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The Henry Vacuum Range – What are the Differences in 2024?

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Last Updated on May 14, 2024 by James Cook

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05/26/2024 06:39 am GMT

The Henry Vacuum Family

The Henry range of vacuum cleaners are renowned as well-built machines that will last for years (and even decades), providing no-nonsense vacuuming for people who want a machine that will perform well, consistently, with little maintenance, and for a price that doesn’t break the bank. Whether you are a professional cleaner, a tradesperson, or a homeowner, you are sure to be pleased with a vacuum from the Henry range.

All of the machines in the Henry range are still built in the UK, which is an incredibly rare accolade in 2024. The cheeky, smiling face of the original red Henry has been a staple of homes, offices and vans since the 1980s. However, over the years we’ve seen his siblings emerge onto the market, each offering a unique cleaning function and it can be a little confusing figuring out what the differences are. So lets dig into those distinctions, so you can discover the true differences between the Henry, Hetty, Henry Xtra, Henry Pet, James, Charles, George, Henry Cordless, Henry Quick and other names in the Henry vacuum family.

Henry (best all-rounder)

All of the contents that come in the box with the Henry Vacuum cleaner.
The perfect all-rounder for homeowners
Best All-Rounder
Henry Vacuum
£159.99
Pros:
  • Versatile, sturdy set of attachments.
  • Large capacity dust bags that are cheap to replace.
  • Long 10m cable means you can vacuum an entire floor without changing socket.
Cons:
  • You will have to carry it in one hand as your vacuum your stairs and it's not light.
  • The standard floor tool it comes with is not great with pet hair.
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Unsurprisingly, Henry is the best selling vacuum cleaner in the range, with at least 20,000 machines sold each and every week. He is a cannister vacuum that works by sucking up dust and dirt through a hose, directly into a large 6 litre capacity dust bag, which you then discard into your outside bin and replace with a new one. He comes with three strong, sturdy attachments (upholstery brush, crevice tool and soft dusting brush) which cover all of your vacuuming needs. Additionally, you get a metal vacuuming wand that connects into a floor head (combi floor tool) which can switch between hard and soft floors using a foot pedal.

Henry is the perfect all-rounder and the ideal choice for regular homeowners, who want a vacuum cleaner that can tackle everyday dust and dirt in the home and car. His attachments will grant you access to those really tight gaps down the side of your sofa, as well as allow you to vacuum delicate items such as lamps and picture frames. Lastly, your upholstery such as armchairs and sofa cushions will also get a really good clean.

Henry Vacuum Cleaner's attachments and floor tool
All of the vacuum’s in the Henry range come with Henry’s three attachments and floor tool as standard.

He has a long 10m cable, which means you can vacuum an entire floor of your home without relocating to a new socket, which is a fantastic practical feature. The dust bags are very cheap to replace, costing roughly £1 each and they will take a couple of months (or more) to fill up.

Illustrating the 10 metre long cable with the Henry vacuum cleaner.
Impressive Cable Reach

Henry is the stalwart of this range: tough, durable and easy to use. However, he is heavier than the more expensive vacuum cleaners, which means he isn’t very good for stair cleaning. He also isn’t great on pet hair, because he doesn’t have a rotating brush roll. So if you have a dog in particular, you are going to want either a Henry Xtra, Henry Pet or Harry (more on those below).

Read our full, detailed performance review of Henry here.

Henry Xtra (great for dog hair)

Henry Xtra vacuum cleaner with AiroBrush and Hard Floor Tool
The Henry Xtra comes with two additional floor tools for hard floors and pet hair.
Larger Capacity + 2 Extra Floor Tools
Henry Xtra
£179.99
Pros:
  • Better for Pets & DIY
  • An extra 3 litres of dust capacity
Cons:
  • Heavier than the regular Henry
  • Not great for stair cleaning
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As the name suggests, the Henry Xtra is just like the regular Henry but a little bit more. He comes with two additional floor tools (one dedicated for hard floors and one with a rotating brush roll).

A unique Airobrush is great if you have pets in the house. It provides an outstanding level of cleaning with carpets and is the perfect tool for cleaning up pet hairs, thanks to the fact that it has a rotating brush roll powered by a fan. This brush roll is much better at gripping stubborn pet hair and thus removing it from your carpet, compared with the standard combi floor tool.

Henry Xtra vacuum cleaner AiroBrush
The brush roll spins to pick up stubborn pet hair.

It also comes with a dedicated hard floor tool, which is only very marginally better than the standard combi floor tool (which has a brush bar that is lowered or raised for hard floors/ carpets) and isn’t really necessary. However, if you like the idea of the AiroBrush then I would still opt for the Henry Xtra, the dedicated hard floor tool is just a bonus but not a unique selling point.

