When Jake got sick, I turned off Carl the RoboVac because I didn't want him running through puke and smearing it all over the house. Now that Jake has been puke-free for two months, I'll likely turn Carl back on. Because there's nothing quite like having your floors vacuumed when you come home after a hard day at work. Especially if you have pets shedding all over the place.
While Carl has been hibernating, I've been using my cheap cordless Hoover to pick up all the kitty litter and cat hair. For what it is, the thing does a pretty good job. Not so good that I can use it for my monthly deep-clean... for that I have to pull out the Shop-Vac (which my cats hate more than just about anything)... but for day-to-day cleaning it's fine.
But Hoover has been acting up lately so it was time to find a newer, better, stronger, faster vacuum. The only requirements being that it had to be cordless and it had to be lightweight. So when Black Friday rolled around, I did my due diligence Google research and found that Dyson came out on top every time for the things that were important to me. I loathed to get in bed with Dyson again (which was explained here), but they had a deal that was very good and so away I went.
Believe it or not, the two features I was most looking forward to were these...
Being able to clean baseboards and above door-frames without getting on my hands and knees or climbing on a stool is a pretty big deal. And so I've been counting the minutes until my Dyson V7 Absolute would get here. And today was the day.
Overall? I like it. But it's not perfect...
- Lightweight. I had read in reviews that it was lightweight, but wasn't expecting it to be this good.
- Comfortable. Not just because it's lightweight... but because it's well-balanced and ergonomically designed
- Quiet. I mean seriously quiet for a vacuum. My cats are terrified by my Hoover and Shop-Vac... but Jake is content to sit and watch me use the Dyson V7. Jenny keeps her distance, but is likewise not as terrified.
- Cordless. Apparently Dyson has stopped making corded vacuums because they feel the cordless models they make are powerful enough to replace them. I think this is a load of hogwash, because the raw power of a good corded vacuum is leagues better than what you get out of my V7. That being said, the convenience of cordless just can't be denied.So quick and easy to clean when you're not fighting a cord the entire time.
- Easy to empty. My other vacuums are such a frickin' hassle to empty that I probably don't clean them out as often as I should. But the V7? A piece of cake! As if that wasn't enough, it doesn't make a mess.
- Versatile. Being able to easily remove the tube and snap tools directly on the motorized head is a serious game-changer. It's so quick and easy with none of the hassle that you get with a "traditional" vacuum. Dyson put a lot of thought into how you clean, and it shows. I love how easy it is togo from vacuuming my floors to cleaning out my car by stripping everything down to a small unit that fits in tight spots.
- Good tool assortment. My Black Friday "deal" came with all kinds of attachments. The one I most wanted was the "stiff brush" from the "deep clean" add-on so I could sweep/suck the dust that ends up on my baseboards. While not quite as stiff as I would have liked (that's what she said) it still does a really good job.
- Fluffy cleaning head. When vacuuming debris on hardwood, most traditional vacuum heads will just push it along (the so-called "snowplow effect"). In order to suck it up, you have to lift the head by rocking it back, come down directly on the debris, then wait for it to rattle around until it is removed. But the "fluffy cleaning head" changes all that. It happily pulls debris into the suction with no additional effort. Spill dry cat food on the floor? Just run over it with the soft roller head. Easy.
- Motorized upholstery brush. I don't have much upholstery. My living room furniture is nice leather stuff that my brother gave me. But I do have a couple chairs that collect cat hair like a magnet. Enter the "mini motorized tool" which is unbelievably good at removing every trace of the stuff. I use it on the carpet treads on my stairs and it's amazing at getting the dirt out.
- Unparalleled maneuverability. Zipping around my home is ridiculously easy because the design of the V7 "stick" vacuum feels like it was made to make it easy. Once you get in the groove of things, vacuuming around stuff is so much easier than with a fixed-head vacuum.
- Not as powerful as I expected. The Dyson has far better suction than the cheap Hoover it's replacing, that's not even a debate. It plows through cat hair, dust, and kitty litter on hardwood with ease thanks to the "fluffy head" that comes with the "Absolute" version. But when push comes to shove, the suction is not where I thought it would be. I put my hand up to the tube and am not feeling the pull I was expecting. Yes, the V7 has a "MAX" mode for awesome suction, but it only lasts 6 minutes, making it impractical. If I had the money, I'd return this and get the V10 for more power. But I don't, and this does a good enough job that I'll be keeping it.
- No trigger lock. For the life of me, I don't understand this. You have to keep your finger on the trigger the whole time you are vacuuming. Sure it encourages you not to waste precious battery time when you get distracted with picking up LEGO (or whatever), but shouldn't it be my choice?
- Expensive. If it weren't for Black Friday, there is no way I could have afforded to buy this. Even with the Black Friday sale, it was still kind of jarring. Even so... I do feel that I got my money's worth since I got the Deep Clean Kit as a "bonus" when I ordered it on sale.
- Small bin. While there has to be compromises in designing a cordless vacuum, I question the size of the bin. If you have a dirty home, you'll have to empty more than a couple times to clean it. Luckily emptying the bin is easy, but a bigger problem remains. Larger refuse will definitely get stuck in it. I vacuumed the tag from a T-shirt and suddenly the "cyclone action" in the bin was halted because the tag formed a blockage.
- Freaky design. In all honesty, I don't give a crap what my vacuum looks like. I'm not going to display it like a piece of art or anything. It's either in my garage being charged or in my hand vacuuming, so how it performs is far more important that any aesthetics. That being said... this thing has more nooks and crannies than you can believe. I just know it's going to collect dust in all that, and then I'm going to need a vacuum for my vacuum.
- Confusing lineup. There are four versions of the V7 I bought. The Animal, The HEPA, The Motorhead, and The Absolute. This is just nuts, and can be confusing. All I know is that if you have hardwood, you want the "Absolute" version because it's the only one that comes with the "fluffy roller head"... the single most essential piece of equipment for my home (which is all hardwood).
Compared to what I have, the Dyson V7 Absolute is a dream. Sure I wish it had more power in "regular mode" but it still does a very good job of making quick work of dirt, cat hair, and random cleaning tasks. Though there is an up-side to the lower power... the thing is so quiet! That goes a long ways towards my liking my new vacuum. If you can get it on a good sale, I wouldn't hesitate picking one up. But, once again, if you have hardwood floors you must get the "Absolute" version that comes with the fluffy cleaning head! For me, the V7 would be half the vacuum it is without it.
I cannot stand Dyson. We got this version at work and while it says you get 45 minutes of power, you can only use the low power setting. With 11 animals, low power won’t suck up more than a few hairballs. Ugh. And I agree with the trigger thing! What the heck!??! And have you had it start losing power? It will pulse on then off over and over again. Yeah, not a fan.
You make a very good point about a Roomba in conjunction with cats that _could_ have hairball moments. As my two sometimes will. I shall rethink my Roomba request to Santa this year.