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  1. #16
    Forum Member Kerrpe's Avatar
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    I've had Dyson and Hoover and have switched to Kirby. Tough as a tank - no plastic, everything replaceable, sucks up dog hair like nobody's business. I have two Labs, a Husky, and a Rottie. If you're good at bargaining you can get one for a good price and it will last forever. My Hoover lasted less than a year, the Dyson about two, the Kirby still going strong after four. It's the TB of vacuums.
    “Order and simplification are the first steps towards mastery of a subject” ― Thomas Mann

  2. #17
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    Warning – I may be too detailed oriented in my reply (I am an engineer by training … )

    I personally have a Dyson V8 cordless stick vacuum and love it. It takes care of my cat’s hair very well and it is convenient to get out and use (no looking for a plug, playing with the cord or needing to re-plug if moving to another room) – so I tend to clean more often. I have measured the suction and in Max mode it matches, if not betters, most full size main vacuums. In Regular mode, it does a good job at picking up things on bare floors / low pile carpet. Note that the battery lasts 26-40 min in Regular mode and 7-10 min on Max. It is also a Hepa vacuum in case you have allergies.

    Now, a good vacuum is the combination of strong suction and a well-designed cleaner head that can “agitate” the dirt so it can be sucked up by the vacuum. I find that Dyson does a better than average job of that – especially when it comes to edge cleaning. With other vacuums, it is annoying to have to back over the edges of a room with a crevice tool or brush again – not so with the Dyson V8 (and other Dysons as well as far as I have read). Also the Dyson V8 is the top rated stick vacuum – cordless or corded - in almost all reviews I have seen including Consumer Reports and Which.

    Now, one caveat for the Dyson V8 (or any cordless vacuum) – if you mostly have carpet (especially thicker carpet), heavily shedding multiple pets and a large house, this may not be the “one vacuum to rule them all” as it is cordless and may run out of battery before you can finish. But, even if this is your case, the V8 is great as a day to day vacuum for touch ups or if you do a few rooms at a time.

    A corded alternative if wanting a light weight stick vacuum would be the new Shark Rocket Complete with a soft and brush roller built into the cleaner head … but is it heavier and corded though cheaper (though does not have Hepa filtration for allergy sufferers).

    For my regular vacuum, I have a very old (18 years) Electrolux canister vacuum (the original Electrolux – now called Aerus). It has served me well and has never broken down or needed maintenance – and it does well with pet hair. In Consumer Reports, it matches or is only 1 level below the top canisters in each category. However, it is expensive.

    If a new full-size vacuum is more your need, Dyson and Miele are the tops while Shark has come out recently with some great vacuums that are inexpensive. Sears Kenmore also rates highly for most of their models.

    Some sites I like that give some good comparisons and do not require a subscription are:

    Vacuum-Cleaner-Advisor.com
    Consumersearch.com
    Reviewed.com
    Sweethome.com
    Cnet.com

    Note: look at both the Vacuum and Stick Vacuum categories.

    Based on the Consumer Reports reviews and corroborated by other sites:

    For Canisters:
    Miele C3 is tops (there is a Cat and Dog version) – the C1 (Classic version – Cat and Dog) is good too.
    Kenmore models (except the smallest ones) rate well as well.
    Note: The Dyson canisters are NOT rated well for Pet Hair

    For Uprights:
    Kenmore and Miele are tops for bagged vacuums
    The bagged Hoovers and the Kirby that I think @kerrpe mentions are also up there
    One interesting one (IMHO) is the Hoover Platinum bagged vacuum It is one of the few that rates excellent for Carpet, Bare Floors, Emissions and Pet Hair – even besting the top recommended uprights. Only the Kirby matches this but at a higher price point. The only downside is that it does not have any tools / additional hoses – it is just a floor vacuum. There is a separate vacuum unit with tools / hoses that comes with some versions of this vacuum if needed.

    Among the bagless vacuums, Dyson and Shark rule with 1 Hoover matching them – an older model – UH70120
    Note that the Dyson Cinetic did not do well in the pet hair tests but the other one – the Ball / DC65 did excellent. This may be an testing anomaly as other review sites find the Cinetic fine for Pet Hair.

