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Coordinates: 51°18′33″N 7°03′59″E / 51.3091033°N 7.0663713°E / 51.3091033; 7.0663713

IndustryConsumer products
Founded1978; 41 years ago (1978)
HeadquartersWulfrather Strasse 47-49, ,
ParentStein & Co GmbH

SEBO is the brand name of vacuum cleaners made by Stein & Co GmbH, a company based in the German town of Velbert. They produce a range of upright and cylinder vacuum cleaners for domestic and commercial use. Sebo vacuum cleaners are endorsed by Allergy UK (the British Allergy Foundation).[1] Sebo stands for SEmigewerbliche BOdenpflege, German for semi-commercial floor care.[2]

History and commercial heritage[edit]

SEBO was established in 1978 by two German engineers, Klaus Stein and Heinz Kaulig, who were seeking to build a reliable, powerful and easy to use commercial upright vacuum cleaner. Klaus Stein had previously worked at Vorwerk, the manufacturer of the Kobold vacuum cleaner since 1929. The first SEBO factory was located in Dannenberg, West Germany in a disused weaving factory where they developed in 1978 the SEBO 350 upright commercial vacuum cleaner.

The 350 was their first upright vacuum cleaner and it was engineered for commercial uses. The company understood that most cleaning staff weren't motivated to perform simple maintenance or be concerned about the operational status of the machine; their job was to clean the floor and their employer provided a machine so that they could do their job. If the machine was "complicated" for the employee to use, then the machine isn't any good. They still had to vacuum, but didn't care that the machine needed the disposable filter bag to be changed, readjusted for different floor surfaces, or that there was a clog somewhere. With that in mind, it offered a degree of functionality that didn't require the user to read an operations manual before using. It was equipped with a commercial-grade motor that could run continuously for 1000 hours or 41 days. The 350 was designed to pass the hardest test; to survive the abuse and neglect of cleaning professionals.

Due to the patented technical features that allowed effective cleaning of all kinds of carpets and bare floors, plus the ability to clean in the tightest corners, the 350, which indicated that the brush vibrator bar was 35 cm (14 in), was sold and used in hotels, hospitals and offices. With the addition of features like a clutch-protected brush roller, a by-pass motor and hospital-grade filtration, the first SEBO found acceptance in the market by 1979. Commercial cleaning manufacturers such as Windsor Kärcher and Jeyes Hygiene re-branded SEBO uprights under their own name during the early 1980s. In 1986, the SEBO 360 was launched to replace the 350. The 360 had a simple, electronic surface height adjustment feature that would automatically raise or lower the carpet nozzle based on different cleaning surfaces. It would also notify if there was a brush obstruction or if the disposable filter bag was full.

By 1998, the company celebrated 20 years of SEBO Stein & Co. and the 1,500,000th unit built was a SEBO AUTOMATIC X1. Launched in May 2014, the new SEBO EVOLUTION commercial upright brings more improvements to the existing range.

SEBO's products are offered in two formats, canisters and uprights. The models consist of the 350, 360 and successor 370 models and the BS36/46 models dependent on floor head widths for the commercial and retail market.

Upright models[edit]

SEBO "Automatic X" /X1/X1.1/X4/X5[edit]

In 1991, SEBO began to branch into the domestic market with an upright cleaner known as "Automatic X1" upright and built from commercial components and low energy release motor. A re-designed version of the earlier 360, the BS36 was also introduced. Other manufacturers offered an integrated attachment hose that would extend for cleaning hard to reach areas or dusting, but the Automatic X1 included a holster wand that was easily removed from the machine and stored simple cleaning attachments on the back.

Featuring a low watt 850 watt motor, computer controlled height adjustment, a lifetime guaranteed drive belt system, S-Class filtration, easy access block-check doors and an easy access brush-roll with shut off mechanism to sense clogs or obstructions, the X1 Automatic is designed to be user/owner repairable. The design continues on with the cosmetic X1.1, X4 and X5 with increased motors from 1150 watts to 1300 watts.

