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rainbow vacuum cleaner  RSS feed

 
Thekla McDaniels
gardener
Posts: 1823
Location: Grand Valley of Colorado's Western Slope
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I had one that was used when I got it, and more than 35 years old when I replaced it because I had vacuumed up dry wall dust - which I had been warned not to do,

too fine, non wettable, I could have had it repaired but opted for a new one.

This one definitely comes under the heading spending more to save in the long run. You won't have to buy vacuum cleaner bags, so there is a sizeable yearly savings right there.

The machine uses water as a filter and lets "no" particles through. Looking at demonstration filter placed after the filtering system, it is clean. Ogther bagless vacuums use a sort of "settling chamber" to collect the detritus, but the air flow is turbulent enough that plenty of stuff is still suspended.

You have to buy them from distributors or dealers who come to your home and do a demo. That's a real pain, almost a deterrent to making the purchase, but the machine is excellent, and possibly there are online sources now -a -days, who won't annoy you with their spiel.
 
r ranson
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Posts: 6027
Location: Left Coast Canada
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How does it do with wood floors? I've noticed some vacuums scratch and scuff them.
 
Jay Angler
Posts: 134
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I can't comment on R Ranson's question, but I can say that we bought a second hand Rainbow 15 years ago and it's had some TLC since, but is still going strong. Having a place to dump and rinse the reservoir is important, but we've got lots of forest and I spray it with the hose nozzle so that isn't a problem here. I also like how you can tell from the reservoir how badly I've let the farm take precedence over the house! If the housework's been required to slide, I have to dump the reservoir at least once in the middle of the "whole house vacuum" process if not twice. It can be a bit of a nuisance dealing with the reservoir if you have a quick mess to clean up, but I know some people use a hand vac for that and I just use a broom if it's on a hard surface.
 
Thekla McDaniels
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R
The head on the end of the wand does not scratch. The tank is on wheels, and if the wheels were kept clean, I guess they would not scratch the flooring.

An interesting factoid, the R2D2 robot character in the Star Wars movie was based on the Rainbow vacuum of the era.
 
Cam Mitchell
Posts: 108
Location: W. CO, 6A
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I had a Rainbow maybe 15 years ago. Cool idea, and no bags to replace.
But there were issues:
1. Some stuff didn't hit the water and "stick", so it wouldn't pick up everything. It would just come out the other side. This was not a *huge* issue, really. Pretty minor.
2. The water, when done cleaning is nasty. Gross looking (think sink hair clog X2) and smelly.
So never (never!) tip the vacuum over when full. You must clean it every time. Every. Time.
Don't ever let it sit for a day (or week-and-a-half) full and then clean it. It will get worse.

But of course, YMMV.
Personally, I like the bagless vacuums (just dump the container), but they are not "Buy It For Life."
 
Thekla McDaniels
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Cam Mitchell wrote:I had a Rainbow maybe 15 years ago. Cool idea, and no bags to replace.
But there were issues:
1. Some stuff didn't hit the water and "stick", so it wouldn't pick up everything. It would just come out the other side. This was not a *huge* issue, really. Pretty minor.
2. The water, when done cleaning is nasty. Gross looking (think sink hair clog X2) and smelly.
So never (never!) tip the vacuum over when full. You must clean it every time. Every. Time.
Don't ever let it sit for a day (or week-and-a-half) full and then clean it. It will get worse.

But of course, YMMV.
Personally, I like the bagless vacuums (just dump the container), but they are not "Buy It For Life."


My experience with some stuff not "sticking" to the water: that only happens when I need to dump the tank.
I have a place outside the door where I always dump, then I can look for lost things there. If I don't dump it when it needs dumping, then some things can "blow" through. For me, this is too much dog hair, then things can't get into the water.

About the gross water, yes, but no grosser than when the same stuff was on the floor. And if you dump after using, and don't store the motor on to of the tank, no foul odors ever develop. I don't rinse the residual dirt out, I just let it dry on the bottom of the tank, but in a more humid climate, one might need to rinse it more thoroughly, but still if the tank not stored with the motor part on top, it stays odor free.

At my most lazy, I remove the motor part from the tank, and dump it later, but would not ever re-use the water in the tank for a second vacuuming session.
 
Cam Mitchell
Posts: 108
Location: W. CO, 6A
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Thekla McDaniels wrote:My experience with some stuff not "sticking" to the water: that only happens when I need to dump the tank.
I have a place outside the door where I always dump, then I can look for lost things there. If I don't dump it when it needs dumping, then some things can "blow" through. For me, this is too much dog hair, then things can't get into the water.

About the gross water, yes, but no grosser than when the same stuff was on the floor. And if you dump after using, and don't store the motor on to of the tank, no foul odors ever develop. I don't rinse the residual dirt out, I just let it dry on the bottom of the tank, but in a more humid climate, one might need to rinse it more thoroughly, but still if the tank not stored with the motor part on top, it stays odor free.

At my most lazy, I remove the motor part from the tank, and dump it later, but would not ever re-use the water in the tank for a second vacuuming session.

Ah, I think that was the problem. I was too lazy.
Good points. Yes, it was dog hair that was the problem.
It was a very humid climate, and the tank was stored under the motor. Thus the probable source of the smell.
 
Thekla McDaniels
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sorry to hear that Cam. The information should have come to you with the machine. do you still have it?
 
Cam Mitchell
Posts: 108
Location: W. CO, 6A
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Thekla McDaniels wrote:sorry to hear that Cam. The information should have come to you with the machine. do you still have it?

Oh no, lost it in the divorce, thank God.

