Dyson V10 cordless vacuum review – Animal, Total Clean, and Absolute

Dyson V10 Review & Tests (Hands-on Review & Results)

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A high-end Dyson cordless vacuum cleaner that ticks all the boxes, even with the high price tag.

Dyson V10 cordless vacuum review – Animal, Total Clean, and Absolute

The Dyson cordless range is probably one of the most popular in the world, and it’s quite easy to see why. These models are capable of replacing a corded machine, which is no easy feat in the world of cordless cleaning. 

You either find yourself with too little power or not enough time, and these are issues that Dyson has been working on improving ever since the launch of the V6 range. The good news is that they have been succeeding. 

It’s no secret that I am a big Dyson fan – I think they are innovative, advanced, and some of the best on the market. Any chance I get to test a vacuum cleaner is an exciting one, but especially with Dyson. 

I was looking forward to seeing how it coped with my home; especially all the pet hair that has a way of sticking to anything that isn’t wood. I can tell you now that I was really impressed with the feel and overall operation. 

Of course, I still haven’t found a perfect vacuum cleaner so why not take a moment to read what I loved and what I wasn’t too interested in.

About the Dyson V10

We purchased the Dyson V10 Absolute for this review. This model comes with both the Direct Drive motorised head and the soft (fluffy) head, which is designed for hard floor use. It cost £449 for this model. You can purchase the Dyson V10 Animal for £399, or the Total Clean for £479. Below, I will discuss the main differences between the three models.

*prices quoted are at the time of this review and may now be lower or even higher in price.

Quick View of the Dyson V10 Specifications

ModelV10 Absolute,
Total Clean, Animal
Detachable HandheldYes
Length125 cm
Width24 cm
Weight2.65 kg
Floor TypeMulti-Surface
Pet OwnersYes
Dust Bin Capacity0.76 L
CordlessYes
BaglessYes
ReturnsFree 35 Days via Dyson.co.uk
Warranty1-Year limited

Dyson V10 – Absolute Vs. Animal Vs. Total Clean – Key Differences Explained

So, what’s the difference between the V10 Absolute, Animal, and Total Clean? In short, there are some pretty tiny things, but there are also larger changes that could impact your choice. Below, you’ll find a quick rundown of the things that separate them. 

Firstly, all three feature the Direct Drive head, which is great and cleaning carpets and good on hard floors. However, the Absolute and Total Clean also have the soft Fluffy floorhead included. This is really gentle on hard floors, collecting fine dust and giving them a thorough clean without the risk of scratching. Tiles, laminate, vinyl; no matter what you have the fluffy is great at handling it. 

Secondly, the attachments do differ between the three models. The V10 Animal has the least accessories, which does feel a little odd since it’s made to deal with all the fluff and hair in your home. However, this also makes it the cheapest option. The Total Clean has the most tools, two more than the Absolute.

The extra accessories come in the form of the mattress tool – which is actually amazing and getting all the grime and fuzz off your mattress – and the quick-release top adaptor. This final tool allows for more flexibility when cleaning the home, and helps you reach tricky places. The only tool the Animal is missing is the Fluffy head we mentioned before. 

Finally, the colour of the wand is different for each model. Now, this isn’t necessarily important, but it will help you tell the difference between each one when you are looking through them. The V10 Animal is nickel/purple (as usual), the Total Clean is nickel/red, and the absolute is nickel/copper.

Features & Benefits

Battery Life and Charge Period

The V10 has a great battery life, and it was the start of a revolution for Dyson. Past models within the V series didn’t have enough charge to deal with an entire home, and it was a pretty major complaint. The V10 was the change we wanted to see, with a battery that lasts for approximately one hour on its lowest setting.

Even the boost setting can keep going past 10 minutes; impressive for a cordless machine. Overall, you get loads of time to clean your entire home, and even larger ones are unlikely to need a quick recharge in the middle.

How we test on Run-Time

In order to get some precise results, we whipped out the stopwatch and got ready for action. Holding the trigger down continuously, we allowed it to run from full charge down to empty on each of the three settings. 

The results we got are while using the Direct Drive head, which is motorised. Generally speaking, you get slightly longer battery life when you are using the non-motorised attachments (like the crevice tool or dusting brush).

Model (Mode)Runtime (Mins)
V10 (Eco)40
V10 (Medium)20 Mins
V10 (High/Boost)7 Mins

The charge time is much better than the V8, which shocked us all with its five hour charging time. Despite having a bigger battery, Dyson has managed to bring the charge time down to the 3.5 hours we all remember from the V6 and V7 ranges. This will bring it back to 100% and ready to speed through your home. 

