The Oreck company is known for making vacuums, but it also produces air cleaners and miscellaneous household products. The company makes several models of household vacuums, shop (wet/dry) vacuums, floor waxers and refinishers, and air purifiers.
The Oreck Corporation was founded by David Oreck in the United States in 1963. The company is based in New Orleans, Louisiana, and its principal manufacturing facilities are in a modern 375,000 square foot factory in Long Beach, Mississippi.
Oreck Corporation started as a manufacturer of upright vacuum cleaners for the hotel industry in the United States. They designed a lightweight yet powerful and durable vacuum which was preferred by hotel housekeepers over the very heavy models available at that time. Oreck vacuums proved so popular that they are now used in over 50,000 hotels worldwide. After using these efficient vacuums at work, hotel personnel wanted to buy the machines for home use, which prompted Oreck to manufacture household models as well as their commercial line. Their products, while not cheap, are known for exceptional durability and ease of handling.
The Oreck XL 8-pound vacuum cleaner, aside from being one of the lightest models on the market, has a factory-tested estimated product lifespan of 18 years. The Arthritis Foundation gave this vacuum an Ease-of-Use Commendation for its exclusive Helping Hand Handle, which is ergonomically designed to reduce strain on wrists and arms. The user can simply push and pull the vacuum without having to grip the handle tightly, making it much easier to use for arthritis sufferers.
The Oreck air cleaner works by attracting air particles such as pollen and dust onto an electrically-charged collection grid. One unit can clean the air of a 30 foot square room. After passing air over a collection plate to trap particles, an Air Revitalizer is added at the end of the air cleaner which releases negative ions to revitalize the air. The Air Revitalizer can be turned on or off on the Professional Air Purifier. Leaving theAir Revitalizer on provides a pleasant, clean smell, but has no effect on the air purifiers cleaning efficiency.
The Oreck Air Purifier is not an ozone generator because it does not rely on ozone as part of the cleaning process. However, ozone is a natural by-product of many electrical appliances. The Air Purifiers Air Revitalizer emits only a very low level of ozone, well under UL and FDA guidelines of 50 ppb (parts per billion). Though ozone generators are sold by other manufacturers, they do a poor job of cleaning the air and generate high levels of ozone, especially in small spaces, which irritate the lungs. Consumers are advised by health authorities and the EPA not to purchase these units.
The collection grid of the Oreck air purifier, which should be kept clean to maintain the efficiency of the unit, is easy to remove and can be washed simply by a short soak in warm water and detergent. The company offers a specialized cleaning solution for the collection cell, but unless the air is full of tarry substances such as cigarette smoke, this is not necessary. Other than the carbon filter, which is not necessary to clean the air, there are no disposable filters to buy.
The Oreck model functions differently from a HEPA filter. HEPA stands for High Efficiency Particulate Arrestance, and These filters use a mat of very fine fibers to capture airborne particles.
HEPA filters create high resistance to airflow, which gets worse as the filter loads with dirt. This resistance causes HEPA units to use more energy , and cost more to operate. As the filter becomes more and more clogged, performance declines. Therefore, HEPA units require the user to frequently change the expensive filters. Since Oreck uses only a washable collection plate, continuing cost is not an issue with their air filters.
However, it is important to keep the collection cell clean, as it does not function well once it covered with dust. The company advises users to wash the collector after 4 weeks of initial use and every 8 weeks thereafter, but every house has a different amount of dust, so it is best to check the unit every few weeks to see whether a film has accumulated on the collector.
New units come with a 3-year warranty, and reconditioned units come with a 1-year warranty. The company has been in business for a long time and has a good reputation for honoring its guarantees.