Dirt Devil Accucharge BD20035RED Review: Versatile & Smart

The Dirt Devil BD20035RED was released sometime 2008. And their main selling point was the AccuCharge system that is smart enough to detect when the battery is full.

Dirt Devil Accucharge 15.6 Volt BD20035RED Review

Once that happens it automatically reduces current to a trickle, just enough to maintain its charge without overheating the battery thus extending its service life.

It doesn’t use a lithium ion battery so its ability to hold its charge over the long haul is a big question mark as several consumers found out.

Dirt Devil didn’t have any official number on the run time but based on consumer reviews you’ll get roughly 10 to 20 minutes of run time from a 6 hour charge.

Pros

  • 6 hour charge time
  • You can leave it on the charger without overcharging it
  • Motorized brush roll helps in cleaning carpet
  • Lightweight
  • Swivel feature make it easier to maneuver
  • Easy to remove canister
  • Self-standing charger
  • Foldable handle reduces storage footprint

Cons

  • Noisy
  • Brush clogs quickly if you use it to clean pet hair
  • Battery life is short
  • Small dirt container
  • Integrated battery can become a problem in the long term
  • Struggles with larger pieces of debris
  • Filter isn’t washable

What to expect from the Dirt Devil Accucharge 15.6 Volt Cordless?

Despite the NiCad battery, the charger has an energy star rating so it does use less electricity.

It uses a bagless system but the main filter isn’t washable. You’ll need to replace the filter after 3 months to maintain performance.

  • Powered by a 15.6 volt nickel cadmium battery
  • 6 hour charge time
  • Foldable handle reduces storage space
  • Accucharge system uses 70% less energy
  • Transparent dirt canister
  • Brush roll on and off feature makes this usable on bare floor and carpet
  • Swivel cleaning head
  • Allergen filtration

Cleaning the edges

It doesn’t have any edge cleaning bristles so it won’t pick up dirt well at the edges.

Stair cleaning

Even at 40 inches long, the lightweight nature of this vacuum allows it to clean stairs.

Attachments and accessories

This is strictly a floor vacuum – the only accessory included is the floor charger.

Charging time

It takes around 6 hours to fully charge.

Because it uses a smart charger (a.k.a. the Accucharge) that cuts current down when it detects that the battery is full, you can leave this on the charger without frying the battery.

Filter clean up

This is an 8 step process that includes the following:

  1. Removing the dust cap.
  2. Taking off the filter assembly
  3. Separating the filter screen from the filter itself
  4. Cleaning both the screen and the filter
  5. Emptying the dirt container
  6. Putting the filter assembly back together
  7. Attaching the assembly back in the canister
  8. Attaching the canister on the body.

The main filter can filter out allergens so you can’t wash this. You will need to use a second vacuum to clean dirt from it.

Battery life

It will vary. Some reviews say it was around 5 minutes, longest is 40 minutes. But most reviews report between 10 to 20 minutes so that is a good baseline.

Remember that this product uses a nickel cadmium battery. So power delivery won’t be as consistent as it’ll be if it had a lithium ion battery.

If you look at reviews some consumers did complain power loss as early as 5 minutes.

Warranty

It comes with a 2 year warranty on parts and motor.

If the any part of the vacuum fails within the warranty, call up dirt devil and they’ll send you a replacement unit or part.

Just don’t lose the power card and manufacture sticker because they’ll ask you to send those in to claim the warranty.

Bare floor cleaning

Based on consumer reviews, bare floor performance is satisfactory. It will do its job in cleaning small bits of dirt like bread crumbs, small seeds, dust, etc.

As one consumer in Amazon pointed out “this vac REALLY picks stuff up! I am AMAZED at the amount of dog hair, crumbs, etc this thing will pull in!”.

It however will struggle with the larger ones, the base is low so it will not fit those larger chunks and it isn’t powerful enough to suck them in outright even if you tilt it.

Carpet cleaning

Even if this has a brush, it will struggle cleaning thick carpet because it lacks power. It will do okay cleaning lower pile carpet but it will an okay job as long as dirt fits under the low profile base.

And because the motorized brush uses extra power, this will cut run time short.

If you have deep patterned rugs, this will struggle to pick dirt up but for flat ones, it’ll do the job.

Pet hair cleaning

This vacuum can remove pet hair on bare floor and carpet. But hair will wrap around the brush. So you’ll need to clean this part regularly.

See it in Action

Not the red one you see in the picture but it’s the same model…

Product specifications

AttachmentsNone
Battery15.6v Nickel cadmium
ChargerCharging stand
Charging time6 hours
Battery life20 mins
Net weight (with battery)5.85 pounds
Shipping weight11.2 pounds
Overall length41.7"
Battery indicatorNo
Filter typeAllergen filtration
(disposable)
Dust capacityN/A
Air WattsN/A
Voltage110v
Manufactured inChina
Warranty1 year limited

Customer reviews

Around 350 people left a review in Amazon and most of them were positive.

Consumers who left high ratings said that it has good enough suction that’ll pick up stuff like bread crumbs, pieces of paper, pet hair, small pet litter and small pieces of debris on hard floor, rugs and carpet though it’ll struggle with the larger ones because of the low clearance of the base.

Battery life was sufficient according to the majority of reviews but there were complaints about premature failures – some a few days and some within a few months of purchase.

The average run time that users got was between 10 to 20 minutes, with some complaining about losing suction as they go along while others didn’t experience this.

Reviews from other sites

Tech Crunch

Interesting that a technology website would review an appliance but Doug Aamoth did it here.

In his test, he was able to clean up “crumbs, coffee grounds and various crap off our linoleum floor” without much difficulty.

He wasn’t able to test it on carpet though.

The run time he got on his test was roughly 20 minutes.

Read Doug’s review in Tech Crunch

Where can I buy this?

You can buy this in Amazon for less than $80 and it’ll is eligible to their free 2-day shipping if you join Prime.

Extended warranties are also available of up to 3 years if you want that extra peace of mind.

Conclusion

This product would be great for small homes or apartments to clean small messes but it will struggle to pick up bigger pieces of dirt because it has a low profile and while it has decent power don’t expect deep cleaning type power.

While it can pick up pet hair, you’ll have to regularly clean the brushroll because pet or human hair will get stuck in there.

Suction is strong enough to use bare floor and flat thin carpet but it will struggle on thicker and uneven carpet surfaces.

Since the battery is built into the vacuum, there’s some concern with the long term viability of this product. Some folks say that it will conk out within a year. So keep your warranty card handy just in case. It does come with a 2-year warranty.

On a side note, a couple of Amazon customers were able to get replacement units just before their warranty expired so Dirt Devil honors their warranty.

For folks who can’t afford or aren’t willing to spend over a hundred dollars for a high end cordless stick vacuum like a Rowenta Delta Force or a Hoover Linx Stick Vac, this would be a good and affordable alternative, just be mindful of its limitations.

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