SEBO's commercial machines continued to supply the industry market with commercial products as well as bigger floor head versions such as X2 and X3, two versions that are still available to buy in other European countries. Eventually the X1A receives a higher motor increase to 1000 watts before it is replaced by the X1.1 in 1999.

The X1.1 remains to be a UK specific model only compared to the X4 Extra with slightly uprated motor power to 1300 watts. Both models with different colours are available to buy in the UK. A larger "big foot" model based on the X4 was also launched a few years later, called the "X5," available worldwide.

In September 2014, the X series is modified to reduce the maximum motor input power from 1300W to 1100W, and it is known as "X series ECO". X1.1, X4 and X5 all have an 1100 watt motor and only differ from different specs and colours.

In March 2015, SEBO presents the X4 Pet Boost upright with a central push button for deeper cleaning option on carpets and hard floors. Private franchise labels are introduced to exclusive SEBO models such as X4 Pro for Euronics stores and X4 Excel for the British John Lewis Department Stores.

SEBO Dart/Felix[edit]

In 2005, SEBO launched the "swivel neck" upright, which meant the connector to the motorized brush cleaning unit could turn aiding in flexibility. The SEBO Dart, aimed at the commercial market and its domestic equivalent, the "Felix" with additional features that domestic customers demand, to include interchangeable floor heads or a power nozzle that are available for both machines to deal with a variety of floor types. The floorhead/powerhead can also be removed from the main body, and the handle folded down to convert the unit into a portable, handheld cleaner in a canister mode.

The powerhead fitted to all Felix models (Not Dart) is the ET-1 (premium) type which has a foot pedal recline similar to the X series. The ET1 features a manual 4 position height adjustment dial to suit different flooring types. LED control panel indicates brush roll monitoring at all times if height adjustment is set too high and automatic shut off of the motor if brushroll becomes obstructed, strained or jammed. The brush roll motor can be switched off manually for use on hard floors, and automatically shuts off when the machine is in the upright locked position. Like the X series, the brush roll can be easily removed for cleaning or replacement.

In 2010, SEBO introduces the "DISCO" polisher buffer. With an optional hard floor round crystal and polishing discs for polishing and cleaning hard floors, the DISCO head can be used with both Felix and Dart models. The Dart 3 comes as a package with the Disco head. Other than a similar attachment for Kirby Vacuum Cleaners, the Felix/Dart is the only machine offering this feature.

The Dart 1 and Dart 2 machines feature a similar power head range to the Felix, and in 2 widths, 31 cm, and 37 cm (similar to the commercial BS36 and BS46 and SM1/SM2) but no facility to shut off brush roll is offered for longevity of usage in commercial areas.

The Dart 4 is supplied with the SEBO "Kombi" floor head and offers variable suction control. Other versions of Dart has fixed suction.

All models feature a 3.5 litre bag capacity and piston bag full indicator set into the lid of the bag housing.

A unique feature of the Felix and the Dart is that the main exhaust filter also forms the covering of the bag compartment, and on the Felix, can be customised with different colour fabric designs. Sebo supply a 3 layer electrostatic fabric disposable bag for the Felix/Dart, which is an improvement on earlier paper bags.

The original SEBO Felix/Dart is rated at 1300W for the suction motor and 175W for the powerhead motor.

The new EU directive for reducing vacuum cleaner wattage from September 2014 means a whole re-launch for SEBO products. Felix & Dart are fitted with 700 watts for the domestic market and 1000 watt Dart models for the commercial markets.

A new F9 filter has been redesigned and fitted to the SEBO Felix Pet, designed to give heat protection and increased allergen retention.

SEBO Evolution 300/350/450[edit]

Launched in 2014, consisting of three (Evolution 300, 350 and 450) models with varying cleaning widths, this range is literally an "evolution" of the old BS36/46 commercial, incorporating refreshed styling similar to the BS36/46, but differences include a power on/off kick switch on the side of the cleaner head, single motor, and re-designed cord replacement. In the UK, this range replaces the 370 Comfort uprights.

