The Air Force Flex 760 adopts the same architecture as the Air Force Flex 560 and we also find the famous articulated suction tube from which it derives its suffix “Flex”. However, Rowenta has somewhat muscular its technical sheet since the voltage reaches 25.2 volts against 21 V for the 560, which ultimately does not change much. On the other hand, autonomy is also seen to increase from 35 to 75 minutes. Finally, the collector grows and can now store 0.8 liters of various detritus (0.4 liters for the 560). Are the changes enough to convince us to put our old vacuum cleaners in the closet?Read this Rowenta Air Force Flex 760 review.
The Rowenta Air Force Flex 760 is a format stick vacuum stick. This means that the engine block, the filtration system and the recovery tank are placed near the user’s wrist. In theory, this particular configuration, popularized by Dyson, facilitates the handling of the device since it requires less muscular effort to orient it in all directions. Stick vacuums stick are particularly practical for vacuuming difficult places: corner of the ceiling where the spiders will weave their webs, high shelves …
And if the Air Force Flex 760 adopts this architecture, it is not necessarily recommended for this kind of use because of its weight. Indeed, the guy weighs 2.29 kg in hand vacuum cleaner mode, that is to say without the suction tube; it’s almost twice as heavy as the Black + Decker Smarttech FEJ520JFS (1.30 kg). To overcome this weight problem, the manufacturer has provided a second handle, placed in front of the collector.
If the attempt is commendable and effectively allows you to manipulate the vacuum cleaner with less effort, it is clear that this grip is not natural. Consequently, the Air Force Flex 760 is still much less practical than a model like the Candy CAS10, which is lighter, better balanced overall and which can be used with one hand.
In ground suction mode, the weight is just as important, but less problematic since part of the mass of the Air Force Flex 760 rests on the ground. However, you have to drag, push, pull … just over 4 kg to clean up. For comparison, the fully equipped Tornado TOP5-21TG weighs only 2.13 kg. What is more, the suction head lacks a bit of flexibility and the somewhat abrupt turns cause it to lift. Long housekeeping sessions can quickly become tedious.
Fortunately, the “Flex” function which breaks the tube to facilitate suction under the base units proves to be practical and easy to engage since a simple press of the button is enough. When raising the device, the tube regains its rigidity and a “click” signals that the mechanism is blocked. It’s hard to make it simpler. But while a ramp of LEDs on the suction head would have made sense on this vacuum cleaner, perfectly suited for thorough cleaning under furniture, the manufacturer did not see fit to equip the Air Force Flex 760.
Stick vacuums often have a limited control panel and the Rowenta Air Force Flex 760 doesn’t really make a difference. Pressing the trigger (always concave and therefore less accessible than such a right button) starts the suction, the user can modify the power by pressing the “+/-” key. Three levels are offered: eco, boost, turbo in their order of power.
Finally, there is an indicator of remaining autonomy on the base. However, you will have to be content with three diodes, which is singularly lacking in precision compared to the Dyson V11, able to indicate the time remaining to the nearest second.
As a format stick vacuum stick, you must install a wall base to store the Rowenta Air Force Flex 760. It is rather impressive, but, good point, it is equipped with electrical connectors for charging. It is therefore not necessary to connect the appliance after having placed it on its base.
True to tradition, Rowenta is particularly generous in accessories since the box contains a telescopic nozzle, a motorized mini-brush, a wide brush, a bent tube to reach the top of very high shelves and finally two mini-brushes to be fixed to the end of the Air Force Flex 760 or its suction tube.
The suction performance of the Rowenta Air Force Flex 760 is above average.
Our long pile carpet still poses some problems for him. At minimum power, after 120 seconds of use, it collects only 88% of the detritus mixed in the woolly curls. In two minutes, the result is perfect by switching on the maximum suction power, but all is not rosy: the brush turns faster and strongly hooks the fibers. It therefore becomes very difficult, if not impossible, to vacuum the vacuum as it seems taped to the ground. You then have to settle for Boost mode – less powerful than Turbo mode – to collect 93% of waste in 2 minutes.
On fine carpet, the Air Force Flex 760 performs very well. We note however that the power level has little importance in the result since they are exactly the same in Eco, Boost or Turbo mode: 97% of the rice sucked in 30 seconds, 100% in one minute. The relative “poor performance” of Turbo mode is explained by the rotation of the brush a little too fast which tends to push the grains of rice behind it.
Like the vast majority of stick vacuums, the Air Force Flex 760 expresses its full potential on hard ground. On this surface, even the minimum suction power is enough to pick up all the trash in just 30 seconds.
The models of Air Force vacuum cleaner follow each other and look alike and we are always entitled to this painful collector to empty. Indeed, it must be detached from the main block to empty it, then remove the prefilter which acts as a cover so that you can finally get rid of the trash in the trash. And of course, you have to reassemble everything and put it back in its housing before thinking of continuing the suction. All this is far too complicated when the vast majority of stick vacuums facilitate the process thanks to an articulated bottom, which opens (often) at the touch of a button.
The brush is removed from the main suction head without difficulty and without any tools. It can be replaced just as easily. Surprisingly, the user can also remove the brush from the mini-head. And even if the process is a little more delicate – especially for the reinstallation – we appreciate this possibility.
During the suction, the dust is well retained in the hopper thanks to the action of the cyclone which separates the air from the particles. Admittedly, the prefilter is far from being immaculate after having ingested 20 grams of cocoa powder and it will be necessary to think of cleaning it by passing it under water. But it does its job well since the foam filter only took 0.11 grams. But once this barrier is passed, the air is freed of dust, as evidenced by the weight of the HEPA filter, which is exactly the same before and after ingestion of the cocoa powder.
Rowenta’s Air Force range had accustomed us to vacuum cleaners with limited autonomy. The 760 model corrects the shot a bit since it is able to vacuum for 66 minutes at the lowest power, which is quite comfortable. Obviously, if we increase the suction powers, we reduce the autonomy and it runs out of steam in 30 minutes at the intermediate power level. The turbo mode, meanwhile, only allows 9 min 30 s of cleaning.
The autonomy of the Air Force Flex 760 is therefore significantly less than that of the Dyson V11 which, for the record, draws 78 minutes in eco mode and 47 minutes at the intermediate power level. The strongest suction must be used for the Rowenta model to run longer than the British one (9 min 30 s and 7 min 45 s respectively).
You can do your cleaning with the Air Force Flex 760 without having to bear too much noise. Indeed, at minimum power, the sound level reaches 63 dB (A) and it does not exceed 71 dB (A) when the vacuum cleaner is pushed to its last entrenchments. Many other models have been noisier: the Dirt Devil Blade 2, for example, emits a noise of 72 dB (A) in normal mode and 80 dB (A) in boost mode.
- Flex function still as relevant and easy to use
- Wall socket supplied with electricity which can be used for recharging
- Excellent filtration
- Heavy, very heavy
- Emptying the waste bin to be reviewed
- The most powerful mode cannot be used on long pile carpets