Which Are The Best Dyson Vacuum Cleaners?

Written by James Hall | 0 Comments| Last Updated: May 21, 2018

There are few brands that can match Dyson’s reputation for powerful and high-quality vacuum cleaners. In this article, we’ve listed what we think are the five best Dyson vacuum cleaners – including their top features and why they stand out.

But before we get to the list, let’s start with some history. James Dyson, the inventor behind Dyson vacuums, built his first vac back in the 1980s. This model wasn’t just any vacuum though – it was the first bagless vacuum with cyclonic technology. We all know what happened next!

Today, of course, there are many Dyson vacuums on the market. The brand has grown to become one of the most recognisable in the UK, despite the expensive prices of most Dyson models. Even so, you might be wondering whether Dyson vacuums are really worth the money? Or can you get models that perform just as well for a reduced price (perhaps from our Under £100 or Under £200 price guides)?

To answer some of these questions – including which Dyson vacuums we think provide the best value for money – read on!

Big Ball Animal 2 Dyson Big Ball Animal 2
  • Type: Cylinder
  • Dust Capacity: 1.5 litres
  • Filter: Radial Cyclone
  • Price: ££££
  • Big Ball for manoeuvrability and tangle-free pet hair tool.
Dyson V8 Absolute Dyson V8 Absolute
  • Type: Cordless
  • Dust Capacity: 0.4 litres
  • Filter: Radial Cyclones
  • Price: ££££
  • Powerful, versatile and 40 minute run-time. The ultimate cordless.
Dyson Ball Animal 2 Dyson Ball Animal 2
  • Type: Upright
  • Dust Capacity: 1.8 litres
  • Filter: Radial Cyclones
  • Price: ££££
  • Ball technology, motorised tools and suction-sealing cleaner head.
V7 Motorhead Dyson V7 Motorhead
  • Type: Cordless
  • Dust Capacity: 0.54 litres
  • Filter: Radial Cyclones
  • Price: £££
  • Direct-drive head for carpets and excellent filtration.

 

What’s Special about a Dyson?

While Dyson manufactures a range of vacuums, including upright, handheld, cordless and cylinder models, they all have two things in common: cyclonic technology and a bagless design.

Cyclonic technology forces dust and dirt into the container so it can’t escape. It does this by spinning air in a circular pattern to create centrifugal force. Modern Dyson vacs take this a step further, with two layers of cyclonic technology to force even smaller particles into the dust container.

Bagless technology is relatively common for modern vacuums, but is another defining feature of a Dyson. While there are advantages to a bagless model, including not needing to buy replacement bags, they may not be suitable for people with allergies.

How to Choose a Dyson Model

Choosing a Dyson vacuum is much like choosing any other brand. The first step is to decide what you need from a vacuum cleaner. Do you need a vacuum that excels at picking up pet hair? Or are you more interested in a lightweight model for cleaning dust from high up areas?

Your personal requirements dictate which is the best Dyson vacuum cleaner for you, and for more information we recommend reading our vacuum selection guides using the menu at the top of the page.

With that said, here’s an overview of factors that require extra consideration when buying a Dyson:

  • Type of vacuum. Dyson are known for their excellent upright vacuums, but they manufacture a range of models including cylinders and handhelds. Dyson was also one of the first major brands to manufacture cordless vacuum cleaners. These models (such as the V7, V8 and V10) are lightweight, simple to use and great for cleaning difficult areas of the home. Dyson cordless vacuum cleaners also have a detachable handheld attachment, for use on stairs or in cars.
  • Capacity. Dyson vacs are designed to be easy to use. A big part of this is minimising weight, which is why the vacuums often have small capacities to counteract the large engines and other components. If you want to reduce how often you need to empty your Dyson, make sure you check the dust capacity.
  • Extra Features. Dyson has introduced a number of interesting and useful features to the vacuum market, with one of the most famous being the Dyson Ball. This replaces fixed wheels with a large, single ball to increase mobility. Newer uprights usually have ball technology.
  • Multi-Floor, Animal, Absolute…What’s the Difference? Most Dyson vacuums have multiple models. The core vacuum is usually the same, but accessories and floorheads vary depending on which you buy. We’ve been critical of Dyson for having too many vacuums with minor differences, but the company has recently made an effort to simplify their range. Make sure you know which model you’re buying and the accessories included though.

