Let me start by saying I've always had a canister vacuum cleaner (Hoover to be exact). I have used uprights in the passed but don't like them because they can't get everywhere. I saw the Dyson DC40 on QVC and was impressed. The rep said it was only 14 lbs. and she kept holding it up above her head. I've heard about the great suction so I took the plunge and bought one. I am returning it.
If you are used to the weight of an upright vacuum, the 14 lb weight of the Dyson may not be an issue. I am used to a lightweight pole with a powerhead on the end so the Dyson seemed very heavy. Also, with a canister the cord is behind you between the canister and the wall. With an upright, the cord is right there and you have to hold it or trip over it. This is a pain.
This Dyson is great for carpet but has no crevice tool, which I used often with my canister. Even with the tools it does have, there's no place to attach them to the upright so mine are in a closet and I constantly have to keep track of them. This is a pain.
Also, this upright is difficult to use on stairs. You pull out a wand and a hose. The hose on my Dyson is sooooo tight, even after stretching, that I can not keep the upright from being right behind me. On the Dyson infomercial, it shows a rep cleaning 6 steps up while the upright is sitting at the bottom of the steps. I could not do this because the hose was so "tight" I had to bring the unit with me because there was so much tension, I could only go 2-3 steps from the unit. If I pulled too hard, it would fall over. The hose is so tight that it hurt my back after I used it.
Also, it's great on hardwood flooring but .... the hose has so much tension and pulls the upright behind you at such close range, that you trip over the unit. And the wand is too short, and I am only 5'6". When I do my hardwoods, I find I only get results if I CARRY the upright with one hand while I bend partway over and use the wand with the other hand .... and of course the cord is there all the time to trip over. That's 14 lbs of carrying. This is a pain.
My bathroom tiles are also a problem because, even with the hardwood attachment, the suction is so powerful that sometimes I have to PULL the head off of the floor. There's no place to adjust the suction. Again, dealing with the suction, the short wand and the fact that the hose has so much tension #oh and the cord# ....
Oh and this vacuum blows out very hot air from the back, all over your feet and legs. You will be in a sweat by the time you finish your chores. If you look on the Dyson webpage for reviews and questions from owners, you will see many people ask about that hot air because they don't like it.
I contacted Dyson and told them about these issues. First I was told to get another person and help me stretch out the hose. My sister-in-law has another Dyson and said in three years her hose hasn't stretched out. Then I sent them an e-mail - and was told to call the customer service number.
I have decided to return my Dyson DC40 to QVC for a $10.95 return fee. I don't know if I can match the suction of a Dyson, but I'm sure I can find something more user friendly and certainly more worth my money. I think this unit is way too high priced for what it lacks compared to a high quality canister-style vacuum cleaner.
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