They say honest companies suck at cheating. Now, two German companies stand accused of being cheats at sucking.
British inventor James Dyson, founder of the vacuum cleaner manufacturer, has accused Siemens and Bosch of using an illegal defeat device -- a sensor in their cleaners that makes them use less energy in government lab testing than they do in real-world vacuuming.
The European Union won't allow vacuum cleaners that use more than 750 watts to be sold. Tests are conducted while machines run statically -- that is, not sucking up dust and dirt. Dyson claims the Bosch and Siemens vacuums use a "dust sensor" that knows when the vacuums aren't being used to clean anything and limits usage to 750 watts. When they are cleaning, he says, energy usage goes up to 1600 watts.
"Just like the testing regime for the diesel engines in cars, the European regulations state that vacuum cleaners should be tested in a laboratory without any attempt to replicate real-world conditions which leads to misleading results," said Dyson's company.
Bosch and Siemens deny the claims.