Henry Xtra has a larger dust capacity (9 litres) than Henry (6 litres) so you will be changing your bag less often, which is ideal for those with very large homes. However, this means that he does weigh a little more (8 kg) compared with Henry (7.5kg), although that difference is marginal. Lastly, he is slightly larger (340 x 360 x 370mm) compared with Henry (320 x 340 x 345mm).

As with the other Henrys in this range it provides unbeatable suction power which will not deteriorate in the same way as other cyclone vacuum cleaners. Its robust shell gives it plenty of staying power, meaning it can go on giving you reliable service for years. But, is it worth the extra money? Only if you have pets, otherwise the regular Henry is more than adequate.

For even more information, check out our detailed review of the Henry Xtra.

Henry Cordless (best for those with mobility issues)

Henry Cordless
£179.99
Pros:
  • Useful if you have no access to mains power
  • Good for people with mobility issues
Cons:
  • It is double the price of the standard Henry
  • The battery lasts just 20 minutes
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The battery for a Henry Cordless sitting on top of its housing.
The battery lasts just 20 minutes on the high setting.

Henry Cordless is powered by a large, bulky battery that clips in to the top of the machine. Surprisingly, given the size of the battery, it will last for only 20 minutes on the high setting before it runs out of juice. This is a major disadvantage of this model, as 20 minutes is pretty tight when it comes to cleaning an entire house. However, the suction power is actually very good, performing only slightly worse than the corded Henry. The main reason to purchase this cordless vacuum cleaner is if you have to clean in a location with no access to mains power. Additionally, if you have any mobility issues are are worried about tripping over a trailing cord, this is a great fit for you.

The attachments and floor tool that you get with the Henry Cordless are exactly the same as the standard, corded Henry.

Is the Henry Cordless worth double the price of the standard Henry? No, it isn’t. However, if you’d like more information (including a performance comparison) read our full review of the Henry Cordless.

Henry Quick (best for those with strength issues)

Henry Quick vacuum cleaner

60 Mins Run-time
Henry Quick
£299.99
Pros:
  • Long 60 minute run-time
  • Very lightweight
  • Uses mini dust bags (pods) that reduces mess
Cons:
  • Much smaller capacity dust bags (1 litre) compared with Henry (6 litres)
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Henry Quick is the latest in the range, offering cordless vacuuming in the form of a stick vacuum, that you have to charge up. Each charge will give you roughly an hour of running time, which should be more than enough to cover a regular-sized family home. The major benefit of the Henry Quick is that you don’t have to trail a power cord around and if you don’t have any access to mains power, it is a fantastic choice. The dust and dirt is sucked up into small 1 litre capacity pods and the cost a little over £1 each. Most of these stick vacuums need you to empty the detritis into your bin and the process is always very messy. However, you don’t have this concern with the Henry Quick because everything shoots straight into the pod and then you just have to discard it into your outside bin.

Henry Quick has a rotating brush roll, so it is a good option for pet hair. It also comes with a combination tool, which transforms at the click of a switch to cover all of the cleaning ability of the upholstery brush, crevice tool and soft dusting brush, that you get with the Henry.

It is not that light (3.2kg) compared with the likes of the Dyson V12 (2.2 kg) but then again, it is half the price.

Read our full review of the Henry Quick, which includes a direct vacuuming comparison with Henry.

Hetty (great all-rounder)

The Hetty vacuum cleaner on a chair
There is no difference between the Hetty and Henry.
Exactly the same as Henry
Hetty Vacuum
£159.99
Pros:
  • Versatile set of attachments.
  • Large capacity dust bags that are inexpensive to replace.
  • Long 10m cable means you can vacuum an entire floor without changing socket.
Cons:
  • Not the best vacuum for stair cleaning as it is quite heavy and you will have to carry it as you go.
  • The floor head tool is not brilliant for pet hair.
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Henry’s little sister is Hetty. She comes with all the same features as Henry and is in fact exactly the same. There is no difference between the Hetty and Henry, other than her appearance.

We are not going to comment on which gender Hetty is aimed at. All I will say is that my daughter’s favourite colour is pink and she absolutely loves the Hetty, over the Henry.

For more information, check out our detailed review of the Hetty.

James (best for professional cleaners and tradespeople)

A James vacuum cleaner on a sofa.
Significantly lighter than Henry and best suited for cleaners and tradespeople.
Much Lighter than Henry
James Vacuum
£139.99
Pros:
  • Larger Dust Capacity than Henry
  • Lighter than Henry
Cons:
  • You have to manually wind up the power cord
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There’s always a frugal member of the family and James is it, often available for the lowest price out of all of the vacuum cleaners in the Henry range. Bright blue in colour, he’s lightweight and offers a different approach to storage.