Canister models[edit]

SEBO "Airbelt C"[edit]

SEBO's first cylinder/canister vacuum cleaner for the domestic market, the C series was launched in 1995 and though sited as a main rival to Miele and other premium brands, the C series offered an eco-friendly 1500 watt motor when most of the rivals had much more powerful motors. Equipped with an award-winning Ergo-handle and a highly efficient filter system called "AirBelt," the C series quickly became a worldwide success. The AirBelt design acts to diffuse clean air from the main filters on board the vacuum and emits clean air from the sides of the vacuum cleaner as opposed to the top of the vacuum that can affect the breathing of the owner at time of usage.

With a foot operated roller suction dial and a comfort handle, also copied by Miele on their later machines, SEBO's highly compact C series also uses the X series large disposable dust bag, loaded from underneath the machine to cut costs and extend accessibility. The design amasses awards from the Good Housekeeping Institute and was the first cylinder vacuum on the market to be credited with the British Allergy Foundation seal of approval among other organisations. By using the same capacity large dust bag as the X1 Automatic upright, this feature allowed buyers to independently choose between an upright vacuum or a more compact cylinder vacuum. Eventually SEBO launched the C1, C2.1 and premium C3 series with an electric power nozzle floor head, known as "ET-H." The C Series is long discontinued, but parts and accessories are still available.

SEBO "Airbelt D"[edit]

In 2010, SEBO replaced the C series vacuum with the D1, D2, D3 and D4 series - the largest cylinder vacuum SEBO has ever produced for the domestic market and specifically designed for large homes. Designed in collaboration with Achim Heine, Professor of product design and member of the German Design Council, whose timeless design is famous with Braun's small appliances, this innovative new vacuum emanates form and function, led by SEBO's original design knowledge. For example, the circular front, with its patented airbelt bumper, is ideal for negotiating obstacles, houses an easy to remove filter inside, and allows a large capacity 6 litre disposable high filtration dust bag. An extra long 12m cable contributes to an incredible 15.5m cleaning range, twice the cord length that other German brands supply.

To give maximum performance the air path has been optimised and a cone shaped hose has also been used, which improves suction and prevents clogging. A new turbo fan motor uses the latest turbine technology to give superlative cleaning power that reduces motor noise and the vacuum carries on with the famous AirBelt clean air diffuser bumper as well as protecting both the vacuum and general usage in a home.

The D series vacuum cleaner is an instant success with GHI. Red Dot Award and other organisations approving this model for its excellent new filtration design and usage. SEBO also add the ET-1 power head option and handle remote control with the white D4 model called the "D4 Premium", and in late 2011, a commercial version known as the "Professional D" is also launched with an pigtail interchangeable industry manual cord, low eco friendly 1200 watt motor and a design specifically catered for the commercial market.

The D4 Premium also features a unique novel ring of blue LED's around the control dial that highlights visual suction speed according to motor speed. Lower models such as the D2 Storm, D2 Titan, and D2 Total only have a single LED next to the rotary power adjustment knob to indicate power on status. The D series features a mechanical piston bag full indicator next to the hose outlet, and 4 swivel castors on the underside for maximum movement in space restricted areas.

As of March 2014 most UK domestic models of the D series including the D4 Premium are fitted with a 2100W motor.

To comply with the EU directive, the latest D2 series from SEBO features a range of 700 watt or 1200 watt models to replace older 1600 watt/2100 watt models. The ET-1 power nozzle remains unchanged rated at 175 watts.

In other countries and Germany, the D1 and D3 series offer several different permutations including a lower energy model with 1200 watts.

SEBO Airbelt E[edit]

Designed in conjunction with a German design specialist, the E Airbelt cylinder vacuum features a 3.5 litre dust capacity, lightweight and space efficient design with a one touch cord rewind, a motor protection system built in and a new filtration system. It is intended to eventually replace the AIRBELT K series compact vacuum and will be available in E1 and E3 models. Models with 700 watts and 1200 watts are available, as is the E3 Premium with ET-1 power nozzle.

