on February 10, 2016
This is NOT a paid review. I paid real money for this thing.
ONE MORE UPDATE:
I just can't stop updating this review, because I think this ONE flaw in the design is ludicrous. It's like they didn't even test it on pet hair longer than 3". See the pictures, but basically, over use, the hair gets pulled under the brush bars and under the spindle/post that holds the brush bars in place. This then gets so clogged up and hot that it MELTS the plastic and hair. This hair was packed in there in this picture from probably a month or two of use, but I've now experimented with just vacuuming my living room 3x over a week and there is already a burning smell/hair globbed under the spindle. Terrible design, and I'm not even an engineer... You can see t he gap below the spindle where the hair gets sucked in (there's got to be a better design).
Dyson called me back to offer more support (that's nice..), and basically there's nothing they can/will do about it. The vacuum is great for someone with dog hair that is shorter than 5" or hard wood or no pets at all.
I have recently been calling my house that smells like burning plastic/hair the "Freshly Vacuumed Dyson Smell". Sad.
UPDATED UPDATED REVIEW #2:
I really want to like this vacuum, but I'm on the 3rd head Dyson sent me because, despite cleaning the brushing head every month or two, I kept getting a burning smell. I finally bought a Torx (non-security head) kit and took the freaking thing apart. I'm no engineer, but there's got to be a better design. See my pictures of the brushhead motor below. What would happen is dog/human hair would get wrapped around the brushes, but it also gets pushed deep in to the motor. You can see the Picture #1 with the brush heads off. Picture #2, I removed the "studs" that hold the brushes in place with a Torx T9 (here is where the hair clogs and [perhaps] slows the motor, but more importantly, melts the plastic and you get the burning smell. Picture #3 shows the open "gear/belt assembly" that turns the brushes (some hair even in here). Picture #4 is upclose of the cover of the gear/belt assembly. Hard to see, but notice the hole isn't perfectly circular, that's because the hair that was clogged in Picture #2 gets so clogged and hot it melts the plastic!! I hadn't used this vacuum in a couple days and I could smell the burned hair/plastic smell still.
I put it all together after cleaning that clog in Picture #2 and it's working again. I wouldn't expect any average user to disassemble this every couple of months, nor pay $50-$80 for a vacuum tech to do it. Really disappointed in this purchase. Maybe Dyson can run their tests at my house next time... (the rest of the pictures of from my original posts below. OK, done rants).
UPDATED REVIEW #1:
See below for my original review, but I've had to update it from 4 stars down to 2 (almost one, but I don't HATE it). Here is why (also see the last pic of the plugged up motor spinner):
I bought this to replace a DC25 orange ball I had. We have since added 2 Australian Shepherd dogs. I thought, "Dyson's best vacuum and called Animal, it must be awesome." It'd be awesome if you had hard floors and short haired dogs.
The suction IS awesome. But now, only 4 months in, I've got a burning smell and a cleaner bar that is really tight. Come to find out, you're supposed to remove 4 screws and the purple cleaner bars and clean the hair out of the black posts (there is a black bar in the middle of the cleaner bars that is part of the motor assembly and the main function for making them spin). "It says it right in the manual." - the Dyson Expert Support person told me, and "You'll have to take it to a service repair center and pay to have it cleaned out properly". Well, that's interesting, I didn't get a manual in my brand new box, I only got a quick start guide with cute little pictures (and which does not show you how to unscrew the entire cleaner bar head, only to remove the quick release outer perimeter piece and pull the hair off the cleaner bars - I even went through multiple times to make sure I didn't miss anything).
Needless to say, that is partially my fault for not cleaning out those bars. Not my fault is the poor design of this, and the fact that is is marketed as an Animal vacuum. Did they ever try vacuuming up pet hair on carpet before with this for more than a test or two in a lab environment on lab (probably new) carpeting? Should it last longer than 4 months without a cleaning? I've never had to disassemble my vacuum head this much before to clean it out every month, or ever for that matter, even the DC25 never had this issue (different design). The support rep told me to do this every month. I have tried pulling the hair, but most of it just tore and the real clog is internal to the black post motor section, see pic.
