Dyson DC31 Vacuum Review



Avg. consumer rating = 80/100 

The Dyson DC31 Handheld vacuum is widely available but consumer reviews and ratings at this time are sparse.  Having said that, those that can be found are not too bad.  It seems the DC31 is an improvement over the DC16, Dyson's first handheld attempt.

Like other Dyson vacuums the DC31 uses Dyson's patented Root Cyclone technology, needs no vacuum bags, and comes with washable filters (which Dyson say you should wash with cold water at least every month).  It uses a dirt cup (instead of a bag) and the cup is emptied from the bottom.  A button opens the bottom of the dirt cup so you don’t have to “dig” the dirt out.  And again, like other Dysons, the DC31 has fade-free power.  This is also a cordless vacuum.

The major complaint with the DC16 was the short battery life of the unit.  Dyson appear to have taken this to heart and increased the battery duration of the DC31 – although this still seems to be an issue with some consumers.  The DC16 provided about 5 minutes on a single charge (with 36 air watts of power) while the DC31 handheld comes with 2 different power modes - "low" provides 10 minutes of continuous vacuuming with 38 air watts of power, while "high" will provide 6 minutes of continuous runtime at 65 air watts.

Consumer ratings for the DC16 were not particularly good and it scored an average of 3.25 stars out of 5 (see our review of the DC16).  The DC31 has improved on that score as the ratings below indicate (although there are a limited number of ratings at this time):

 Source  Consumer Ratings  #Ratings
 Amazon  3.6 stars out of 5  56
 Overstock  4.6 stars out of 5  41

Dyson claim that the motor in the DC31 is more powerful and that is uses less energy than that used in the older DC16.  The DC31 uses a 22.2Volt lithium ion battery and is Energy Star Rated.   This rating appears on many products these days and is often used to describe a product as being more “environmentally friendly”.   Energy Star is actually a joint program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Energy.  The Energy Star program involves protecting the environment via the development of energy efficient products and practices.  Thus if a product is Energy Star rated it will have met strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the EPA and the US Department of Energy.  And, in theory, a more energy efficient product should help reduce energy bills.

The DC31 Handheld vacuum comes with an AC/DC power adapter and battery charger that can provide a full vacuum charge in about 3 hours.   It also has an LED battery charge indicator to let you know when the charge is running low.  In addition, a crevice tool and a combo accessory tool are provided – the crevice tool allows one to vacuum in hard to reach areas while the combo accessory tool essentially acts as an upholstery tool and dusting brush.  These tools simply snap into place.  A toolkit for the DC31 that contains a number of specialized tools can also be purchased (see image to right). The Dyson DC31 handheld vacuum is very lightweight at 2.9 lbs and the vacuum carries a manufacturer’s 2 year parts and labor warranty.

A review of consumer comments from several quality sources indicates the following common Dyson DC31 likes and dislikes:

- Charge lasts longer than 10 minutes because only “on” when trigger squeezed
- The “low” power setting is sufficient for most vacuuming
- Very light
- Good for stairs and automobiles

- Only 10 minutes of power
- Loud
- Expensive
- Not good with a lot of fine powders as these quickly clog the filters

Vacuum Manual
And if you want to learn more about the vacuum you may wish to browse through the Dyson DC31 User’s Guide.




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About Me


I'm Nigel Russco, a 50 year old professional engineer who loves to review vacuums, and I’ve been doing just that since 2008.  

I strive to write unbiased, intelligent vacuum cleaner reviews and I provide a score for each and every vacuum I investigate.  My goal is to help you find the best vacuum for your cleaning needs.

Also, watch my video reviews on the Vacuum Cleaner Advisor YouTube Channel.

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