There was some disappointment when it was revealed that the battery can’t be switched out like in previous V series models. However, that’s because the V10 has something a little new and exciting. It contains something called a smart battery, and this means you can leave it on charge constantly without needing to worry about potential damage as a result of over-charging. 

What’s more, is the fact that Dyson claims this battery will last 15 years. Now, the V10 hasn’t been out quite that long, but it seems to be a solid claim so far as batteries are remaining strong a couple of years after release. A lot of this is thanks to the fact that Dyson has acquired a number of battery companies; allowing them to advance their tech quite quickly.

Cleaning Power

This is the part we all care about most. I mean, a vacuum cleaner is nothing if it can’t actually clean your home efficiently. With cordless vacuum cleaners, there is usually an element of disappointment because the suction is just a little less than a corded model. Well, you haven’t been formally introduced to the V10 Absolute.

What makes the V10 such an impressive cordless machine? Well, for starters, the suction has a good 30% increase when compared to others in the V series. This really puts it at the top when compared to cordless vacs as a whole, and it’s something we don’t currently see a lot of in the marketplace. 

It gives the traditional corded vacuum cleaner a run for its money, with carpet and hard floor cleaning that does an excellent job. When using the V10, it’s no longer surprising that Dyson made the decision to drop corded vacuum production. Cordless is the future, and it’s starting with the V10 range.

Read Here : Dyson V10 vs V11 – Side by Side Comparison

How we test on Airflow

To measure the airflow of the V10, we performed our own set of tests. We used the vacuum cleaner with both the wand and floorhead attached as this is the most common setup. The figures in the table below are measured in CFM (Cubic Feet Per Minute), which is better known as Airflow.

Air Flow ( Low Setting)15 CFM
Air Flow (Auto/Medium Setting)21 CFM
Air Flow ( High/Boost Setting)33 CFM

As with all Dyson vacuum cleaners, the V10 models contain cyclonic technology that helps to keep the machine running smoothly. This is especially useful for dirt and debris, as it is directed straight to the bin instead of allowing it to be sprayed within the machine.

This tech also creates fade-free suction, which is becoming more prevalent in vacuum cleaners. What this means is that as the dust canister fills with debris, you will not notice a lack of suction at any point. Therefore, you get the most out of every session.

Then, you have the Direct Drive head – which is featured across all three of the models within the V10 range. It contains two rows of bristles (hard and soft) that work well on both carpets and hard floors. This bar is also easy to clean, as all you need is a coin to open the side, cut the hair and debris off, and then slide it back in and resecure it with the coin.

It is a motorised head, which means it does take a little more power to run, but it’s also very effective. It causes minimal snowploughing while picking up large debris, and it is easy to use and control.

You also have the Fluffy head for hard floors, but the V10 Animal doesn’t have the benefit of coming with this. However, those with the V10 Absolute and Total Clean are going to love this for their hard floors; just scroll onto our hard floor cleaning section.

Dyson v10 combination tool

So, how does the Dyson V10 cope around the home? Let’s take a look:

Carpets. This is the first cordless Dyson (one of the first cordless vacuums as a whole, even) that is truly capable of deep cleaning carpets, and it does an excellent job. You can really see the difference at the end, and the main floorhead really does excel with carpets.

The brush bar that comes with the Direct Drive works its way deep into the carpets, and you can feel the suction power working. Embedded dirt, grime, and hair is no match for the power provided by this little vacuum cleaner.

The important thing is that while you can feel the suction provided by the floorhead, it is never so much that using it becomes difficult. It has achieved an excellent balance that allows it to retain brilliant flexibility and ease of use.

How we test on Low-Pile Carpet

We took exactly 100g of household debris (dirt, fluff, flaxseed, loose black tea, cheerios all that fun stuff) so that we could get a good and diverse representation of the kind of grime you find in the home. We took our little mixture and spread it over a 1.5m long strip of carpet and then performed a 10-second pass over the debris.

Once we were done, we weighed the contents of the bin to see how much was collected. In the table below, you will find the percentages.

Low Setting95%
Auto Setting98.5%
Boost Setting99.5%

Hard Floors. The Fluffy floorhead was designed specifically to deal with hard floors, and to be wonderfully gentle as it rolls over them. This means that if you own painfully delicate hard floors that are prone to scratching and damage, the Fluffy is here to take those worries away. This is especially true for those with vinyl or laminate flooring (we all know how difficult they can be).

The other thing that makes the Fluffy head stand out is how good it is at picking up fine dust from your floors. This is perfect for those who suffer from allergies or asthma because it does a more thorough job. It’s great with large debris as well, although we did notice that it sprayed some of the chunkier pieces as we went to pick them up.