I am thoroughly disappointed with Dyson. I was also hoping this vacuum would solve my issue of pet hair in my carpets, and while it does do a pretty good job, there is still hair left in the carpet (thicker) after passing through once, even twice. For being their top model and listed as an Animal vacuum, it leaves a lot to be desired, in my case.
Dyson's support is good. This is not the first time they replaced the entire head though. I had this early on after 2 months of use, and they didn't tell me to do this extra step of removal. That new head lasted 4 months without my knowledge of deep cleaning it. Now, after 5 support calls, they are sending me another new head, and now I know to deep clean those posts...
My dog's hair is between 2"-7" in length and our carpet is pretty thick. I've used my $130 Bissell carpet cleaner ProHeat and it gets more hair out of the carpet than my Dyson does, but it could be because it uses water and the hair sticks to that.
I waited awhile to post this, so I could get used to it. A bit of back story: I had an orange ball DC25 before this for years, it worked well, but when we moved, we now have 3/4 of the house with carpet. We also added two Australian Shepherd dogs since then ("medium" shedders, one with long hair and the other with short hair, both with endless hairy undercoats). The DC25 was not cutting it anymore on the carpet. I dropped about $500+ on this top end Dyson at Kohls over Black Friday + $140 back in Kohls cash (best deal around) and sold the DC25 for $100. Of course, now I see they dropped their price to $559 on Amazon.
My complaint review (I don't know some of the official names of parts, so bear with me):
- With this much dog hair, it doesn't do a flawless job on carpet. In fact, for this price, I would hope it would do a perfect cleaning job, but it does do better than the DC25.
- The removable hose attachment is awkward. There is no handle to grip it when you pull it out, just the hose "tube" (the DC25 main handle came off with the hose for control). There is also a red button to slide it back in when you're done, which I always forget to depress (the DC25, you just had to slide it back in, no "stopper" button).
- There is no attachment holders on the vacuum besides a strange, "thin" hose attachment which doesn't even fit in the main hose opening! It comes with a nice carry bag, but I'm not carrying all the attachments around the house.. Again, the DC25 had 2 holders, so you could keep the step tool with the vacuum. Two would be nice for commonly used tools.
- On the motor head (which comes off easily and which Dyson has already sent me a replacement for due to a "burning" smell), there is a strange plastic piece in the middle (see pictures), which I assume gives the "spinner bar" some support. The problem is, it leaves an "unvacuumed" line in your vacuumed carpet, so I always go over it twice.
- Also, a lot of dog hair got stuck in a small hole above this plastic support (see picture) after 3 uses.
- The dirt canister drops dust on the ball when you pick it up (see picture), without even opening the bottom of the canister yet.
- May be a bit heavy and bulky for some (like my mom for instance)
- The canister is bigger, but the distance between the inner wall and the cyclone thing is smaller than the DC25, thus, when gobs of dog hair are in there, I have to pull it out each time, it doesn't just fall out when I empty it (or maybe it's just sucking up so much more than the other that it's denser).
- I wish they'd make a small tight-space nozzle to fit on just the flexible tube hose (not the straight stiff arm) so that you could clean in tight areas, like a car. Still impossible to get to some places with the 2-3' stiff arm on the hose.
- Quiet. Some people complained it was loud, but it's quieter than my DC25.
- Lots of different attachments.
- It's a Dyson, so the customer support is really good (sent a replacement complete head quickly)
- Suction is insanely good, which is really the best reason.
Pictures are of:
The motor head and plastic support
The stuck dog hair in a small hole above the support (after 3 uses)
The handle-less removable hose
My carpet post-Christmas tree droppings and one pass over it with the Dyson
Dusty big ball below the canister from removing canister