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Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline review

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Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline
  • Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline
  • Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline
  • Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline
  • Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline
  • Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline
  • Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline
  • Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline
  • Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline
  • Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline
  • Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline

Summary

Our Score:

9

Pros

  • Powerful with 6 suction levels
  • Effective pet hair cleaning
  • AirTeq head great on hard floors
  • Quieter than rivals

Cons

  • Cable could be longer
  • Turbohead too large for stairs

Key Features

  • 1200Watt cylinder vacuum
  • 4.5L capacity dust bag
  • Turbobrush floorhead
  • Pet odour filter
  • Manufacturer: Miele
  • Review Price: £239.00

What is the Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog?

Miele pretty much invented the pet-specific vacuum cleaner and its Cat & Dog models have been cleaning up after pets for well over a decade. With the EU’s limit on vacuum cleaner power consumption now in force, the Complete C3 Cat & Dog Powerline comes in at a frugal 1200W, adding a rotating Turbobrush and new high-flow AirTeQ floorhead to lift pet hairs where previous models went for brute suction force.

Miele Active AirClean filter has been designed specifically to help absorb pet related odours, and there is a colour strip to let you know when the filter needs changing. The C3 Cat & Dog uses self-sealing HyClean bags, comes with a range of on-board accessories, electronic controls and a substantial 11m cleaning radius. With our Labrador, Poppy, fresh from a dip in the local duck pond compete with mud, moulting hairs and a piquant odour, we set about ‘animal testing’ the C3 Cat & Dog. It passed with flying colours.

Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog – Accessories

Miele’s marketing department got a bit carried away with long names for the C3 range, so let’s just refer to this model as the C3 Cat & Dog. Like the C3 Total Solution, this is a light, compact and solidly built cylinder cleaner with a 4.5-litre bag capacity. There are three tools on-board under the top cover, an upholstery nozzle, dusting brush and crevice tool, and two floorheads supplied. The first is the Turbobrush head, which while labelled Cat & Dog is identical to the Turbobrush supplied with the Total Solution model. The air-flow powered brush has variable speed thanks to a slide vent on top.

The Miele AirTeQ head is a direct result of new power regulations and has been designed to allow the fastest and most efficient flow of air to give the same suction power as an older 2000W vacuum with a more traditional head. It’s light and flexible, thanks to an all-way pivoting neck, and its drop-down hard floor brushes make it really effective on a range of surfaces.

The smaller on board tools simply push onto the tubes while the floorheads have a secure clip. The cable length is only average at 7.5m, but the soft flexible hose and quality-feeling telescopic metal tubes make up the difference to give an 11m cleaning range from your power point. The electronic up/down control offer variable power in six steps from minimum, ideal for cleaning curtains, right up to maximum power for hard floors.

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Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog – Carpet and Hard Floors

The AirTEQ floorhead is perfect for hard surfaces with its brushes lowered, the switch for which is conveniently fitted to both sides of the head. The brushes have only very small cut-outs for air flow to stop the head sticking through suction to the ground. Yet in use this head glides around on hard surfaces like it’s on wheels, drawing in dust, dirt and pet hairs with ease.

The AirTeQ head’s impressive suction shows on carpets. In fact, on short pile surfaces and the high power setting, the head limpets itself on to the carpet, requiring a very firm hand to move. We reduced the power to make life easier and there is a suction release vent on the handle, which has the same effect. While this does demonstrate this floorhead’s suction efficiency, the Turbohead is simply easier and more effective on carpet.

On full power the Turbohead brush spins very fast indeed to give the carpet plenty of agitation to loosen dirt. The sliding vent switch is useful if you need to reduce the suction pressure a little, perhaps on rugs that may move or pull up, but we preferred the higher suction with the vent closed.

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The brush is air-powered, so it does slow down when you hit deep pile carpets, but never enough to significantly reduce cleaning efficiency. The head moves around easily on most carpets and is not too noisy either, at 79dB. With the AirTeQ head this falls further to 77dB, and it can be quieter still if you reduce power below maximum.

We would probably use the Turbohead for carpets and the AirTeQ head for hard floors almost exclusively as these surfaces see each at their best. So on our carpet test, liberally covered with carpet freshener powder, the Turbohead did an exceptionally good job of picking up the dust and a few stray pet hairs in the regulation three passes. Its close to edge cleaning was also exceptional, with little or no powder showing against the skirting board.

