Vax ONEPWR Evolve cordless vacuum review

It's cordless, capable and affordable...

Image of Vax Evolve being used on hard floors in promo image
(Image credit: Vax)
Ideal Home Verdict

The Vax Evolve is an inexpensive cordless floor cleaner, but for the majority of people, the lack of any tools to clean awkward crevices or help with the stairs will be a deal breaker. That said, if you really do just want to clean floors, you’ll get a lightweight upright cleaner that’s ideal for everyday dirt and dust.

Reasons to buy
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    Large dust bin

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    Extra batteries available

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    Simple to use

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    No tools so can only be used to vacuum floors

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    No choice of suction power

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Vax is a floorcare brand that many of us have grown up with, a well-known household name often associated with carpet washing appliances. Admittedly, it hasn’t quite managed to keep up with the newer names on the scene such as Dyson and Shark, but the brand has quite a line-up of affordable models that can compete with the best cordless vacuums.

At £179.99 (and often reduced) the Vax Evolve is one of the most budget friendly models in the Vax cordless range. It’s an uncomplicated upright vacuum designed for floors only. So there are no confusing configurations to master for overhead cleaning, and you won’t have to find storage space for a load of accessories you’ll never use.

I’ve been using this vacuum in my own home for several days now and while its use is limited to floors - which will be off-putting for some – there are plenty of reasons why it will suit certain households. It’s got a decent runtime and large dustbin, so it doesn't feel like a cordless cleaner, but a lightweight upright vacuum with added freedom.

Vax Evolve specifications

Image of Vax ONEPWR Evolve in cutout image

(Image credit: Vax)
  • Max. run time: 35 minutes
  • Charge time: 3 hours
  • Bin volume: 1.2 litres
  • Weight: 4.1kg
  • Dimensions: H111 x W28x D23cm
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Modes: hard floor, carpet, brush bar off
Freelance Writer & Home Economist
Image of Helen McCue, Freelance Contirbutor
Freelance Writer & Home Economist
Helen McCue

Helen is a regular contributor to Ideal Home, reviewing appliances to let us know what they're worth. She lives in a village in Buckinghamshire and reviewed vacuum from her 17th century cottage with unnervingly low beams that make her glad to be short. 

 Unboxing the Vax Evolve 

Image of Vax Evolve during unboxing at home

(Image credit: Future/Helen McCue)

The ONEPWR Evolve came in cardboard packaging that I was able to pop straight in the recycling bin. There were a couple of plastic wrappers around some components, but I was impressed to see that the one around the floorhead is compostable. And I hope this means Vax is making moves towards completely removing plastic from its packaging.

Since this vacuum doesn’t come with accessories, there’s not too much to unpack from the box. The main unit comes fully assembled apart from the handle, which simply slots into position – no screwdriver or tools required. Aside from this, the battery and charger are the only other parts in the box. 

Like all cordless vacuums, the battery needs to go on charge before the first use. Because it’s removable and the charger is compact, you can pretty much pop it wherever is most convenient to charge and it takes around three hours.

First impressions 

Image of Vax Evolve vacuum components unboxed

(Image credit: Future/Helen McCue)

Okay, so if you’re looking for a sleek and stylish Dyson-esque vacuum, this won’t be the model for you, it’s a bit ugly and dare I say it, old fashioned. It looks like a slightly compact version of a traditional upright vacuum. However, there are benefits to this design, including the 1.2 litre dust bin which is far larger than you’ll find on most other cord-free vacuums.

Immediately it feels lightweight, and what’s more, unlike a lot of cordless vacuums, you’re not holding all the weight in your hand, it’s bottom heavy so is a great choice if you struggle with weighty vacuums. The controls aren’t on the handle though, they’re on the top of the main body of the vacuum, alongside the removable battery.

There’s a simple power button as well as a mode button which allows you to cycle between the three options; hard floor, carpet, and brush off. To those of us used to multiple suction levels it feels somewhat basic, but that said, for an elderly person or anyone who just wants very straightforward controls, it’ll do just fine.

It’s self-supporting, which means it can stand up on its own. This might sound like a small thing, but if you’ve used a cordless vacuum that isn’t self-supporting, you’ll know how annoying it can be to find somewhere to lean it, or to have to lay it down every time you need to stop for a few seconds. And for anyone that struggles to bend down, this feature is a must. It’s also worth noting that if you stand it upright without switching it off, the brush bar automatically stops to avoid damaging floors.

Using the Vax ONEPWR Evolve 

The vacuum automatically starts in hard floor mode, happily though if you’ve been in another mode and only stopped for a short time, it’ll remember and restart in the same mode.

The handle is comfortable to hold and it’s agile enough to turn corners and manoeuvre around chair legs with ease. Personally, I missed having a few tools and accessories to vacuum into tricky areas and the lack of tools certainly makes it less versatile than most. Cleaning stairs for example is a bit more awkward since you have to use the main floorhead and lift it from stair to stair. But at least it’s light, so this isn’t too much bother.

To help with reach under furniture, the vacuum can be laid completely flat and this did mean I could reach right under my sofa and footstool without moving them. And as there are no tools to make it easy to reach these awkward spots, this proved to be a very necessary feature.

It’s not too noisy and on both carpet as well as hard floors it maxed out at around 80dB on our noise meter, which although a smidge louder than some other vacuums we’ve reviewed, is around average.

Image of Vax Evolve vacuum

(Image credit: Future/Helen McCue)

Hard floor

The hard floor mode works at a lower suction level than carpet mode, but nevertheless, it didn’t struggle to suck up anything from my wooden or tiled floors, including fine flour as well as general kitchen debris. It also collected my long hairs that were scattered around the bathroom floor.

