Yeah, I know: A whole article about a vacuum cleaner may not really seem like a gripping topic. Honestly, I tried to lure you into reading this piece by trying to come up with a nice clickbait-headline but in the end, let´s be honest: It is what it is. An article about vacuum cleaning your boat. But – but! – now that you´ve begun reading, let´s stick to it and stay with me because you may discover, like I did myself, that this “boring” vacuum-thing may really, really improve your boat-life substantially.

Fits into the tightest corners: A handheld vacuum

As I said, it did so for myself too. A short prologue: Usually when I sail, be it as a guest, as a skipper or on my own boats, I never have used a vacuum. Why? Not because I didn´t cared for a tidy boat but because these boats all had a solid wooden flooring and as such I used a small broom and from time to time a wet mob. Well, that works fine with these boats, but not in mine. That is because of the floor material which in my boat is EVA-foam. You cannot sweep up EVA-floor with a broom and a dustpan.

Useful & so convenient: A handheld vacuum cleaner for your boat

So, upon fitting my boat prior to my first real sailing trip out on the sea I bought a Philips handheld battery-powered vacuum cleaner. Some of my sailing friends had also encouraged me to do so but I must admit I never paid that much attention. But boy have I been happy every time I used it afterwards! There is always something to clean away: After breakfast, after lunch, after a small snack. Even when not eating, there´s always dust and sand entering the saloon. And here we are: The handy vacuum is always ready. I have the impression that the battery at least of my product lasts like forever. It is so easy, so convenient: Turning it on, the suction power is just great.

Convenient, fast & clean

It cleans away all the leftover cereals fallen from the breakfast table, the breadcrumbs from the German Klappstulle made for underway and the rice and corn-leftovers. Just perfect! When on shore power I plug it in and it is re-loaded after 12 hours when batteries sucked dry, which never happens. It is so great that I regularly vacuum clean the whole boat after finishing breakfast (which is normal) and after landing the boat on a new jetty after a long day out sailing because I like to return home to a tidy and clean atmosphere. I know, this may sound ridiculous to anybody not having owned a handheld vacuum, but believe me, it changes the way you treat your boat and will instantly improve living quality on board.

In the test: Philips FC6149

I bought at amazon. There are many handheld vacuum cleaners available and I must admit I did not choose my Philips for a reason: It just was the first “big brand” that was shown to me for a reasonable price. My handheld clocked in at some 70 Euros, I chose the one with NiMH-batteries. It lasts for 11 minutes continuous operation. There´s also a Li-Ion-battery powered version that is re-charged much faster (8 hours) when sucked dry. As for my vacuum, I love the fact that the system can be demounted as easy as ABC which is great. On one occasion my jar of freeze-dried coffee busted open and the whole mess was spilled all over the place. I vacuumed it away and thought everything was fine. Days later I saw that everything was messed up as the coffee-crumbs had been gone semi-fluid inside the vacuum-cleaner and the filters clogged with a tar-like coffee-stinking sticky slime. So, back home, I dismounted everything and had it cleansed with hot water (making my flat smell like a coffee shop) and everything was like new again. A definitive plus!

Easy to dismount & clean

What else do you get? A recharging station, a flexible hose that is really convenient to reach for hidden areas and spaces, some other top caps and such. I love my handheld vacuum and it is definitely a skipper´s essential: Cleaning fast, easy and convenient, taking the stuff away as it happens, always at hand, always ready. Now, tell me: Was reading this article not informative and valuable? Okay, next time more “saily” stuff again, I promise.


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