Panasonic Jet-Turn MC-UL815 Review
The Panasonic MC-UL815 Jet Turn resembles certain crime-fighting turtles... but lacks Ninja Turtle strength.
The Panasonic MC-UL815 Jet Turn ($199 MSRP) is quite a good value, though it's hard to find on sale. In our tests, it outperformed most machines in its price range, especially on high carpet. Its heavy-duty power brush picks up a lot of dirt and debris, but also makes it difficult to push on carpet.
Design & Usability
No luxuries here—this is a bare bones machine.
The Panasonic MC-UL815 Jet Turn is a 17 lb., upright, bagless vacuum with three removable tools that attach to the hose. Its dirt container can be easily removed, the contents releasing through a trap door at the bottom of the canister. There's a washable HEPA filter in there too. The vacuum’s “swivel steering” feature was likely meant to make up for the machine’s considerable bulk, but it creates a flimsy feel when moving forward. Another drawback is not being able to adjust the power brush’s height.
There are a few levers on this machine, most of which aren't covered in plastic or rubber. Turn it on by tapping your foot on the large gray button on the left at the bottom of the vacuum. On the right is another pedal that releases the handle and allows the users to push the vacuum. This button needs to be pressed a few times to actually let the handle down. Also on the left is a lever that either drops the power brush down or pulls it up.
The 24.5-inch power cord retracts back into the Panasonic MC-UL815 Jet Turn with a quick pull. The extension wand is a bit short, with only about eight inches of reach. That's not enough for snagging spiders off the ceiling or cleaning up cobwebs.
Features & Performance
This vacuum had some trouble picking up debris off of wood floors, but it was very competitive in most of our other tests.
The Jet Turn was impressive in our dirt tests, picking up more than half of what we put down on high-pile carpet. That may not sound like such a great feat, but other cleaners in this price range leave behind much more filth. Pet hair was also no problem, and the vacuum did pretty well on short carpet and wood floor pickup, too, though it had some trouble getting debris off of hardwood. We attribute this to the lack of height adjustment that made it just too tall for adequate suction.
Lastly, we found that this Panasonic was neither incredibly loud, nor tremendously quiet, and was also fairly energy efficient for a cleaner of its size.
A little pricier than some uprights, but the extra money you spend will be worth it
The Panasonic MC-UL815 Jet Turn represents a very good value purchase for consumers who are not looking to spend $400-500, but still want strong performance on a variety of floors. It outperformed other higher-priced machines on both high and short carpet while receiving high marks in usability with a retractable cord and a dirt container that’s easy to remove and to empty.
The Jet Turn does have its weaknesses, however. It has trouble picking up debris on hardwood, its hose is too short, and the power brush can get bogged down on high carpet. The swivel steering feature can also be counterproductive at times, as it makes the machine somewhat unsteady. These are just minor deterrents, though, considering the Panasonic MC-UL815 Jet Turn’s $199 price tag and solid overall performance.
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