SEBO "Airbelt K"[edit]

The K1 and K3 series "compact" cylinder vacuum was launched in 2002, designed to offer domestic homes with a smaller version of the C series. Using a four layer filtration 3 litre dust bag, (also with the bag door forming part of the underside of the machine) and similar Hospital grade filter system developed on the C series, the K series was also awarded with the British Allergy Foundation seal of approval and carried on with the AirBelt Clean Air diffuser design. Unlike the C series, the K series has only 3 swivel castors. The K is designed to be space efficient and smaller than the C series. Initially fitted with an 1800 watt motor to compete in the market with rivals and featured a new 500gram lighter tube and hose system earned design awards for this model. Also equipped with a longer domestic market hose and 6 metres of cable length, the K series remains popular.

SEBO further offered the K1 "Komfort" featuring two different floor heads - a parquet head and full size turbo brush; the K1 "Pet" which included a turbo mini head and full size turbo brush, (but no specific head for hard floors); the K3 "Vulcano" with a remote electronic suction control added to the handle grip and supplied with the Deluxe Kombi head plus the full size turbo brush, and a small dusting brush; and the K3 "Premium" top of the range model, with remote control handle grip, dusting brush and an electric ET-H power head similar to the C3. As from early 2014, SEBO have now started supplying the K3 Premium with the later ET-1 powerhead which is fitted to the current Felix range, and the D4 Premium.

All models in the K series have an orange bag full indicator light, and the Vulcano and Premium models also have a green "mains on" / standby light. K1 models have a lightweight crushproof hose that swivels both ends, but the K3 Vulcano and Premium have a heavier electric hose that does not swivel at the machine end, so does tend to be a slightly more unwieldy in use.

In 2011, SEBO further enhanced the K series with a longer 2.1 metre hose on higher variant models (Komfort, Pet, Vulcano and Premium) and 1.8 metres on the red base model K1 Airbelt. Later, 1800 watts remained the standard for the base level K1 Airbelt, whilst 2100 watt motors were fitted to all other K models, to compete with Miele's 2200 watt vacuums.

To conform to EU Directive (EU) No 666/2013 of 8 July 2013, SEBO launched an updated K1 Eco Comfort Plus with a 700 watt motor to comply with the impending EU law requiring vacuum cleaners to be limited to 1600 watts (from Sept 2014) and later (by 2017) to 900 watts. The K3 Vulcano variant is discontinued in September 2014, following the new ECO range introduction, although SEBO have launched both 1200 watt models alongside the 700 watt models.

SEBO Duo Cleaning System[edit]

In addition to their vacuum cleaners, SEBO also offer a dry powder cleaning agent for carpets which they call "Duo P" This powder can be distributed across carpet using a sprinkler dispenser, and scrubbed into the carpet with a brush or the SEBO Duo Daisy, which is a wheeled long handled brush, for easier distribution of the powder.

Alternatively, for optimum penetration of the powder deep into carpet pile, the motorized SEBO Duo cleaning machine can be used, which achieves the best results on large areas of carpet. After the powder has been allowed to permeate the carpet fibres for an hour, it can be vacuumed up, with any vacuum cleaner.

Timeline of product launches and company information[edit]