Before and after

Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog – Stair Cleaning

With the C3 Powerline models weighing in at less than 5.5kg, the C3 Cat & Dog is easy to carry up and down stairs with its nice balance and chunky handle. It sits well on individual steps as long as care is taken not to knock it over by pulling the hose or cable. The good hose reach and telescopic tubes mean we could get to half a flight of domestic stairs from the top and the other half from the bottom, so covering the entire flight without needing to place the cleaner on steps.

The Turbobrush head was our chosen weapon of choice for our carpeted stars, although its size did stop it getting into tighter corners on bends in the stairs. For this we resorted to the lightweight upholstery tool, which while not as effective at grabbing pet hairs was great for getting into nooks and crannies.

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Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog – Pet Hair

On hard floors with drifting pet hairs, the AirTeQ head does a great job of pulling in the detritus. The smaller vents in the sides of the bristles do mean some hairs stick to the brush parts as you sweep, but the suction is strong enough to keep them there, and even draw them into the head if you ‘lift’ slightly.

Yet the main tool here is the Turbobrush head as this lifts pet-hairs off of carpets and upholstery with consummate ease. It cleaned our standard test patch with mixed Collie and Labrador hair in 12 seconds and did a great job on the sofa, rug and the dog’s beds. All the while the C3 Cat & Dogs emits a faintly perfumed odour, which is a whole lot better than ‘eau d’soggy Lab’.

This was most noticeable when we switched back to our workhorse Numatic Henry for these duties, which seem to amplify the smell over the heat of its motor.

Should I buy the Miele C3 Cat & Dog?

If you’ve had enough of stubborn pet hairs and doggy smells, the C3 Cat & Dog has to be near the top of your list. While other models with Turboheads do an equally good job of collecting furry debris, the way it quells pet odour is a useful extra. It’s also built to last, has well thought out features and superb hard floor cleaning with the AirTeQ head, while the 4.5-litre capacity is ample.

The best alternatives, assuming you want a cylinder vacuum cleaner, are the Dyson DC54 Animal and the Miele’s own C3 Total Solution Allergy PowerLine. The Dyson is even more efficient at cleaning pet hairs – it completed our pet hair test in just three seconds – and comes with the awesome tangle-free pet hair handheld tool, but then it costs a fair amount more. The C3 Total Solution cleans as well as the Cat & Dog, but substitutes the pet odour zapping in favour of improved dust filtration for allergy sufferers. Any of the three would serve you well, but the C3 Cat & Dog is the cheapest.

Verdict

A good value and very effective bagged cylinder vacuum on all surfaces

Overall Score

9

snaxo

August 12, 2014, 12:47 pm

I'm just in the process of choosing a new vaccuum cleaner right now. This was right at the top of the list but I have now found a lot of reviews and discussions saying that the charcoal filter is held in poorly by some plastic clips and it frequently 'pops out'. It seems the MIele customer service has been very poor with dealing with numerous customer complaints on this. How did Trusted Reviews find this part of the machine when reviewing - do the clips look weak ? In addition both the filter and dust bags seem expensive to replace - much more expensive than, for example. Sebo. Right now the Sebo D2 / D4 is top of my list for these reasons. Would be interested to see a D series review on TR.

andyvan

August 12, 2014, 1:47 pm

I've asked our testing man to get back to you if he can -- not sure if we still have the unit in the lab still or note.

On Sebo, we're talking to them at the moment about getting some of its units in to test.

snaxo

August 12, 2014, 2:27 pm

thanks - appreciated :)

Richard Stevenson

August 12, 2014, 3:00 pm

Just had another look at the review unit and the clips for the filter look OK and did not pop out during our test. Certainly not 'bullet proof' construction but I doubt they would break easily in average day to day use unless your are really heavy handed with the filter change-over. Both the filters and dust bag in this model are 'premium' high filtration items designed to output very little dust in the exhaust while maintaining a high mass air flow rate - which goes some way to explaining the premium price tags. As Andy noted, we are in talks with Sebo right now and hope to bring you a Sebo model review in the next few weeks.

snaxo

August 12, 2014, 3:54 pm

Thanks Richard. Just to be clear I'm not sure the clips 'break' but for whatever reason an alarming number of people seem to be reporting that the filter starts to lift-up off its plastic latches due to air pressure after little use - and a new filter then has to be purchased. Enough people reporting this that it raises concern over whether to purchase. Looking forward to the Sebo reviews :)

Prem Desai

August 12, 2014, 5:40 pm

I've had the previous cat and dog model of this after 3 expensive and relatively useless Dyson cleaners.

