Dyson DC14 Vacuum Review

October 3, 2006 · 19 comments

in Reviews

Well I have been wanting to get a Dyson vacuum since the first time I have ever seen the DC07 in a magazine, even though I did not have any carpeting at the time. Well I finally moved into a place with carpeting and had supposedly one of the better vacuums on the market, at least according to commercials, an Oreck XL, but I felt as though it was not doing a very good job of vacuuming, so it was time to get one.

Like I said before I had my eye on the Dyson DC14 for a long time… I have been browsing through Amazon, Sears, Target, etc trying to find the best price, but there are about 10 different DC14 models or kits available and I was not sure which one to get. I finally read up on the various accessories and compared the different DC14 models. After reading reviews tons of reviews and a price I finally liked I went with the refurbished Dyson DC14 Full Kit model for $339.99 plus Amazon, had a $25 off coupon bringing the total to $314.99, tax free, shipping included. I was SOLD

Well today the Dyson arrived and I gave it a test drive. The results are pretty impressive for some areas, disappointing in others, and even some parts are disgusting.

Here is my review of the Dyson DC14 Full Kit:

Packaging: Amazon box, with a brown box inside, nothing flashy since this was a refurbished model

Looks: Dyson vacuums are known for their bright colors and futuristic looks. The Dyson DC14 Full Kit is a pretty toned down version of the vacuum. It is white and grey and not overly flashy. I wish it was yellow or purple on the outside… On the inside it is the same as the other DC14s

Weight: This thing is a bit heavy, probably around 20 pounds. A bit heavier than most vacuums but still manageable to bring around.

Instructions: The Dyson came with roughly 4-5 different types of instructions, a quick assembly one, a large manual in numerous languages, and then a few specific manuals for the accessories.

Assembly: Assembly is very easy:

  1. unpack the box.
  2. plug the hose into the vacuum.
  3. plug the hand attachment/handle into the hose.
  4. Slap the on board attachments to the top and side of the vacuum.
  5. Plug in.
  6. Turn on.
  7. Get disgusted with all the grossness your other vacuum left behind.

The only part I was slightly confused on was that the handle looks like it should go the other way on the vacuum.

Build Quality: The vacuum seems pretty well built, although it is made of almost entirely of plastic, other than the telescoping reach handle/hose which is made of metal. It seems sturdy, but I think a trip down the stairs would destroy it. We will see how it holds up. The parts seem to fit very tightly together and even have gaskets in areas where air could leak out. If you are wondering if something is attached right or wrong, usually there is a sturdy sounding click that holds the item in place. Construction I would say is very high quality.

Design: There are some serious design flaws with the vacuum.

  • First off it is pretty bulky in the front and too high to go under lots of furniture. In addition to this it is too tall to fit under standard cabinets, which is a HUGE design flaw. In order to vacuum the baseboards in the kitchen and bath you either need to use one of the on board attachments or one of the hard floor tools. If you have cabinets in a carpeted room, I am guessing it will do a poor job cleaning under there without some serious work.
  • The second flaw I found is that the telescoping handle is a little too short for my liking. I would have liked an additional 6” to 12” of reach on it. It seemed like I had to slightly bend over to use the floor attachment.
  • Lastly it would be nice if you could somehow lower the amount of suction the vacuum has. At times iot seems like there is almost too much.

Reach: The power cord on the Dyson is really long. It comes with a 35 foot power cord which is crazy. I can plug it in my dining room, and vacuum the entire first floor! In addition to the long power cord there is also up to 17 feet of addition reach with the on board hose, although it does not seem that easy to stretch to that distance. So the total distance you could cover with this vacuum is 52’ radius, or 104’ diameter!

Power/Suction: The suction of this vacuum is great. On carpeting it can almost be too strong and will make a crazy clicking noise if it sucks up too much carpeting or I think when the brushes stop. Sounds like a loud ratcheting sound. This only would happen if the carpeting dipped near the baseboards and when I tried to vacuum a really low pile indoor/outdoor carpeting on my enclosed front porch. I think on the front porch it was lifting the entire carpet up since it was just cut out and placed over the floor and not glued down.

On carpeting it brought life back into my old carpeting and made it feel very soft. It also got an absurd amount of powdery dust from it, and this was after using my Oreck prior to the Dyson. View pictures of extra things the Dyson picked up.

On hardwood the vacuum did a great job, but I could not get close enough under the cabinets and switched to the hard floor tool which worked wonders. It handled crumbs and what not without worry as well as any dust bunnies that were around.

Suction with Attachments had more than enough power, I would say as much as a shop vac.

Included On Board Attachments: All the DC14 models come with the following on board attachements:

  • Stair Tool – I have not tried this, and I think it is for carpeted stairs which mine are not. It is plastic with some felt covered metal guides it looks like.
  • Brush Tool – This works great. I used it to go after baseboards, ceiling fans, windowsills, and air vents. It sucked up dust, hair, and cob webs.
  • Crevice Tool – I only tried this in a few corners. My main complaint would be that it is short. Other then that it seems fine. They also designed this to use full power without getting stuck which is a problem many other crevice tools have.

