This post is yet another one of our Dyson vacuum reviews. This time we are reviewing the Dyson DC31. The DC31 is the only true Dyson handheld vacuum cleaner in the range. It is lightweight weighing at around 3 pounds and built for quick and effective spot cleaning such as the hasty spruce-up before guests arrive or when your child or pet has made a mess which doesn’t warrant the full blown vacuum treatment but for which this powerful little vacuum is perfect.

There are two very slight variants of the DC31 model; the slightly cheaper standard DC31 and the more expensive DC31 Animal. The only real differences between the standard DC31 and the DC31 Animal are that the DC31 Animal has the motorized brushbar head tool which the standard model doesn’t have, and the standard DC31 is orange in color while the DC31 Animal is purple.

Dyson DC31
Lithium Battery
The Dyson DC31 runs on a rechargeable lithium battery which is an improvement from the older nickel metal hydride battery. The new battery lasts longer and can withstand the frequent charging and re-charging.

Dual Power Mode Settings
This vacuum cleaner has two power modes – ie, a normal suction power (38 Air Watts) setting and a boost setting (65 Air Watts) which gives you up to 70% more power than the normal mode.
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You get 10 minutes of battery life from the DC31 when you are using it in normal suction power mode which from our experience is plenty of power for most tasks. If you use the extra boost power you will get approximately 6 minutes of battery life when fully charged.
The boost power mode is useful when you need that super suction for ingrained dirt or pet hair trapped deep in high pile rugs for instance or even crumbs or dirt trapped in the kitchen tile grout lines.

Bagless design and Easy Release Dust Cannister
Dyson DC31

Like most of the Dyson range, the DC31 is a bagless vacuum cleaner and has a convenient and hygienic method of emptying the dust cannister. It’s as easy as pressing a trigger button which releases the bottom of the cannister to let the dirt, dust and anything else the DC31 picked up, fall into your waste bin. There are no messy dust bags to remove or empty which means less chance of allergy prone individuals coming into contact with the dirt.

Convenient attachments for a variety of cleaning environments

Dyson DC31 Dyson DC31
Both the standard and DC31 Animal come with a combination accessory tool and a crevice tool, both of which are easy to attach.

The combination tool easily slides back a forward between a brush nozzle and a hard nozzle. The brush nozzle is very good when you need to be gentle on surfaces or you want to do some dusting, whereas the harder the nozzle is convenient when you simply need to vacuum larger debris.

The crevice tool is useful for getting into the tight corners or between floorboards and is also great for getting into the hard to reach places in your car such as down the seat crevices.

Watch the following video to see the Dyson DC31 in action:

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Trigger action Off/On Switch
Due to the portable nature of the Dyson DC31 and the fact that it uses a battery, the engineers at Dyson have designed the ON/OFF switch such that you need to keep the switch pressed to the ON position as you vacuum. In other words you can’t just press the switch and leave the vacuum cleaner on automatically. This is done on purpose to maximize battery life and prevent you from wasting precious seconds during moments that you are not vacuuming.

Customer comments

I can’t figure out what the folks who don’t like this are talking about; for it’s intended purpose I couldn’t be happier with this purchase. I’m glad that I thought about what the negative reviewers were really saying before I let them influence my purchase.

I love this little hand vacuum so much more than the other choices available (several of which I’ve tried in the past) and highly recommend it

This little fella has amazing suction. With a houseful of shedding machines – golden retriever, and 2 Maine Coon Cats – a daily swoop along the baseboards, under the table, and down the stairs picks up the fur that was formerly all over. I love it!

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Negative Feedback
Some customers have found that the 10 minute battery isn’t long enough. I need to stress here that you have to put the purpose of this vacuum cleaner into perspective. It is a portable machine designed to be used for quick but effective cleaning. We have been able to thoroughly vacuum both of our cars (one of which is a large dodge truck) in one 10 minute session with no problems.
Another related complaint is that the 3 hour re-charge time is too long.

The Dyson DC31 vacuum cleaner has a 2 year warranty which covers parts and labor.