Other than these factors, you should also consider the priceweight, warranty and noise level of a Dyson. There isn’t really such a thing as a cheap Dyson vacuum, but you can find lower prices if you’re willing to buy an older model rather than the latest versions. If noise level is important to you, then you may want to look at our list of the quietest vacuums, as Dyson vacuums have a reputation for being relatively loud (although this has changed with the new EU regulations).

Dysons can also be heavy compared to other vacuums, so if you’re going to be lugging the vacuum up and down stairs all day you may want to take a look at our list of the best lightweight vacuums. We define a lightweight vacuum as under 5kg, while some Dyson models weigh more than double that.

Also, while price is important, you shouldn’t assume that the most expensive models are always the best. Even the cheapest Dyson vacuum cleaner models are often pricier than other brands, but the company still manufactures some excellent mid-range options (see the reviews below for more information).

5 Best Dyson Vacuums

The Dyson Ball Animal 2Dyson Ball Animal 2 (Upright)

The Dyson Ball Animal 2 upright is the newest entry on this list (replacing the now discontinued Dyson DC40 multi floor). It’s a powerful upright with Dyson’s patented “Radial Root Cyclone” technology to prevent suction loss, along with a new cleaner head and hygienic bin emptying system.

What’s the difference between this model and the previous DC40 though?

As the name suggests, it comes with Dyson Ball technology for easier manoeuvrability. This technology was included with the DC40, but the Ball Animal 2 has an articulated handle for easier cleaning in awkward locations. It’s also certified as allergy and asthma friendly by Allergy Standards Limited, which is important as it’s aimed at people with pets.

Other features include a carbon fibre Turbine Head, stair tool, Quick-Release Turbine Tool (for pet hair) and powerful cleaner head that seals in suction on all floors. Dyson has also designed the floor head to be low-profile.

It’s an impressive feature list. And, as you would expect, the Dyson Ball Animal 2 provides excellent cleaning performance across all floor types. The combination of cyclone technology, powerful motor and Epicyclic cleaner head allows it to dig deep into carpets to remove hair and other debris. The turbine tools are also excellent for cleaning stairs and upholstery.

There are some downsides though. At 7.34kg it’s not the heaviest vacuum on the market, but it’s not lightweight either. The bagless design means you’ll need someone else to empty it if you suffer from allergies. It’s also expensive – although this is to be expected from a Dyson.

To summarise, if you’re looking for the best upright Dyson vacuum cleaner then the Ball Animal 2 is a great choice. It provides ample power for most jobs, has a great range of tools and is highly manoeuvrable. It’s also one of the best options for people with pets.

Overview:

  • Price Range: ££££
  • Weight: 7.34kg
  • Dust Capacity: 1.8 litres
  • Filter Type: Washable

Key Features:

  • Powerful upright vacuum cleaner that’s great on all surfaces
  • Ball design for easy manoeuvrability
  • Turbine tools make quick work of pet hair

View Price

Dyson Big Ball Animal 2 (Cylinder)

The Dyson Big Ball Animal 2 is a bagless cylinder vacuum with 2-tier radial technology, hygienic bin emptying system and Ball technology for improved manoeuvrability. It’s probably the best cylinder Dyson vacuum cleaners on the market at the moment – especially since the company consolidated their range to make it easier for buyers to choose.

What makes this a vacuum worth buying though?

To start with, Dyson has worked hard to maintain powerful suction while reducing noise output. This is good news, as Dyson vacs often have a reputation for being loud. For comparison, the Big Ball Animal 2 is 25% quieter than the previous model.

