Posted by John on August 31st, 2008
I’ve been testing air purifiers for several years now, and most new brands are unimpressive. Airgle air purifiers, on the other hand, stand out as effective machines with novel features.
The most impressive fact about the Airgle 750 air purifier is that it received the highest possible Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR) ratings from the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM). It works much better than most air purifiers because it has a 12-stage filtration process, including 4 pre-filters, 2 antimicrobial filters, 4 HEPA filters, and 2 activated carbon filters.
Don’t worry, though; you won’t have to replace all of those filters! Only the HEPA and carbon filters need to be replaced (about once a year). The other filters are washable. Continue reading
Posted by John on August 27th, 2008
If there’s one cleaning chore that I dislike more than vacuuming, it has to be mopping – at least in the conventional sense of the verb. Traditional mopping involves filling up a bucket with water and spreading chemicals across the floor with a germ-infested mop that you have to wring out with your hands. Yuck!
Now there’s a much more pleasant alternative to traditional mopping: the Bissell Steam Mop. This chemical-free cleaning machine works well on smooth floor surfaces like marble, ceramic, stone, vinyl, laminated, linoleum, and sealed hardwood floors.
Simply fill up the steam mop’s tank with regular tap water, and you’re ready to go. No bucket. No chemical cleaners. The Bissell mop heats up the water in just 30 seconds to produce a steam vapor that’s around 240 degrees Fahrenheit – hot enough to kill bacteria, mold, dust mites, viruses, and other germs on contact. Continue reading
Posted by John on August 23rd, 2008
I’ve always recommended against the use of carpet cleaning with hot water extractors (also known as steam cleaners or carpet shampooers) because most of them leave the carpet damp, setting the stage for mold growth. They can also leave a sticky film on the carpet that just attracts more dirt.
Then I saw the Bissell ProHeat CleanShot deep cleaner. This system works much better than any steam cleaner that you can buy or rent. And, for about the same price as renting one, you can have your own to use whenever you want. (If you have light-colored carpets like I do, a deep cleaner will come in handy quite often!) Continue reading
Posted by John on August 5th, 2008
I’ll admit it: As an allergy sufferer, I don’t vacuum as well as I should. When it comes to vacuuming, I like to get it over with as soon as possible. That’s what I enjoyed most about testing out the Sebo X4 vacuum: I was able to get my floors extremely clean with minimal effort. This upright vac is a powerhouse with an S-class filtration system (the British equivalent of HEPA). I knew that the carpet was clean without having to go over the same spot twice.
I prefer upright vacuums, and I can tell you that few upright vacuums match the cleaning power of the Sebo upright. The Sebo X4 contains two fans for twice the suction power. (Be warned: don’t get this vacuum near a frayed rug because it’ll suck the edges right up!) Continue reading
Posted by John on August 3rd, 2008
First, a quick trivia question: What do the following celebrities have in common?
Ronald Reagan, John F. Kennedy, Jr., and Wilt Chamberlain
Answer: They all demanded Royal Pedic mattresses. (JFK actually insisted on a Royal Pedic mattress wherever he went!) Continue reading
Posted by John on August 2nd, 2008
If you’ve never slept on genuine silk bedding, you don’t know what you’re missing! Kumi Kookoon bedding is made from the highest quality charmeuse silk, which drapes you in silky smooth comfort.
My favorite thing about silk sheets is the way they feel. I tend to get hot when I’m sleeping, but Kumi Kookoon bedding doesn’t trap body heat. It’s very light against the skin, and it wicks moisture away from the body. Continue reading
Posted by John on July 25th, 2008
Editor’s Note: The original Santa Fe Compact Dehumidifier has been replaced by the Santa Fe Compact 2 Dehumidifier. It packs all the same features as the original model, but has a slightly higher moisture removal capacity along with a more compact and efficient design.
Don’t let its size fool you; this 65-pint capacity dehumidifier may not be much bigger than a breadbox, but it’s twice as powerful as the 65-pint dehumidifiers at your local hardware store – and it’s more energy efficient.
The Santa Fe Compact Dehumidifier is made to fit in small places – crawlspaces, basements, closets, and even between floor joists. You can suspend it from above with the optional hang kit; make it a truly portable dehumidifier with the caster kit; or hide it inside a utility closet with the ducting kit. Continue reading
Posted by John on July 23rd, 2008
Several studies have suggested that, in a typical home, the kitchen is by far the dirtiest room. This makes sense if you think about it; the kitchen is where you store and prepare food, which is a vast source of biological contamination. (Just think about all of the salmonella warnings for various vegetables in the past year!)
Of course, we all try to keep the kitchen clean, but even the act of cleaning often just creates more germs. Sponges, for instance, are notorious for being bacterial breeding grounds. Simply washing a sponge doesn’t destroy all the bacteria. The best way to sterilize a sponge is to wet it and then place it in the microwave for a minute or two. The heat from the microwave is sure to fry all living microorganisms. (Note: If you try this, be sure to wet the sponge first, and let it cool down before removing it.)
The AirFree Air Sterilizer also uses heat to destroy microorganisms – and the best thing about this air purifier is that you can literally “plug it in and forget about it.” There’s absolutely no maintenance involved – no moving parts, no filters, no bulbs, nothing to clean, nothing to replace. Continue reading
Posted by John on July 22nd, 2008
I tried the new Electrolux Pronto stick vacuum a few weeks ago. Although I loved the entire design concept of the 2 in 1 vacuum and its actual performance, I must admit that it’s not the right vacuum for my home – but it may be the perfect vacuum for you!
The Pronto vacuum is ideal for apartments, lofts, and small houses with mostly hard floors. While it works well on low-pile carpets, it is not made for use on high-pile carpets. (I have high-pile carpet and two pet cats, which is why I need a larger vacuum made for carpet cleaning.) Continue reading
Posted by John on July 16th, 2008
I recently had the opportunity to “test-drive” a Halo UV vacuum cleaner, and I was very impressed by its design, handling, and germ-killing ability. Halo UV vacuums feature a UV-C light bulb that kills viruses, bacteria, dust mite eggs, flea eggs, mold spores, and other germs. UV-C light bulbs have been used to kill germs in water treatment plants and hospitals for many years, and more recently, some supermarkets have started using them to sterilize shopping carts. Continue reading