A few months ago I published a review that talked about the Duo Clean Rocket that featured Shark’s latest technology called the “Duo Clean” that features a roller brush and a bristled brush.
This Shark Cord-Free Stick Vacuum Comes With A Twist
Shark ION Flex 2X Review
Shark puts a twist with the ION Flex 2X, instead of just using a solid tube, it has a flexible hose in the middle that allows it to twist, hence the name “Flex”. This feature does two things – first, it allows users to clean under furniture without having to bend and second, it helps with storage space as you can fold down the wand and store it vertically without the need of a dock. It also has the Duo Clean feature that, in my opinion, is one of the best innovations when it comes to cleaning surface dirt regardless if it’s carpet or hard floors. The 2X model comes with two ION batteries that extend the run time for up to 48 minutes with the non-motorized attachments.
It was one of their first products that used this feature and had a similar design to the Dyson cordless vacuums.
The only difference is the Rocket has a cord.
Now Shark has a proper cordless vacuum that may rival Dyson in terms of versatility and performance.
Meet the IONFlex Duo Clean – Shark’s latest cordless stick vacuum to hit the market.
And it has several features not even found in the Dyson V8.
- MultiFlex technology allows this to reach deeper into furniture because of the flexible extension wand
- Of course, there’s the Duo Clean feature that cleans large and small debris on carpet and bare floor without the need to switch anything
- It has two removable lithium-ion batteries so that you can charge one battery while still using the other
- The versatile toolset that includes a duster crevice tool, pet multi-tool, anti-allergen dust brush, and a flexible extension wand
- LED Headlights
- Smart Response Technology that has different settings tailored for carpets or bare floor
- Comes with a 5-year limited warranty
- Versatile stick vacuum that morphs into a hand vac
- Duo Clean feature is a game-changer in how well it cleans bare floor and carpet
- Extended 5-year warranty – 3 years longer than the Dyson V8
- The flexible wand allows it more maneuverability and reaches under furniture
- The removable battery means batteries can be replaced just in case it breaks
- LED headlights give it better visibility
- The small capacity dust cup
- It takes around 3.5 hours to recharge
- Not as maneuverable as the V8
Introduction to the Shark IONFlex Duo Clean cordless?
This vacuum is similar to the Rocket Duo Clean minus the cord. In typical Shark fashion, they’ve added lots of goodies and features that make this stand out from its peers.
Before I go on babbling, please watch this video from Shark to see what this product is all about…
The features shown in the video is quite impressive from the Duo Clean system to the LED headlights.
There are two versions of this vacuum in Amazon – the IF251 and IF201. Both have the same features; the most significant difference would be that the IF215 (blue) has two batteries while the IF201 only has one.
Both will have the same Duo Clean tool with LED headlights and a flexible wand.
Shark was the first and perhaps the only manufacturer that utilizes counter-rotating brushes. Instead of using two bristled brushes, the front part utilizes a soft roller brush that does a great job of pulling up dirt.
The second beater bar has a traditional bristled design to agitate the dirt on the carpet.
Using this design allows Shark to raise the clearance and prevent snow plowing large particles of dirt.
It’s a fixture in all their new products that include the Rocket and Rotator series vacuums.
The IONFlex comes equipped with a lithium-ion battery that will give you around 20 to 30 minutes of run time depending on the power mode you use.
If you opt for the more expensive IF252, you’ll get not one but two batteries. Take note that this vacuum has an external charger so you can still use it while the other battery charging.
You can also plug it directly on the vacuum itself to charge when not in use.
One thing that limits the Dyson V8, Hoover Cruise, Shark Rocket and other similar vacuums would be their inability to stand without a wall-mounted bracket.
In my home with concrete walls, I don’t want to drill holes, but that’s just my preference. It isn’t a big issue for folks who don’t mind a little DIY work, but if you don’t want to drill any holes, this is a big plus.
Because the wand folds, it’ll take less real estate to store this vacuum. You’ll be able to stow this vacuum away easily.
Before the IONFlex came out all of the vacuum cleaners in the Dyson mold used an extension wand that did not bend. While there’s nothing wrong with this setup, you’ll have to crouch down to reach deep under furniture.
Shark brings another innovative feature called the MULTIFLEX where a part of the extension wand flexes. It gives it better maneuverability when it comes to cleaning areas under tables or sofas.
Another feature not found in other cordless stick vacuums is the LED headlights. You’d have to purchase a high-end upright to enjoy this feature.
Now it’s available in this vacuum.
It helps in terms of visibility and tracking down dust.
Floor to ceiling versatility
Perhaps the greatest strength of this product is the versatility that it brings to the table. When you combine all the tools, you have a vacuum capable of cleaning every part of your home and even your vehicle.
