After posting on @SharkClean ‘s Twitter feed about my frustration and disappointment, I was contacted directly by one of their customer service representatives in SharkNinja’s Claims Department. After explaining my specific complaints about the Shark LiftAway model I have and also about the steam mop I purchased at the same time, she offered to accept my return of the product for Quality Assurance to inspect in exchange for my being sent their current model, the Power LiftAway, as well as their steam mop, all without charge.
So, this is what I intend to do:
When the return label is sent, I’ll ship the vacuum you see in the picture, below. After I receive the replacement, I’m going to give it a thorough work out of all its’ features and functions. Then, I’m going to sit down and write a comprehensive, 100% honest review of how the product worked, highlights of my experience with the design & features and if I would, based on this experience, return to the flock and take up the cause to promote SharkNinja products as I have previously or if I will remain as I am, now: vacuum challenged and putting pennies in a jar to save up for a Dyson.
Will let you know!
Executive Summary: A company product evangelist since 2007, I now feel it is my responsibility to recant my praise and recall my recommendations.
Believe me when I say that I recognize that writing letters about cleaning appliances to a company’s CEO and President just smacks of someone who is habitually disgruntled and unhappy, a person who probably complains about everything, always, and who has too much time on their hands (perhaps for their lack of having any friends willing to listen to their perpetual discontent.)
In response to possibly having my letter dismissed as being written with this potential case being true, I want to preface what follows with the assertion that I have never in my multiple decades, as a paying consumer of goods and services, ever felt compelled to take the time necessary to sit down and express in writing my experience with something I have purchased. In this case, I stopped everything I was doing because my Shark vacuum fell over into a cupboard and broke another dish. Enough.
Caveat Emptor (buyer beware) is a reasonable principle. It reminds me that I am accountable for making as certain as I can that where I choose to spend my hard earned money is worth the value, whether that be a car, an insurance policy, or a vacuum cleaner and steam mop.
As far as vacuum cleaners and steam mops went, I want you to know directly, that since 2008, I have been a die-hard, committed evangelist of Shark products. Having done my homework, tested the products, used the products extensively and compared the results to that of other products of every price range, I can tell you that a rare few people that I engaged with over the past 7 or more years were not subject to my enthusiastic praise and unhesitating recommendation of the Shark brand.
Alone, I probably generated at least a couple dozen sales by those acting on my dogged faith in the quality of your vacuum cleaners and steam mops.
But, I must insist you not thank me, yet, because, sadly, I now feel it is my responsibility to recant my praise and recall my recommendations.
Anyone who, upon my influence and persuasion, purchased a Lift-Away model within the previous two or two and a half years, of either the vacuum or the steam mop, has, I believe, been misled. My credibility in this case being completely lacking, I have been consoled, only by the fact that I have shared in the frustration and losses incurred while using these products.
Sir, what in God’s name were you thinking when the design was approved for manufacturing the Lift-Away Deluxe? It is immediately apparent that using this machine is worse than difficult, it is downright painful.
Do you have any idea how many bruises, skin abrasions and broken objects I have accumulated in this past year, alone, since the purchase and use of the Navigator Lift-Away Deluxe?
I am sure you do not. Because, if you did, the persons responsible for this abominable machine design would have been banished from ever being in a position to destroy the reputation of a company, again.
Suction, be damned, if the vacuum is designed to fall over with every move of the wand attachment.
As for the steam mop, I don’t even know where to begin. It never worked in the upright position and soon after its purchase, simply stopped working altogether. It caused more than its share of wasted hours and embarrassing moments trying to explain the problem to others who were promised altogether superior results.
The original Shark products I purchased and used repeatedly and in the most extreme conditions for a solid 5 years and that worked as well the day they were retired as the day they were received, earned my utmost respect and loyalty as a customer.
Then, after saving for months and excited about finally being able to upgrade to a newer model with all the attachments, pads, cleaners, you name it, I am now left with a vacuum that causes me to swear like a drunken sea merchant every time I have to use it (and I try so hard not to have to use it…which, is so so so sad in its own right.) and no steam cleaner, at all, which I have depended upon for years.
In fact, at the very moment of my writing this letter, I can see where the Navigator lay on its’ side, where I left it while trying to vacuum my bedroom. After first falling over into my shin bone for the zillioneth time, in my frustration and disappointment, I decided you deserved to have this letter written to you so you could participate in this small way in my experience.
And, sadly, I now have to consider sharing with others that I am no longer a convert, and can no longer advocate as I have for Shark.
In some strange way, this experience has caused me to lose something special–the ability to feel excited about stuff.
Thank you for your time. Please speak to the the people that designed the Lift-Away line. They kill happiness.
the Santa Cruz Mountains Portland, Oregon