James weighs significantly less than Henry (1.5 kg lighter), mainly due to the fact that he doesn’t have the automatic rewind system that comes with the Henry, Hetty, Henry Xtra and others. This means that you have to manually wrap the cord around the central housing, which is a bit of a pain at first but it is actually not much of a chore, once you are used to it. Additionally, the wand is made from aluminium instead of stainless steel, which is an extra weight saving as well. Lastly, he is slightly larger (340 x 365 x 360mm) compared with Henry (320 x 340 x 345mm) due to his larger dust capacity (2 litres more).

The James vacuum sitting on a stair tread.
James’ manual cord storage

So who is James suited for? Mainly professional cleaners and tradespeople, who want less weight to carry around all day. Furthermore, the automatic cable rewind system that comes with the Henry can become faulty with very heavy use, so this is just one less thing to go wrong, over time. If you have ever been to Center Parcs, you will see a James vacuum in the storage closet by the front door, in every single lodge.

James offers all of the cleaning ability and has the same attachments as the Henry.

We have a detailed review of the James vacuum, in case you want to know more.

Henry Pet (great for dog hair and pet owners in general)

Henry Pet vacuum cleaner EcoBrush
The EcoBrush is great for stubborn pet hair.

The Henry Pet has a larger capacity than Henry (9 litres compared to 6 litres) and it has a special charcoal filter that reduces pet odours. However, the main advantage of this model is the EcoBrush, which has a rotating brush bar that is much better at removing stubborn pet hair, than the regular combi floor tool. Henry Pet is also slightly larger (340 x 360 x 370mm) than Henry (320 x 340 x 345mm) and he weighs 0.5 kg more.

The EboBrush that comes with the Henry Pet is very similar to the AiroBrush that comes with the Henry Xtra, except that the EcoBrush is smaller. They both perform about the same on pet hair. However, the charcoal filter in this machine means that it is the best option for dog owners.

The EcoBrush floor attachment for the Henry Pet vacuum cleaner.
It has a similar brush roll to the Henry Xtra, just a little narrower (better for upholstery).

We have a performance comparison in our full review of the Henry Pet.

Best for Dog Hair
Henry Pet
£179.99
Pros:
  • It comes with an EcoBrush that is better at removing pet hair than the standard floor tool.
  • It has a special filter for reducing pet odours.
Cons:
  • Quite heavy.
  • Awkward for stair cleaning.
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Harry

Exactly the same as Henry Pet
Harry Vacuum
£179.99
Key Features:
  • Power: 1,060 watts
  • Capacity Dry: 15 litres
  • Capacity Wet: 9 litres
  • Cleaning range: 26.8m
  • Weight: 11kgs
  • Cost: Around £180
Pros:
  • Perfect for Reducing Pet Odour
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Harry is exacty the same as Henry Pet in everyway. He was actually the original pet vacuum in the Henry range, with the Henry Pet being a relatively recent release. I think the reason for this duplication is that the name “Harry” does not immediately convey its purpose as a pet vacuum cleaner and I imagine that one day this model will be retired. However, this does mean that you can opt for either the Henry Pet or Harry, depending upon which one is cheaper at the time.

George (best for carpet cleaning)

Best for Cleaning Carpets
George Vacuum
£299.99
Key Features:
  • Power: 1,060 watts
  • Capacity Dry: 15 litres
  • Capacity Wet: 9 litres
  • Cleaning range: 26.8m
  • Weight: 11kgs
  • Cost: Around £300
Pros:
  • Perfect for Pets, DIY & Emergency Cleaning
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Haven’t you always wanted a vacuum cleaner who could do pretty much everything? George can suck up spillages, as well as deep clean your carpets, valet your car seats and even unblock a drain. On top of this, he also performs brilliantly as a regular dry vacuum cleaner, lifting up stubborn hair, dirt and dust from your carpets and hard floors.

In the dry it has a hefty storage capacity of 15 litres and a wide range of attachments means it can switch effortlessly between different tasks. It really is a vacuum which can rise to meet just about every challenge you can think of. However, he is quite large (360 x 370 x 510mm) and heavy (8.8 kgs) when configured for wet cleaning. George comes with two hoses (one standard for dry and one with a water pipe running through it) and  to use it as a wet cleaner, you simply remove the bag and the filter, and then replace it with a bucket and lid. Lastly, he comes with a large floor head for carpet cleaning, a miniature version for upholstery cleaning, and a large squeegee for hard floors.

We have a more detailed review of the George Vacuum, should you require any further information.

Charles (best for spillage clean-up)

Charles Vacuum
£179.99
Pros:
  • Both Wet and Dry Vacuuming
  • Huge wet capacity
Cons:
  • Very heavy and bad for stair cleaning
  • Cable storage is awkward
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Charles is another wet and dry vacuum cleaner in the Henry range, with a dry capacity of 15 litres and a wet capacity of 9 litres. The main difference between Charles and George is that George can squirt water or cleaning detergent first and then suck it up, whereas Charles cannot do the former and can only remove liquids, which it does very well. This reduction in wet performance is reflected in the much lower cost of the Charles.

