Bosch Flexxo Serie 4 Review
- ✔️ Very light
- ✔️ Great battery life
- ✔️ Integrated tools
- ✔️ Inexpensive
- ❌ Plasticy feel to it
- ❌ Battery can't be replaced
- ❌ Small capacity
First impressions of the Flexxo is that it's light, nimble, a good size, and very easy to use. It ticks all the boxes, but is it better than competitors or the Athlet range?
Read on to find out more, but like any cordless vacuum it's important to know what it is you want from the vacuum. For some consumers the weight is the most important factor, whereas for others who may have pets it might be the suction that is the priority.
Suction on the Flexxo is good for the size of the vacuum. There are 2 power modes, a standard and a more powerful mode (often referred to as 'Turbo mode'), which I always find to be a must-have on any cordless - it allows you to clean 95% of your home in standard mode, but the extra suction is there when you need it.
The Flexxo has what Bosch call a "RobustAir System". Breaking through the marketing fluff, the motor has air gaps available to it, which allows it to continue offering great suction even when the dust bin is full or near capacity. This is something a lot of cordless vacuums don't do, and you notice a big drop in suction.
The brush bar is powered, which means it has its own motor for spinning independently of the spin caused by the suction. A powered brush bar is a must-have if your home is carpeted, as without it you'll only be pulling up surface dirt.
Design and Features
The design of the Bosch Flexxo is similar to the Athlet. It looks very much like a traditional upright vacuum, which is an advantage. Many cordless vacuums have decided to adopt a 'handheld-first' approach where they're effectively a handheld vacuum with a long neck to reach the floor; while this has its advantages it becomes a pain to store as you either need to lay them flat or have a wall bracket to fix them to.
The Bosch Flexxo doesn't follow the handheld-first ethos, instead it looks just like a traditional upright so you can easily store it upright.
The Bosch Flexxo comes with a few tools, including a neck extension, a crevice tool and a soft furnishings tool.
Often dubbed 'turbo mode', the Flexxo has a mode that makes the motor spin faster, which in turn causes better suction. Of course this uses more battery, so use it sparingly, but it's a must-have feature for any cordless vacuum.
Bosch have taken a different design approach to the Flexxo than other models like the Athlet. Although it may look very similar there is a key design different: the motor can be removed from the centre casing and create a truly handheld vacuum.
The handheld mode makes this handheld vacuum even more manoeuvrable and easy to use.
The Bosch Flexxo cordless vacuum weighs in at a tiny 3.1kg. That's about 6 cans of beans for those of us unfamiliar with kilograms!
Considering the design of the vacuum is one of an upright, much of the weight is distributed to the floor. This isn't the case with other cordless vacuums, that are 'handheld-first'. So not only is it an already light vacuum, but it also distributes what little weight it has far better. It makes it very easy to use and to whip around the house.
As we often mention though, less weight isn't necessarily better. The less a vacuum weighs the less force it has to push down against the carpet, which can effect the amount of dirt pulled up. Of course it's a trade off, as heavy vacuums aren't great to be lumbering around the house, so it really depends on the size and layout of your home. If you have a large open plan home on one floor then you'd want a heavier vacuum, but if you have a home spread across multiple floors with lots of nooks then you'll want something a little lighter. The Bosch Flexxo definitely fits into the second category!
We've briefly talked about the Bosch Flexxo's light and flexible body, but what we haven't discussed too much is its ability to split into a true handheld.
When people buy a vacuum they often get bogged down in features like the suction power, battery life and dust capacity. While these are very important, you quite often forget how you actually use your vacuum. Dust and dirt gets everywhere, not just your floors, and if you have pets then there is hair to content with as well.
You've got sofas, under tables, under chairs, cushions, pillows, corners of rooms and ceilings to contend with. That's just inside the house, you're bound to want to clean to car from time to time too, so lugging a huge upright round the front garden and driveway isn't too appealing.
Well fortunately the Bosch Flexxo is an upright vacuum that can split from its main body and turn into a fully handheld vacuum cleaner. It comes with a couple of tools to make cleaning sofas, stairs, and reaching ceiling corners easy.
We lived with the Bosch Flexxo for a couple of weeks and used it every day, and the ability to quickly switch to a true handheld was great. Compared to other vacuums like the Dyson range which are 'handheld first' it was a little more cumbersome to switch between modes, but the benefit you get of being able to easily store the Flexxo in upright mode far outweighs it for me.
Battery life on the Bosch Flexxo is great. Advertised as "up to 55mins", in our tests we got between 45-50mins out of a full charge.
We have a mix of hard floors, low pile carpets and high pile rugs in our home, so it can be a strain on the motor (and in turn the battery) over a full clean so 50 minutes from a full charge is pretty great.
Suction isn't as strong as alternative vacuums, which helps on battery life, but the suction is plenty enough for most households.
Bosch Flexxo Serie 4 Review
|Battery Run Time||45 minutes|
|Charge Time||4 hours|
|Capacity/Dust Box||0.6 Litres|
|Noise Level||76 dB|
|Good for Pets?||❌|
The Bosch Serie 4 Flexxo is a nice bit of kit. It's a great cordless vacuum, at an affordable price point.
But, is it as good as its sister vacuum, the Bosch Athlet or the Bosch Athlet ProAnimal? Well, it's newer, so you'd expect it to be better, but when we look at the details you can make up your own mind.
We'll cut through the noise for you, our choice here is probably the Athlet. Why?
It has a much larger capacity; roughly double, which means you need to empty it half as much
It comes with a flexible hose
It has been out for 4 years prior to the Flexxo being released, this means it's easier to source accessories, batteries and repairs
It is (ever so slightly) cheaper
That said, the Flexxo does have advantages. In our opinion it is more manoeuvrable. It is a massive plus being able to turn it into a handheld quickly, which is very different to how the Athlet models do things.
In short; if the ability to switch to a handheld is important to you go for the Flexxo, otherwise go for the Athlet.