous angle (like I have to do) to get the vacuum to move. My grandmothers vacuum worked better than this Oreck.
Marie on 08/10/2013:
Don't buy Oreck. Way too much money for the performance. Not made well. The only plus side to any of their vacuums is the lightweight 8 lb upright. It's light but again, bad performance You cannot get under furniture with this Vacuum. They have no tools to attach to this upright.. BAD IDEA!

I have a DutchTech 1300. I had to fight with the corporate office for nearly one year for them to send me a replacement. The Plug kept popping off the cord.. Ridiculous. I had it replaced twice by our local Oreck at a hefty charge to me.
After nearly a year of contacting Oreck and putting up with them not sending me what they promised they finally got it right. They kept sending parts of a machine that were not compatible to what I owned. ALL very stressful

I received a completely new Dutchtech 1400 ( almost a year later) with all the parts necessary to operate the thing.. This machine was a replacement NOT A PURCHASE. Now hear this: That stupid company sent me a bill for 780.00 past due no less.. More Stress.. Another fight I had with them over this..

I won, YES-- BUT I will NEVER again buy another Oreck.. Too much Stress and Anxiety dealing with a company who does not stand behind a loyal customer. I am Done.. It's no Wonder they went bankrupt and are putting the Miele machines in their stores while making up some half baked excuse why that is.. Funny isn't it! HA!

I have always said and will continue to say:

A product is only as Good as the Customer Service that stands behind it.. This company has NONE!
CMX on 02/21/2014:
I just started working for Oreck as a store manager this past week and I have to say it is a great American company that has been through ups and downs but has an exciting future ahead of itself. Oreck really cares about their customers I can attest to that. Oreck currently has the lightest vacuum in the industry-magnesium RS at 7.7 lbs. try comparing that to an 18 lb Dyson. Oreck vacuums sweep up pet care in one run of the vacuum. The magnesium is so the ONLY vacuum to use in high shag carpet. Period! A vacuum is used to maintain your investment of carpeting/your home. If you want attachments just get a canister for your steps and car. Good luck lugging that Dyson outside to clean your car. What makes Oreck great is the few parts it has. Consumers need to think of a vacuum like a car. When you go get a car tune up/oil change---do you get free tires? New windshield? New brakes? NO! That's all items you pay for--- same concept. I notice a lot of people being careless with their Oreck as well...tons of hair on the brush, clogs, dirty bags, screws loose, and being thrown and dinged up. Take care of this baby! Oreck has a 30 day guarantee. All the warranties and tune ups are extra and or included in the "expensive" price. It is a 40 dollar value by the way! Oreck is great and care about their customers. I stand by their practices. Mr.Oreck had the American consumer in mind when he thought of this product and it shows! If you don't love your Oreck then you must not know how to vacuum!!!!
Tom84 on 04/16/2014:
I work at Oreck. I currently have to deal with the issues most of you are ranting about. The sales person needs to explain to the consumer what type of vacuum they need. Oreck had superior suction and carpet agitation and is well built. Most people beat the crap out their vacs and then they get mad at the product. I see dog crap, mud, tons of hair all picked up and guess what people?!? U will get a clog every time. Dyson has great suction cuz the dirt needs to go through tons of plastic parts and tubes. We work on non Oreck brand and I cringe when they come in. Dyson uses plastic screws and is crap in my opinion. Some vacs do not go on high pile carpet. This should be explained. The magnesium goes over any carpet type. When people bring in their vacs for a service it's always a belt or a clog. Very common. Take care if ur vac and it will be good to u. People bring in their vacs that are 12-20 years old and they love them. If u don't love ur Oreck ur doing something g wrong. They are built well and work well...period
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Oreck XL
Posted by on
COOKEVILLE, TENNESSEE -- I bought an Oreck XL, in May 2011. I was told it was safe for hardwood floors, man were they wrong, it has done over 5000.00 dollars worth of damage to my floors. I have been speaking with the customer service reps, and can you believe they want me to send them the vac back, so they can look at it. Well I wasn't born yesterday, the bottom of the vacuum cleaner is scratched up and worn down from scratching my floors. They will not get a chance to repair it so it looks like it didn't do it. Don't buy the Oreck silver XL if you have hardwood, it is not safe.
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trmn8r on 12/12/2011:
In a situation such as this, I think you would prety much have to sue them to try to receive compensation.

