Dyson’s $600 Vacuum: Is It Worth the Cost?

Blair Pfander

dysonthumb Dysons $600 Vacuum: Is It Worth the Cost?Some people covet designer handbags, elegant watches, even elaborate speed boats. But for others, the ultimate luxury purchase has a more practical utility.
Meet the Dyson DC41 Animal, the range-topping upright vacuum that promises to banish dirt and dust along with micro allergens and irritants (all while looking rather fetching in your cleaning cabinet). The vacuum has garnered a cult following among the likes of hedge-fund wives, celebrities, and even hotels (not to mention its legion of fans who are just good old-fashioned neat freaks). Still, for all its virtues, a vacuum that retails for $599 can be a tough pill to swallow—or, perhaps more accurately, to suck.
Intent on hoovering with the best of them, we caught up with Dyson senior engineer Rob Green to unpack the special features that come with the DC41 price tag.
1.  Radial Root Cyclone. “The cyclone is what really sets us apart,” says Green. “James Dyson invented the cyclone”—essentially a super-strong bagless suction system that traps fine dust particles—”and as we develop new machines, we’re still the ones who leads the market in cyclone technology and dirt separation.” Furthermore, the little conical shapes you see at the top aren’t just decorative—they’re mini cyclones, too. “Quite often people think they’re just a visual thing, but actually each one of those cones has a function, and help to separate tiny dust and dirt particles.”
2. The Bore. Dyson’s new Bore technology is anything but boring. “For a number of years we’ve been developing Dyson Bore Technology, which is all about improved movability, and a more pleasant experience for the user,” says Green. “Bore allows the user to maneuver the machine much more naturally, turn around tighter corners, clean around furniture with a more natural, arching movement rather than the more traditional backwards-fowrards motion that you usually have with wheeled upright vacuum cleaners.” The result? You don’t have to struggle to get the DC41 to clean inside your shoe closet.
3. Adjustable Cleaner Head. “The cleaner head is hugely important for any vacuum cleaner since it’s the first contact with the floor or carpet,” Green explains. “The big thing on the DC41 is what we call our active base plate, which is the plastic section on the bottom of the vacuum cleaner that touches the surface. It has a rubber accordion spring, which allows it to adjust to a range of heights to make sure that the cleaner head is setting itself up on all floor surfaces for the optimum performance.” The adjustment also reduces air leaks and helps retain suction power, so you’re not on your hands and knees feeding cat hair into the mouth of the vacuum.
4. Asthma and Allergy Certification. Good news if you’re constantly sneezing in your apartment: the DC41 has third-party certification from the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, meaning it hoovers up allergens that lesser vacs can’t.
5. Form Follows Function. Speaking to the sleek design of the DC41, Green explains that nothing on a Dyson isn’t there “for a functional benefit. The smaller currents that you see around the top of the cyclone pack—people assume that’s a styling thing, but actually it’s part of the filtration system. The brand has always believed in every component of the design being there for a reason, which I think creates a very honest aesthetic.”
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