Comparison of a Dyson DC14 and Oreck XL Deluxe

October 3, 2006 · 27 comments

in Reviews

I got the Oreck XL deluxe as a hand-me-down from my grandparents and have not been too impressed with it. I think size and weight on the machine are great, it has two speeds which is nice, but it feels like it lacks any sort of power. It misses little pieces of paper or sock fuzz on the carpeting and just does not seem to suck like it should.

I decided to invest in a Dyson DC14 Full Kit model to replace it and was happy that I did.

Side by side the vacuums are similar in price, and that is about where it ends.

The Oreck XL is better than the Dyson for only the following 4 reasons:

  1. It is a much lighter vacuum and is easier to carry around and store.
  2. The Oreck has a headlight which may sound stupid, but it seems to help when you are in a corner or against a dark wall.
  3. The Oreck can actually fit under cabinets and under some furniture. This is where the perks end however.
  4. The Oreck has adjustable power settings, high and low.

Here is how the Dyson is a better vacuum than the Oreck XL:

  1. The Dyson has MASSIVE power. Here are pictures of all the extra junk my Dyson picked up from my recently Oreck vacuumed carpeting.
  2. The Dyson has onboard hoses and attachments to make it a much more versatile vacuum. You can clean stairs, hardwood floors, dust, etc.
  3. The Dyson looks cooler. It looks like Oreck changed some of the colors of their XL, but it is still the same base vacuum that they have been pushing for 20 years. It is a modern design that actually has great performance enhancements over older vacuums.
  4. The Dyson does not use bags.
  5. The Dyson is quieter than the Oreck.
  6. The Dyson has a longer cord.

I would say my Dyson is 3 times the vacuum of my Oreck, and I would recommend getting a refurbished Dyson DC14 over a new Oreck XL any day of the week. They are very similar in price and I think the suction pictures speak for themselves in the area of suction and performance.

If you are interested in more about the Dyson DC14, you can read my full review of the Dyson DC14 Full Kit, read about the available accessories for DC14 series, or look at all the different Dyson DC14 vacuum kits available.

{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

1 funk 10.21.06 at 3:42 pm

try putting a new brush roller and belt on that handed down oreck

2 Gerald Renner 02.04.07 at 3:02 pm

Our Oreck works extremely well, is light and easy to use — except that the belts are always breaking, sometimes after only one use. We finally went out and bought a cheaper vacuum at Wal-Mart rather than hassle with a new belt all the time..

3 VIC WEIL 03.18.07 at 7:33 am


4 Mark 08.07.07 at 1:10 am

Odd review. You have a hand-me-down Oreck and expect it to perform like a new Dyson? WTF are you thinking. Get the Oreck tuned up, get a new bag and then try it.

Oh and the “junk” you see in your Dyson, is the carpet it’s tearing up. It needs a shampoo, clearly.

If I ever see a Dyson in a hotel (being used by the staff), then I may consider one. Not likely as it would clearly be a marketing stunt.

I too wanted one when I saw them originally. Then I saw the price. Plastic for three to six hundred? I think not. Sheesh.

I doubt you will hand the Dyson down to your grandkids.

5 Werty 08.07.07 at 1:31 am

Mark you make some interesting points, BUT the Oreck was in like new condition, and had a new bag.

You see the Oreck was such a piece of shit that my grandparents would always use their sturdy electrolux canister vac. My sister got that and uses it to clean her apartment. That is a good a vacuum, the Oreck is not.

Do you have an Oreck? What are your thoughts on that little piece of shit “handheld” they give you to do stairs and such? My parents and grandparents still had theirs both in boxes because it performed terribly.

This clearly contains a bunch of dust on the bottom, and some fuzz on the top.

Lastly, if the dyson is so much marketing hype, why do you see all major manufactures going after the same cyclone technology? Either to scam people out of money, or because it actually works. Probably a bit of both.

6 linda 09.07.07 at 11:34 pm

two large breed dogs……one dyson
I have convinced all my co-workers with pets to purchase a Dyson. I have heard no complains only praise.
Dyson is the best! I have tried them all.
Two large breed dogs… do I need to say more.

