Miele Complete C2 Powerline Vacuum Cleaner Review – A High-Quality Mid-Range Cylinder?

Written by James Hall | 2 Comments | Last Updated: October 1, 2019

Miele Complete C2 Powerline

7

Cleaning Score

6.8/10

Design Score

7.4/10

Value for Money

7.0/10

Features

9.0/10

Tools and Accessories

5.0/10

Pros

  • Excellent suction power for a great price
  • Decent dust and pet hair pickup
  • Plenty of convenience features
  • Large 4.5 litre capacity
  • On-board tool storage

Cons

  • Quite a bulky vacuum
  • Not great at picking up large debris
  • No motorised pet tool

The Miele Complete C2 Powerline has many of the features found on its bigger brother, the excellent Miele C3, but for a cheaper price. How does it stack up against other cylinder vacuums though? We tested it to find out.

It’s true that bagged cylinder vacuum cleaners seem old-fashioned compared with sleek cordless models. But these vacuums have a number of advantages, including better dust retention, larger capacities and unlimited run-time.

The Complete C2 Powerline is Miele’s mid-range model. It’s relatively inexpensive, especially compared to newer cordless vacuums, and is designed to be convenient and durable.

Despite being cheaper than the Miele C3 Powerline, the C2 comes with many of the same features. These include an energy efficient motor, extension tube, and cable rewind. The vacuum also has onboard tool storage and a variety of cleaning modes.

In this Miele Complete C2 review, we’ve put the vacuum through a variety of tests to find out how it performs. Let’s get started!

Note: This review follows our new vacuum review process for 2019. Previous reviews were conducted with different process, so the scoring may not be directly comparable. We purchased the C2 Complete ourselves – we didn’t receive a free review model.

Appearance and Design

Rating: 7.4 / 10

The Miele C2 with all tools

The C2 doesn’t have the slimline design of modern cordless vacuums, but it’s still an attractive vac. The combination of shiny black and silver controls gives it an understated appearance that’s certainly not ugly .

It has many of the features we expect from a Miele cylinder vacuum. These include a bagged design, AirClean filter, automatic cable rewind and a non-motorised floor tool. The C2 also has six power modes and two floorhead modes, so it’s suitable for any surface.

General Usage

When it comes to convenience, the Miele C2 Powerline is one of the best vacuums on the market.

At 7kg, it’s not the lightest vacuum on the market, but the three wheels, powerful motor and large 10 metre operating radius make up for this weight. If you don’t need the freedom of a cordless design, the C2 is a great choice for home cleaning. We also found the vacuum easy to pull around the home, which meant it rarely felt restricted by its cord.

Holding floor tool

The C2’s floor tool is attached to the vacuum via an extendable tube. We like how this allows you to quickly adjust the height – especially if you’re tall or have a bad back. The floorhead also feels easy to manoeuvre and there are foot controls for turning the vacuum on.

As the tube can be extended, it’s also great for sucking up cobwebs from ceilings.

An interesting feature of the C2 is that it has six cleaning modes. These are changed via a dial, and range from curtains (weak suction) up to hard floor (very strong suction). It’s great to have more control, especially as the strongest suction mode can make it difficult to push.

The vacuum has an automatic cable rewind, which saves a lot of time and frustration (especially with the long power cord). It also has a stand (or “park” system) for the floor tool, so you don’t need to lean it against a wall when having a break.

Another great feature is the onboard tool storage. In our experience, crevice and dusting brushes often go missing, but this is less likely when they are always stored within the vacuum.

There are a few downsides to the design though. Aside from the heavy weight, we found the tools quite stiff to attach and detach. It’s also a bagged vacuum, so you’ll need to purchase new bags – although the 4.5 litre capacity is much more than most bagless vacuums.

Of course, having a cord makes the vacuum less convenient than a cordless. The lower price, unlimited run-time and powerful suction make up for this though.

And, as you would expect from the popular German company, the C2 has excellent build quality.

Size

The Miele isn’t a huge vacuum, but it’s not slimline either. It’s possible to balance on a step when cleaning stairs, but it’s relatively bulky compared to other vacuums we’ve reviewed.

This isn’t necessarily a criticism though. The larger size increases the vacuum’s capacity and allows for onboard tool storage. Both of these features make the C2 more convenient to use. It’s also allowed for a more powerful motor.

Noise Output

The official noise output of the Miele C2 Complete Powerline is 80dB. This is around average for a powerful vacuum – but don’t expect to hold conversations while using it.

We use a different test to assess noise, so we can directly compare vacuums. At a distance of one metre, we found the C2 to have a noise output of 70.5dB when in “Loop Pile” mode. When we cranked the power up to its maximum suction, this increased to 74dB (again at 1 metre).

