Dyson D23 Turbinehead Canister Vacuum Review

By Greg Spira on 1 December 2010
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Buying a Dyson vacuum cleaner is not like buying other vacuum cleaners.  It’s not just the purchase of a product, but also the buying into of a philosophy – the philosophy of James Dyson.  Dyson, an inventor and technologist, doesn’t make vacuums the way other companies do.  His machines are bagless and use the patented cyclone technology that Dyson invented in the early 1980s and has continually developed and improved.

Dyson vacuum cleaners don’t trap dust and dirt as much as they spin such particles out of the air they encounter.  As a result, the machines generate especially strong suction and maintain those high levels of suction even as the vacuum fills up.

A Dyson vacuum also doesn’t look like an ordinary household device, as most vacuums do.  It looks like a precisely engineered machine.  Design, both in terms of functionality and appearance, is what Dyson prides itself on.

Dyson vacuums are generally regarded as expensive, but we tested the Dyson D23 Turbinehead Canister Vacuum, which lists for a reasonable $399.99.

The D23 arrived here unassembled, but the brief assembly instructions enabled me to put the machine together and get it in working order in about 20 minutes.  If you haven’t put together a vacuum like this before, you might have to do a little extra thinking, but the pieces fit together very easily.

While the vacuum is a bit bulky,   it’s easy to maneuver forwards and backwards.  Turns require somewhat more effort.   But you don’t have to do much bending at all to make the machine go where you want it to go.  It is a bit of a pain to carry up and down the stairs, but that would probably be true of any canister vacuum.

It certainly lives up to its reputation in terms of suction.   It will pick up more dirt from the floor than you ever imagined was there, and unlike most other vacuums, the suction does not decrease as the vacuum fills.  The only problem you may run into is that the vacuum sucks up so much stuff you may have to empty it sooner than you anticipated, especially the first few times you use it.  But emptying the canister is relatively simple.

Most of the machine is well made, although there’s a lot of plastic and the hose is a bit flimsy and could easily be damaged.  The vacuum is especially good on hard floors and friends have told me that it is far more effective than its peers at picking up pet hair.  On the other hand, the vacuum is not ideal for use on small, thin rugs; it’s a bit too powerful for those.

The D23 is both affordable and powerful.  It’s not the perfect vacuum for everybody, but it could be that for you if suction is what you seek.

www.dyson.com $399.99

Greg Spira is Executive Road Warrior’s Editorial Director.

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