The V10 Animal is the only model that doesn’t come with a Fluffy floorhead. Instead, it has the Direct Drive for both hard floors and carpets. It does a good job on hard floors and is great at collecting debris, but it can struggle with fine dust and powders because it doesn’t quite have the same touch as the Fluffy. 

One thing about the Direct Drive head, however, is the fact that it performs amazingly on crevices. It can reach right down and pull grime up, something that is hard to find in a corded model – let alone a cordless one.

How we test on Hardwood Floor 

We took exactly 100g of household debris (dirt, fluff, flaxseed, loose black tea, cheerios all that fun stuff) so that we could get a good and diverse representation of the kind of grime you find in the home. We took our little mixture and spread it over a 1.5m long strip of carpet and then performed a 10-second pass over the debris.

Low Setting100%
Auto Setting100%
Boost Setting100%

Stairs. Say hello to spotless stairs when you use the mini motorised tool on your carpets. The V10 series is fantastic on stairs, and you can even use it for cleaning your furniture and the interior of your car.
It’s as simple as removing the wand and attaching the tool to the main body of the machine. The mini motorised tool does a really thorough job, and you can feel it working hard to ensure that your stairs look great. After all, they get run up and down multiple times a day, and this can leave them a little worse for wear.

Pets. Of course, the V10 Animal was designed for pet hair, especially those that shed a lot. It tends to benefit from improved suction and cleaning power because of the extra effort it needs to put into cleaning, and so it’s only natural that the V10 Animal comes out on top in this area.

The Direct Drive floorhead really works out that extra hair and fluff, and you’ll be surprised by how much it is able to collect. Even floors that appear spotless are full of hidden hair (as well as the dirt that they bring in from the outside world). You also have the mini motorised tool to cope with pet bedding, blankets, and any other areas that need some extra attention to get clean.

How we test on Pet Hair

The first thing we did was comb actual dog hair along a five-foot section of low-medium pile carpet. Then, we went over it with the Direct Drive in boost mode for 20 seconds.

It did a great job picking up all the hair and fluff from the floor, and there was nothing visible left on the surface. To check things over, we also ran a window blade through the carpet to remove any hidden hair that might have been left behind.

Pet Hair Pickup (Eco/Low)89%
Pet Hair Pickup (Auto/Medium)98%
Pet Hair Pickup (Boost/High)99%

This test revealed that in both the auto and boost settings, the vast majority of pet hair was picked up. It should also be noted that we put a lot of hair into the carpet, which makes these results more impressive. The results in eco mode weren’t brilliant, but using this setting on carpets isn’t necessary as it lacks the power to deep clean.

Filtration

Most Dyson vacuum cleaners have a HEPA filter; excluding the V7 which was mysteriously left out of this trend. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the HEPA filtration system has returned with the V10 range. Able to collect debris and dust as small as 0.03 microns, it’s an impressive filter. However, there is a little more to it.

The V10 series features a sealed system, which doesn’t always come with a HEPA filter from other vacuum cleaner brands. What this means is that none of the air will escape while you are cleaning, ensuring that dust and allergens get directed straight to the filter without the risk of them being pushed back out. This keeps the air clear, and also makes it safer for those with asthma and allergies to breathe in.

How we Test on Filtration

When we tested this using a particle test meter, whereby we test the air environment before the test and then after we have sucked up dust for 15 seconds (special international approved dust from DMT) we found no increase in the air environment. behind.

Air Particle Test ( Our rating %) 99.5%

This is fantastic for those with allergies and asthma as they don’t need to worry about how much dust is being thrown back into their home.

Noise levels

Generally speaking, the Dyson V10 Absolute is quite quiet when compared to the rest of the V series – especially the V8. However, it’s not quite perfect. On boost mode, it reaches 73db in volume; a nice amount lower than the EU limit of 80db. This is actually rather quiet for a cordless vacuum cleaner on its most powerful setting, and is quieter than both the V6 and V7.

On the eco and automatic settings, you will find that the decibel level hovers in the low 60s, creating a much more pleasant atmosphere for cleaning. This is quieter than most previous Dyson models, and shouldn’t wake the house up if you want to clean in the early morning.

How we do Noise Test

After getting our decibel meter out, we set it down three feet from the vacuum cleaner with both the wand and main floorhead attached. Looking at the table below, you can see that the volume is superbly low.

Low Setting63.2 Db
Auto Setting71.4 Db
Boost Setting72.5 Db

Tech Features

There aren’t many tech features on the V10, but the ones it does have are exceptionally handy. The first of these is the LED battery light that can be found on the handle. Unlike some of the past models within the V series, this has three lights that will show you how charged the battery is, and roughly how much you have left.