For comparison, the Dyson V7 Animal had an output of 68dB in standard mode and 77dB in maximum mode. The Miele isn’t quiet, but it’s not uncomfortably loud either.

Filtration

The C2 exhaust filter

The Miele C2 has a decent filtration system. The HyClean bag itself acts as a filter, but there’s also an AirClean exhaust filter. Allergy sufferers also benefit from the self-sealing bag, which can be emptied without allowing dust to escape.

It doesn’t have a HEPA filter though. If you suffer from allergies, it’s worth paying extra for a HEPA filter, as this is more effective at removing tiny allergens from the air.

Note: The C2 also has a motor protection filter. Both filters need to be periodically replaced.

Emptying, Cleaning and Maintenance

The C2 bag

Emptying the C2 is as simple as opening the vacuum and pulling out the bag. As we mentioned, these are self-sealing, so emptying is a hygienic process that doesn’t allow dust to escape.

The same is true for replacing the filters. These can both be accessed via the same door as the bag.

A minor annoyance is that the soft pads on the floorhead and upholstery tool seem to attract and hold hair. If you have a dog or cat, you’ll need to periodically clean these to keep the floorheads gliding effectively.

Tools and Accessories

Rating: 5 / 10

All tools

The Miele C2 Complete Powerline comes with Miele’s FiberTeq floorhead and three extra tools. None of these are motorised, but all feel well-built and should last a long time.

Floorhead(s)

Fiberteq floorhead

The FiberTeq floorhead is designed to be used on all floors. It doesn’t have a rotating brush bar, but there are bristles for cleaning hard floors. You’ll need to disable these using the foot switch when cleaning on carpet.

We found the floorhead to provide strong pick up on carpets, hardwood floors and laminate. The lack of a brush bar means it isn’t quite as effective as stirring up small particles trapped in carpet fibres, but the C2’s strong suction partly offsets this.

It’s also easy to manoeuvre and, unlike upright vacuums, is easy to use under tables or other furniture.

Bottom of floorhead

Tools

Aside from the floorhead, there are three tools included with the C2, all of which can be stored within the vacuum:

  • Dusting Brush – This is a standard dusting brush for delicate surfaces.
  • Upholstery tool – This is effectively a mini floorhead that’s useful for sofas and stairs.
  • Crevice tool – A standard crevice tool for cleaning in tight spaces.

There’s nothing wrong with these tools – and they are useful for cleaning areas that are awkward to access with the floorhead. They aren’t anything special though. And, importantly, the C2 doesn’t come with a motorised tool. If you have pets that shed a lot of hair, you may struggle to get it all out of upholstery or stairs (although the C2 still does a surprisingly good job on pet hair – see the next section.)

Aside from the lack of a mini motorised tool, our biggest complaint is that the crevice tool is much shorter than you would expect. The tools can also sometimes be a little stiff to remove.

Suction Power and Cleaning Performance

Rating: 6.8 / 10

We ran multiple tests to see how the Miele C2 performed on carpets, hard floors (tile), stairs and pet hair. These included several test materials, such as baking powder, rice and cereal, to see how well it picked up various substances. We also performed a “full house” test by using the V7 to clean an entire home. You can see the results below.

In terms of power, the Miele C2’s 900W motor provides plenty of suction. In fact, the problem is more likely to be that suction is too strong to push the floorhead, rather than not enough.

Fortunately, there are six suction modes, allowing you to adjust the vacuum’s power depending on the surface type. There’s also an air inlet valve for reducing suction temporarily if the floorhead gets stuck.

To summarise the results below, the Miele was great at cleaning dust and small debris on any surface. The strong suction power does a brilliant job of picking up everything from tiny dust particles to clumps of hair. It struggled with larger debris though, such as rice and cereal, as it tended to “snow plough” rather than pick it up.

Note: EU regulations set the maximum power of a vacuum motor at 900 Watts. Previous versions of the C2 Powerline had 1600W motors, but these are no longer available. The good news is that the reduction in motor power hasn’t had much of a negative impact on the vacuum’s suction.

Carpets

Rating: 9 / 10

We were impressed by the C2’s carpet cleaning performance. It has excellent suction power, allowing it to remove plenty of dust and hair. The lack of a brush bar also didn’t seem to have much of a negative effect.

It struggled with larger debris though. The vacuum took multiple passes to pick up rice and cereal, as the floorhead tended to push the debris, even with the bristles retracted.

The vacuum can also be difficult to push on certain types of carpet. You can fix this by reducing the suction power, although this might mean you need a few extra passes.

Overall, however, the C2 is an excellent choice for cleaning carpets.

Baking Powder Test

Crpet baking powder test

The C2 had no trouble picking up baking powder from our test carpet. In fact, nearly all of the powder was vacuumed in a single pass.

