One of my kids likes to use a catchphrase whenever life doesn’t go according to plan. Waiting in the line forever at Raising Cane’s Chicken, dropping her smartphone on the floor, realizing at the last minute that we forgot where we parked at the shopping mall: “It sucks to suck,” she says. We laugh and give each other a high-five.
I think of this phrase quite often when it comes to testing vacuum cleaners. Most low-end models last about a year and then--due to a failure of design and manufacturing, or both--the $60 model you purchased on a whim at Target suddenly becomes a dusty artifact that sits in the basement. Quite literally, it doesn’t suck anymore.
That’s why I really prefer the Dyson V11 Torque Drive vacuum I’ve been testing since for several months. The motor spins at 125,000 RPMs which is about twice as fast as most cordless models and is absolutely an essential feature. Too often, the idea of “cordless” also means “powerless” but the V11 matches or exceeds many corded models. I vacuumed the steps, my basement carpet, the car, the wooden front entry-way floor, and (briefly) considered sucking up the leaves in my front lawn. There’s no question the V11 has enough power for most household tasks. I liked how portable it is at just under 17 pounds. In my case, it means I did spot-vacuuming more often, knowing it wasn’t a laborious chore to unwind the cord, grab a heavy piece of machinery, and haul it a heavy old-school model out for five minutes only because I got busy with a box of crackers.
A new auto mode senses what you are vacuuming with the V11 and adjusts itself. I tested this as well on a thicker carpet and on something more like indoor-outdoor carpet. What’s cool about the auto mode is that the vacuum adjusts the power level and then can last longer. In my case, I was able to vacuum a 2,200-square-foot house on one charge.
There are so many extra perks. Emptying the vacuum takes one quick button press and ploop you’re done. I recommend the bundle that includes extra cleaning brushes. The V11 includes a wall mount panel. A new LCD readout shows charge level and any blockage problems. I also liked “eco” mode for light vacuuming duties when I need the vacuum to last longer (for my carpet, the couch and chairs, and the wood floors). It’s such a smart purchase because I know the V11 will last. It’s not destined to be a basement relic.
Dyson V11 Torque Drive Cordless Vacuum Cleaner
Down from $700
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