Geek Review: Karcher FC5 Hard Floor FC5 Cordless Premium Cleaner

The act of mopping the floor is both a science and an art.

Traditionally, you’d fill up a bucket with a good amount of water, drop in some floor cleaner, and then you start mopping. As you go along, lugging the bucket around the home, you start to double dip the mop into the clean water, drain it and repeat. 

Do your floors really become cleaner just because you’re rising the surface with water and floor cleaner? It’s almost a philosophical question. It’s hard to say, especially once the original bucket’s water becomes murkier as your cleaning progresses.

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But just as how cordless vacuum cleaners have changed the way families suck up dirt, it was only a matter of time that the act of mopping gets revisited by technology.

Enter the Karcher FC5 Hard Floor FC5 Cordless Premium Cleaner. This 4.4 kg beast is by no means as svelte as cordless vacuum cleaners but it certainly does the job. And yes, this is an electric mop, for lack of a better term.

On the box, the Karcher FC5 cordless cleaner states it’s able to clean continuously for with a range of up to 60 sq m or 20 minutes, and in our tests, it easily cleaned an 87 sq meter apartment, with battery life to spare. The only downside would be having to charge it for 4 hours before it can be used.

Setting up the Karcher FC5 cordless cleaner is easy. Fill up the water tank, add in a small portion of cleaning fluid and you’re good to go. Operation wise, use it like a vacuum. This is not a tool which the kids can help with. Not only is this a 4.4 kg beast to handle in only one hand, but you’d also need to lift the cleaner at an angle for the microfibre rollers to make full contact with the floor. 

Unlike a traditional mop where fluid control largely depends on the type of mop used and how good the strainer used. The Karcher FC5 cordless cleaner leaves a nice layer of fluid as you go about “painting” the floor. The amount of liquid is just right as it only takes a few minutes before the floor is completely dry. The rollers essentially buff the floor into cleanliness picking up dirt and hairs along the way as well. By releasing clean water onto the rollers, the FC5 cordless cleaner simultaneously extracts the soiled portions from the roller and deposits it into the wastewater tank. No mess, and only just the right amount of liquid used.

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For folks who are using this for the first time, do take note to brace yourself for the initial tug. While it’s not by any means on the same level as being pulled by a big dog, the acceleration can catch one off guard. Furthermore, the power button itself has to be manually toggled to power on/off. Take your hand off the handle and the cleaner could easily drag itself on your pristine floors.

Quick to dry, and streak free.

All things considered, the Karcher FC5 cordless cleaner does a stellar job. Being in Singapore where we tend to go barefoot in the home, my floor has never felt cleaner. It looks like all the grime from my steak-grilling days is gone.

Now all that’s left is to clean up the cleaner and get it all ready for the next session. By popping off a second wastewater tank, prep yourself to be appalled how much dirt the cleaner has been able to scrub off the floor. After all, the FC5 cordless cleaner is both vacuum and wet cleaner all rolled into one.

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In my home, the Karcher FC5 cordless cleaner was tested on both tiles and oak floors. Officially, the cleaner should work well with parquet, laminate, cork, stone, linoleum or PVC. Sounds like pretty much any hard surface apart from carpets.

Based on our tests (and the wife), the floor has never felt cleaner and all without leaving any streaks on the floor. While it might be apparent while cleaning, once the floor is dry, everything is fine and dandy.

Once done, the upside of this all would be to simply dispose of the wastewater down the sink, rinse the container and you’re all set. Compared to the amount of water you would use with a traditional mop, using the Karcher FC5 cordless cleaner is more environmentally friendly. About 400 ml goes into the clean water tank and less than half is collected through the waste tank. 

While it might look like a container where a protein shake might reside, disposing off the gunk from the floor has never been easier. Forget about having to dump a heavy whole pail of liquid in the bathroom, all you’re left with is a small tank of liquid to drain in the toilet bowl.

Maintenance wise, the microfibre rollers are machine washable though it might be a big waste to throw that into the washing machine. Considering that they are also made of hard plastic, being faced down with the prospect of having the rollers or washing machine damaged is a prospect no one looks forward to. Unlike a big mophead, these rollers can simply be rinsed off gently and placed in the sun to dry.

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Considering its large stature, this is where the Karcher FC5 cordless cleaner has its flaws. It’s almost as big as a traditional bagged vacuum cleaner and its weight is pretty formidable as well. While Karcher themselves are thoughtful enough to include a stand together with pegs to allow the microfibre rollers to dry, it’s hard to imagine the cleaner being stored outdoors to be charged and dried ready for the next session in sunny Singapore. The large frame would also mean that the cleaner would also have a bit of an issue getting under low spaces and around corners due to its inflexible cleaning head. 

These are small costs to be considered especially but shouldn’t be a big issue if you’re out for an all in one cleaning solution for the home. When it comes to the operating noise level, the Karcher FC5 cordless cleaner is actually far quieter than my existing Dyson. So much so that my cat isn’t as perturbed by the noise and will happily saunter past.

Priced at S$798, the Karcher FC5 Hard Floor FC5 Cordless Premium Cleaner certainly matches up to its price tag. However, there is plenty to consider if you’re plonking down this sum for the home especially when it comes to the run time and floor space it’s able to clean before the battery gives way. If you have an apartment, the Karcher FC5 Hard Floor FC5 Cordless Premium Cleaner might be your new best friend.

GEEK REVIEW SCORE

Summary

If not for the massive size, the Karcher FC5 Hard Floor FC5 Cordless Premium Cleaner certainly earns its premium title based on price and performance. It’s hard to beat a pail and mop when it comes to cost but this gets the job done quicker and easier.

Overall
8.2/10
8.2/10
  • Aesthetics - 7.5/10
    7.5/10
  • Build Quality - 9/10
    9/10
  • Performance - 8/10
    8/10
  • Value - 7.5/10
    7.5/10
  • Geek Satisfaction - 9/10
    9/10
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