The Miele C2 and C3 are both excellent cylinder vacuums. But what are the differences? And which should you buy? Here’s our in-depth comparison.
The Quick Pick...
Winner: Miele C3 Complete PowerLineBoth the Miele C2 and C3 are excellent cylinder vacuum cleaners, but the C3 is the marginal winner in this comparison. It has all the features of the C2, plus a wider cleaning radius and foot controls for suction power. Click here to view the price of the Miele C3 Complete PowerLine.
The Miele C2 is almost as good though – and for a cheaper price. It provides strong suction power and excellent carpet pickup. Click here to view the price of the Miele C2 Complete PowerLine.
Despite the cordless vacuum trend, Miele cylinder vacuums have remained a popular choice in the UK.
The company produces a range of cylinder vacuums, but both the C2 and C3 have proven to be powerful, durable, and provide excellent cleaning performance.
We don’t think Miele does a great job of explaining the differences between these vacuums though. To help you choose, here’s our full Miele C3 and C2 comparison.
Note: For this comparison we’ll focus on the standard C3 Complete Powerline and C2 Complete Powerline. Other versions share many of the same features, but include a different filter and toolset. See the “Versions” box for more information about the various C2 and C3 Complete models.
In-Depth Comparison of the Miele Complete C2 and C3
A Quick Overview
At first glance, the C2 and C3 are very similar vacuums. They have a bagged design, extendable wand, all-surface floorhead, PowerLine motor and 890W motors (unless you choose an EcoLine version.) They are also both built with a similar form and on-board tool storage.
There’s no doubt the C3 is an upgraded version though. It has a bigger cleaning radius than the C2, so you won’t need to change plug sockets as often. It also has foot switches for suction control, rather than a dial.
Of course, it also has a higher price to match. Let’s find out if it’s worth the extra cash.
The world of Miele vacuums can be a confusing place. It’s important to understand how the company names its products, so you can choose the best vacuum for your home.
Miele vacuums have a name, such as C1, C2 or C3, and a type (Complete, Compact or Classic.) “Complete” vacuums are top-of-the-line models, while “Compact” versions have a smaller capacity and slimmer design. Only the C1 is currently available as a “Classic” version, so we won’t discuss these models in this article.
There are then multiple versions of both the C2 and C3, with names such as Silence, Total Solution and Cat & Dog. Each version has a similar design, but a different set of features and tools.
You’ll also notice that Miele vacuums are listed as either “PowerLine” or “EcoLine.” This refers to the type of motor. PowerLine is the standard 890W version that we’re focusing on in this comparison. EcoLine motors are less powerful, at 550W, but more energy efficient.
At the time of writing, these are the Miele C2 Complete models available:
- C2 Complete PowerLine – This is the standard version of the C2 Complete. It has a set of basic on-board tools, including a dusting brush, crevice tool, and upholstery nozzle.
- C2 Complete Cat & Dog PowerLine – As the name suggests, this model includes a turbo brush for removing pet hair. It also has an anti-odour filter.
- C2 Complete Allergy PowerLine – Unlike the standard C2, the Allergy version has a HEPA AirClean filter to remove allergens from the air. If you suffer from allergies, the C2 Complete Allergy is one of the best vacuums on the market.
There are also several Miele C3 Complete versions:
- C3 Complete PowerLine – The basic version of the Miele C3, and the model we’ll be focusing on in this article.
- C3 Complete Cat & Dog PowerLine – The same as the C3 Complete, but with Miele’s Turbo Brush and Active AirClean filter to eliminate odours.
- C3 Complete Total Solution PowerLine – This model comes with a variety of extra features,, including a HEPA AirClean filter, turbo brush, and Parquet Twister for delicate hard floors.
- C3 Complete Premium Edition EcoLine – This is an EcoLine version, which means it has a less powerful 550W motor. It comes with Miele’s Parquet Twister for hard floors, along with a handle spotlight to illuminate dust and dirt.
- C3 Complete Performance Parquet EcoLine – This is another EcoLine version with the Parquet Twister tool. It also has an AirClean+ filter.
- C3 Complete Silence EcoLine – This EcoLine model has a Silence AirClean filter to reduce noise output.
Note: Miele also produces “Compact” versions of their Powerline cylinder vacuums. To learn more, read our in-depth guide to the Miele C1 Compact and Miele C2 Compact or our Miele C1 vs C3 comparison.
In this article, we’re focusing on the standard Complete PowerLine versions of the C2 and C3. Almost all the points are applicable to other Complete PowerLine versions, but not to EcoLine models.
Design and Weight
Both the Miele C2 and C3 are bagged cylinder vacuum cleaners. They don’t have the convenience of a cordless vacuum, but make up for this with powerful suction and a wide cleaning radius.
The vacuums have similar designs and sizes. The C3 is marginally bigger, with a length of 49.6cm compared to 48.7cm, but the difference is negligible.
Ease of Use
Miele puts a lot of thought into making their vacuums easy to use. The C2 and C3 both benefit from features such as automatic cable rewind, multiple suction modes, and an easily extendable wand.
We’re also big fans of the on-board tool storage. It’s great to always have the upholstery nozzle, crevice tool and dusting brush to hand when you need them.
One difference between the vacuums is that the C3 has foot switches for suction control. This makes it easy to change suction without stooping or parking the vacuum. In contrast, the C2’s suction mode must be adjusted via a dial.
