Kenmore Elite 31150 Pet & Allergy Friendly Upright Vacuum
Kenmore Elite 31150 is corded, bagged upright vacuum cleaner with excellent, true HEPA multi-layered air filtration, suitable not only for pet owners and people prone to asthma and allergies, but also for everybody else regardless of floor types found at home. Disposable high-quality HEPA vacuum bags ensure easy dirt disposal, thorough air filtration and they protect motor pre-filter and exhaust HEPA air filter.
Kenmore Elite 31150 Features and Specifications
Kenmore Elite 31150 is upright vacuum cleaner with the flexible cleaning hose, telescopic wand and several cleaning attachments, and is suitable for cleaning both floors and elevated surfaces.
Unit is powered with 12 Amps inducer motor providing 20% more power when compared with similar Kenmore upright vacuums.
Main cleaning head feature so-called 'Beltless Direct Drive System' - brush roll (agitator) is powered directly with two built-in electric motors.
Cleaning width is 12.75 inches (~32.4 cm), and combined with 35 feet long (~10.7 m) power cord, it allows the user to quickly clean rather large area.
Although the power cord is rather long, unit doesn't feature automatic power cord rewind system - power cord is manually wrapped around the power cord hooks.
Brush roll is of a classic design and periodically it has to be cleaned from pet and human hair, fibers, lint and similar debris.
Main cleaning head also features strong headlights, allowing the user to spot dirt even in low-light conditions for example, under the sofas, beds, furniture and similar.
To help the users with the cleaning, Kenmore Elite 31150 features infrared dirt sensor in the air flow - when dirty air passes into the unit, it warns the user that the floors are still dirty.
Main cleaning head comes with manual height adjustment system, with 5 possible heights:
- 'Hi': suitable for shag, deep pile or scatter rugs,
- 'Med Hi': suitable for medium to deep pile carpets,
- 'I': suitable for medium pile carpets,
- 'Med Lo': this height is suitable for low to medium pile carpets,
- 'Lo': suitable for low pile carpets and for bare floors.
Power setting controls are positioned on the handle and these include:
- 'Off': this setting turns OFF both suction and brush roll motors,
- 'Floor': this setting turns ON only the suction motor, while brush roll doesn't rotate. This setting is suitable for cleaning sensitive bare floors,
- 'Carpet': this setting turns ON both suction and brush roll motors. This setting is suitable for carpets and rugs that tolerate this kind of cleaning. Sensitive carpets should be vacuumed using 'Floor' power setting in order to prevent any potential damage.
Note: this is simple to use unit, but just to be sure, when unit arrives be sure to thoroughly read the manual/instructions.
Unit is relatively heavy, and it weighs 21 pounds (~9.5 kg). Although it doesn't have full swivel mechanism and despite its weight, unit easily traverse over various floors and is rather maneuverable. However, due to its weight, it takes some effort to carry it up and down the stairs.
Kenmore Elite 31150 Air Filtration
Kenmore Elite 31150 is true HEPA vacuum cleaner - it filters out at least 99.97% of 0.3 microns or larger particles from the air and exhausts practically the clean air.
There are three layers of air filtration:
- disposable true HEPA vacuum dirt bags - original Kenmore Type O (53294 part number) vacuum bags are easy to replace, and have excellent filtering capabilities. They are not the cheapest dirt bags on the market, but their filtering level justifies their price.
Non-OEM vacuum dirt bags are not recommended.
Note: Kenmore Elite 31150 features so-called 'Power Flow design' - as the bag fills with the dirt, suction is not decreased until the bag is almost full.
Also, unit comes with 'Check Bag Indicator' - it goes on when the air flow through the unit is decreased. This can happen due to the full dirt bag, but also if the motor safety filter is dirty, there is a clog of some kind in the unit, or when certain cleaning tools are used.
- motor safety filter protects main motor. Motor safety filter is washable with warm water and some mild detergent (soap for example). After washing it is very important to dry out the filter thoroughly before returning it back into the unit.
Note: never assemble the unit with wet filter, never operate it with wet filter and never operate it without the filter!
- HEPA media exhaust filter - Kenmore 53296 HEPA Vacuum Media Filter EF-9 effectively removes 99.97% of 0.3 microns or larger particles from the air flow. It removes various allergens and pollutants, including pollen, mold, germs and other particles that cause health issues like asthma, allergies and similar.
This filter is not washable and it must be replaced periodically.
OEM vacuum dirt bags prolong the operating time HEPA media exhaust filter by filtering particles that can cause this filter to lose its filtering capabilities - and vacuum bags are disposable, too!
All in all, disposable HEPA vacuum bags and HEPA exhaust filter, combined with motor safety filter enable Kenmore Elite 31150 to exhaust clean air back into the cleaned room.
Kenmore Elite 31150 Cleaning Tools
Kenmore Elite 31150 comes with additional cleaning tools, which include:
- flexible cleaning hose, enabling the user to clean elevated surfaces using telescopic wand and cleaning attachments,
- telescopic wand extends the reach of the cleaning attachments and help with the cleaning in general,
- Crevice Tool is designed for cleaning narrow and tight areas and gaps, like between cushions and seats, along the edges and corners and similar,
- Combination Brush is 2-in-1 cleaning tool. It can be used without brush for increased suction for cleaning stairs, cushions and similar surfaces, or with the brush for cleaning loose and gentle surfaces like drapes and similar,
- Pet HandiMate is used for deep and thorough cleaning of furniture, smaller carpets, stairs and similar. It has rotating brush which help removes pet and human hair, lint, fibers and similar dirt off the cleaned surfaces. Since it is not of tangle-free design, it is not maintenance free cleaning tool. But, hair and lint can be removed using scissors rather quickly.
Kenmore Elite 31150 comes with the set of cleaning tools that help it clean practically all surfaces commonly found at homes.
Kenmore Elite 31150 Safety Features
To protect the unit from the damage due to the overheating, Kenmore Elite 31150 has built-in thermal protection for both main motor and for brush roll (agitator) motors.
If there is a clog of some kind in the unit and the air flow is decreased, cooling of the motors is decreased. When their temperature reaches certain level, built-in thermal protection shuts them off. If that happens, turn off the unit, unplug it from the wall socket, let it cool down and find the clog and clean/remove it.
Kenmore Elite 31150 also comes with 'By-Pass Valve' which prevents the main motor from overheating and damage - when the air flow is decreased, 'By-Pass Valve' opens allowing more air to flow through the motor and thus increases the cooling. When 'By-Pass Valve' opens, suction is decreased and unit's sound is changed.
Note: 'By-Pass Valve' may open due to the decreased air flow when using certain cleaning attachments. If that happens, use the suction control to adjust the air flow through the unit. And never, but really never block the 'By-Pass Valve'.
Long Story Short: Kenmore Elite 31150 is large and sturdy bagged upright vacuum cleaner. It is designed for cleaning both large floor and elevated surfaces commonly found at homes and apartments.
The use of high-quality dirt bags and filters is mandatory to keep the air filtration level high.
Unit is not the lightest corded 'upright with hose' vacuum on the market. It is easily moved around, but carrying it up the stairs can be somewhat problematic.
Also, height adjustment selector is positioned low on the main cleaning head - people having back issues could have problems reaching this selector and setting desired height.
Other than that, it is very good upright vacuum - if you need corded, bagged upright vacuum with additional cleaning hose, telescopic wand and few more cleaning tools, consider Kenmore Elite 31150.
For more reviews and recommendations, check Kenmore Elite 31150 Amazon link (link opens in the new window).