    Bottom line, IMHO, you cannot go wrong with Dyson (bagless) or Miele (bagged) top models. If needing more inexpensive vacuums, Shark, Kenmore and certain Hoovers are good alternatives. I do like Shark’s innovations and versatility but the design of the their cleaner head seems not as good at getting dirt from the edges – unlike the Dyson where the roller part goes right up the edge of the vacuum head. Also, for those with allergies, the Dyson, Miele and Shark full size vacuums are outstanding for whole vacuum Hepa filtration (not so much for the Hoovers and not sure about the Kenmores).

    Again, I do not have actual experience with anything other than my Dyson V8 and Electrolux (I also have a Hoover Linx stick vac which I like a lot and CNET rates very well but it is not a whole home vacuum like the Dyson V8). However, I had done a lot of research before finally deciding on the Dyson V8. Let me know what model are on your shortlist (I have have more specific info on them based on my research).

    Hope this helps
    Cheers!
    Last edited by tpnl; 12-31-2016 at 10:55 AM.
    TB Ballistic Black/Iberian Dyneema backpacks and briefcases for every occasion together with my cherished Nordic and Solar Dyneema!

  3. #18
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    +1 for Miele. Have had two different corded cannister Mieles for the last two decades and couldn't be happier: great design, build quality, and reliability. (The first didn't fail or anything: just upgraded to another Miele.)

  4. #19
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    That's good to know that they've come out with a cat and dog version of the canister Miele. I have an older (10, maybe 15 yrs.?) model and it does NOT do a great job of picking up fur. The power brush shuts down pretty quickly if it encounters something it does not want to vacuum up. Hair seems to get wrapped pretty easily around the brush. This is the first canister vac I've had over the years and what is nice about the Miele is that you can get a lot of attachments for it. I do take it in for routine maintenance so I can try to catch any problems before they occur.

  5. #20
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    @prairiegl

    I heard that the top Miele powered brushes are better as they have height adjustments to suck bigger things (or do tall carpet) better without clogging or shutting down. You could investigate buying a version for your older Miele as long as it has a powered wand (ie if you have a option for or already have a powered roller bush as opposed to an air powered brush).

    Hope this helps
    Cheers!
    TB Ballistic Black/Iberian Dyneema backpacks and briefcases for every occasion together with my cherished Nordic and Solar Dyneema!

  6. #21
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    @tpnl, I am very intrigued by the Dyson V8 - thank you for your detailed comments! I will be moving next month to someplace with more than one story, and while I would love to continue to use my older Dyson Animal on the carpeted upstairs, I will now be dealing with two sets of carpeted stairs and hardwood floors in the living/dining/kitchen. How do you think the Dyson V8 would handle two sets of carpeted stairs and reasonably sized (not enormous) living/dining/kitchen wood floors. Do you think it could handle that space on one charge if it were not on max suction setting? This might be the supplemental vacuum solution that I didn't know I needed, as I am daunted by the prospect of vacuuming stairs with my full-sized Dyson. Thank you in advance for your thoughts.
    "Do one thing every day that scares you." - Eleanor Roosevelt
    "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." -Ferris Bueller

  7. #22
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    I forgot to mention - my Dyson V8 attachments fit very well in all the pockets of a DLBC !!

    Cheers!
    TB Ballistic Black/Iberian Dyneema backpacks and briefcases for every occasion together with my cherished Nordic and Solar Dyneema!

  8. #23
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    @NWhikergirl

    If you have the upstairs carpet covered with your existing Dyson Animal, I think the Dyson V8 would work well for your 2 sets of stairs and main floor (and even touch ups for upstairs). In handheld or stick mode, it would work especially well in your situation with lot of stairs. In addition to the vacuum being very light, you have motorized heads that you can use to really get the dirt out. Full-size vacuums rarely come with motorized heads that can go on the hose part of the vacuum. Shark has one on their Rotator series Pet version but not Miele and Dyson full size vacuums to my knowledge.

