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The SEBO Felix is the Best Vacuum I've Ever Owned!!!

Updated on March 10, 2017

My Favorite Sebo Vacuum is Almost 20 Years Old...But Still Looks New!


A Little About Me

Everyone who knows me knows that I'm slightly obsessed with vacuums. At one time this may have been thought of as just another of my fleeting obsessions, but through the years, I find myself coming back to the topic over and over again.So I think it's safe to say that my vacuum obsession truly is an obsession. It's not waning with time, and a happy result is that places me in a good position to recommend a great vacuum.

I was recently in the market for some new vacuum cleaner bags. I've owned a SEBO Felix vacuum for roughly 15 to 20 years. While searching online for the bags, I discovered that my obscure, European vacuum, which I've loved and raved about to anyone who would listen, had finally arrived in America! This was a huge discovery for me for several reasons. First, because I've been secretly considering getting another one (my husband doesn't know about this yet...but I guess the cats out of the bag now!) And as my story unfolds below, you'll find that I wasn't thrilled with the purchasing options available to me previously. Second, I discovered a plethora of information about my vacuum which makes me love it even more (if that's even possible!)

There are videos available to learn about every single aspect of caring for my vacuum. There are accessories I was wishing for that actually exist! And last, I discovered, or rather rediscovered why I so love everything about German engineering and technology. My vacuum is smart in both it's design and it's fabrication...everything works together so precisely. And the features and expandability it offers, put it light years ahead of anything else on the US market. Plus I was really impressed with the technology used to create an animated marketing video. In watching it I realized that my vacuum is actually sexy!!

After reading all this, my husband will undoubtedly agree that we can't seriously think about living one more year without owning this patriotic version of my much loved vacuum!!!

SEBO Felix Fun Vacuum Limited model for 2012 Elections
SEBO Felix Fun Vacuum Limited model for 2012 Elections

More of My Favorable Review, Details About the Felix, Repairs & Maintenance

SEBO is a German company that makes vacuums

It's been perhaps twenty years now since I first ran across the SEBO name.At that time I was a young mom with a brand new house in a somewhat rural setting, 2 young boys, a husband with a newly developed passion for landscaping, and a puppy.

I joined my husband in his landscaping interests, since we had a lot of outdoor space around which was essentially a 'blank canvas' for us to build our utopian dream yard. But this endeavor, along with the 2 little boys and the adorable but obstinate puppy, made the task of keeping all that dirt outdoors a real challenge. Added to that was my growing dislike of wearing shoes, socks or virtually anything at all on my feet indoors. This amplified the need to keep our indoor floors as spotless as possible.

So in a nutshell the situation was that we'd just spent a small fortune on new flooring, and I personally couldn't stand to walk around barefoot and continually step on any little things like twigs, leaves, dirt, bugs, etc. I was hard-pressed to find a decent vacuum!

How I First Discovered SEBO

After making the rounds of the local stores that sold vacuums in our area, purchasing a few, returning a few and keeping the best of the lot, I began to think there had to be a better way.

The Internet was new back then...and that wasn't really the first place you'd think of to go and purchase a product like a vacuum. It strikes me as funny now, how much things have changed in such a short time! But you could research things, and that's what I decided to do.After reading about Electrolux online (the apparent front runner for the top-of-the-line category, we decided they were out of our price range (the company to me seemed to require fairly high ongoing expenses to keep their products working well). Another popular high-end contender at that time in was Oreck.I researched them online and found a distributor close by.We actually purchased an Oreck stick vac, also called an electric broom, and while it was a good overall it had some inherent design problems, necessitating frequent expensive repairs.

Nothing new, unique or unusual was forthcoming in my early research until I stumbled upon this vacuum made by a German company, called SEBO.The vacuum was called the Felix. It was intriguing in both design and features...really intriguing. But no one locally carried the brand; in fact one of the few US distributors I could find was based in New York.I just wasn't ready to spend a lot of money on an unknown brand, and to pay a lot for shipping a heavy item, and then have no local means of repairing the vacuum if something broke.

So My Search for the Perfect Vacuum Continued for Several More Years

During the period of time that I was I considering my options, I ended up burning through some of the more popular American brands we could buy locally at an alarming rate. I'd tried some of the top US brands including Hoover, Bissell, Sharp and Eureka. Every brand I tried was good at first, but performance degraded overtime...not very much time either!

Then the Website Came onto My Radar

Frustrated and tired of shelling out money for new vacuums that lasted only a few years, I pulled up my earlier research and more seriously considered the SEBO brand.There wasn't much more information available online at that point, but the one new entry I found was significant.