Charles is a great multi-purpose vacuum, but his ability to suck up even big spills could well save you money. Water causes a huge amount of trouble in the home and big spillages or leaks could lead to damage which has your wallet screaming for mercy. By gobbling up those leaks, Charles could save you a small fortune.

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05/02/2024 12:32 pm GMT

What else should I know about the Henry Vacuum Cleaner Range?

A Word on Price

The Henry vacuum cleaner range covers a number of price points. The more expensive models, like the George, do more things than the models that don’t cost as much. Adversely, the cheapest Henry Vacuum is usually either Henry or James.

Dust Bag Capacity

The bigger the capacity of the vacuum cleaner, the more dust and dirt it can hold. The standard 6 litres that you get with the Henry and Hetty is still on the larger side for a cannister vacuum and you will find that it lasts many weeks, if not months, before filling. The extra capacity that comes with the James, Henry Pet, Harry and Henry Xtra is an added bonus.

A comparison between the bag in a Henry vacuum cleaner and a sofa cushion.
The 6 litre Henry dust bag is the same size as a sofa cushion.

Is it Bagless?

Rumour has it that your Henry will work without the bag in it, but that you might not get the suction you could expect otherwise. Since you can buy ten bags for around ten pounds there really is no reason to risk the loss of suction or damaging your Henry. At the very least, you will definitely ruin your filter.

Noise Levels

These vacuums aren’t all that noisy anymore. People did used to complain about the twin motors back in the early days, since the double-motor meant double-volume. The team at Numatic International have made specific advancements in the noise volume department. Coupled with energy efficiency regulations from the EU, this has made the physical noise output of the whole range at under 80 dB. You will notice a sifnificant increase in noise when you attach the crevice tool in particular.

Suction

The suction power for all of these machines is excellent, with the standard Henry putting out 620w of power and 2300mm H20 of suction.

Corded or Cordless?​

Most of the Henry Range comes with a cord, which you either wind back in using the handle on top of the machine, or do it manually (as with the James). Both the Henry Cordless and Henry Quick have no cords to worry about.

Storage

All of these machines come with a handy storage caddy on their backs, which allows you to clip the assembled wand to the machine (for upright storage when not in use), as well as an additional two attachments. The ability to clip on two of the attachments is really useful, as it means that you can keep switching them out as you navigate your house, instead of having to return to where you started from to fetch them.

The storage caddy on the Henry Cordless.
The storage caddy allows two attachments to clip on to each machine. All of the machines have this feature.

George and Charles are large and quite difficult to store. However, the rest of the range are relatively compact (as soon as you have disconnected the wand from the hose) and can be stored in chests, under the stairs or even in wardrobes.

A Henry Pet vacuum cleaner being stored in a chest.
Some disassembly is required for easy storage.

Durability & Reliability​

The Traditional Henry has a long established history of being a durable, tough vacuum cleaner at a fantastic price point. The whole range are some of the most long-lasting vacuum cleaners you will ever buy. They are mostly made from dense plastics. Again, they aren’t the most recyclable range of vacuum cleaners, but they do last long enough that they make back their carbon footprint before they break..

FAQ’s about the Henry Vacuum Range

What’s the best Henry  for my small home or outhouse?

The regular Henry is more than adequate for a small home but remember, if you have pets you still should opt for the Henry Pet or Henry Xtra. The Henry Cordless is ideal for outhouses or any premises with no access to mains power.

Where can I buy replacement dust bags?

Dust bags are inexpensive to buy and you can source them by following this link. In a pinch, the older models of Henry can be used without any bags if you have to. Be aware that this might result in a loss of suction, as well as damage to your filter.

Can a Henry vacuum cleaner unblock drains?

Yes, certain models are able to clean things like your drains, standing water, or any spillages in the kitchen or bathroom. The Charles and the George are both made to be wet and dry vacuum cleaners, whilst George also cleans carpets and upholstery.

I have allergies. Do Henry have a vacuum cleaner I can use?

Henry have a vacuum cleaner for everyone! You need the Henry Allergy, which uses a MicroTex Filtration System to ensure that even the smallest particles are whipped out of the fibres of your flooring.

I want a Henry vacuum that does everything, is there one?

For that you need the Henry Xtra. This model deals with pesky pet hair, thanks to its powerful AiroBrush and also has a huge dust capacity.

James Cook
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4 thoughts on “The Henry Vacuum Range – What are the Differences in 2024?”

  1. THIS isn’t all of the models. there is the henry reach which is sold by argos (not sure if it is an exclusive to them) and there is the henry plus which is exclusive to john lewis.

    Reply

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