So, as you use the vacuum cleaner the lights will slowly switch off as the battery depletes. That way, you know when it needs to be charged again. Similarly, while the battery is juicing up again, the indicator will light up and show you roughly how much is left to go as a result. It’s good to have, and certainly a lot clearer than the single light system found in previous models.

There is also an additional light that will let you know when the filter needs to be washed, and also when there is a blockage in the machine. This helps the vacuum cleaner to keep running efficiently, and also means that you can stay on top of the maintenance

Design

The V10 series is quite different from previous models, and it’s also a good deal chunkier. The V6, V7, and V8 were all quite dainty models in a way; very compact and easy to handle. Their small size made them easy to handle and quick to manoeuver, but while the V10 is certainly bulkier, that doesn’t mean it’s lacking in terms of flexibility.

The main body of the machine is larger, and a little heavier than the previous V series models, but this doesn’t restrict its handling capabilities. It’s still very easy to use, and the extra weight is not particularly noticeable. 

This is because Dyson have been careful to ensure that the main body remains quite balanced with the added weight of the battery. It might cause your wrist to become tired faster in the beginning, but this is something you’ll get used to pretty quickly.

How we do Weight Test

We performed our own set of tests to check out the weight, including weighing the handheld section on its own. We also weighed it with the wand and floorhead (full unit). This is to give you balanced results, as you are likely to use both the full and handheld unit in different parts of the home.

Weight ( Full Unit with Floorhead)2.65 Kg
Weight (Hand Unit Only)1.7 Kg

The good news is that the wand is still nice and light, just like the rest of the V series. There were some rumours that the wand would be heavier due to the new design, but these were proven false. Made from lightweight aluminium, it’s nice to handle and doesn’t feel cheap like the plastic often found on other cordless machines. 

Of course, the V10 is not completely free from plastic. The majority of the machine is made from it, but it is a thicker and more durable form. The higher quality offers reassurance as to its reliability, and it remains exceptionally sturdy even when dropped (I am a clumsy cleaner). 

Despite the change in design, it still keeps the Dyson look we all know and love from their cordless machines. Plus, it can be used as both a handheld and standard vacuum cleaner. In handheld mode, the balance remains excellent as it is still easy to use and allows for smooth movement in order for you to clean stairs, upholstery, and reach the hidden corners of your car. 

In standard mode, the floorhead has a really handy joint that allows it to swivel from side to side with little effort from you. This makes it easy to reach under furniture as well as get right up along the skirting boards. It’s also gentle on your wrists thanks to the minimal movement. 

It’s a nice size as well, and isn’t that much bigger than previous models in the V series. Coming in at 125cm, it’s not much taller than the V8 at all. This means you won’t need to worry about storage too much, or the added height making cleaning more difficult for you.

Read Here : Dyson V8 vs V10 Comparison 

Accessories

#1 Direct Drive Cleaning Head

This is the main floorhead for the V10 series, and it comes with all three models. Designed with two rows of bristles (hard and soft), it makes quick work of deep grime and dirt in carpets while also doing a good job on hard floors. With exceptional cleaning results in a number of different situations, it is one of the best floorheads Dyson has (and you can read more about it earlier on).

#2 Fluffy Cleaning Head

Made for hard floors, the Fluffy head has a gentle touch that even the most delicate surfaces will be able to withstand. It’s fantastic at collecting all forms of debris and grime, especially fine dust. Even large debris can’t escape, and it does a good job as not snow ploughing all the grime. Sadly, the V10 Animal does not come with this floorhead, but the Direct Drive is still goon on hard floors.

#3 Mini Motorised Tool

This is one of the most useful accessories, and the one that we use all the time. It works like a tiny floorhead, which makes it really effective on carpeted stairs, pet beds, and furniture. The bristles zoom around collecting hair and grime – leaving the space you just vacuumed looking cleaner than ever. It’s great with pet hair, doesn’t get clogged easily, and can be attached directly to the handheld unit for precise cleaning in small spaces.

#4 Combination Tool

A classic Dyson addition, the combination tool sports a soft dusting brush over a wide nozzle. This allows for a delicate touch on areas that need it (like bannisters and counters) while also ensuring that you get maximum suction and debris collection. I quite like using it on my kitchen floor, as the brush does a good job of removing debris while also providing a soft touch.

#5 Stubborn Dirt Brush

I really like this brush because it is a firmer version of the dusting brush you get with the combination tool. It works out stubborn dirt that’s stuck in the carpet, while also remaining gentle enough that damage won’t be caused. Initially, I didn’t think I would get much out of this brush but I’ve used it a lot more than I thought; especially with the dogs after muddy walks.