Let me ask this - did you at any time notice that there was damage being done to the floor and consider stopping using the Oreck XL? $5000 is a lot of damage.
onlooker on 12/13/2011:
take photos of the floor, damaged and undamaged portions, take photos of the scratched part of the item, take photos of the entire item. Confirm that you were using the item correctly,(make sure you can truthfully say you read the warnings and instructions before use) get estimates on how much to repair. Get costs for shipping and - send the item back, with copies of photos, estimate of repair, shipping cost - ship with confirmed signed receipt - and maybe something will happen. As it is now you have nothing - but damaged floor
Venice09 on 12/13/2011:
I don't see the need to vacuum hardwood floors either, but if the Oreck XL is safe to use on hardwood floors, then it shouldn't have done any damage, and certainly not to the tune of $5,000!

You can bet Oreck won't just be sending out a check. There will need to be proof, and that won't be easy. As was already said, why continue using a vacuum cleaner that is doing such extensive damage? It doesn't make sense.
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Refusal of Service
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GAITHERSBURG, MARYLAND -- I purchased my Oreck XL21 7 years ago. The company guarantees yearly check ups once a year for 21 years. They are supposed to clean and replace parts if need be. I have been taking it for 7 years into an Oreck store in Gaithersburg Maryland. The Kentlands Oreck store. When I brought it in last week for its yearly checkup the owner refused to service it unless I could produce a proof of purchase. I was confused since the previous owners never once asked me this. I did not have a receipt from something I purchased 7 years ago but assured them I was in their computer system and to just look me up by the serial number on the machine. Indeed I was in their system and showed I had been in last year for a check up. However, that did not satisfy them and they refused to service my Vacuum cleaner as guaranteed in the purchase agreement. I called Oreck headquarters and they still have not gotten back with me, even though the lady on the phone said there should be no reason why the merchant shouldn't service the vacuum cleaner. I have left 3 messages and wrote them an email and still nothing has been done. In the meantime I have been complaining to neighbors about this and come to find out a couple of them have had similar problems with Oreck. One of my friends leant me her Dyson's vacuum cleaner and I don't know maybe this is a blessing in disguise but I fell in love with Dyson's vacuum cleaner and just purchased it. If you are thinking about an Oreck keep in mind I had a lot of problems with the belt coming off too, but because they replaced it free I didn't sweat it. Save yourself a headache buy Dyson.
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Venice09 on 11/30/2010:
If you were in the system, they should have serviced the vacuum. I wonder what Mr. Oreck would say? Good luck with the Dyson.
dave_feu on 01/17/2011:
I take my Oreck to this store too. I haven't had any problems but I always bring in my paperwork. I need to go there for the yearly service soon. I will check with the person in the store about this policy.
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Billing Department Incompetence
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I purchased 2 Oreck XL Air Purifiers and don't think much of the product. What I cannot stand is the terrible customer service Oreck provides.

I bought the Air Purifiers where I would have no interest for 1 year. Sometime after the product arrived I began receiving mailings from Oreck Direct telling me I had a past due bill. I was receiving 2 letters like this per day! What a waste of stamps and trees.

I sent payments, but the letters did not stop. I called and Oreck said I had no outstanding bill, but the letters did not stop. Finally, I escalated the issue and someone figured out that the tax on my original purchase was not forwarded to HSBC. Oreck/HSBC are not one and the same. They are business partners, but hardly much good at actually partnering.

So, Oreck Direct is to straighten this out, and my next months HSBC bill shows I owe $0, zip, nada; in fact, I have a rather large credit balance. I call them to say, “no I have a real debt of about $300 and to please check their records.” Par for the course, I must call several times to fix this mistake.

Three months later I start receiving letters from Oreck Direct saying I am delinquent on making payments and the entire bill of $600 must be paid immediately. Well, I had made some payments because of the tax letters and my bill now should only be $300. I’m wondering what’s going on?

I call HSBC and a supervisor tells me she will work with Oreck Direct to let them know HSBC is still holding the debt that is around $300. She promises to call me back later that day; she never does.

I call Oreck Direct and they tell me HSBC closed my account and sent them back the unpaid debt. Oreck tells me to work with HSBC.

This two-headed monster of Oreck/HSBC will point back and forth at each other all day long, saying "don’t talk to us, talk to them." Obviously they don’t talk to each other.

I insist on a conference call and felt a bit like the fly on the wall as the two representatives discuss the all the pratfalls of their business and the mistakes that were made. Finally, the Oreck Direct associate who had been so uncompromising when telling me to send them a payment NOW and then get my money back from HSBC, apologizes and says the situation is resolved. IF ONLY....

Today I received a call from a collections agency hired by Oreck Direct and they start in with the PAY NOW OR ELSE attitude.

