Is a Dyson Vacuum Really Worth the Money? We Tested One to Find Out.

Seriously, this thing costs as much as my rent.

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I’m proud to announce that a few weeks ago I reached peak adulthood. How do I know? I got excited about a vacuum cleaner.

Now, previously, vacuuming was a chore I absolutely dreaded. I mean, who actually enjoys lugging a heavy machine around to each room, plugging it into a different outlet every five minutes and sticking their hand into a grimy filter? I certainly don’t.

So, when I got the opportunity to test out Dyson’s new V11 Torque Drive cord-free vacuum, I was intrigued. This modern machine looks more like a spaceship than a vacuum cleaner, and it boasted a lot of impressive features. The only downside? A nearly $700 price tag.

By the way, this is how often you should really be vacuuming.

What’s All in the Box

When the Dyson arrived, I was impressed by how much they were able to fit into a relatively small package. Upon opening, I unveiled the vacuum, a connecting shaft, several attachments, a docking station, a charger and the torque drive head.

At first, all of these pieces looked pretty intimidating. But with the help of the operating manual, I had the vacuum fully assembled in mere minutes.

The next step was to charge the machine. Since I live in an apartment (where drilling holes in the wall is a major no-no), I opted to just plug the vacuum directly into the wall charger. But the vac does come with a mounting plate, if you’re so inclined.

How It Works

Start by selecting your desired power mode: Eco, Auto or Boost. Eco is designed for longer cleaning projects and ensures you’ll get the most bang out of your battery’s buck. Auto mode is a medium setting that will help your vacuum automatically adjust its power when transitioning between floors. And Boost—an intense cleaning mood that will suction even the most ground-in dirt and grime. To toggle between power modes, simply press a button on the vacuum’s LCD screen. (Yeah, it’s that fancy).

Once your power mode is selected, start the vacuum by holding down a trigger. This design definitely takes a little time to get used to. At first, I thought I was doing something wrong because the vacuum would shut off when I let go. But in hindsight, this feature helps preserve your vacuum’s battery life since it uses power only when you’re cleaning. (As opposed to a standard vacuum that keeps running until you turn it off).

The Cleaning Test: Hardwood Floors

First, I vacuumed the hardwood floors in my apartment on Eco mode. I was impressed (and slightly horrified) with how much dust and hair the Dyson picked up. I consider myself a fairly clean person, but this machine had so much more power compared to the vacuum I typically use. Plus, since I didn’t have to worry about plugging it in, I could move the vacuum into hard-to-reach areas I’ve never been able to access, like underneath radiators. (These are the spots you’re not vacuuming, but should be).

I had to empty the cleaning bin twice as I vacuumed my tiny one-bedroom space. Yikes! But luckily the process was super simple. I disconnected the machine from the shaft, pulled down the opening bin over the trash and snapped the bin back in place.

Finish the job with our favorite hardwood floor cleaners.

The Cleaning Test: Carpeting + Furniture

To really stretch this vac’s legs I took it to my parents’ house, which has carpet, hardwood and tile floors. My mom was initially skeptical—she’s used to changing the settings in between each flooring type—but instantly fell in love. The Dyson performed just as well on carpet as it did on hardwood, sucking up a full bin of dust, hair and dirt. (And my mom’s stricter about her vacuuming schedule than I am!) The only drawback? On some settings, the vacuum was a little hard to push on carpet.

Psst! Are you making any of these cleaning mistakes that are making your home dirtier? 

I also tested out the hand-vac attachments on my futon. At first, I accidentally plugged in the wrong attachment, but the machine quickly alerted me with a warning message on the LCD screen. Once I rectified my mistake, I put the vacuum on Boost mode and worked my way around the furniture. In less than five minutes it was crumb-free and just as clean as when I first bought it. I’m looking forward to using the hand-vac feature in my car, too.

The Verdict

Now, an answer to the question you’ve all been waiting for: Is this vacuum really worth the price tag?

Answer: Yes! Trust me, I was a skeptic at first, too. After all, $700 is almost as much as one month’s rent. But there were so many features that made this vacuum worth the cost. It’s well-designed and so easy to use. Plus, it comes with a 2-year warranty and one of the most well-respected brand names in the industry. (These kitchen brands are well-renowned, too).

But what really sold me was how clean my apartment felt after just one use. I suffer from allergies, and there’s nothing more satisfying than picking up dust and placing it in the trash where it belongs. (Next, read up on our top cleaning tips for people with allergies).

Plus, I now know what I’m getting my mom for Christmas. (Well, maybe Christmas, Mother’s Day and her birthday).

Want your own? You can buy the Dyson V11 Torque Drive cord-free vacuum on Amazon.

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Katie Bandurski
Katie is an Associate Editor for Taste of Home, specializing in writing and email newsletters. When she’s out of the office, you’ll find her exploring Wisconsin, trying out new vegetarian recipes and combing through antique shops.