There is at this time, in my mind, one vacuum manufacturer to rule them all:
I’ve owned competing brands (they found their way to Craigslist eventually) in both upright and handheld. I put up with the borderline horrendous suction of a central vac for years. I put up with dust and dirt that just didn’t want to come out of carpets for a very long time.
That ended when I bought the DC23 Stowaway. I was sold the first time I used it; I put it through the “Dyson test” – vacuuming my floor with my old vacuum and then going back at it with the Dyson. The DC23 and every Dyson model I’ve tested since (the DC18, the DC25, and the DC26–the Dyson City) have all performed the same way: the level of gross that the pull out of apparently clean surfaces is astounding.
Too much power?
There’s only one problem: sometimes a small mess isn’t enough to warrant hauling the big guns out, even when those guns are as compact as the DC26 Dyson City. I’ve always wanted a Dyson handheld, but the short battery life just put me off. Even if a job was a short one, I felt too constricted by the time limit imposed by them. What I wanted was a Dyson handheld vacuum that would be good for upwards of ten minutes of continuous use (I’ve only got 1100 square feet to clean, max) with awesome suction. Oh, and it would be great if it had an extended wand for doing blinds and drapes, and a powerhead so I could clean the floor quickly. It’ll never happen, right?
You can imagine my glee (yes, I said glee. I like to clean, alright? It’s something I get from my mother. It’s either vacuuming regularly or therapy. Deal with it.) when I found the Dyson Digital Slim DC35. I’m actually a little giddy writing about it. It’s the perfect companion to my DC23 for me. Seriously, they’re like Batman and Robin.
So let’s break it down:
- The DC35 is light. It’s a portable Dyson all the way through, with portable attachments for cleaning crevices, surfaces, and everything in between.
- It’s got an easy-to-empty bin. Hold it over the trash, push the red button down, voila: clean bin.
- It’s got two suction levels: wicked and WHOA. Hit the button on the back and you’ll kick the motor into high gear. This burns through battery faster, but it’s great for fast cleanup of concentrated messes.
- It has a long-reach wand and a power head. Yeah, this thing transforms into a fully fledge stick vacuum with a click. That means fast cleanup of messes in the kitchen, or when someone tracks grit into the house, or you’ve just got sock fluff on the carpet. It’s… glorious.
- It comes with a charging bracket that you can screw into your wall; the DC35 will dock there until it’s needed, charging until it’s full. It hangs out, much like the image to the right, just waiting to be used.
Does this sound a little sycophantic? Sorry about that, but honestly, this thing really is that good. Like any other Dyson, it’s expensive, but I find that having a clean home is something I can’t put a price on. The ability to clean anything, anywhere in a very rapid and thorough way is huge for me, and I would wager it is for others out there as well. I actually installed the bracket in my broom closet and threw out my broom. Who needs to push dirt around and try to corral it into a dust pan when you can actually dispose of it cleanly?
I’ve been through vacuums. I’ve had bad relationships with hand-helds. There was a little brown number that was named after a nasty insect in the class Arachnida; that thing didn’t even last through the first time I cleaned my car. I was skeptical about the DC35 when I first got it; it promised far too much to be true, but it absolutely delivers.
I mentioned above that it’s an ideal companion piece, and I stand by that. For hard floors I could switch over to the DC35 completely, but given the three carpeted rooms that I have, I won’t be bidding farewell to my DC23 Stowaway any time soon. The powerhead on the Digital Slim is good, but it just doesn’t deep clean like its bigger brother. If you don’t have a Dyson already and you’ve got a lot of carpet, please keep that in mind.
I can, without reservation, recommend the Dyson DC35 Digital Slim. Dyson has developed a handheld/floor vacuum that really does hit it out of the park. When I sleep I still dream of my perfect vacuum, but now it has a name.