Like all Dyson’s recent cylinder vacuums, the Animal 2 is designed with Big Ball technology. It also has an improved self-adjusting cleaner head that’s effective on both hard floors and carpets, along with a self-righting design and rotating wand.

Dyson prides itself on producing vacuums with great all-round cleaning performance. This model is no exception. It’s great on almost every type of floor and quick to suck up pet hair – especially with the tangle-free turbine tool. It’s also effective at removing larger debris, such as cereal, which many vacuums struggle with.

A downside is that it has a slightly smaller capacity than previous Dyson cylinder vacs (such as the DC54 Cinetic Multi-Floor). While 1.5 litres isn’t tiny, you’ll need to empty it regularly due to the powerful suction and excellent pickup. It’s also an expensive vacuum cleaner and relatively heavy for a cylinder.

Even so, we think the Big Ball Animal 2 is the best cylinder Dyson vacuum currently available. It’s powerful, has decent allergen retention and is great for almost any surface. We highly recommend it.

Overview:

  • Price Range: ££££
  • Weight: 7.5kg
  • Dust Capacity: 1.5 litres
  • Filter Type: Washable Lifetime

Key Features:

  • Outstanding suction power and cleaning performance
  • 2-Tier radial technology to prevent suction loss
  • Tangle free pet hair tool

View Price

Dyson V7 Motorhead Cordless

V7 MotorheadIf you’re looking for the best cordless Dyson vacuum cleaner but can’t afford the V8, the V7 Motorhead is a good option. It’s a cordless stick vacuum with powerful suction, direct-drive cleaner head and a 30-minute run-time. It also provides excellent cleaning performance on a variety of surfaces.

What’s the difference between this and the V6 though?

The V7 was first released as a “bridge” between the V6 and V8 series – but it has now replaced the V6 entirely. It has an improved 30-minute run-time and includes Dyson’s “no-touch” dirt emptying system. All models in the series also come with a direct-drive cleaner head, which wasn’t the case with the V6.

In other respects the V7 is very similar to the V6 (and V8). At its core, it’s a lightweight stick model with a detachable handheld mode and relatively small dust capacity. It’s powered by two tiers of radial cyclones, has a “MAX” power mode for extra suction, and includes a docking station for storage.

The handheld mode is one of the best features of Dyson cordless models, as it’s great for cleaning above furniture or car interiors – although it’s not quite as convenient as a hose. The V7 also provides excellent cleaning performance on almost any surface, including carpets, hard floors and laminate.

Unlike the huge variety of V6 models (such as the Absolute, Fluffy, Total Clean and more), there are only three options when buying the V7. If you’re on a budget, the Motorhead includes the direct-drive floor head, crevice tool and combination tool, so it has everything you need to thoroughly clean a home. It doesn’t include a motorised pet hair tool though – for that you’ll need the Total Clean or Animal.

To summarise, if you’re looking for a powerful cordless vacuum cleaner but can’t afford the V8 series, the Dyson V7 Motorhead is one to consider. It has great suction power and efficient filtration, plus the 30-minute run-time is much more reasonable than the short 20-minutes provided by the V6.

Note: There are two other models of V7 currently available. For homes with pets, the V7 Animal is probably the better choice as it includes a mini motorised tool. The V7 Total Clean is more expensive, but includes a wider selection of tools. To learn more, click here for our comparison of the V7 and V8 ranges.

Overview:

  • Price Range: £££
  • Weight: 2kg
  • Dust Capacity: 0.4L
  • Filter Type: Radial Cyclones

Key Features:

  • Powerful cordless vacuum cleaner
  • Direct-drive cleaner head
  • Up to 30-minutes run-time

View Price

Dyson V8 AbsoluteDyson V8 Absolute Cordless

The V8 is Dyson’s latest cordless range – and it’s certainly lived up to expectations. With a direct-drive head for carpets, soft roller for hard floors, powerful V8 motor and 40 minute run-time, this is a huge step up from the V6. It also has a max power mode and can convert into a handheld when needed.