    As a bonus to the V8, you have several motorized options - the mini motorized tool (narrow cleaning width) or the main direct-drive cleaner head (wide cleaning width) or even the soft roller cleaner head (if your stairs were hardwood instead of carpet). Using it in regular mode and easily flipping to max mode when you know there is lots of dirt would work.

    The main floor should be fine to vacuum with the same heads. I have about 1000 square feet on my main floor of about 1/3 carpet and the rest hardwood floors and I can vacuum that up on one charge. Also note that because the batteries are of the Li-Ion type, they run at full power up until the end of the charge and are quick to charge – just under 4 hours for me from empty to fully charged. Also note that you can partially charge it (ie ˝ hrs or 1 hr) and use it again if one charge is just a little short. Unlike earlier battery technologies, these batteries do not need to fully recharged each time before reusing.

    I use the V8 every 2-3 days and rarely use my full sized vacuum (used once in the 5 months I have had the V8). The ease of use has changed how I keep my house clean and it is now cleaner on a regular basis (as opposed to vacuuming once every 2 weeks with the heavier corded main vacuum).

    As people are generally concerned about the run times, here are some more detail that may help:

    Regular mode:
    40 min with non-motorized tools (e.g. crevice tool, combination tool, mattress tool)
    30 min with motorized soft roller cleaner head (for hardwood) / mini motorized tool
    25 min with motorized direct drive cleaner head (for carpet / hardwood)

    Max mode:
    10 min with non-motorized tools
    7 min with motorized tool

    To get a better idea of whether the runtime is enough, perhaps time yourself and see how long you spend vacuuming. For me it is not more than 30 min but I am sure some more detail oriented people may vacuum for longer.

    Another thing people seem to ask is if the V8 is worth getting over the V6 model. Both have the same regular power level with the V8 having a stronger max mode and longer run time than the V6 (double when using the non-powered tools).

    If possible, I would opt for the V8 model because of the following:
    More hygienic dirt removal system (dirt does not get caught up as easily in the bin)
    More power in max mode
    Longer run time
    The newer cleaning heads are much better than the original V6 one

    For me, I found the extra soft roller cleaner head not needed as I was fine with the regular power head on hardwood. The soft roller is better but not enough so that I would bother replacing it every time I changed from carpet to hardwood floors. So, the V8 Animal version (does not have the soft roller cleaner head) may be a slightly cheaper option.

    As an example of how I have used my V8 over the holidays:
    Main floor overall cleanup before decorating
    Cleaning Christmas Tree needles that fall off and get carried around the house (many times and after our cat chose to redecorate the bottom 4 feet of our tree - twice !!)
    Cleanup of carpet and bare floors after present opening and kitchen cooking
    Cleanup of carpeted entrance way due to salt, dirt, leaves (many times)
    Cleanup before New Year

    It would not have been as easy / convenient to vacuum and clean if using my full sized vacuum. The cleaner heads are very low profile (< 3” high) and the signature Dyson ball at the end really makes it maneuverable under furniture, Also, as my wife has allergies, the whole vacuum HEPA filtration is great to use (whole vacuum filtration is important as dirt can escape back into the air via the hose/vacuum joints before it reaches the bag).

    As for any negatives about the Dyson V8, the main things I have read is that it is heavier than the V6 by a bit more than ˝ lb, that you need to hold down the trigger all the time to use (ie no On lock) and that it does not stand up on its own (though putting it upsidedown allows it to stand on its own somewhat). For me, these are not an issue but they may be for others. Minor (to me) ones I have noted are that there is no "On-Off" for the motorized tools as sometimes you just want suction and that the unit is a bit bulky for tight spaces (e.g. when car cleaning) - but you have an extension hose to address that issue.

    One “hack” I have done is to tape a small cheap LED flashlight to the vacuum stick portion to add a light that shines on the ground so I can vacuum in low or no light (as in under things). I use rechargeable batteries on the flashlight so I do not have to keep on buying batteries – works great and addresses the one thing I wish the vacuum had – a light (though I understand its omission as it would reduce battery life).

