Vacuuming with this little wizard just might be my new favorite hobby.

By Liz Steelman
May 22, 2017
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A couple of weeks ago, my roommate told me her mom had ordered us a cordless vacuum on a whim. This is not out of the ordinary—we’re pretty sure she has a HomeGoods and Costco addiction (I would, too, if I lived in the suburbs and had a car of my own), and it’s been quite helpful in stocking our starter apartment. But this gift I was less than enthused about. The word “cordless” conjured up images of the wimpy DustBusters and Dirt Devil stick vacuums of my youth, which meant a hot minute of super suction followed by me practically sweeping the dirt into the nozzle and holding upright in hopes of the dust eventually making its way towards the filter. And besides, we already had inherited a vacuum cleaner from a friend moving away. And even though it sucked—sorry, I had to—I didn’t want to deal with finding space for another multiple (or dragging the darn thing down to the basement).

But since no one enjoys using our bright yellow WALL-E roll-along vacuum, we often neglect to vacuum unless we absolutely have to—think when parents, extended family, or potential suitors come to visit for the first time. And since we’re busy professional women who don’t want to clean more than we have to, the dust bunnies had turned our hallway into Watership Down. So, when we decided to host a handful of friends over for a casual night of board games, we decided to break out the new vacuum cleaner—a Bissell Air Ram. My roommate took the hallway while I was getting ready, and I would clean our living room while she cooked dinner.

Now, I didn’t realize how long it had been since I last bought and used a cordless vacuum cleaner: a series called Mad Men had both its series premiere and finale on the air, seven iPhones have been released, and a man named Barack Obama went from senator to president to citizen. The thing about it being 2017 is that rechargeable batteries are actually pretty great now—you can even get power tools or even a car that runs on them! Technology!

So, imagine my surprise to find that this vacuum was not just a gift to us, but a gift from the universe. It was powerful, long lasting, quiet, easy to maneuver, light, and most importantly sucked up everything all by itself! I enjoyed the experience so much I even moved our living room furniture so I could vacuum under our couches—a true sign of domestic bliss, courtesy of this appliance. No one was going to go into my room that night, but I decided to hit up the rug in my bedroom to keep the fun going. Now, this rug has been “vacuumed” since I first got it two years ago, but I was just convinced that it would always be slightly dirty unless I wanted to send it out for cleaning. After running this vacuum over it a couple of times, there’s no need to take it off my floor: it now looks brand new.

After completing my 20-minute cleaning marathon, I ran down my (always) very long, (now) very clean hallway and entered the kitchen, where my roommate and her boyfriend were cooking dinner.

“Oh my GOSH that vacuum is great!” I said, in the most enthusiastic tone I’ve ever used to describe cleaning. They turned around at the exact same time, the exact same glee-stricken smile on both of their faces—“I know, right?” they said in baffled unison. “Wait till you have to empty the container,” her boyfriend said.

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And so I did: not only was seeing how much dirt and dust I had accumulated on my cleaning brigade vilely satisfying, but it was also remarkably easy to clean. You just slide a Ziploc-type slider and everything comes out into the garbage—no having to reach in and pull it out.

So, try this vacuum out for yourself: If you listen closely, you’ll find that that whirr from its quiet suction is it actually saying “Welcome to 2017.”

To buy: Bissell Air Ram Cordless Vacumm, $187;