Accessories: There are around 10 different Dyson accessories/attachments that you can get. I have written an article about the various Dyson attachments here. Mine came with the mini turbine, which I like, the hard floor tool which I like, and an extra filter which I hope I will never use!

Warranty: Standard Warranty on all new Dyson Vacuums is I guess now 5 years? It used to be 2. Mine is 90 days because I have refurbished. If you have problems you can call Dyson customer support at: 1-866-my-dyson (866-693-9766), between the hours of: 7am – 8pm (CST) Monday to Friday, 8am – 6pm (CST) on Saturday, 9am – 6pm (CST) on Sunday.

Strengths: Cool design, great sucking power, no bags, does not lose power, extremely long cord, long on board hose, surprisingly quiet, good prices on refurbished, great warranty on new units.

Weaknesses: expensive price on new units, too many packages to choose from, cannot fit under cabinets without secondary attachments, all plastic construction, short warranty on refurbished vacuums.

Summary: All in all I am impressed with the Dyson DC14 other than it having a hard time fitting under furniture, and not being able to reach under cabinets. I would say getting a new one is a gamble and a large investment, based solely on price, but the refurbished units are pretty competitive to Orecks or other high end bagless vacuum models.

Based on performance this vacuum is better than any that I have ever used, and is comparable to the power of a shop vac. I am quite happy with my purchase so far and was shocked and actually disgusted by how much more dust it picked up than my Oreck (view pictures of the dust here). I hoping this extra dust removal will help my allergies and keep my house cleaner overall. If you are interested in how much more the Dyson sucked up then my Oreck Read my Comparison of a Dyson DC14 and Oreck XL Deluxe.

See all of the DC14 vacuum kits available
Read about Dyson vacuum attachments and accessories
View pictures of what my old vacuum left behind

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Phil 12.09.06 at 2:14 am

Ok, first things first, I work at a local sears store in the appliance department. I sell Vacumes and other home appliances. When i moved in with my boy friend he had a Kenmore Progressive Canister vacume. While i was thrilled to see a Kenmore, i hated the fact that it was a Canister vac. I am an upright guy. The cumbersomnes of the canister vacume is unbelievable. dragging a canister while pushing a powerhead, moving the canister, and seeing a pile of hair laying where you had thought you had vacumed… the list goes on. Now to say we are slobs is not a true statement, but we do have 3 dogs (a benji 2 Jack Russel Chiuaua Mix) 2 Cats (Domestic Short, and part lynx) and 1 bird. Vacuming becomes an everyday chore. Now when i started Living here, i begged him to get an upright. To no avail we have had this canister now for the past three years. One of the things i noticed, when ever i would vacume, the next day i would find a fine white “dust” on the carpet, We have red carpet. So i would lug out the canister, fight with the hose, cord the little pile after vacuming… to no avail this dust will appear every day. So i started pressing him to let me buy a Dyson. I wanted the dc14 Animal, but he couldn’t see the point of spening 549.99 on a vacume. Every day i would fight with the vacume, and him. Then the DC 17 came out… I drug him to the store, and made him try it. He still didn’t like it… Then i made a propasal that he couldn’t refuse, He wants new carpet, I want a Dyson, so i said If you want new carpet, we get a DC 17. The fight continued. Then the sale to end all sales at work, My dyson cost me 283.99 I called him up said i was buying it, and there were no iff ands or buts about it. I brought it home, Vacumed with the canister, Then vacumed with the dyson. he could not believe what the canister missed. The canister i put a new bag in, and ran it in the two rooms. Then the Dyson was ran the same exact way that i ran the canister. The container was filled with pet hair and that “fine white dust” that i mentioned earlier. I emptied it, and vacumed again, More fine white dust… One final time, and lust a little white dust remained. he was totally grossed out. After all this fightibng, he could not believe the ammount dirt that that this Dyson picked up. The Suction power is amazing. It makes this relativly heavy vacume to carry a breeze to manuver. The attachmets are very easy to work with. the mini turbine head works great on stairs and furniture. low reach tool gets under furniture tables and cabinets without moving them, and The maintinence kit, “AKA ZORB” helped eliminate my trafic patterns. As traffic patterns are only ground in dirt. And yes having 6 pets that shed the amazing thing is NO PET SMELL FROM THE MOTOR!!!!!!!! All you pet owners know what i am taling about, that funky smell that comes out of the back of the vacume while your cleaning. which means you are cleaning not only the dirt, but the SMELLS out of your carpet too. If your considering purchasing a Vacume, and made it though my review here, do yourself a favor, and buy yourself a dyson. the old addage really does apply here You get what you pay for, and believe me this vacume is worth every penny, Spend 49.99 and you get a 49.99 clean. Spend 549, and you get a 2000 clean. (Yes i have been told it cleans better than a Rainbow or an Electrolux) You will be MORE THAN THRILLED!!!!!