The was a website catering to all kinds of people with allergies.We, like most families have some allergies in our midst, but nothing significant enough to warrant special vacuums.But the site began recommending certain brands for their filtration systems especially the HEPA ones.As I understand it HEPA certified vacuums have filtration systems that contain the dust and particles your vacuum picks up.There are several levels of HEPA filtration and the link below will take you to a Good Housekeeping article that describes the various levels and what they mean:

Good Housekeeping article about HEPA Filtration

For our purposes, the true-absolute, (or it may be called True S) which is the highest level of HEPA filtration that's available, really wasn't necessary.But it was interesting to learn that the Felix vacuum I was quickly falling in love with had it! I was also able to ascertain that the Felix met all of the other criteria on my short list of necessary features.

Vacuum Features I Require

  • A long cord
  • Light enough for me to easily manage on my own
  • Easy to use
  • Small enough to fit into our overfilled closets
  • The ability to raise the beater bar, or brush roller for 'delicate' floors like hardwood and marble
  • An assortment of accessories available so that I can attach a longer hose and add attachments
  • Disposable Bags for Emptying - I didn't like that the new bagless models all had clear bins where you could see the dirt and junk you picked up. Plus I think taking a bag out and tossing it is cleaner than dumping stuff in a garbage can where all the dust flies all around.
  • Well made for longevity

So I Took the Plunge and Ordered the SEBO Felix Fun Premium 1

I rapidly came to the conclusion that the SEBO Felix met all my criteria, and was a really great looking vacuum cleaner too!I

Admittedly, I still had trouble with the price, which at that time (maybe 15 years ago) was between $500-550 (surprisingly it hasn't gone up very much in price since I got it 15-20 years ago!) But then I discovered how much my husband had spent on the Dyson that I didn't really love. And when I added up the cost of the 'disposable vacuums' I'd purchased over the years, I quickly realized that the cost was really relative.

I also had a big problem with the cost of shipping, but I called the store in New York, and after a few conversations, I got them to throw in the cost of shipping...all while learning more about the Felix and cementing my desire to on it.

Ultimately, each of my concerns were adequately addressed, and I finally decided to take a chance. I placed an order from the store in New York, and eagerly awaited it's arrival.

March 2017 Update

When I wrote my last update 2 years ago I thought I as searching for a canister vacuum but truth be told I've just never loved them. In the end I got what I loved...another Sebo. I got it from Sebo USA and it's absolutely beautiful! I'll add a photo of it very soon. My original Sebo still is pristine and we've located it in a hard to reach part of the house where it was cumbersome trying to carry a vacuum back and forth...even one as light and easy to carry as the SEBO. I feel so lucky!

March 2015 Update

I still love vacuums. I recently began to research them again. This time I need something entirely different. The opposite of my SEBO. I began searching for an inexpensive, light weight canister vac, and was delighted to find that once again my patience and perseverance paid off. I found the perfect one for my needs yet again! My new vacuum just arrived, so I haven't had a lot of time to test it out yet, but in a few weeks time, if I still love it, I'll add it to the end of my review.

I Bought This Inexpensive Cannister Vac from Amazon in March 2015

Eureka Mighty Mite Canister Vacuum, 3670G
Eureka Mighty Mite Canister Vacuum, 3670G | Source

2016 Update: Well, I've Had The Eureka Mighty Max for a Year Now, & it's Great!

There's not too much to say about this vacuum...good or bad. It's a very basic model. It was very inexpensive, it works well and it's a year old. It's not fancy but it does the job. It is very lightwieght so it's easy for me to carry around alone. Also, the suction is great...even after a year of moderate use! This is my 2nd Eureka...the first was an upright that really lasted much longer than I could have expected.


To Say That My Sebo Has Surpassed All Expectations Would Be An Understatement

My Happy Outcome

Taking a Risk with an Unknown Brand Paid Off Big Time

I could not have hoped for a better outcome.Fast forward 15-20 years after I first agonized over my decision and my SEBO still looks and operates almost like it the did the day I got it.To say I've been happy with my choice would be the understatement of the century...ecstatic is more like it.Here are some of the reasons:

  • Everything on it is easy to figure out and easy to do
  • As I get older I've come to appreciate how easily it glides and how maneuverable it is
  • It's incredibly quiet
  • It converts from an upright to a canister I can carry around very easily
  • It's dependable, and just always works
  • I can now get local repairs if needed
  • Since the establishment of SEBO America I can now get virtually any information I need, as well as order accessories that I didn't even know were available, and watch How-To Videos for all operations.
  • My cleaning people actually fight over who gets to use's hard to believe I know, but it really does makes vacuuming fun...thus the name Felix Fun...who knew the Germans were so clever?
  • It turns out SEBO has almost single-hand-idly engineered most aspects of today's modern vacuum cleaners
  • I recently discovered there is an unusual head attachment that buffs and shines hard surface floors like marble and hardwood (the principles it works on make complete sense, and if it truly does what it's designed for it could be a game changer in for homeowners...I need to learn more though!)

