Product Type: Dyson vacuums
Newest Review: ... similar versions out now that are better and more readily available but hopefully this will give you some idea of what to expect from thi... more
There's a new sucker in town
Member Name: sersha
Date: 21/01/03, updated on 21/01/03 (6411 review reads)
Advantages: excellent suction and power, clear bin so you don't lose stuff, you don't have to buy new filters, vast array of attachments
Disadvantages: array of attachments initially offputting, attachment for hoovering the cat not yet invented
Normally when I make a decision to buy something, it's the quickest and cheapest option I go for. But this time I wanted to do my research, and spend a decent sum of money in order to get something I could trust to do the job. And something purple, as it's my favourite!
As with most things in life, I think you get what you pay for. My old electrolux bottom of the range hoover cost me £29.99, and as you would expect, it's crap. It will pick up a cornflake on two conditions: 1) you point the hose right over the cornflake and wait 2) you haven't stood on the cornflake first. It seems to have a superiority complex: dust and crumbs are beneath it.
This opinion is specifically about the Dyson DC08 Animal which is going to set you back £299 at most electrical stores and is widely available. It looks just like this picture, except the colours are different. It's purple where the yellow is. The cheapest price I could get was £257.99 from www.electricaldiscountuk.co.uk. If you find it cheaper elsewhere, don?t tell me!! This included delivery within 48 hours - very impressive.
BUILD AND PORTABILITY
This is the newest of the Dyson range, and not an upright Dyson, so if you have been used to uprights, you may find you have to rearrange your cupboards. This might not be something everyone takes into consideration when purchasing a vacuum cleaner, but
you never know. And part of the reason I like the Animal is because I can pile lots of things on top of it once I've kicked it into the cupboard.
Seriously, it's not as big, or as heavy, as I thought it might be. Don't get me wrong, it's a serious Dyson, but it's actually quite compact in shape, and not hard to carry around. I find it quite light to pick up and carry up and down stairs, and it will sit quite happily on the stairs without threatening to fall on you or your moggy. It has a rear centre of gravity, and you can turn it around on the spot. Great for pulling around corners through rooms without clunking off the walls. It seems to know where you are going and follows accordingly. The handle rotates to take the weight off your wrist as you clean corners.
It has a very long lead, which is retractable, something I particularly like. I've spent too long tripping myself up on cable when trying to put the old hoover away. This Dyson basically has an answer for everything. I'm sure if you asked it nicely it would make you a cheese and pickle sandwich. It even has an in built clippy bit so you don't have to hold the hose. And it's my favourite colours!
WHY IS IT MORE POWERFUL THAN MY OLD HOOVER?
Dyson go on and on about their revolutionary Root12Cyclone technology. Whatever! I don't really care what they call it. It picks up dust, pet hair, and all the other icky things that get into your carpet. Really really well. And that's about all you need to know. You really want to know how it works? Ok then? here?s a quick rundown for those who are really interested.
(With thanks to dyson.co.uk) The cyclone is basically a stream of air that spins, meaning that dirt and debris are thrown out of it. The outer cyclone throws out the larger particles, and the inner cyclone removes the microscopic ones. The cone shape speeds up the spinning air to create even greater centrifugal forc
es, which remove even more dust particles. This technology took James Dyson 15 years and 5,127 prototypes to develop. (end of rundown.)
It's so strong that as I vacuum the carpet in the living room, the carpet physically lifts up to meet the machine. This is where yet another piece of Dyson magic comes into play. It has variable suction. There is a suction release trigger which reduces suction by 35%, so that you can clean upholstery or delicate rugs without them sticking. It is great on lino covered surfaces, since I'd rather the lino actually stayed on the floor!
OTHER EXCITING FEATURES (Well, really. It's a hoover.)
The Clear Bin
This is the feature I most associated with the Dyson before getting one "one of them hoovers where you can see inside!" It means you can see when it's full, without opening your machine and getting a cloud of dust in your face. It's easy to empty, (you click off the cylinder, hold it over the bin, and push a button.) You can also see if you have accidentally sucked up your wedding ring and best of all, you can tell how well it's working when you see enough cat fur to make a large sparrow retirement village. The first day I got it, I have to admit to being absolutely disgusted at the amount of cat hair it picked up. It was gross to think all that stuff had been lying on the carpets for weeks and I couldn't even see it.
