A Decent Dyson for Light Work

by Jason Dyck
(last updated July 1, 2019)


The Dyson brand has become synonymous with unusual designs and advanced technologies. James Dyson's special design of bagless vacuum cleaners has become very fashionable in recent years, and those vacuums have won awards and certifications from prominent organizations for their quality. I got a chance to try the smallest of the Dyson family, the DC31. It is a cordless (battery powered) handheld unit about the size of a small pitcher, and roughly shaped like one. All the buttons, switches, etc., are clearly marked. The DC31 comes with a crevice tool and a hybrid tool for debris and dusting: the brush part slides back and forth along the shaft, locking into either position. This model also includes a dual speed control. The lower speed gives better battery life and still picks up most things, while the high power setting delivers superior suction for heavy duty jobs.

(For more information on Dyson vacuum cleaners, see their website at http://www.dyson.com.)

Wanting to put the vaunted Dyson technology through its paces, I tackled my staircase which had been the recipient of some tough love by my two toddlers. I also used the DC31 on a few other jobs around the house since then as well. Here are my thoughts on its performance:

  • Ease of use. For quick clean up jobs, the DC31 is great. It maneuvers easily and the grip is comfortable. Emptying the canister is very easy. For long jobs, like the job I did on my stairs, the vacuum's weight becomes uncomfortable. Most of the weight sits well in front of the handle, so after a while it puts a strain on the wrist and arm to hold it up. The speed control button on the back is easy to see and easy to use with the thumb of the gripping hand.
  • Maintenance. The canister is easy to take care of. There are few internal corners where dust and debris could build up, so it requires cleaning less often, and the door in the bottom for emptying it is simple to open and close. Changing and cleaning the filter are also easy. The DC31's filter is made of washable materials, so you don't have to buy a new one very often; just a run through the sink will do the trick. The filter is easy to find, remove, and replace. The battery is even easier, clipping into the bottom of the handle in a manner reminiscent of a power tool battery pack.
  • Pros. The Dyson DC31 has a well-powered motor in it, and it keeps that power going clear through till the battery is drained. As advertised, the vacuum will not lose suction as the job goes on. Without a bag, and using their cyclone technology, the fullness of the holding canister has no effect on the suction. Likewise, the battery level will not affect suction either. The power remains the same right up until the end when the machine simply shuts off. The vacuum is easy to use and to maintain, which are big plusses.
  • Cons. The price of a Dyson vacuum means it will not be for everyone. The DC31 is a very nice machine, and it does its job well, but at $219.99 it is not for those with small budgets. As I mentioned before, it can get very heavy over long jobs. Which leads to my last complaint: battery life. I actually had to finish my stairs with my upright vacuum because the battery on the Dyson did not last long enough to finish the job. It has an estimated battery life of ten minutes on low power and a little over five on high power. Good for quick clean ups, but not for lengthy work.
  • Overall experience. The Dyson DC31 is a very solid little vacuum that delivers very good power in a small, effective package. It does virtually everything I want out of a vacuum. It is especially suited to small clean ups: dusty window sills, spilled flour or sugar, and the like. If the price is not an issue for you, then this vacuum will not disappoint.

Note: For important information about Tips.Net product reviews, see our review policy.

Author Bio

Jason Dyck

Jason has been a cook, a hotel clerk, a website developer, a landscaper, a dance instructor, a financial auditor, and the list goes on. He holds Associate degrees in English and Social Science. Jason lives in Utah with his wife and two sons. ...


Ceramic Knives that Do the Job

Ceramic knives are becoming more and more common on the home front. Shenzhen knives, available only online, are one of ...

Discover More

A Dependable Skil Cordless Drill

One of the most essential power tools is the drill/driver. Skil has a real winner in its 12V Max Lithium Ion Cordless ...

Discover More

Changing an Electrical Outlet

Even outlets wear out eventually. Learn how to replace an aging or damaged outlet yourself for a safer, more convenient, ...

Discover More

Tough Tools for Tough Cleaning Jobs O-Cel-O sponges and Scotch Brite scrubbers are truly a fashion-meets-function success story. The highly absorbent and durable sponges in this handy six-pack make quick work of tough cleaning problems in any kitchen, bathroom, or garage. Check out Scotch-Brite Heavy Duty Scrub Sponges today!

More Cleaning Tips

Properly Using a Vacuum Cleaner

These ten steps outline the way to properly vacuum-clean a room. You'll learn how to prepare the room and machine for ...

Discover More

Cleaning a Bagless Vacuum Cleaner

Keeping your bagless vacuum container clean is essential to keeping your carpets and floors clean. A simple washing out ...

Discover More

Vacuuming Basics

Vacuuming is a basic skill that most people know how to do already. But, re-learning some basics may help your vacuuming ...

Discover More

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in Cleaning Tips from Tips.Net. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.


If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 9 + 6?

2020-08-08 09:59:56

Dorothy LucyAnn Curling

This is 'almost' the tip I need! I've inserted an extra appendix to a chapter in the book I'm writing. Each chapter has a set of appendices with the titles of each corresponding to the chapter number, so Chapter 2 has appendices 2a, 2b, 2c etc. I need to update each of the cross-references to each of the appendices for this one chapter, but I can't see how to do that.

Newest Tips

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in Cleaning Tips from Tips.Net. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.