More About Repairs:

In all the years I've owned my Felix there was only one time it needed to be repaired.The repair was minor. It involved replacing a little rubber piece that kept the cord snuggly attached to the had come loose. I blamed the cleaning people for wrapping the cord so tightly when they put it away.But regardless of the reason, it came lose. It didn't cause any real problem with it operationally, but I thought it should be fixed anyway. I thought that if it was left alone, that the cord might someday come unattached from the motor assembly, although the repair center told me that wasn't the case. The repair cost about $5 and the most frustrating thing about it was having to drive across town to bring it there and pick it up.

This is a link to SEBO America's Felix Premium Vacuums

Right around the time I began frantically searching for the perfect vacuum, Dyson entered the American market.

The Dyson had so much potential...but, for me, it disappointed in the end

Around the same time that I was pulling my hair out with frustration from needing to purchase yet another new vacuum, a new British made vacuum entered the US market, known as Dyson. Unbeknownst to me, my husband had purchased one of the early Dyson's for his office and then was so thrilled with it that me got one for me as a surprise.I don't remember the occasion, but I do remember how excited he was by the vacuum itself.And he had good reason to be, because the Dyson is a great vacuum. The only problem for me was that it was so completely different than the US upright vacuums we were used to that nothing about it was intuitive. It took a lot of time to figure out how to do anything with it...even just turn it on!

You would think that this wouldn't be a big factor but for me it was. I keep a vacuum on each floor of our house, because lugging a heavy vacuum up and down stairs is difficult at best, and dangerous or destructive (for me) at worst. So in addition to the Dyson being heavy and awkward to carry around, every single time I turned it on I had to stop and examine it to find the on/off switch.Then stop and examine it again to find the handle lowering mechanism. This was all that I ever mastered with it. Anything more I left to be figured out by the cleaning service I hired to come twice a month and do a more thorough job than I could during our child raising years.

But most of my friends will tell you that I'm a bit challenged when it comes to 'patience', and many friends and family members have owned and loved their Dyson's as much as I love my SEBO Felix!

SEBO America Offers a Risk Free Option for Americans

The SEBO 30 Day Trial Period

SEBO America, through their website and in collaboration with some of their authorized dealers, have a special product return and refund program called the “SEBO 30-day Test Drive.”However, some authorized outlets do not participate in this program, or they may have alternative policies, or they may have no provision for returns and refunds.Therefore, return and refund privileges may not be available for some SEBO products purchased outside of this program. If you have a 30-day Test Drive Certificate and wish to receive a refund for your SEBO vacuum, it is important that you follow the program procedures posted on this website.

This is my exact vacuum!!!

SEBO 9803AM Felix 1 Premium Fun Upright Vacuum with Parquet, Orange/Purple - Corded
SEBO 9803AM Felix 1 Premium Fun Upright Vacuum with Parquet, Orange/Purple - Corded
I'm pretty amazed that's available on Amazon today! I'm even more amazed that it's the same price as mine, which I bought 15 to 20 years ago!! I paid $600 for mine...the most I've ever spent on a vacuum either before that or since then. It's still amazing today. No discernible loss of suction, very little wear and fact it still looks and functions extremely well!!! On the day I'm updating my post 5/10/2016 Amazon's price is $699.00.

This it My Yellow Eureka Mighty Canister

Eureka Mighty Mite 3670G Corded Canister Vacuum Cleaner, Yellow, Pet
Eureka Mighty Mite 3670G Corded Canister Vacuum Cleaner, Yellow, Pet
This is the inexpensive canister vacuum I got in 2015. The reviews are confusing regarding which model this is...mine is the 12 amp model. It has tons of suction and it was so inexpensive. I use it on low pile carpet tile made by Flor and painted concrete floors in our basement, workshop and garage. I like that it's light enough for me to shlep around by myself! Mine was $62.99 and it's currently $69.89 in May 2016.

Sebo Videos

Who doesn't love a good vacuum video?

I'm including some great videos I found on SEBO vacuums, and the commercial division Windsor, because I wished this content had been available when I was researching vacuums.

Windsor Vacuums - The Commercial Felix - A Great Video Showing the Felix Features (but it's really the commercial counterpart

(You need to good down to the media player menu item)

This next video is so amazing, cool, and awesome that any guy around will probably want to buy this vacuum! (The best part begins at 1:04)

This is the cool animation video of my SEBO Felix Vacuum

This is my favorite vacuum of all time so I had to show it first!

My Dyson (purchased by my husband) is Still Going Strong Too...I just Never Loved It Like the Sebo!