When vacuuming along the skirting boards, it works best if you vacuum with the right side of the floorhead against the skirting board. It sucked up oats from alongside the skirting board in just two swipes and if any were missed, I found it was very efficient at collecting them up if I pushed the front of the floorhead up to the skirting board.

Image of Vax Evolve being used under furniture

(Image credit: Future/Helen McCue)


Carpet mode is more powerful than I expected if I’m honest. I was surprised by the amount of dust and fluff in the dustbin after vacuuming the supposedly not-very-dirty bedroom carpets. It picks up most surface debris on the first swipe, but judging by what was in the dustbin, it also gets to the deeper, more ground-in dirt.

On a long pile rug, it took a few goes to collect a dry leaf that had been trodden in. And I could see that it wasn’t cleaning the rug quite as thoroughly as my carpet, so I went over it for longer and in several different directions to try and get most of the bits out of the longer pile. It sucked at the edges of the rug a bit too enthusiastically, so if your rug has tassels I’d advise tucking them in or switching to hard floor mode to avoid damage.

At the skirting boards, the results weren’t as good as on hard floor and it didn’t pick up all of my spilled oats when I ran it alongside the skirting board. I had to push the front of the vacuum to the skirting board to make sure it collected everything. At this point I missed having a crevice nozzle that I could just pop on and run along the groove between the carpet and skirting board.

Image of Vax vacuum being used on a rug

(Image credit: Future/Helen McCue)


Image of Vax ONEPWR battery

(Image credit: Future/Helen McCue)

I timed the battery to see if it lives up to the claims made by Vax. On carpet mode the battery lasted for 20 minutes of continuous vacuuming, this increased to a little over 40 minutes in hard floor mode, which is well in excess of the 35 minutes stated by Vax.

A full charge took around 2 hours 45 minutes and there are four lights on the top of the battery that blink while it charges. One by one they remain solid to indicate the progress, so if two of the four are solid, you know it’s roughly 50% charged. Furthermore, at any time you want to check the battery level there’s a battery button you can press, which shows you the rough amount of charge via the four lights.

All Vax ONEPWR appliances use the same removable battery, and you can buy additional batteries if you think one won’t offer you enough flexibility and cleaning time. They are £80 each though, which is around half the cost of buying the vacuum to begin with, so you may decide you don’t mind waiting three hours for it to recharge!

Care and maintenance 

Image of Vax vacuum with full dust tank

(Image credit: Future/Helen McCue)

The large dustbin can be unclicked and removed from the back of the vacuum using just one hand. There’s a release button to flip open the bottom so all the dust and debris will fall directly into your rubbish bin.

On the top of the dustbin there’s a washable filter that along with a larger filter called the separator, will need to be tapped over your bin every 4-6 uses to remove dust build-ups, and they’ll need rinsing every 3 months. The main filter should be replaced every 6-9 months.

Some hairs did become tangled around the brush bar but it’s easily removable so they can be cut free. Additionally, Vax says the brush bar has antimicrobial protection, and I must admit it had never really occurred to me that this could be an area where bacteria and fungi might grow. But now that I think about it, antimicrobial protection feels like a welcome addition.

Because the battery is removable you don’t need to store the vacuum near a plug socket. And since it’s self-supporting it’ll stand in a cupboard or utility room and doesn’t take up too much floorspace, plus there are no other accessories to store, so it doesn’t clutter your cupboards.


It’s hard to find a meaningful direct comparison as it’s so rare to come across a vacuum like this that is only designed for floors. However, if you want a bottom heavy cordless vacuum but you’d like some accessories and added versatility, it’s worth looking at the Shark ICZ300UKT Anti Hair Wrap cordless upright vacuum. It is double the price, but it’s got a better floorhead and can be used all around your home, including for overhead cleaning. Like the Vax, the battery is removable, but the dustbin is far smaller at 0.6 litre.

If budget is your priority, our current top cordless vacuum on a budget is the Vax ONEPWR Blade 4. It’s a similar price to the Evolve and lightweight too, but the design is more in line with other cordless vacuums we’re used to. It doubles as a handheld vacuum, with a crevice tool and dusting brush included. But, it can’t stand up on its own and the dustbin is smaller. 

Should you buy the Vax ONEPWR Evolve? 

If, like me, you’re fond of versatile vacuums that allow you to clean your sofa cushions and along the tops of skirting boards, amongst other things. Then the lack of tools will be far too limiting, and this isn’t the vacuum for you.

But, if you want a very easy-to-use vacuum that’s cord-free, lightweight, and will allow you to quickly spruce up your floors, then this is an inexpensive cleaner that’ll tick all your boxes. The straightforward controls and lack of complicated accessory options, coupled with the lightweight, bottom-heavy design will make it an appealing choice for elderly users as well as those who struggle to lift heavy and cumbersome vacuums.

About this review, and the reviewer: 

Helen honed her reviewing skills at Good Housekeeping and has years of experience reviewing household appliances under her belt. She lives in a village in Buckinghamshire, UK and reviewed this vacuum at home in a 17th century cottage with a modern extension that’s split over several levels.

Along with her husband, Helen can often be found doing DIY at the weekends, which means a trusted vacuum is a valued appliance for post DIY clean-ups. She has carpet, hardwood floors and tiled floors as well as area rugs, so was able to test it on all floor types. sent Helen this vacuum and allowed her to donate it to a worthy cause after the review.

Helen McCue
Freelance Reviewer

 After completing a Home Economics degree, Helen went on to work for the Good Housekeeping Institute and has been reviewing home appliances ever since. She lives in a small village in Buckinghamshire in the UK.