You know, I've been thinking about this. Vacuum cleaners, that is.
I've come to the conclusion that, for me, I'd rather not have one.
I don't like the noise, dust, plastic construction, or power usage.
I'd really rather have wood floors (with rugs) and sweep them.
Just need a sawmill so I can afford to make my own.
 
Thekla McDaniels
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I don't have carpeting, but I like the rainbow better than sweeping. most vacuums DO raise the dust, and have a weird smell that changing the bag won't help. That's what I like about the rainbow. It's actually rated as an "air filter" and "air purifier". I hate all that hype the sales jerk puts forth and corrects me every time I call it a vacuum cleaner, but the machine is excellent for my uses... dog hair and very fine sand that sweeping won't gather, but grinds away the surface of the wood flooring, the concrete flooring.

OK, I guess it sounds like I'm plugging the rainbow but they are not paying me to do it. I just believe it is an excellent machine, don't know of any other vacuum that works as well or lasts as long. In other circumstance I might not need it but for now...
 
Destiny Hagest
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I have a lot of mommy friends - we spend an embarrassing amount of time talking about laundry detergent and vacuum cleaners, and they all swear by the rainbow.

True to my Permies flunky form, here's an Amazon affiliate link to it: Rainbow Vacuum Cleaner

Me personally, I can't spend that much on a vacuum. I have all hardwoods in our rental home we have, and I use this Dyson cordless vacuum, and it's been really great. It's lightweight enough that I can use it with a baby on my hip, and more effective than sweeping at getting the tumbleweeds of dog hair up in my house.

I actually got mine refurbed on eBay and saved like $100 too, and it's been over a year and is still working really well. Of course, that's still only a year, so we shall see, but I freaking love this little thing.
 
R Scott
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Location: Kansas Zone 6a
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They are a love hate thing.  I love them. My wife hates them. We don't have one.
 
John Wolfram
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Location: Lafayette, Indiana
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I'm leery of anything sold mainly through an in home presentation (Cutco knives, kirby/rainbow vacuums, oils/kitchenware/cosmetics sold at parties, etc.). While the product may actually be good, the markup due to the salespeople tends to be huge.

My current vacuum is a Dyson that I picked up for free on trash day. Apparently the people did not realize that you have to clean the filters from time to time to get decent suction.
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 5859
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
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I owned a used rainbow vac briefly, and gave it away...just more plastic and it seemed to loom at us, implying we should be cleaning more

I have more carpet than I like in this old house (and the one we just moved from) but picked up a Kirby at the thrift store for fifty cents years ago, rewired the plug and keep it supplied in bags from that same thrift store (I change the bag once a year or so whether it needs it or not).
Somewhere I heard that Kirby's are able to run on 12 volt systems, don't know anything first hand though.

My ideal is all wood floors but that's not going to happen anytime soon.

For all of the floors that are smooth we use a handmade brooms by our friends and former neighbors http://www.grassycreekbrooms.com/

and for finer stuff I like a dust mop like in this picture...I even like the soft clicking sound it makes when in use.....



For smaller areas of really fine stuff a soft shop bench brush and a dust pan works for us....like on the floor under the edges of the cutting board when I'm cooking in the kitchen

I really don't like carpet 
 
R Scott
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John Wolfram wrote:I'm leery of anything sold mainly through an in home presentation (Cutco knives, kirby/rainbow vacuums, oils/kitchenware/cosmetics sold at parties, etc.). While the product may actually be good, the markup due to the salespeople tends to be huge.

My current vacuum is a Dyson that I picked up for free on trash day. Apparently the people did not realize that you have to clean the filters from time to time to get decent suction.


Having run both types of business, the direct sales/network marketing model usually has LESS markup overall.  I prefer supporting an entrepreneur when I can.  Problem is they seldom show up when I need their product.
 
Sebastian Köln
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Another option is to integrate the vacuum cleaner into the building. I have seen it at a friends house. Very quiet and the filtered air goes directly outside instead of back into the room.
 
Kj Koch
Posts: 22
Location: Jersey Shore PA
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I have worked for rainbow in the past. Rule #1 NEVER store it with water in the tank!!!
 
Nancy Troutman
Posts: 186
Location: Swanton, MD
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Judith Browning wrote:
For all of the floors that are smooth we use a handmade brooms by our friends and former neighbors http://www.grassycreekbrooms.com/

and for finer stuff I like a dust mop like in this picture...I even like the soft clicking sound it makes when in use.....

 


I am 100% carpet free for about a year now, and am loving every minute of it.   I own a shop vac.   The bags cost me about $15 for 3 bags.   3 bags lasts me about 4 years.   I would sweep the carpets when I had them, then mop them with the same mop water as I did the rest of the house.  I would use Dr. Bronner's soap.   My mop water was boiling hot.   I Never saw the need for spending a lot of $$$ on a Rainbow Vacuum when I will be about 300 years old before I recoup the savings that going bagless would bring.  The vacuum's initial cost exceeded the savings it would bring me even if it lasted a lifetime.  I mostly use the vacuum on the walls and for spider webs.

Judith's post excited me though.   I have been looking in vain for some of the brooms she had in her picture.   Clicked on the link and found a goldmine.   They will be getting an order from me soon.
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 5859
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
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Judith's post excited me though.   I have been looking in vain for some of the brooms she had in her picture.   Clicked on the link and found a goldmine.   They will be getting an order from me soon.


Nancy, They are wonderful people producing wonderful brooms on their homestead...we live in an area of the Ozarks with many craftspeople, sometimes I don't appreciate that fact enough
Years ago they custom made for us a 'nimbus 2000' quidditch broom from the Harry Potter series for our grandkids...it survived all of them trying to fly with it.
Their brooms last a long time and are very reasonably priced.
Another successful 'back to the land' venture...makes me proud
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://richsoil.com/email
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