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I swore Id never buy a Dyson. Not at that price. How good could a vacuum be to warrant such a whopping monetary difference? No matter what I read, or how good people told me a Dyson was, I didnt believe the price could possibly be justified. A classic case of paying for the name.
But then 6 months ago yet another vacuum cleaner broke on me after not much use and I decided to face the told you sos and splash out.
After a lot of reading, researching and online price comparisons, I decided on the DC08 Animal cylinder model. I thought that maybe it was the cat hairs that had buggered my previous vacuums, so decided to splash out on a model specifically designed to cope with the havoc pets wreak on your carpets.
I paid around £220 for my DC08 Animal from the online Co-op Electrical Shop. This is about £40 more than the DC08 non-animal version. For your extra £40 you get a couple of attachments specially designed to pick up animal hairs.
(Incidentally, do make sure the description of your DC08 is followed by Animal if you want this model. Comparison sites offer you prices from £184, but they are NOT the Animal version.)
When the product arrived, gleaming silver-grey and mauve, I approached it with great expectations
The manual was very comprehensive and included plenty o diagrams and text in several languages. Following the instructions, I had it fully assembled in around 10 minutes.
The DC08 is reasonably compact. Its unique design does not follow the typical lozenge shape of most cylinders nowadays, so it is a little awkward, though stylishly so. The compactness is lost, however, by the size of the hose. The hose is massive, meaning you need quite a bit of storage space for it. The hose does click on to the body, but that makes little difference to the overall size.
Along with the main components came several attachments:
Animal Turbo Tool
Small Animal Turbo Tool
The attachments can all be clipped on to the hose, but I found this made handling rather awkward so I left them off.
Duly set up, I turned the thing on and prepared to get to work.
I began with the Animal Turbo Tool and discovered that, my god, it is powerful. By the time Id been over the bedroom, the dust collector was half full of animal hairs and dust that I had no idea were even lurking in the wool. I was extremely impressed.
Then onto the stairs with the stair tool. The tool itself is extremely adept at getting into those corners and again is powerful enough to pick up all the deep-down dirt. My only problem here was that the body of the machine does not fit on a stair, so I had to keep hold of it with one hand whilst vacuuming with the other.
Next to the living room rug, a favourite sleeping haunt of the cats. Animal brush once more attached, I turned it on and WHOOSH! The rug began to disappear into the tube. After retrieving it, I put the small Animal tool into place and encountered the same problem. I then fixed the standard brush onto the hose and found I could vacuum without problems and with brilliant results yet again. In fact, the standard brush seemed just as effective at picking up dirt as the Animal one.
I then used the standard brush on my wooden floors and it worked brilliantly.
Crevice attachment next, and it got down the back of my sofa easily and produced excellent results again.
Not being a curtains person, having a house entirely kitted out with blinds, I didnt then and havent since used the little brush attachment.
So am I pleased? Well mostly.
ON THE PLUS SIDE
The best thing about my DC08 is that it cleans so well that your carpets actually look like new. It removes dirt and pet hairs that are deeply embedded, meaning your home is cleaner and more hygienic. Ive also noticed that cat allergy sufferers visiting my home are sneezing less.
The dust collector is a good size. I find I can do every room in my house before it needs to be emptied. Its great not having the hassle of bags to empty and replace. Simply click the bowl off the body and tip your debris into the bin.
Also, you never have to change the filter, which is a major plus as it can be a dirty and fiddly job.
ON THE DOWNSIDE
My DC08 is not the most manoeuvrable of objects. It seems to have an inbuilt ability to seek out furniture and lodge itself firmly under, behind and around it. I am constantly having to put down the hose and go and dislodge it from places before I can move any further. Its one of those little things that REALLY gets my goat.
The cord rewind is also a little troublesome. Some days it works as smooth as clockwork, other days I need 3 or 4 goes to get all the cord to rewind.
The most important thing about a vacuum is its performance, and the DC08 is superb at picking up dirt. It really is a class of its own. Five stars without a doubt.
However, the fact that it keeps getting stuck, that the hose is difficult to store, and that the cord doesnt rewind as well as it should, do knock a star off. They might be only minor annoyances, but they are things that a name and price-bracket such as Dyson should be getting right.
In the end, I cant decide whether or not the Dyson is worth the money. It is certainly worth more money than other vacuums, but the gap is so large I find it hard to justify. Also, the standard brushes are so good and do pick up so much animal hair that I dont think its worth paying the extra £40 for the Animal attachments.
That said, cleaning performance is as I said the most important factor, and I cant fault my DC08 on that.
Highly recommended, but it aint perfection.
Short name: Dyson DC08 Animalpro