Small, compact and handy to use, cordless vacuum cleaners are seen over our TV channels and social media and there is no doubt that they have a place in the cleaning arsenal. However, they are not a replacement for a powerful corded vacuum cleaner in a busy house. Cordless vacuum cleaners use rechargeable batteries to power them. These batteries, which are generally lithium-ion, have undoubtedly improved but they still lack the ability to supply the power needed to enable cordless products to match the performance of a corded, mains-operated machine when it comes to sucking up dust and dirt. More frustratingly, the need to recharge batteries means the cleaner is not always available. When the battery dies, there is no alternative but to stop cleaning, plug in and wait. Full charging times can vary from two to a lengthy sixteen hours. Examples of cordless vacuum cleaners include small handheld cleaners and stick-like models more akin to traditional vacuums in design. Running times for cordless machines vary considerably depending on the model: the shortest is quoted at around five to six minutes and the longest at up to an hour. Using motorised tool accessories reduces running times. They do offer convenience for cleaning small areas. They are easy to carry around because of their light weight and they have the ability to get into corners. There is no searching for a power socket and no trip hazard from a trailing cable or tangling around furniture, people or pets. However, batteries have a limited life expectancy of around 500 charging cycles. Battery powered vacuum cleaners are also useful for cleaning tasks that are only of a short duration, such as cleaning car seats and for spot cleaning crumbs and cobwebs. In commercial environments, such as shops, they are used for dealing with visible surface litter during trading hours when it would be intrusive or impractical to use a corded machine. Due to their compact size, cordless vacuum cleaners may even be the answer for very small flats where storage space is at a premium. Conversely, corded, mains-operated vacuum cleaners score highly because of their superior cleaning power and ability to make light work of the tough challenges of everyday cleaning, making them essential in family homes, especially where there are pets. Both upright and cylinder machines are available that are capable of excellent, fade-free cleaning performance, day after day without ever needing to be recharged. With many models, their lightweight and ergonomic design means that they are easy to use for long periods. They are versatile, often come with a wide range of accessories and are able quickly to clean large areas and thoroughly brush the pile of carpet while sucking away ingrained dirt. Quite simply, while cordless vacuums cleaners undoubtedly have their place, they are really a complementary product to mains-operated, corded machines which offer enduring performance, durability and a depth of clean that is unsurpassed.