It comes with: dusting brush, crevice tool and a pet multi-tool that will help you clean every nook and cranny of your home.
The pet multi-tool is handy when cleaning fabric sofa and mattresses. If you have children suffering from eczema, this is a handy tool that’ll help you clean bed bugs.
The most significant benefit you’ll get from the Duo Clean system would be how it cleans bare floors.
The Duo Clean design will funnel dirt towards the inlet.
Using this allowed Shark to raise the clearance thus preventing it from pushing larger bits of dirt forward- a phenomenon known as the snow plowing effect.
In a way, the soft roller part of the Duo-Clean system is similar to Dyson’s soft-roller but not as thick.
It will work great on most bare floor surfaces such as hardwood, tile, and linoleum. Even if it has crevices, there’s enough suction and agitation to pick up dirt trapped in those areas.
Take note the vacuum cleaners with a cord has more power.
But it’ll still have better performance when you compare it to other underpowered stick vacuums in the market. Dare I say that this will go head to head with the Dyson V8 in terms of how it cleans dirt and it’ll last more than 8 minutes even with the max power engaged.
This vacuum comes with a pet turbo brush; this vacuum is capable of cleaning debris like crumbs of chips or pet hair off fabric upholstery like sofa and mattresses.
If I could nitpick though, this tool does not pivot so it’ll put a bit of strain on your wrist.
It also comes with a crevice tool so cleaning nooks and crannies should not be an issue.
See it in action
Here’s a real-world demonstration of how the Shark IONFlex works.
Take note that these may not be the same variant you’ll see in Amazon, but it’ll have the same motor and Duo Clean head.
Looking at reviews, consumers like how this product performs.
One review said that this vacuum has a “self-propelled” feeling on carpet.
It is good in my opinion because you know that suction is good and bad because it makes it harder to maneuver.
In terms of performance, it seems that this vacuum outperforms the Dyson V6 thanks in large part to the Duo-Clean system that has very good agitation in bare floor and carpet.
One thing to note is that Shark weighs more than the Dyson V6 or V8 because of the bigger motor and wider cleaning head.
It won’t be as easy to maneuver, but it still has the swivel steering.
Run time based on reviews is between 20 and 30 minutes depending on the cleaning mode. If you use the carpet mode, run time will be closer to 20 minutes.
The self-standing feature also got a lot of thumbs up, and since you can fold the wand, this lessens the footprint and requires less space to store.
Complaints include the dirt bin being small and some complaints about the long charge time that’s around 3 to 3.5 hours. Recharge time is pretty standard – take note that the Dyson takes the same time to charge fully.
Does the Shark ION Flex 2X Provide Good Value?
If you look at the current pricing, the ION Flex 2X is a little bit more expensive than the newer Shark stick vacuum – the ION F80. And these two products are basically the same as the F80 having the longer-lasting battery that will run for up to 80 minutes. So between the two, the ION F80 is a no-brainer option because it has the same Flex feature, Duo Clean head, and two batteries.
3 Reasons why you should get the Shark ION Flex 2X
- Want something cheaper than a Dyson: The ION Flex 2X is cheaper than either the Dyson V10 and V11. With the Duo Clean head, this vacuum will have outstanding performance on hard surfaces.
- Extended run time: This model comes with two Li-Ion batteries that will run for up to 48 minutes.
- Parts availability: Shark provides excellent support for their products and parts such as the battery and filters are widely available in Amazon and direct from the Shark website.
Shark does it again with the IONFlex Duo Clean. This vacuum is a Shark Rocket minus the cord.
Again, Shark has its eye set on challenging Dyson as the market leader in the cordless vacuum niche with never before seen features in a cordless stick like the MULTIFLEX technology, LED headlights and self-standing storage that does not require any brackets.
It’s a bit pricier than the corded Rocket but it does not have any cords, so this is a great versatile cleaner that’ll clean anywhere inside your home and vehicle.
Unique Design Makes It A Compelling Dyson Alternative
Ergonomics - 91%
Surface Cleaning - 96%
Deep Cleaning - 84%
Quality - 92%
Design - 92%
Value - 91%
The Shark IONFlex Duo Clean has some unique features that make it a compelling option. First, it’s got the DuoClean head that perhaps is the best solution for cleaning hard floors and also cleans carpet as well. There’s no need to switch cleaning heads every time there is a transition which is a time saver. Second is the IONFlex feature that makes cleaning under furniture less painful on the back and helps this vacuum to stand on its own for easier storage. It also has LED lights that help with visibility. However, there will be some issues like the top-heavy design that makes it more tiring to use when cleaning any area above the waist or shoulder.