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Xist 08-11-2014 02:04 AM

KNR Marketing is Kirby the vacuum cleaner company
If they offer to clean two rooms of your house for free, they will clean one after trying to sell you a vacuum for $3,000. My dear mother agreed when the girl on the phone insisted they were not Kirby and they would not send a salesman. The sales pitch was about two hours.

Kirby hates salesmen!

To be honest, the Kirby is pretty well-rated by Consumer Reports, but two or three times as expensive as the next-expensive vacuums, while eight places below the Kenmore Elite 31150 for $350, although the Kirby did better on carpet.

I am not sure if I have mentioned this in these forums, but a previous tenant ruined our carpet. Professionals cleaned out the carpet itself well enough, but a roommate told me over and over that the pad was ruined and stains kept coming back up. I bought a secondhand carpet cleaner and use it every couple of weeks. The old stains eventually went away, but my roommates were good at making new ones.

Wikipedia quotes Kirby's claim that:

Made primarily of aluminum, it converts into an upright vacuum cleaner, a canister vacuum cleaner, a carpet shampoo system, a floor buffer, a tile cleaner, an air pump, and a sander
While it works, it would be worth something to have one machine that both vacuums and shampoos. There are 983 reviews on Top 983 Complaints and Reviews about Kirby Vacuum Cleaners, with an average rating of 1.5/5. I skimmed ten or twenty reviews, nobody said the vacuum was great, they just had other issues, but a fair number of people complained about their machine working poorly.

The salesman kept talking about the lifetime warranty. Wikipedia states:

The registered purchaser of a Kirby home care system currently receives a three-year Manufacturer's Limited Warranty, access to a Lifetime Rebuild Program, and a Fire Protection Plan.


The current rebuild price is determined by the United States Consumer Price Index (currently $175 for original owners and $350 for non-original owners), plus shipping cost.
I wish there was something that lived up to Kirby's promises. I have probably had five vacuums. I would love keeping my carpet so clean that a vacuum salesmen could not pick up anything.

Arragonis 08-11-2014 02:03 PM

I'm getting a Henry next time, although I think he parties quite hard...

Oceanic815 08-17-2014 04:50 PM

Those things are $3k?!? Yeowch! We picked up a used Kirby Sentria for $200 and that thing works awesome. It does go through its share of belts and bags, and is not the lightest vacuum in the world however. Other than that, all the accessories work great and strong enough it can lift the carpet. I'm not displeased with it.

Xist 09-21-2014 07:56 PM

Oceanic, the salesman did not try to sell the vacuum for three thousand dollars, when he finally said the price, he tried to convince us that it was worth that much, but he was such a nice guy that he offered us several discounts.

"Ma'am, you are not a senior citizen are you? You are?! I never would have thought so! You get a discount! Do you have any Veterans in the family? You get a discount!" and so forth. I believe that he tried to convince her to pay $1,850 and dropped the price to $1,350 after I left. I read that everything over twelve hundred is commission.

jochy33 05-25-2015 10:29 PM

for $3,000..? Woaoo .. that is crazy i got one for $400

freebeard 05-29-2015 11:22 AM

Why would anyone need anything more than an $80 Shop Vac?

Frank Lee 05-29-2015 01:25 PM

Years ago I got a call "that I'd won a free carpet cleaning". I knew what it was too. I removed everything from my living room and hallway and let them clean it. I'm sure they weren't expecting that. I still chuckle when I think about how frustrated the guy got when his sales pitches fell flat: "DON'T YOU CARE ABOUT YOUR FAMILY???" "Who- me and the cat?" He drove from 55 miles away! Yup, it did a nice cleaning job! Thanks!

The Other Andy 06-13-2015 12:33 AM

For what it's worth, I have a Kirby Tradition in the closet (I used it today in fact). It dates back to 1979, and was purchased by my parents at a thrift shop probably about a decade ago.

Think about that: 1979. A vacuum cleaner. Those Dyson vacuums everyone loves so much won't last ten years, never mind thirty some. All I've done is replace the belt, cord, and tube leading up to the bag (a messy and annoying job, but one that cost me about $10. I could've upgraded the Kirby to the HEPA bags, but I'd have needed another part). Are they worth $1500 new? I'd say so, but I'd always buy one second hand for $500 instead.

Now that said, they can be a bit of a pita. I've never figured out the jumble of attachments (some of which I'm sure are missing), and getting the normal-carpet-roller-brush thing back on again correctly on the first try is impossible. And if I had stairs I'd probably throw the thing out the nearest window.

But I could then plug it in and continue using it, because it's a Kirby.

gone-ot 06-13-2015 10:25 AM

KIRBY is the household-appliance version of TIMEX "...takes a licking (suction) and keeps on ticking (sucking)..." (wink,wink)

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