The following is an edited email I sent to Mr. David Orek (like anyone in that company has the brains to actually forward an email) with the copy of the email I had to send to the collections agency:

To David Oreck:

At the end of this email I am including a copy of an email I have been obligated to send to a collection agency because your billing department has repeatedly demonstrated that it cannot competently address or fix problems it has created.

I do not want to repeat the full litany of missteps Oreck Direct (and HSBC, by association) have made, for that information is in your records.

I will say that I have spent a great deal of time in trying to resolve the problem your business created. Your company has repeatedly offered me apologies and promises that the problem has been resolved, now only to find that you have turned my name over to a collections agency.

As I explained to your employee D______, I would like nothing better than to be done with your company once and for all, but you simply cannot get it right, but rather make matters worse. I won’t use the product I bought from you because it reminds me of what a mistake I made when I established a relationship with you to begin with.

To: F______ G_____ with A____ Collections

This is a notice to dispute that I have an outstanding debt with ORECK Direct.

Today you contacted me to collect on a debt with ORECK Direct. When I explained that I do not have a debt with ORECK and was advised me to send a written notice to dispute the debt.

I have subsequently called ORECK Direct and I spoke with D____. She reviewed my account and confirmed that I do not have a debt with ORECK Direct and that a mistake had been made when their computer sent you my information for collection. She said that they would recall the collection notification sent to you.

My past dealings with ORECK Direct have been unsatisfactory and I have little confidence in their ability to carry through with promises. I share my opinion about ORECK's demonstrated business incompetence since ORECK has seen fit to invite you into my business.

I want to stress that I DO NOT owe ORECK Direct any money.

Please, let me know if you need anything else from me to prevent ORECK, through your company, from damaging my credit rating.

Thank you.

CC: posted to Oreck's Contact Us page on www.oreck.com

Last word on my Oreck Experience: I don't recommend the Company. And the product is mediocre, at best.

Any bets on whether Oreck will call off the dogs?
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Frank Izzo on 05/09/2013:
I purchased an Oreck Vacuum cleaner and have it 9 years we paid for their best one so we get yearly cleaning. Last year the handle became loose which I understand so they fixed it and replaced the cord. Now this cord is like really stiff and isn't like when I bought it and there is nothing we could do. Ever try winding up a cheap cord? Not to happy and now they're filing chapter 11. Thanks
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Dyson Repair
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Rating: 5/51
GAITHERSBURG, MARYLAND -- Brought in my beloved Dyson, which after nearly 9 years of faithful service, suddenly started making a horrific grinding sound, and the roller wouldn't turn.
The man was very friendly and helpful; diagnosed it as the clutch belt. I had a 50% off coupon, which he explained would be 50% off of the labor, as they couldn't discount the part itself. That was fine by me.
They honored the coupon and finished the repair a day earlier than anticipated (I'd brought it in on a Saturday; they said they'd have it ready Tuesday, but called me Monday afternoon to tell me it was ready).
They completely cleaned it as well as repaired it; it works like new! I am eternally grateful, and if I have further issues (heaven forbid), I will be happy to take my business here.
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Customer Service and Warranties Don't Apply With Oreck
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Rating: 2/51
CHESTERFIELD, MISSOURI -- I have had my vacuum for 13 years and paid over $800 at that time. Until the last 6 months, it was running fine. When it started to act a little different than I was used to, I took it in for service. I paid for the belt and a new beater bar and took it back home. I have now been back for service every 2 weeks for a total of 6 times. I've complained and asked for a "like" replacement since it can't seem to stay "fixed" they refuse and told me to continue to bring it in when it breaks. Their product warranty is a lie and the customer service and attitude of the employees in the actual store do not exist. I ended up buying another manufacturers product.
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Took in for Warranty Repair What a Joke
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Rating: 1/51
RIVERSIDE, CALIFORNIA -- Took vacuum in for repair the connection between the bag to the unit broke sending dust everywhere. The Vacuum has a 15 year warranty in the book. The service tech ask me if we have pets? I said yes and he told me the vacuum is covered in urine and he cannot work on it. adding that the hose clamp I put on the connection voided the warranty. The vacuum sits in the garage so the dogs do not urinate on it. He told me it would cost $150.0 plus to fix.

I called Oreck who said clean up the vacuum and take to store in Ontario CA. when I took it there after cleaning, with bleach and sanitizer, I took the unit to Ontario store the tech told me that he heard about this unit and that he would not work on it as this unit is covered in urine, not even examining the Vacuum. This unit was taken on a regular basis to the Riverside store for service.
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