Dyson Digital Slim vacuum review: Restores dignity and power to housecleaning

With this in your hands you are the Germinator sent from the future to clean up this mess.

The Dyson Digital Slim. Courtesy Dyson
Powered by automated translation

Don’t tell my wife this, but I always quite enjoyed vacuuming the floor.

Vacuuming is an eminently manly pursuit, a simple repetitive action, not involving too much labour but still employing a power tool. It also visually displays the amount of endeavour expounded, requiring a nice sit down, a cup of coffee and a biscuit once finished.

However, we now have two French bulldogs in our home that shed so much hair I had to check their pedigree to make sure they weren’t crossed with Yul Bryner. Vacuuming is not so much fun these days as it is a constant occupation, much like painting the Golden Gate Bridge – once you get to the end, you best go back to the start and begin again.

That was until the Dyson Digital Slim changed my life and one of my simple pleasures was returned.

Dyson is known for thinking outside the box. This vacuum, however, marries professional cleaning power into a cordless, Terminator-styled, hand-held, luridly coloured piece of hardware. With this in your hands you are the Germinator sent from the future to clean up this mess.

It is cordless, so no bit of fluff is safe no matter how high or previously inaccessible. However, you only get 20 minutes of battery life from one charge – 17 if you are using the mechanised heads, and you will want to use the mechanised heads.

The carbon fibre brush bar has rows of ultrafine filaments engineered to remove fine dust from hard floors, perfect for most UAE residences. There are also stiff nylon bristles for carpets. They spin at high speed to remove ground-in dirt (and dog hair). The attachments fit both the elongated wand or directly into the cleaner, meaning you are able to use it much like a traditional vacuum cleaner with the long tube or go hand-held.

It is the answer to all men’s vacuuming dreams. The power, virtuosity and design allow thorough cleaning in a good-looking product. It does retail for just over Dh2,000 so it’s not cheap, and it does only last for 20 minutes before it needs a recharge.

In the end this product sucks, but in a really good way.

Q&A

Where did the founder of Dyson’s obsession with cleaning products stem from?

James Dyson’s first invention was a boat that could unload cargo without the need for a jetty. His idea for a vacuum cleaner that didn’t lose suction as dust clogged up the filters came from the paint room of his ballbarrow factory. He set up his own manufacturing company in 1993 after ten years trying to launch his first bagless vacuum cleaner. The problem was that the disposable cleaner bag market was worth Dh600m per year in the UK alone so retailers and vacuum manufacturers were not interested. He launched it first by mail order in Japan costing a whopping Dh12,000. Rather than the great suction it was the lack of paying for the bags that created a market.

How successful is he?

According to the Sunday Times Rich List in 2013, he is worth about £3 billion, so pretty successful.

Has everything he designed been a success?

Dyson launched his contrarotator washing machine in 2000 which had two rotating drums moving in opposite directions. The range was decorated in the usual bright Dyson colours. If you bought one, good luck on getting any spares for it. The item was not a commercial success and is no longer available. He has also been a huge supporter of the UK joining the single European currency, which I can’t see happening any time soon.

ascott@thenational.ae

Follow The National's Business section on Twitter