The Black & Decker Pivot Vac has a pivoting nozzle that's narrow enough to reach in small crevices and cracks that are otherwise tough to access. It also folds down for compact storage. The Pivot Vac has a run time of about 15 to 20 minutes, according to owners. This 5-pound vacuum has a washable filter and is backed by a two-year warranty, although some users find it loud.
Powerful suction in a compact package. The Black & Decker Pivot Vac has powerful suction, according to owners posting feedback to sites like Amazon.com and Walmart.com. Editors at one consumer testing organization agree, noting that it works well on bare floors and carpets, and its ample dirt cup means less frequent emptying. One problem noted in both professional and owner-written reviews is that when the Pivot Vac is powered off and the nozzle folded down, leftover dirt and debris may fall out. Overall, owners say the Pivot Vac is versatile for tasks such as stairs, pet hair, and general dust and debris.
Great range of motion, but short run time. The Pivot Vac's pivoting nozzle makes it easy to clean hard-to-reach places, according to the editors of Good Housekeeping. However, testers felt it was heavy -- although it weighs just 5 pounds. In one test-run conducted by a U.K.-based consumer magazine, the Pivot Vac lasted just 10 minutes at full strength and drained completely in 13 minutes, despite being charged for a full 24 hours prior to use. The thin, pivoting nozzle is ideal for cleaning crevices and can move in a range of directions. The filter is washable, but accessing it requires removing both the nozzle and canister.
So-so noise level. Editors of Good Housekeeping say the Pivot Vac is noisy. Among over 1,000 reviews across sites like Amazon.com, Walmart.com and BestBuy.com, most owners don't comment on the Pivot Vac's noise level. The few who do comment tend to say it's loud. One owner posting a review to Amazon says her cats run for cover when they see her with this hand vac, although others say it's not unreasonably loud.
Excellent customer service. The Black & Decker Pivot Vac is backed by a two-year warranty, twice as long as the usual one-year warranty for handheld vacs. One owner posting feedback to Amazon says the first Pivot Vac he purchased stopped working after a few short months, but Black & Decker's customer service was excellent and sent a replacement right away. We read a few complaints from owners about the battery weakening over time and not holding a charge as well. The battery cannot be replaced in this hand vac, so a bad battery means replacing the whole unit.
The Black & Decker Pivot Vac 18V Cordless Pivoting Hand Vac was the best hand vacuum of 2012, but it loses its crown to the Black & Decker Lithium Flex BDH2000FL in 2013. That said, the Pivot Vac still earns accolades as a solid performer for a reasonable price.
Review: The Best Portable Vacuum, Seamus Bellamy, Feb. 14, 2013
2. Good Housekeeping
Editors of Good Housekeeping rate 35 hand vacuums on a scale of A to F. The Pivot Vac earns a solid score of B for its easy maneuverability and excellent performance on carpets, bare floors and pet hair. Its run time is short, however, and it's heavy and loud.
Review: Black & Decker Pivot Vac PHV1810 Handheld Vacuum, Editors of Good Housekeeping, Not Dated
More than 1,200 owners contribute to an average rating of 4.1 stars out of 5. Owners love the Pivot Vac's "wide range of motions" and its easy conversion to a brush tool. Flipping the nozzle up to reveal the brush is messy, though -- and the filter is difficult to clean.
Review: Black & Decker PHV1810 Cordless Pivot Head Vacuum, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of March 2014
4. Which? magazine
Editors of U.K.-based Which? magazine evaluate handheld vacuum cleaner brands and provide individual reviews for a few select models including the Black & Decker DustBuster Pivot, which goes by a slightly different name in the U.K.
Review: Black and Decker DustBuster Pivot, Editors of Which? magazine, Not Dated
Nearly 100 owners review the Black & Decker Pivot Vac at Walmart.com, where it earns an average rating of 4.5 stars out of 5. Owners say it has impressive suction power and will run for about 20 to 25 minutes on a single charge.
Review: Black & Decker 18V Cordless Pivoting Hand Vac, PHV1810, Contributors to Walmart.com, As of March 2014