The C2 and C3 have similar weights: 7kg and 7.26kg respectively. While the C3 is marginally heavier, the difference isn’t enough to make vacuuming less convenient. The three wheels also make it easy to pull the vacuum around the home.
Both standard versions also come with a universal floorhead. This has modes for carpet and hard floors. It can be a little difficult to push on thick carpets, although you can always reduce the suction if necessary.
The C3 has a wider cleaning radius – 12 metres compared to 10 metres – so you won’t need to change plug socket as often. The combination of wand, hose and long cord makes both the C2 and C3 convenient for cleaning everything from car interiors to ceiling cobwebs though.
Replacing Dust Bags
Both the C2 and C3 use the same 4.5 litre bags. They are easy to remove and provide an excellent initial layer of filtration.
Miele bags automatically seal when you remove them. You don’t get a cloud of dust escaping, which is brilliant for people who suffer from allergies.
Cleaning Performance and Suction Power
Both vacuum cleaners are powered by 890W PowerLine motors. These are designed to comply with the latest EU regulations, but still provide ample suction.
They also both include Miele’s multi-floor floorhead. This doesn’t have a rotating brush bar, but is a wide floorhead that does a decent job of picking up dust and dirt.
Let’s take a look at how the vacuums compare when tackling common cleaning tasks.
Carpets: Both vacuums provide strong cleaning performance on carpets. They make quick work of dust and smaller debris, and can also handle pet hair. The lack of a brush bar means you don’t always get the deep clean associated with powered floorheads though.
It’s worth noting that both vacuums struggle with large debris. They tend to push cereal and cat litter around, although on carpets they can usually pick up most large debris after a few passes.
Hard Floors: The strong suction power of both the C2 and C3 makes them perfect for hard floor cleaning. They also have enough power to remove dust in floorboard crevices.
Again, both vacuums really struggle with large debris on hard floors though. You’ll either need to detach the floorhead and use the wand, or lift the head directly onto bigger objects to suck them up.
The long wand and extendable reach of the Miele C2 and Miele C3 make them convenient vacuums for cleaning ceilings. They also include an upholstery nozzle for sofas.
Cleaning stairs isn’t quite as convenient as when using a cordless vacuum though.
The standard versions of both the C2 Complete Powerline and C3 Complete Powerline don’t come with a pet turbo tool. While they are still surprisingly effective at removing pet hair, mainly due to the excellent suction power, it’s worth spending extra to get the Cat & Dog versions.
The C2 and C3 Complete PowerLine vacuums use a combination of Miele’s HyClean bags and AirClean filter. The bags trap larger particles, while the AirClean filter is designed to capture smaller allergens.
While these filters provide decent filtration, a HEPA filter is always a better choice for allergy sufferers.
Tools and Accessories
The tools included depends on the version you buy. Both C2 and C3 Complete PowerLine models have a basic tool set containing a dusting brush, crevice tool, and upholstery nozzle.
As you would expect from Miele, the tools are well-built and effective at cleaning various surfaces. The upholstery nozzle, in particular, is a useful addition for sofas and even stairs.
If you opt for a version including a turbo brush, this does an excellent job at digging out trapped hairs from sofas and carpets. You’ll need to spend more on the Cat & Dog versions to get it though.
As you would expect, the Miele C3 is more expensive than the C2. Is it worth the extra money though?
For most people, the relatively small price difference makes it worth spending extra on the C3. While the two vacuums are very similar, the C3 has a wider cleaning radius and convenient foot suction controls. There are also more available versions, so you can choose the vacuum that best suits your requirements.
The C2 is almost as good though – and for a lower price.
Summary and Key Differences
As you can probably tell from this comparison, the C2 and C3 are similar in many respects. They have many of the same features, such as onboard storage and PowerLine motor, and even have a similar design.
There are some differences though:
- The C3 has a wider 12 metre cleaning radius, compared to the C2’s 10 metres. This is due to a longer power cord.
- The C3 has foot controls for adjusting suction. The C2’s suction power needs to be adjusted manually using a dial.
- There are more C3 versions available, with extra features such as the Parquet cleaning tool for hard floors.
- You can also buy EcoLine versions of the C3. These vacuums have lower power motors, but are cheaper and more energy efficient.
- The C2 is marginally lighter and smaller than the C3 – although there isn’t much difference.
|Miele C2 Complete PowerLine||Miele C3 Complete PowerLine|
|Filter||HyClean Bags + AirClean Filter||HyClean Bags + AirClean Filter|
|Motorised Pet Tool||No (Available on other versions, including Cat & Dog)||No (Available on other versions, including Cat & Dog)|
|Dust Capacity||4.5 litres||4.5 litres|
|Cord Length||6.5 metres||8.5 metres|
Which Should You Buy?
We’re big fans of both the Miele C2 and C3. They are excellent vacuum cleaners that provide outstanding suction power, good all-round performance, and a large bagged design.
The Miele C3 is the slightly better choice though. It has a larger cleaning radius, which makes it more convenient when cleaning your home. The suction foot controls are also a useful feature.
When it comes to cleaning performance, however, the C2 is a match for the C3. So, if you don’t need the extra convenience features, the C2 is still an excellent choice.
Do you have any questions about this Miele C2 vs C3 comparison? Or would you like to leave your own feedback about these vacuums? Please let us know using the comments section below.
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