7 Tom 11.06.07 at 12:35 am

Wow…some of these comments are…interesting. I’ve been looking for a new vacuum and did some online research, which is what brought me here. Anyway, my research led me to actually put my hands on both Dyson and Oreck machines. Both work fine as new items but the Oreck wins hands down the farther you go into its life cycle. Warranty is at least double (actually 4+ times as much if you go with Oreck’s top-of-the-line) and there are stores supporting the product with parts all over the place. It’s wayyyy lighter and has every bit as much suction. I know because walking by a local Oreck store caught my attention as they actually have a brand new Dyson DC14 for side-by-side comparison! That’s what I call confidence in your product. I went in and the guy was nice and not at all the “salesman.” Instead, he just let me get my hands on the Dyson and his middle of the line Oreck. Ergonomically, there’s no comparison. I witnessed GREAT service for several customers coming in for free annual checkups on there old Orecks. Finally, I ran both. They both picked up the same stuff but the Oreck did it with a lot less effort and noise. It also uses a lot less electricity, by the way. The attachment idea is great too. Why lug all attachments with one of those iron lung bagless machines. Do you use them all at the same time? No, so why deal with all of the inconvenience. Besides, that “little piece of…” can be used for my car as well. Try THAT with the Dyson. Finally, the Oreck is still made here in the US and a big support network is in place for a great machine. I’ve talked to a lot of people in my family and at work and I have yet to hear anyone say anything bad about their Oreck long term. It seems that the only people with a problem are those that don’t know how to care for items properly. Like the belt. They give you a second one for free (on the bottom) so you change it every six months. Two of those for free and you get new ones with that free annual check up. Sorry, learn something about a product before you put good money down. Remember the old commercial, “pay me now or pay me later…”

8 Bree 01.11.08 at 12:22 am

I purchased a brand new orek. The only thing that is good about it is the weight, that is the reason you see them used in hotel rooms. The piece of junk cannister hand held isnt worth a dime it works about as well as a $10 car vac, no wonder they give it to you with the purchase of there vac. I gave my Orek to my elderly aunt, and bought myself a Dyson. Love it, I know my carpet is clean

9 eric 02.15.08 at 11:07 am

My parents own a 23 room motel in the U.P. of Michigan. They have 2 Oreck xl commercial vacuums, and let me tell you, they are not all they are cracked up to be. In the past 5 years they have bought a total of 5 Orecks, they break all the time. Now, I understand that they are being used everyday, and a lot of the maids abuse them. But when I still lived there, about every other week the orecks were breaking down. The belts CONSTANTLY break, the cloth bag eventually gets holes in it, the plastic handles crack off after a while, the cord that goes into the bottom part of the vac with the motor in is will wear out and the wires fray, my mother has was shocked from the handle of the oreck when the wires in the handle broke loose and made contact with the hand grounding wire that is SUPPOSED to prevent shocks. And as far as saying that the Dyson is a big hunk of plastic… whats the oreck? The motor is mounted in a plastic housing, and i have seen the mounts get broke right off case. Really the only non plastic parts are the cloth bag, steel handle tube, the motor and the wood brush. After taking an orek’s apart so often, and being a CAD drafter, I think its a K.I.S.S type of vacuum (Keep It Simple Stupid). The design is nothing amazing, its just an impeller that sucks the debris straight through it (which is bad, because the impeller will eventually break or get jammed). Where as the Dyson makes a suction behind the collection chamber, therefore the debris are never drawn through the motor. Also, their is no question that the dyson would have more suction power. Lets say for example, the dyson and the oreck had the same exact motor inside, the oreck is using a very inefficient way to move the air through the system, it is just an impeller. The dyson on the other hand “spins” the air, thereby creating a venturi effect on the air and greatly increasing air speed, this in turn, creates more suction. So by using what dyson calls “cyclone technology” (which is actually the venturi effect) He has killed 2 birds with one stone, the air spinning at such great speed throws and particles suspended in it to the outside, removing them with no filter. And the second thing is increasing the suction. I will say that the oreck is light, and that does make it easy for the maids to carry around, but for a home vacuum, weight plays a much lesser role, since in most cases you would probably only be moving it up and down a flight of stairs. Also, the dyson has a very cool stretch hose that stores right in the handle, it makes it nice to store, because everything is right on the vac, and it has the longest reach at a whopping 17 feet. Orecks solution is having to lug a portable vacuum around. Also you must think of vacuum consumables, the oreck needs belts and bags, and oreck charges alot for these items, the dyson has no consumables, so even if perhaps the dyson would break a part every now and then, the money you would usually be spending on consumables now goes to fixing the vacuum instead. I will leave you with this, would you buy a computer/car/phone/tv/blender that was designed in the early 70’s, or a new modern one that has 30+ years of improvement upon the old one.