Rice

Carpet rice check

The C2 had a bit more trouble picking up rice. Most was picked up on the first pass, but some was pushed ahead of the floorhead. It still picked up nearly all the rice after a few passes though.

Cereal

Carpet cereal test

Again, the C2 tended to push larger debris along – although it still got most of it on the first few passes. What you can’t see in the image above is that there were a few flakes it failed to pickup after 5 passes (our cut off).

Hard Floors

Rating: 7 / 10

While the C2 did a decent job on hard floors, especially with smaller particles, it struggled with larger debris. It’s great for general cleans, but isn’t the best choice for picking up cereal or cat litter.

On the plus side, the lack of a rotating brush bar prevents scattering. The impressive suction power can also pull up dirt and dust from between floorboards.

Note: All tests below were using maximum power mode and bristles deployed.

Baking Powder

Tile baking powder

The vacuum did a brilliant job of picking up baking powder on hard floors. Most of it was picked up in a single pass – with the only exception being a few small patches between tiles.

Rice

Rice cereal test

The C2 managed to pick up all the rice after a few passes, but there was a certain amount of snow ploughing. Even so, it got most of it in the end.

Cereal

Cereal tile

The cereal test on hard floors was the only real failure from this vacuum. Nearly all of the cereal was snow ploughed and barely any was picked up. You can always use the hose to suck up cereal, but don’t expect to clean larger objects with the floorhead.

Stairs

Rating: 6 / 10

The C2 Complete is perfectly usable on stairs. The long hose allows you to clean more than half a standard flight of stairs, and it’s also possible to balance the vacuum on a step due to the reasonably long cord.

With that said, it’s nowhere near as convenient as a cordless. The lack of a motorised floor tool is also a shame, as these are useful for removing hair and stubborn dirt from stair carpets.

Pet Hair

Rating: 7 / 10

Despite the lack of a rotating brush bar or pet tool, the C2 does a great job at removing most pet hair. We tested it on clumps of hair in rugs and carpets, and it easily picked it all up – often in a single pass.

We still think it’s worth paying extra for a vacuum with a motorised tool if you have a pet that sheds a lot. But for the average home or a moderate shedding pet, the C2 is up to the job.

Large Debris

Rating: 5 / 10

As we’ve mentioned, the Miele struggles with larger debris on both carpets and hard floors.

While it can pickup most debris on carpets with a few extra passes, the floorhead just pushes it around on hard floors. You can use the hose without a floorhead to solve this, although this is tiresome for large areas.

Price and Value for Money

Rating: 7 / 10

The Miele C2 Complete Powerline isn’t perfect, but it provides excellent value for money. It’s not quite as good as the C3 Powerline, but is cheaper and provides many of the same features.

If you don’t want to spend £400 on the latest cordless vacuum, and don’t need a pet tool, it’s a brilliant choice.

Specification Table

TypeCylinder
Bagless/BaggedBagged
Weight7kg
Capacity4.5 litres
FilterAirClean + Hyclean Bag
HEPA FilterNo
Motorised Pet ToolNo
Handheld ModeNo
Floorhead Width29cm
Cord Length6.5m
Cleaning Radius10m

Comparison with Other Vacuums

Miele C2 Complete Powerline Vs C2 Cat & Dog

The Complete Powerline isn’t the only version of this vacuum. There’s also a “Cat & Dog” model.

As you would expect, the C2 Cat & Dog comes with a motorised floorhead (called the Turbo Plus), which does a better job of picking up pet hair.

Other than that, the two vacuums are very similar. Both have 900W motors, the same bagged design, adjustable tube, and six power modes. The C2 Cat & Dog is more expensive though.

Both the C2 Complete and Cat & Dog are available as “Compact” models. These are a bit lighter and smaller, plus the Miele Complete C2 Compact has an AircClean+ filter.

Miele C2 Complete Vs C3 Complete

Both the C2 and C3 are excellent vacuum cleaners – but there are some differences between the two. Here’s our full comparison of these two cylinder vacuums.

Verdict and Who Should Buy

The Miele C2 Complete PowerLine is an excellent cylinder vacuum cleaner. It’s a durable and easy-to-use model, with convenient features such as auto cord rewind, park mode, six suction settings and onboard tool storage.

It’s also great for cleaning both carpets and hard floors – especially pet hair and dust. The C2 struggles more with larger debris though, as it tends to push it around.

So, who should buy it? If you don’t need a lightweight cordless vacuum, and don’t have heavy-shedding pets, the C2 Complete is a great choice. It’s not the most mobile vac on the market, but it provides excellent performance for a very reasonable price.

Miele Complete C2 Powerline Summary

The Miele Complete C2 Powerline provides solid all-round cleaning performance and great suction power. It’s not the best for large debris, but for dust, dirt and pet hair it’s an excellent choice.

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James S Burton

Nice, comprehensive review – thanks