In fact, the only reason we’ve got both the V7 and V8 Absolute on this list (instead of just the V8) is the price. The V8 is an expensive model that’s going to be outside many people’s budgets.

Despite the high price tag, we still think the V8 provides value for money. It’s powerful for a cordless vac, especially when on Max mode (although this greatly shortens the battery life). The long run time and outstanding floor heads also make it effective on almost any surface.

The Dyson V8 Absolute (along with the Animal which we reviewed here) is probably our #1 cordless vacuum on the market at the moment. It’s powerful, lightweight and suitable for cleaning stairs, hard floors, carpets and almost anywhere else. The only downside is the price.

Read our comparison of the Dyson V7 and V8.

Overview:

  • Price Range: ££££
  • Weight: 2kg
  • Filter Type: Whole Machine

Key Features:

  • Powerful cordless
  • 40 minute run-time
  • Two excellent floor heads

View Price

Dyson Light Ball Multi Floor

Light Ball Multi Floor

Looking for a Dyson upright vacuum but don’t want to shell out for the Ball Animal 2? If so, the Light Ball Multi Floor is an excellent alternative.

Most of Dyson’s previous upright vacuums, including the DC40, have fallen foul of the EU’s new regulations regarding power and noise output. For this reason, Dyson released a set of new vacuums – including the Light Ball – in an attempt to provide the same performance but within the EU’s guidelines.

The result is a powerful vacuum cleaner that’s 40% quieter that previous models. It also includes Ball technology so it’s easy to steer around furniture.

This isn’t just a quieter and more energy efficient DC40 though. Dyson has included the new Epicyclic floor head for better carpet pickup, and it does a great job with both fine dust and larger debris. The floor head automatically adjusts to create a suction seal, so you don’t need to change tools when moving from hard floor to carpet.

Other features include whole machine filtration, easy bin emptying (although without the hygienic system found on other Dyson vacs) and three suction settings. The package also includes a stair tool and combination tool.

There are some drawbacks though. The Multi Floor version doesn’t include the tangle-free turbo tool, so we don’t recommend it for people with pets. It’s not the easiest vacuum to use on stairs or under furniture. Dyson also calls this model “light to carry,” but at 6.9kg it’s far from the lightest vacuum on the market.

Even so, we rate the Dyson Light Ball Multi Floor as one of the best uprights on the market. It can sometimes feel clunky to use, but there aren’t many vacuums that can match its all-round performance. It’s also reasonably priced – especially considering it’s a Dyson!

Overview:

  • Price Range: ££
  • Weight: 6.9kg
  • Dust Capacity: 1.6 litres
  • Filter Type: Washable

Key Features:

  • Powerful upright vacuum with new Epicyclic floor head
  • Great value for money
  • Does a good job of retaining allergens

View Price

Which is the Cheapest Dyson Vacuum?

This is a difficult question to answer, as there are many Dyson models and prices change all the time. In general, the older the model the cheaper it will be, but it’s hard to find previous models due to new EU regulations. Handheld models are also cheaper, and can often be found for between £100-£150 when bought new (the price varies all the time though).

In terms of upright vacuums, you should expect to pay at least £200. A model such as the Light Ball Multi Floor, for example, is an excellent performer that doesn’t cost a fortune.

Conclusion

While Dyson may not be the undisputed king of vacuum cleaners anymore, they are still one of the top brands for high-end vacuums. The best Dyson vacuum cleaners are powerful, well-built and come with a range of unique features, including Radial Root Cyclone technology and the Dyson Ball.

If you’re looking for an upright vacuum, we recommend the Dyson Ball Animal 2 (although the Light Ball Multi Floor is a good option if you don’t have pets). If you need a cylinder model, the Big Ball Animal 2 is a good option.

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