2 Liz 05.21.07 at 10:27 am

Hi. My mother just gave me her Dyson DC14 since I’ll be needing it at my new place. She doesn’t have the instruction manuals anymore. Is there any website where I can get pdf manuals online?? Thanks.

3 Claudette 12.26.07 at 1:47 pm

I’m in the market of replacing a hoover model, and through the holiday a friend of mine lent me her Dyson DC14 Animal vac. I’m very impressed and now researching on line.

My question to you, we have 1 dog and 3 cats, would you recommend the DC14 or DC15?

with thanks

4 Chris 11.29.08 at 3:01 pm

Hehe, totally agree about that review. I love this thing, but the suction CAN be a little too much… Especially for tassles on couches.

To Liz

You should be able to find the manuals on Dyson’s website.

5 Bobbie 01.01.09 at 3:30 pm

My mother in law gave us a Dyson DC-14 for Christmas. I have been secretly wanting one. We were using a Bissell bagless upright. So I did the tests you all see on QVC and HSN. OH MY GOSH!!! My husband and I couldn’t believe it. We vacuumed with the Bissell (bought only 6 months ago) and then with the Dyson. It was amazing. I hated vacuuming before this and now I have told my husband it is no longer his chore. I love this vacuum. It comes with a lifetime filter that you clean every 6 months. Other than that there is no maintance at all. I am a very busy mother of an energetic 3 year old. Even she is trying to vacuum with me everyday.LOL Anyway, to anyone debating about this vacuum, GET IT. Honestly, you will be able to breathe better the first time you use it. It is worth its weight in gold(or gas these days). 10 out of 5 starsXXXXXXXXXX

6 Jay 01.31.09 at 7:53 pm

Back in november i purchased a Dyson Animal. In 2 weeks time the power button broke.Called Dyson and was told to return to place of purchase. I did so got another Animal. In about a month the second Animal broke. A metal roller from inside fell out and i could no longer use the Dyson. Took it back and got a full refund. I feel Dyson isn’t worth the money and it’s a piece of junk.
Save your money.

7 mego 03.03.09 at 11:08 am

i can’t find a stupid picture of the first vacuum and its getting on my last nerve

8 Shelly 04.01.09 at 9:10 am

Thank you for your honest appraisal! I am in the process of replacing my Oreck and am so glad to hear your comparison. I have loved my Oreck, but I’ve had it for over 10 years and it just isn’t doing the job anymore. The only thing left for me now is to figure out the difference between the “low reach floor tool” and the “hard floor tool”. Thanks again!

9 Ingrid 04.01.09 at 1:34 pm

Hi George,

I bought a Dyson DC18 Slim and just wanted to let you know that, it’s much smaller. The Slim can fit under cabinets and is relatively light compared to the regular Dyson. It’s about 15 lbs. I researched all the Dysons on Consumer’s Report before I bought the Slim. Even though it didn’t get the greatest score, I read all the reviews from the consumers and based my decision on what they had to say and what my needs were. I’m so happy I spent the time to research, because I feel like it’s the perfect fit. I wouldn’t trade my Dyson for all the Bissells and Kenmores in the world! I would recommend the Slim for women, because it’s lighter, for small houses because it can rotate on a dime, and for those who may have neck, arm, or shoulder problems, because of the ease to maneuver. FYI: I was patient and got a killer deal on ebay. Saved between $275 and $300.

10 werty 04.01.09 at 5:08 pm

Hello Ingrid, glad you got a good deal on the DC18. I think that model would be perfect for the place i am in now… it is a bit smaller and easier to store.

How are you liking it so far?

11 George 04.26.09 at 5:51 pm

Just bought a new DC14 off ebay today for $199.00, shipping included. Ebay had it in the “Daily Deals” section and thought this was too good of a deal to pass up. Thanks for the reviews and I am sure we are going to love the new vacuum. Will beat our old Eureka for sure.

12 jan 11.21.09 at 1:24 pm

Maybe it’s the kind of dog I have (Dalmatian) but I have to go over and over and over the same area to get the hairs up. I don’t know if my Dyson DC14 Animal is so powerful it’s sucking up the hairs that may have worked down into the carpet so it looks like it’s not doing a good job; or the suction’s so poor that it can’t suck ’em up on the first or second pass; or if the hairs are “hanging onto the carpet with little grippers” and are making themselves more resistant to being sucked up…. I know what you’re what thinking: “Get rid of the Dog”. No can do. She’s too sweet and a good snuggler. I guess I should just listen to tunes on my mp3 player and start dancing with the DC14, cuz it’s gonna take a while to get those little white hairs off my rusty-red carpet…

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