#6 Crevice Tool

Another traditional addition, no vacuum cleaner is complete without a crevice tool to help you get the most out of cleaning. With a long and narrow design, its slim build allows you to reach right into hidden corners and those annoying gaps between car seats. No cobweb is safe with this attached, and the extra reach makes above-floor cleaning even easier.

#7 Quick-Release Up-Top Adaptor

This comes exclusively with the V10 Total Clean, and it can be pretty useful to have when you want more cleaning flexibility. The adaptor’s angle can be changed with a quick flick of your wrist, and the attachment that is fitted to it will be able to reach difficult areas with a lot more ease. It just makes life a little easier, and also reduces the number of places you can’t get to.

#8 Mattress Tool

Another one that only comes with the V10 Total Clean, this is quite handy for those who are allergic to dust mites. It gently scrapes over the surface of the mattress, effectively removing dust, grime, and mites from the material. It can also be used on upholstery. While only a small extra, it is one that I feel is worth having (even if you buy it separately).

#9 Docking Station

This is great for vacuum cleaner storage, as you can keep it out of the way by hanging it up on the wall to charge. Even if you are in a rental property, there are ways to secure it without needing to damage the walls (we have a whole guide on it). There is even room for a few tools to hang up with it, ensuring that all of your favourites are close together at all times. While wall mounting is not the only way to charge and store the Dyson V10, it is one of the best methods.

Ease of Use and Setup

Building the Vacuum

Putting the Dyson V10 Absolute together is a piece of cake, and certainly one of the most simple vacuum cleaner constructions out there. All you need to do is click the wand into the main body, and then attach the floorhead of the base of the wand.

Similarly, you can also attach an accessory either directly to the floorhead or the end of the wand, depending on what you are cleaning. If you do get stuck, there is no need to worry as it comes with a quick visual guide to help you out.

Emptying the bin

Emptying the V10 is very different from previous models in the V series. While there were initial complaints that you need to remove the wand in order to empty the bin, this method actually works out a lot cleaner and smoother. It’s also a lot less frustrating; I know the old emptying methods used to drive me a little mad at times.

Once you have removed the wand, point the bin over the bin and push the red lever down in a shotgun motion. This opens the bin, and the debris is pushed out – eve cleaning the shroud as you go. Everything is removed very smoothly, and there is absolutely no mess. The lever can feel a little stiff, but as long as you are gentle you shouldn’t damage it in any way.

Maintenance

The maintenance required for the V10 is actually minimal, and it won’t take much of your time. The dust canister doesn’t need much love because of the new emptying method, but it is worth giving it a quick wipe-down once a week to ensure things keep running smoothly.

The filter is also really easy to clean, and you have the benefit of the filter light on the handle to let you know when it really needs attention. The filter is on the back of the main body, and you can pop it open quite easily. You can then remove it for washing.

When you do wash it, make sure it is under cool running water and that you are gentle with it. Once this is done, leave it on the side to dry out completely before you put it back in the vacuum.

Dyson says you should wash it monthly, but this is down to your own judgement as you can check to see how dirty it is regularly. They will last quite a few years as well, but if you do need to replace it then they cost around £50 from Dyson.

Warranty

The Dyson V10 range comes with a 1-year warranty that starts from the date of purchase. This covers all of the basics, like mechanical faults and defects. It should be noted that you also get a money-back guarantee that lasts for 35 days from the date of purchase.

It’s a good offer to have because if you aren’t happy with your machine you still have the choice to send it back for a full refund.

Read Here : Dyson V7 vs D10 Comparison 

Should I Buy The Dyson V10?

This is the big question, should you go out and buy the Dyson V10? I’ll start off by saying that if you have the cash to do it, then absolutely go out there and pick one up. It’s the kind of cordless vacuum cleaner that is revolutionising the market in all the right ways.

Personally, I think the Absolute is the best choice out of the three, but if extra tools are your thing then the Total Clean might be your best bet. ( You get the mattress tool)

Of course, the V10 Animal is the better option if you have a home with pets and it does perform better on the pet hair tasks. However, it doesn’t come with the Fluffy head for hard floors like the other two models, and this can be a deciding factor.

If the V10 is still a little on the pricey side for you (and I totally get that), the V8 series still does a great job around the home. It’s good if your house is smaller as well because the runtime isn’t as long, and if you are in a small space you may not need such a long run-time..

The good news is that you can often find great offers on all of these Dyson models, and we usually have some great ones that you can check out. Keep your eyes peeled!

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