10 brydan 02.23.08 at 12:46 am

WE have had a oreck for about five months and it is the BEST vacuum we have ever owned. We have had no problems with it it is the top of the line xl21 model and it works great. Believe it or not bagless vacuums are bad for the air you breath. For example dyson, its bagless but when you dump it in to the garbage, dust flys back into the air wich is not healthy for your home. I’ve heard awesome things about the dyson but when it comes to bagless, all bagless vacuums get really messy. did you know the oreck actually seals the bag shut as you take it out so there is now dust or dirt that gets every where. the oreck is really quiet, lite weight, and very easy to use. I would recommend the oreck to every one. the oreck is easier than most vacuums to change the bag all you do is slide it out and slide the new one in. Its that easy. the oreck also cleans the air as you vacuum its that clean. and to prove that its true what I just said watch Mr. David oreck and his vacuum on tv. you will be amazed. and get this the oreck has the power of a category 2 huricane, that is powerful. the oreck has a lot of power and lots of suction. it picks up pet hair just like that. Mr David oreck! I love your vacuum. you have done a great job.

11 Amanda 05.07.08 at 9:31 am

I got an Oreck xl21 from an oreck employee for his cost ($135). I don’t totally love it, but for the price, I can’t complain at all. I really miss the on board tools, and am contemplating getting one of their better handheld vacs. I only need something that will do the tight spaces behind bookshelves and around the banisters on my stairs. Would the little hand held be all that bad for those things? I hate to drop $200 on another vac. Maybe I can find a reconditioned one. Thanks for the info.

12 Dale 06.08.08 at 12:27 pm

Assuming you have not gotten rid of the Oreck…check for a clog. The Dyson does have wonderful suction but the being quieter then an oreck and the oreck leaving paper on the ground tells me there is a partially clog.

13 Jim 07.16.08 at 10:44 pm

Ok so your going to compare an old hand me down vacuum against a new dyson. Ever think of changing the belt in the oreck?

14 Michelle 07.24.08 at 11:05 am

It seemed that I had to get a new vacuum cleaner every year or so. I got tired of that, saw the t.v. ad for Oreck and ordered one! That was over 10 years ago. Never a problem, works great, fits under low tables and chairs. I would never own anything else. Why change when its so good. Very light, goes from tile to wood to carpet, with no adjustment necessary. Can’t say enough about it. If you want a good dependable vacuum, buy an Oreck!

15 john 01.03.09 at 10:10 pm

I love my Oreck XL, I love the support it has I know that if it does have a prob losing suction or whatever I can go down to my local Oreck dealer and have them look at it with no problem.I just bought the Platinum and gave my parents my old Xl they love it it works great and my older parents have no problem carrying it up the steps. If you want a great vaccum go with Oreck.

16 jodi 04.15.09 at 6:45 pm

I am now so confused. I want to get the Oreck self propelled thatc omes with 10 years of free annual tune ups, free bags and the canister vaccum that is 3 steps above the base one.. I felt it and the suction is awesome…
but broken belts,,,,and other reports I rea dandteh same goes for dyson its heavy to carry and do stairs… and if you read consumers they recc a 199.00 HOOVER HELP WHAT DO I DO>?>>
I use to have a kirby, then got a kenmore progressive caniter and love dit but now they make them cheap and I am tired of dragginga round a canister,,,, I dont have pets and have both hardwood lfoors and carpet including carepted steps… any ideas ??

