In the United States, most people use traditional upright vacuum cleaners to clean their homes, and in the domestic market there are hundreds if not thousands of choices. There are, however, two basic problems with the design of older uprights. The first is that the uprights center of gravity is often too high. There is not a proper balance between the base and the body of the vacuum, and often, while using the hose to clean upholstery or to dust, this imbalance causes the vacuum to tip over and fall. Traditional uprights also tend to be difficult to steer around right corners or furniture. The second problem is caused by the fixed wheels on conventional vacuums which are designed to move in straight lines backward and forward. With traditional upright vacuum cleaners it is difficult to make sharp turns. As a result, you often miss spots while cleaning.
Two vacuum manufacturers have taken these challenges head on, Miele and Dyson. Both are tackling this issue in two different ways. In 2005 Dyson introduced the Dyson Ball vacuum cleaners. This upright vacuum cleaner features a round, ball-like encasing which houses the motor. This ball also acts as the main steering mechanism of this vacuum cleaner. In lieu of wheels, the Dyson pivots on this ball and uses rear wheels and the brush roll to help stabilize the vacuum.
In December of 2008, Miele introduced its first full-size upright vacuum cleaner. And in keeping with addressing traditional issues with uprights, the Miele upright vacuum cleaners feature a Swivel-Neck design. This design creates a pivot point between the vertical body of the vacuum cleaner and the base. Most importantly, this design means the majority of the weight of the vacuum is carried by the base while in use. Like the Dyson, with a turn of the wrist you smoothly manipulate Miele's swivel-neck feature, resulting in better cornering capability and a much more fluid sense of movement. The U1 upright still has four wheels, but in a departure from conventional models the front two caster style wheels swivel a full 360 degrees. Combined, these features give the Miele Dynamic U1 uprights (formerly S7) unprecedented maneuverability and control. This design saves time in that you will rarely find yourself moving furniture to vacuum underneath or around it, and the increased flexibility and mobility makes cleaning quicker and more efficient.
Compare Miele Upright to Dyson Ball Vacuum Cleaner
So how do these two different brands compare? When it comes to maneuverability, the Dyson Ball is designed to perform in a similar manner as the Miele Swivel-Neck. However, there are several key differences between these two vacuums.
- The Miele upright vacuum cleaners have four wheels, the front two of which rotate a full 360 degrees. To reduce the straight line motion of the rear wheels, while in use, they recess into the body of the vacuum. While in use, the Dyson lacks wheels in favor of the ball. The ball with the roller brush assembly gives you two points of contact while cleaning.
- The four wheels of the Miele upright work to stabilize the Miele, particularly while not in use or while using the hose and wand, with one of the three included attachments. The Dyson relies on the ball, brush roll and two rear wheels, spaced out behind the ball, to maintain balance. When using the wand and hose, the hose-lock feature of the Miele provides added stability.
- Both vacuums can lie flat while in use, but the six inch profile the Miele Dynamic U1 upright, as opposed to a 12-14 inch depth of the Dyson, gives U1 a decided edge when cleaning under beds, tables, chairs and other furniture.
- Lastly, the Miele U1 upright vacuum cleaners can be considered more aesthetically pleasing than the Dyson uprights. While this may seem like a trivial point to some, if you have two similar vacuum cleaners, the appearance can be a decisive factor in your choice.
While both vacuums are similar, yet different, when it comes to addressing maneuverability, there are several other major differences between the features of the Miele U1 upright vacuum cleaner and Dyson Ball.
- The Miele upright vacuum cleaners feature two independent motors. The powerful Vortex motor provides more than ample suction, while a separate motor powers the roller brush. This gives you the flexibility to clean carpets with the powerful brush roll AND to clean smooth flooring by disengaging the brush roll and using straight suction. The design gives you remarkable cleaning versatility.
- Dyson relies on bagless dirt retention while Miele uses a 9 ply, AirClean U bag. Though you do have to replace bags, the self-sealing, electrostatically charged, U bags are far more hygienic and keep dirt, dust, dander and other allergens trapped. Dyson even recommends that you empty the canister into a bag. If you are emptying it into a bag, why not collect it in a bag to begin with?
- The AirClean bags hold more debris and dirt than the Dyson's canister, Miele's 1.36 gal. vs Dyson's .55 gal (from the model compared). These bags are flexible and allow more greater compaction of materials. Simply, the density and volume of material these bags can retain are more than that of the Dyson Ball.
- The U1 uprights feature the same Sealed System found in the Miele Canisters. This filters all allergens down to .1 microns. Additionally, Miele air filtration meets the stringent European H13 filtration standards.
- The Miele U1 upright vacuum cleaners feature a longer cord, longer reach hose and telescopic wand than Dyson uprights. These give you a far greater cleaning range from a single outlet, 55 feet for the Miele upright vs 51.7 feet for the longest reaching Dyson upright.
- Unlike the Dyson, each of the new S7 upright vacuum cleaners has a LED brush light to enhance visibility of the area you are cleaning.
- The Miele uprights come with a longer warranty, 7 years, compared to 5 for the Dyson models.
While both Dyson and Miele are built to be nimble and more maneuverable than traditional uprights, differences between these vacuums are abundant. Whether we examine suction, ease of use, filtration standards, overall cleaning capability, or simply choice in color, the Miele Dynamic U1 upright vacuum cleaners outpace the competition. The Dyson Ball models cost between $399 and $700, while the Miele U1 upright vacuum cleaners range from $449 and $900. However, when you compare these two vacuum cleaners, you realize that you truly do get what you pay for.