Dyson DC34 Handheld Vacuum Cleaner


Avg. consumer rating = 88/100 

When the Dyson DC34 was first released consumers were not that impressed and ratings were not particularly good.  However over the past several years ratings have continued to climb, perhaps as consumers have gotten used to the futuristic design and features. Consumer ratings for this machine are now quite good.  The DC34 is lightweight and has a reasonable amount of power but owners often complain of the short run time - a common complaint with the Dyson handheld and stick vacs.

A review of owner ratings on several respectable websites reveals the following figures for the DC34 (see table below).  The average ratings score is 88 out of 100 - or 4.4 stars out of 5 - and if you view our list of Dyson Vacuum Ratings you can see that this is a respectable score and is higher than other Dyson handheld units, with the exception of the Dyson V6 Mattress.

Ratings Updated March 2016
 Source  Consumer Ratings  #Ratings
 Amazon  4.4 stars out of 5  455
 Bed Bath & Beyond  3.9 stars out of 5  54
 Overstock  4 stars out of 5  40
 Abt  4.4 stars out of 5  18
 Walmart  4.5 stars out of 5  465
 Target  3.6 stars out of 5  5


Consumer comments yield the following vacuum likes and dislikes.

- Lightweight
- Powerful
- Includes wall-mounted charging station
- Dust canister is easy to empty
- Narrow nozzle helps get into hard to reach areas

- Short battery life
- Expensive
- Have to keep trigger depressed for vacuum to work
- Vacuum cannot be used when charging cord plugged in
- Few attachments

You can read more Dyson DC34 customer reviews on Amazon if you wish.

Of the “cons” shown above the biggest complaint by far is the short battery life, and some people even report buying an extra battery so they don’t have to stop and recharge so often.  However it should be noted that not all owners complain about the battery life and some do feel that the charge lasts for a sufficient amount of time.

Many people report using the vacuum for both cleaning around the house and cleaning vehicle interiors.  It excels at vacuuming in vehicles as it generates strong suction (on the “max’ setting) and the narrow nozzle allows it to effectively get into hard to reach areas.

The Dyson DC34 handheld is cordless (battery powered) and bagless.  It is powered by a digital motor which is lighter, stronger and faster than a conventional motor.  The digital motor spins at 3 times the speed of a conventional motor (up to 104,000 RPM) and generates more power. 

The unit’s 22.2 volt lithium-ion battery provides fade-free power  - it sustains constant power while it is being used.  The lithium-ion battery also offers very quick recharge (owners report about 3.5 hours).  An LED battery indicator on the DC34 begins to flash when there is less than 1 minute of battery power remaining.  A battery charger is included with the handheld.

The vacuum has 2 speeds - maximum and standard.  On standard power the machine provides 15 minutes of vacuuming with 28 air watts of suction, and on maximum power it provides 6 minutes of vacuuming with 65 air watts of suction.  A number of owners have highlighted that they always run the vacuum on maximum as they feel the suction on minimum is insufficient, and as a result the short 6 minute run time on maximum is an area of major discontent.  Lower consumer ratings for this machine are largely the result of the short run time on maximum.

Like all Dysons the DC34 uses root cyclone technology to create suction.  This technology spins air very rapidly and centrifugal force pulls the dust and debris out of the airpath and into the dust canister.  An added advantage of this approach is that the fine dust is also kept away from the filters and they therefore stay cleaner longer.

The dust canister is clear so one can tell when emptying is needed.  Also, the canister is easily emptied at the push of a button.  The push button approach helps to limit the user’s exposure to dirt and dust.  Consumer comments confirm that the dust canister is indeed easy to empty.    The canister has a 0.09 gallon capacity (0.35 litres). 

DC34 Tools
Included Tools

Additional vacuum features include a combination brush and wide debris nozzle tool, a crevice tool, a washable standard filter (no HEPA filter on this handheld), and a 2-inch wide cleaning path.  The DC34 is remarkably light at only 2.9 lbs and consumers report that it is easy to lift and maneuver as a result.  The Dyson DC34 handheld vacuum cleaner carries a 2-year limited parts and labor warranty.

The vacuum is UL listed and the battery charger is Energy Star qualified.  UL stands for Underwriters' Laboratories who are a non-profit, independent product safety certification organization in the United States.  Energy Star is a joint program between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Energy. The program involves protecting the environment through energy efficient products and practices - so if a product is Energy Star rated then it has met strict energy efficiency guidelines set by both the EPA and US Department of Energy.

Vacuum Cleaner Video
A video showing features, maintenance tips and more can be found here.  The video is provided through Best Buy.


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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.