The DC08 has 2 heads, (not like a monster) - the bristle head for carpets and one for wooden floors or other uncarpeted areas. To change between heads you simply press a button with your foot on the head area. No faffing with changing parts around for this, anyhow.
There are also extra heads, which can be put on in place of the main bristle head. These are:
Turbo Brush and Mini Turbobrush
This is the brush that is specially designed for pet hair. It is an air powered brush which
brushes the carpet to remove clinging hairs and fibres. It has nozzles that shoot air very quickly into the pile of the carpet, which dislodges and agitates the dust so that it can then be sucked up.
Because this head tends to get clogged up with hair and muck which winds its way around the bristles, you can take it apart to clean it by undoing 4 screws. You simply remove the unit, clean the bristles and remove all the gunk, and then put it back together again.
The mini turbobrush works in the same way, but is smaller. It is unique to the "animal" models, and is small enough to use for removing pet hair from upholstery, or for use on the stairs or in the car.
Dust: Oi you! Get off!
Animal: (agitating) Na mate, gonna suck you up
Dust: (agitated) Get lost! I'm having a snooze!
Animal: Heh heh heh you're a gonner mate!
Dust: Why, whatcha gonna do about it?
Animal: Your mother is a *£&$(*£(
Dust: (riled) Right, I'm coming up out of this here carpet to get you?
Animal: (smugly) Ah, breakfast. ;-)
This is where the faff begins. When the Dyson arrived there were several packages with it, various different heads and attachments, and to be honest, it was all a bit daunting. Trying to work out what was what was fun too.
The extension tube adjusts to the length you want - you just hold the right section and pull gently, and it goes thunk thunk thunk through a series of clips. You just stop thunking when it's as long as you want it to be. No more backache from bending down! It also makes it much easier to reach high places and hoover cobwebs from the ceiling, or the tops of the curtains.
I was tempted to shut all the tools in the cupboard and forget about them, but then I discovered there is a tool holder you can put them in, which means you don't have to kee
fetching them in the middle of some serious vacuuming. The tool holder clips onto either the hose or onto the back of the machine, so that you have them ready for when you want to use them.
There are three small tools:
1) The long thin crevice tool is for getting into nooks and crannies, and crevices too I suppose! I find it very good for corners of rooms, spillages, and for sucking all the crumbs out of the toaster. (NB: Don't try this at home! - there are easier and better ways to clean your toaster - ones that use common sense rather than hoover attachments)
2)There's a small round brush tool which has long bristles for cobwebs and delicate surfaces.
3)The stair tool is good for stairs, furniture, and curtains. It's basically the same shape as your regular hoover end, but much smaller, so fits into smaller spaces. It has special velour strips on it for picking up hair.
For a small fee, you can order in attachments to suit various different breeds of cat, ranging from the "Rigourous Moulting Burmese Sucker Head" to the "Gentle Kitten Lightly Schooshy Tube." Really, whatever the animal, this is the Dyson for you. Moulting cat? Skin-shedding reptile? Muddy mole? No problem.*
Do you really need all these attachments? Well, if used properly they enable you to get the most out of your Dyson.
WHY YOU WON'T NEED TO REPLACE IT FOR A LONG TIME
The DC08 is built to last. It is made from ABS and polycarbonate - 2 of the strongest materials available.
The Dyson Helpline
If you have any problems with your Dyson you can ring the helpline. Remember to make a note of your Dyson's serial number. You can find it on the underside of the machine. You will need the serial number to register your Dyson when you first purchase it.
WHAT ABOUT BUYING NEW FILTERS?
All Dysons come with lifetime
filters, so you get really good filtration of small particles (even microscopic particles as small as cigarette smoke!) Dysons remove so much dust that their filters don't clog and you don't have to fork out for new ones. It is a good idea to clean your existing filter (in the washing machine or by hand under the tap) every six months. They are easy to remove - a couple of buttons to press and you can access this magical piece of foam. Because the DC08 has the very best level of filtration you can get, this model is ideal for asthma sufferers and people with allergies. Goodbye dust mites and hello clean house!
Since using my Dyson I have found that the house smells cleaner and fresher than ever before. I also scratch less (no joke!) I used to think we just had bad midges in the area, but now I think some of the skin irritation was caused by house dust. Call it psychological, but the carpets LOOK cleaner. Honest!
It's not the best 250 quid I have ever spent - but it IS the best household appliance I have ever owned!
*NB: Do NOT attempt to vacuum your pet!