  • 1978 SEBO 350 commercial upright vacuum launched
  • 1979 Windsor Industries signs deal with SEBO to supply commercial market in the U.S.
  • 1981 SEBO products are sold worldwide, also as private label products.
  • 1983 SEBO distribution founded in Austria, UK, South Africa and France.
  • 1984 SEBO Duo P carpet machine and electrostatic micro filtration introduced.
  • 1986 SEBO 360 introduced with electronic brush control/sensor.
  • 1991 SEBO X1 Automatic and BS36/46
  • 1993 SEBO X2, X3 "big foot" versions of X1 launched
  • 1995 SEBO C cylinder vacuum introduced, distribution extended to Australia & Korea.
  • 1997 SEBO 370 launched, C1, C1.1, C2, C2.1 and C3 range extended with ET-H PN head.
  • 1999 SEBO distribution and SEBO Foundation in U.S.
  • 1999 X1 relaunched as X1.1 and X4 Extra, X5.
  • 2002 SEBO Professional G series G1/G2/G3 and K1 Airbelt & K3 domestic model launched.
  • 2004 SEBO Dart launched in the U.S. under Windsor Flexamatic.
  • 2005 SEBO Dart and domestic market Felix launched in Europe
  • 2006 SEBO K3 Vulcano launched
  • 2006 SEBO and BORK Industries sign private agreement to supply vacuums
  • 2007 SEBO Disco polisher power nozzle & SEBO DART 3 launched.
  • 2008 Pet versions of SEBO Felix and K1 launched, also Diamond dust pad for the Disco introduced.
  • 2009 SEBO X4 Pet launched and UK market exclusive K1 Cappuccino "Eco" 1500 watt.
  • 2010 SEBO D series, D1, D2, D3 and D4 Premium with ET-1 launched
  • 2010 SEBO Felix additional colours launched: Crystal limited edition, Rosso and Vogue
  • 2010 SEBO Dart UHS Polisher hard floor head & Domestic "Disco" version.
  • 2011 SEBO K3 Premium CHOICE Magazine Recommended Vacuum Cleaner, Australia.
  • 2011 SEBO D7/8 Professional commercial cylinder vacuum and Felix charcoal motor filter launched.
  • 2011 SEBO Synthetic ultra dust bags for K1 and Felix becomes available
  • 2012 SEBO K3 Premium CHOICE Magazine Recommended Vacuum Cleaner, Australia.
  • 2012 SEBO D7/8 worldwide distribution begins. Felix Vogue arrives in UK and new synthetic dust bags for Felix also launched.
  • 2012 SEBO Felix UK market Royale launched, X4 Excel for John Lewis launched, other countries with other flags on Felix range.
  • 2012 SEBO 370/470, BS36/46 redesign., SEBO K1 & X4 Pro also launched for Euronics.
  • 2013 SEBO K3 Premium CHOICE Magazine Recommended Vacuum Cleaner, Australia.
  • 2013 SEBO D2 Eco with 1600 watts launched and Eco floor head.
  • 2014 SEBO X4 Excel launched as an exclusive model for John Lewis PLC.
  • 2014 SEBO K3 Premium CHOICE Magazine Recommended Vacuum Cleaner, Australia.
  • 2014 SEBO Redesigned synthetic dust bags launched for all domestic models.
  • 2014 SEBO Synthetic dust bags for X series launched.
  • 2014 SEBO K1 Eco 700 Comfort, Plus models launched with 700 watts and Eco floor heads.
  • 2014 SEBO EVOLUTION 300 commercial upright vacuum cleaner
  • 2014 SEBO Eco range launched, with 700-watt Felix models (175-watt ET-1) 1100-watt X1.1, X4 and X5, 1200-watt and 700-watt K1, K3 and D2, D4 models.
  • 2015 SEBO K3 Premium CHOICE Magazine Recommended Vacuum Cleaner, Australia.
  • 2015 SEBO Airbelt E cylinder vacuum launched, with 700-watt E1, 1200-watt E1 Plus, Komfort and Pet models, 700-watt E3 Premium.
  • 2015 SEBO Felix Kudos launched for Euronics stores.
  • 2015 SEBO F9 Filter for Felix/Dart launched.
  • 2015 SEBO X4 Pet Boost upright launched with push button option for deeper floor cleaning.
  • 2015 SEBO E1 Excel launched as an exclusive model for John Lewis PLC/UK (based on E1 Plus model).
  • 2015 SEBO E1 Pro range launched with Euronics and other private dealers UK
  • 2015 SEBO E3 Premium 1200 model launched in Germany, also home market "E1 Sapphire" model.
  • 2016 SEBO K3 Premium CHOICE Magazine Recommended Vacuum Cleaner, Australia.
  • 2017 SEBO K3 Premium CHOICE Magazine Recommended Vacuum Cleaner, Australia.
  • 2018 SEBO K3 Premium CHOICE Magazine Recommended Vacuum Cleaner, Australia.


External links[edit]