You could end up paying hundreds of pounds over the odds for a cordless Dyson vacuum if you buy at the wrong time, or from the wrong place. So if you’ve got your eye on a Dyson, it pays to do your research before you buy.
You might think that opting for one of the older Dyson models would bag you a good price, if you’re willing to sacrifice some of the newer features of the V10 models, such as longer battery life and larger capacity. But we found that a basic Dyson V7 Animal vacuum could cost you nearly as much as the premium Dyson V10 Animal.
We’ve been keeping tabs on the prices of Dyson cordless vacuum cleaners, as we’ve noticed they can rise in the months before Black Friday, creating the illusion of deals on the day. We did a similar thing in 2017, when we saw prices on Dyson models rise an unprecedented amount in the weeks before Black Friday. The same happened prior to the launch of the new Dyson V10 cordless vacuum in March 2018.
Based on our latest research, it seems that the same old tricks are at play.
What does Dyson say about the price fluctuations?
We queried the large price fluctuations on older cordless models with Dyson. It told us it has recently reviewed its range to offer a more ‘simple and transparent’ line-up. The brand says:
“Our own direct pricing has been adjusted to mirror this, and to avoid potentially confusing fluctuations our recommended retail pricing will remain consistent year-round but, as ever, pricing is at the discretion of the retailer.”
To help you avoid getting caught out, we reveal how to get the best price for a cordless Dyson below, including making sense of the different models available.
To see how Dyson vacuums stack up in our independent tests, and if there are other brands worth considering, head to our cordless vacuum reviews.
How to avoid overpaying for a cordless Dyson vacuum
Knowledge is power, and it’s easy to overpay if you get bamboozled by the range of models available, especially when prices change daily across different retailers.
In the table below, you can see the price fluctuations for different Dyson vacuums between February and November 2018, according to data from Pricerunner. Use this, along with our pricing advice below the table, to get a feel for whether the price quoted is a genuine deal.
|Model||Lowest price||Common price||Highest price|
|Dyson V10 Total Clean||£449||£499||£600|
|Dyson V10 Absolute||£449||£449||£500|
|Dyson V10 Animal||£385||£400||£478|
|Dyson V8 Total Clean||£319||£400||£549|
|Dyson V8 Absolute||£299||£350||£440|
|Dyson V8 Animal||£269||£329||£380|
|Dyson V7 Total Clean||£299||£319||£480|
|Dyson V7 Animal||£219||£279||£389|
|Dyson V7 Motorhead||£185||£249||£255|
|*The V6 range has officially been discontinued, but tends to make a comeback as a special deal for big sales events. It’s one of the cheapest options around, but bear in mind that for around £15-£50 more you could get better battery life and additional features from the V7.|
Buying a cordless Dyson in 2018? Stick to this golden rule
If you’re paying anything more than £350 for a V6, V7 or V8 model, consider trading up to the newest V10 vacuum, which has a longer battery life and larger dust capacity.
The price of this model has remained relatively stable since launch, so if you spot it for less than in the table above you’re on to a good thing.
Watch out for older models costing more than new ones
You’d expect the prices of older ranges to go down over time, but we’ve found that some models end up on sale for a price that exceeds their original launch price, even several years after they first launched. The highest price we’ve seen recently was £600 for the Dyson V10 Total Clean, which originally launched earlier this year for £500.
As well as prices changing over time, they can also vary more than you might think between retailers. In November 2017, we spotted the Dyson V8 Absolute on sale in Littlewoods for £580 (price at launch in 2016: £500). The same product was £388 at Go Electrical, saving you more than £190.
Be wary of ‘exclusive’ models
Last year we saw a couple of supposedly new models launch ahead of Black Friday, such as the V8 Absolute Pro and V7 Motorhead Pro.
Often the difference between these models and the standard version is as simple as a difference in colour. The V8 Absolute Pro, for example, had a black cleaning tube, instead of the original orange.
These models can sometimes be slightly cheaper, but check against the original model first to be sure.
Check the latest price data
Which? members can use the ‘compare prices’ tab on our cordless Dyson reviews. This tells you the price at all major retailers, as well as whether or not it’s a good time to buy, based on analysis of historical price data. Make sure you also check which models performed best in our tough cleaning tests.
Cordless vacuum cleaner reviews – discover the models worth buying
Choosing the best Dyson stick vacuum
One of the main differences between the V6, V7, V8 and V10 models is the battery life. As you go up the ranges, you get more cleaning time. You can see how long each one lasts, according to our battery life tests, in the table below.
|Dyson range||Run time on standard setting||Run time on highest setting|
|V6||20 minutes||6 minutes|
|V7||28 minutes||7 minutes|
|V8||33 minutes||8 minutes|
|V10||35 minutes||8 minutes|
|NB: Dyson’s quoted run times are longer, as they are often based on using the mini tools, which use less power. We test using the floor tool.|
The V10 Cyclone is Dyson’s most recent model. Key upgrades include a re-designed dust-emptying system that points directly into the bin, a larger dust capacity, and a small but handy rubber strip which allows you to lean the vacuum against a wall while cleaning.
On the V7, V8 and V10 ranges, you’ll also get Dyson’s ‘hygienic bin-emptying’ feature, which helps to push dirt and debris out of the dust container. The V6 range is the only one that doesn’t have this.
Animal, Absolute or Total Clean? Making sense of the different models
In each of the Dyson ranges (V7, V8 etc), there will typically be three or four variations to pick from. The difference in price between these models can be hundreds of pounds. The core machine is usually the same – what you’re paying for is additional floor tools and attachments.
For example, in the V10 range you’ll find the Dyson V10 Animal, Dyson V10 Absolute and the Dyson V10 Total Clean. The basic V10 Animal model comes with a combination floor tool for carpets and hard floors. You will also get a crevice tool, mini pet tool, and a 2-in-1 upholstery tool and dusting brush.
Here’s how the full Cyclone V10 range breaks down:
- V10 Animal Comes with mini motorised tool for sucking up pet hair from smaller areas such as stairs and furniture, and standard mini tools (crevice, dusting, upholstery).
- V10 Absolute As above, plus has a special ‘fluffy’ hard-floor tool, pictured above. It looks a bit like a paint roller and is claimed to be gentle on sensitive hard floors, as well as better at picking up larger crumbs.
- V10 Total Clean Similar to the V10 Absolute, but has additional accessories such as a mattress cleaning tool, up-top tool and flexible extension hose.
These differences are roughly mirrored within each of Dyson’s three ranges. Some retailers may offer extra packages with additional specialist accessories, or bargain versions with just the basics. On the V7 range, the Motorhead model is the entry-level one, and doesn’t have the mini pet tool.
So do you need those extra tools? Not always. We’ve found that some are more useful than others. To find out which combination is best to tackle dust and dirt around your home, check our Dyson cordless vacuum reviews.
Dyson vs other cordless vacuums
Cordless vacuum cleaners have become increasingly popular, and we’re seeing a rush of new brands and models coming on to the market, including some bargain options for less than £100.
However, our tests have uncovered a record number of Don’t Buy cordless vacuums over the past year or so. The worst model we’ve tested scored just 21% overall, gaining just one star out of five on six of seven floor-cleaning tests.
It’s not all bad news, though. We’ve found Best Buys from £190, so use our round-up of the best cordless vacuum cleaners to get a vacuum that will be easy to use and leave your home spotless.
*Price data correct as of 02 November 2018