I Always Wonder Why Sebo Hasn't Become More Popular in the US

I find it shocking that the SEBO brand hasn't become better known in America. As the price and functionality of vacuums has increased and improved, the feature to price ratio SEBO offers has become better and better for the average American. This truly is a product I believe could capture the hearts of Americans, and it puzzles me why this hasn't yet occurred.

Maybe it's because the Windsor arm of the company, which markets the commercial line, gets more of the marketing dollars. It appears to be one of the top, if not the top, commercial brand of vacuums sold today. As evidence, the Windsor brand is used in both the White House and Buckingham Palace (the country that produces the Dyson vacuum coincidentally). It's also used in many of the top hotel chains throughout the world. More impressive however, is that it's used in so many of the world's hospitals!!

With all of it's amazing traits I'm glad to see that Consumer Reports gives it top ratings. 9 individual reviewers gave it a combined average score of 4.7 out of 5. But if you search online for vacuum reviews, not one articles that I've found ever mentions the SEBO brand. Here's a link to a good vacuum review article (that sadly doesn't mention SEBO, but they it's still a good one):

Huffington Post Vacuum Buying Guide

I would love to hear about some of the vacuums my reader's use. If you have a great vacuum that you really love, please write a comment here telling me about it.

Once Again I'm Searching for the Perfect Vacuum...This Time A Backpack Vacuum

While my new, inexpensive canister vac is great for the workshop, I still doesn't do one thing that I need from a vacuum, it doesn't let me vacuum in awkward places like between large pieces of furniture that are too heavy to move.

There are some places that collect tons of dust in our home that are visible but relatively inaccessible to me to clean. One example is between the 2 extra-long twin mattresses we have that together combine to form a king sized bed in our master bedroom. The mattresses are Tempurpedic and they are really heavy for me to manage moving on my own. When I put clean bed linens on I always want to clean up the dust that settles in the crack between them. Especially because my husband has dust allergies. But no vacuum I own can handle this spot, and no amount of pushing and pulling can get those mattresses to budge!

I've been asking around and several friends have mentioned backpack vacuums. One friend told me she had an Oreck that was amazing before it died. So I'm now in the market for a backpack vacuum. I've just begun my research and ran across this helpful article I thought I'd share it here.

Backpack Vacuums are a Little Like Cannisters...Except Longer with Straps to Carry on Your Back

Photo credit: tantek via / CC BY-NC
Photo credit: tantek via / CC BY-NC | Source

Update February 2017 I Just Bought Another Sebo Felix,

I've been searching for years for anything that even comes close to Sebo's performance. There is only one brand that I've seriously considered, and that came highly recommended by a friend...Miele. Miele vacuums are in the same price range as Sebo, and it seems to me like they are best known for their canister vacs. That's what my friend has. But every time I start researching them I come away from it overwhelmed. There are just too many options! And their prices get really high! But the most compellling argument is that I just don't love canister vacuums...I love uprights.

Upright Vacuums Are My Favorite a for Several Important Reasons

1. They are faster and easier to handle. You just push the whole vacuum around naturally rather than having to keep picking up the canister portion and moving it as a second step. Or, if it has wheels, dragging it as a second step. The pure act of having to take extra time to move it just bothers me and it seems inefficient.

2. Upright vacuums are much easier to store and to begin using. You just roll it out, unclip the cord and let it drop to the ground and start vacuuming. It's super fast and easy! The footprint in th closet is small. There aren't a bunch of accessories to store...any accessory is attached onboad the upright somewhere.

3. There's something aesthetically pleasing about pushing a well built upright that you don't experience pushing a long metal handle with a brush head attached.

4. Positive aspects that are specific to my Sebo are that it can become a canister vac if I need one quite readily. Also, I like bags, versus bagless models. And my Sebo's bag takes forever to fill up. I can easily go at least a year without needing to replace the bag.

In the end, I just didnt find enough compelling evidence to justify buying a Miele...and the Sebo, for me, continues to far surpass the others in meeting my needs.

So I ordered a second Sebo and it just arrived. I've just finished unpacking's beautiful and I'm excited to try it out. I still like the idea of the backpack vacuum, but also realize that I can convert my Sebo quite readily to fulfill that need. So for me, getting a 2nd Sebo seemed like the best alternative for me.

My Newest Sebo Felix Premium

My Sebo Felix Premium in White was $699...shipping was free.
My Sebo Felix Premium in White was $699...shipping was free.
The Parquet Floor Head, the User Guide and an optional large dusting brush (a smaller one comes atamdard onboard.)
The Parquet Floor Head, the User Guide and an optional large dusting brush (a smaller one comes atamdard onboard.)

Sebo's US Has a Great Video Demonstrating All the Felix Premium's Features

Sebo Vacuums Are Used in the White House

I always forget that Sebo vacuums are the preferred vacuum for the White House! One more good reason to love them!


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