17 werty 04.15.09 at 6:56 pm

Well as far as I know you cannot use the oreck on the hardwood, so you need to use the hand held vac that comes with it. The one that my parents and grandparents both had, was terrible and was never used. I would try that out first, or look around and see if you can get reviews of it.

I suggest the dyson, just because I am very happy with mine, and how it has performed on carpet, tile and hardwood.

18 Susan 04.18.09 at 12:05 pm

Of course you can use the Oreck on hardwood, they are advertised as going back and forth on both. I love my Oreck XL commercial that I got at Costco Business Center (mostly on the West Coast). The Oreck guy was there and gave me some good info. But specifically, I knew I wanted an Oreck b/c you can do hardwood (which I mostly have ) and carpet.

19 Joe 08.02.09 at 9:55 pm

the comments made in reference to the Oreck vs the dyson is not even sensible the oreck in question for one is a relic, the Oreck units rule of thumb must have the best changed at least once a year – no big deal also make sure the bag is not full. The dyson I have used at my freinds it is good as long as it’s not full and makes a mess with dust, also it is much louder than the Oreck and the Oreck hepa bags truly keep the dust in the bag .I have the new Oreck XL Platinum and it is excellent on rugs as well as hard wood floors ,I like it much better than the ear blasting Dyson.

20 Joe 08.02.09 at 9:56 pm

when testing a vac please make sure both models are = in age and top running shape.

21 scottae316 08.11.09 at 7:54 pm

First, you need to replace the belt and beater bar on the Oreck. Make sure the bag is not full and the tube isn’t clogged. Its rare that the filler tube clogs, but it can happen. Other than that, Oreck is a great vacuum. If you wonder why the Oreck stores have Dyson’s in each of them, its part of a law suit that Oreck won. Dyson lost 3 independent lab tests against Oreck and the settlement was that Dyson had to provide one of their vacuums to each Oreck store. Dyson’s are nice vacuums, but they are very heavy, loud and dirty to empty. Orecks are light, quiter, and seal when you empty the bag. It is a top fill bag so it looses power when the bag is near full. Change the hepa bag and you good to go. On and don’t forget the 102 mph suction of the Oreck.

22 indysrider 09.09.09 at 12:05 am

I LOVE MY DYSON: I find these 5 pros over other vacuums:
1. Easy to empty (just pull off the container and pull a lever, the trash empties out of the bottom!)
2. Versatile, clean from carpet to hardwood to baseboards with one unit. (who would want to buy a handheld and an upright to do one chore?)
3. POWERFUL suction that doesn’t seem to waiver*
4. Very quiet. Use it around a baby all the time!
5. Many useful attachments (AWESOME on pet hair on the couches, no need for a fancy brush just the regular attachment and some powerful suction)

I have a handed down Dyson from the first version they made. I have never used an Oreck, but as for the Dyson, I enjoy the flexibility. Not everyone only vacuums large spaces with little furniture. I have couches and a coffee table i have to vaccum around and I love being able to vacuum the livingroom, and using my fioot switch the setting to hardfloor and do the kitchen. I can quickly pull the handle and get the baseboards, under and behind a table and the larger pieces you wouldn’t want to suck up with the brush.

*If you have long hair, it gets caught around the brush and you have to take the brush off and clean the build up off. But this happens with any vacuum that uses a rotating brush to pick things off carpet.

I think it depends on what you use your vacuum for that determines what kind is best. I do have the handheld Dyson also and only need it for my car and sometimes I use it for stairs if i have it out already.


23 Jay, Louisville, KY 11.09.09 at 8:53 am

My Oreck is the best thing I have ever had. It beats my sisters Dyson and my mothers rainbo by a mile. I have 2 dogs that shed a LOT and the Oreck picks up ALL the hair. The Dyson does not get the dog hair that is “down in the fibers” of the carpet. If you honestly thought an old Oreck would act like a new Dyson, then you are a complete retard. My Oreck is 14 years old and I will still be using it in 14 more years when you have bought 3 more Dysons……

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