    Hope this helps

    Cheers and Happy New Year!
    Last edited by tpnl; 01-01-2017 at 04:21 PM.
    TB Ballistic Black/Iberian Dyneema backpacks and briefcases for every occasion together with my cherished Nordic and Solar Dyneema!

  9. #24
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    I do have a power wand, so will give that some thought. I got a new one a couple years ago when I was having trouble with it. We have a couple Miele dealers here.

  10. #25
    Forum Member haraya's Avatar
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    Another happy Miele user. We got one a few years ago on the rec of a vac repair guy (we brought him our old Hoover to fix) and have been very happy with it. We have a very fluffy Samoyed who sheds a lot once a year and lightly the rest of the time. Our Miele Polaris (not the cat and dog version) handles the fur, no problem. We don't use the HEPA filters - however, I find the regular Miele filters work quite well. Dust and pollen trigger my asthma but the Miele does a great job of controlling both those things.

  11. #26
    Forum Member K9TB's Avatar
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    Golden Retriever family here. And Mr. K9 is allergic to dogs. I've been disappointed by many vacuums.

    We have the white Miele U1 Cat and Dog. It's excellent on carpets and dog hair. Downsides: it's heavy. I'm fit and it's a bit of a drag to carry it up and down stairs. However, I think the heaviness helps it make contact with the carpet and makes it more effective. Also, the head is wide. So it's not easy to navigate around furniture legs and into tight corners. So while it's best if you can have more than 1 vacuum, I love it.

    I also have the Shark Navigator. It's surprisingly good, and it's much less expensive, so it's it's a good value. It's easy to use and I often take it out for a quick clean up. I like that the dirt canister separates from floor head. So I hand carry the canister (which is attached to the hose) and vacuum the stairs by hand. But I wouldn't want it to be my only vacuum if I had a lot of carpet.

    I just got the Dyson cordless V8, so I'm happy to hear good reviews on that. I was looking for something cordless with a small head for corners, under the beds, floor molding, and air vents. So far, so good.
    What's better than o-rings? More o-rings.

  12. #27
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    Just a quick follow up to thank you, @tpnl, for the thorough Dyson V8 review and recommendation. I purchased one just before moving into my new place, and it has been a lifesaver over the past month. It has performed flawlessly whether I am using it on carpeted stairs, hardwood floors, regular carpet, to clean out drawers using attachments, or for touch ups in hard to reach ceiling areas. And I have found the battery life to be much more robust than expected. I am pleasantly surprised to say that I actually look forward to using it, and I more often reaching for it than my now neglected Dyson Animal, given how quickly I can put it to work versus a corded vacuum cleaner. The other thing that makes me beyond happy is how maneuverable it is with its small head for areas like the bathroom, under the bed, or around furniture. While the V8 might be less of an asset if I had an enormous home, it has been fantastic in handling multiple floor types and levels in a small to reasonably sized home.
    "Do one thing every day that scares you." - Eleanor Roosevelt
    "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." -Ferris Bueller

  13. #28
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    OK having put myself through College a long time ago selling Vac's I can not believe how late to the party I am with this bit of advice?

    They all Suck!

    And yes I will be here all week,don't forget to try the Veal!

  14. #29
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    @NWhikergal

    I am glad you are enjoying your new vacuum and that I could help in the decisioning. I have the same feeling you have - the convenience, performance and ease of use (manoeuverability)+ Hepa Health really change things. I am happy when I vacuum - satisfied to easily grab the V8 and get things back to clean. It reminds me of when I switch from a desktop to a laptop. I thought - the desktop is still better as it can be more powerful for cheaper, the monitor can be better, etc, etc. But, after enjoying the "cordless" freedom of a laptop + wifi + great screens now and convenience of surfing anywhere I want, I do not want a desktop anymore. The same goes for the usefulness of a tablet or even a smartphone.

    Cheers!
    TB Ballistic Black/Iberian Dyneema backpacks and briefcases for every occasion together with my cherished Nordic and Solar Dyneema!

  15. #30
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    I have a Dyson V6 Total Clean (comes with the motorised heads and the soft roller but no HEPA filter). I love it and if you get the soft dusting attachment it is easy to clean cobwebs out of ceiling corners! Happy vacuuming.


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