This is cheaper than a Dyson and better in every way. It cleans better - visibly.
It is so quiet - doesn't sound like a cheap quality toy made in the far-east which Dysons are.
It uses a bag that costs but this works out to less than £20 a year. The bag doesn't need emptying every time the machine is used.
Best of all, when you do finally need to empty, it's a clean and painless process. The bag seals up. No more taking it outside to empty it and make a cloud dust everywhere - this is where the Dysons make a mockery of their HEPA rating.

My only regret is not buying one earlier.

For an extra £50, you get a 10 year warranty for parts and labour.

No issues with Miele customer service on my part.

Don't let the cost put you off. This will be one of the cheapest cleaners you'll buy because you'll use it for best part of at least 10 years (remember the 10 year warranty for £50?) instead of junking it after a year or so ....

Keith

August 13, 2014, 3:41 pm

I'm like Prem Desai, after having a multitude of Dysons falling to bits on me, I ended up buying a Miele, and have to say I've never looked back.

You only have to watch Miele's own videos to see them dropping there cleaners down a flight of stairs, a company who promotes a product that gets man handled this way has to be confident in there production quality.

Even the part were the pole clips into the side for easy storage, when I first bought the cleaner I thought this going to brake soon, but it's still like new, after what must be 5+ years. I'm not sure what materials they build these things with, but there very strong.

With the Dysons the Tubes would crack and break after only about a years use, not so with the Miele. The soft feeling tube just seems to be indestructible.

It's a shame really, the buy British part of me would really like Dyson to be the better make, but sadly cheap quality parts just let it down badly. Maybe Dyson are already using better materials, but I'm not going to risk it now, anyway the Miele is going strong so no need. :)

Gareth Barber

August 22, 2014, 9:49 am

Better be quick the EU has banned any Vacuum with motors more powerful than 1600Watt from 1st September (you've got 2 weeks people).

Tom Hofmann

December 1, 2014, 12:33 am

I have a equal earlier model since 15 years . Now I must buy a new one very quick , because the fucking EU-idiots stop the manufacturing of powerfully vac-cleaner.
I use this vac-cleaner ( German direct translation is Dust-Sucker / Staub-Sauger ) for house, car and for my copy-machine and PC-service . I will confirm, Miele is pretty good .. ok lots of plastic .. but it works and hold well .

Jordan

February 19, 2015, 9:07 pm

This article inspired me to finally do it...

Google 'Miele pronunciation'.

Mad Cow

June 14, 2015, 11:51 pm

This model has just been released in Australia and I bought one a couple of weeks ago. I have no complaints so far about it's manufacture or performance, however I regret my decision to buy this vac simply because I should have gone with a bagless one. If you own more than about 2 small dogs or cats, think carefully before buying this vac! The first time I used it was just to vacuum a standard short pile floor rug and the carpet in the master bedroom only (also short pile) and after just that small amount of vacuuming, the bag is already three quarters full. At that rate we will go through a bag every time I vacuum the whole house! That is a lot of bags to go through and at $25/box it will add up quickly. We have 3 large dogs and 2 cats that are allowed inside and that is apparently more than this vac is suitable for.

Mad Cow

October 30, 2015, 2:22 am

Thank you LadiesLoveBuresDeke, I actually thought that was what people bought vacuums to do ... but you must be a very wise person to give such mature, necessary and helpful advice! Outstanding.

Chris

February 17, 2016, 4:06 pm

Ebay has multi packs of Miele vacuum bags for much cheaper than retail.

Kaius

February 29, 2016, 2:45 pm

It is unfortunate that the anti-EU lobby in the UK has such a loud voice and trusting fans. The more effective models already way before the directive were using efficient motor technologies. The suction effectiveness of a vacuum cleaner cannot be measured on the basis of the motor output measured in wattage. It is precisely for the protection of consumers such as you and the next gentleman here that the directive was created. Without it the manufacturers would have had little interest in investing in more energy-efficient motors as the less well-informed consumers would continue to buy their "100000 watts!" models that in reality only consume more energy than the next model using better motors at a mere "1000 watts".

Cheydeeshoo

March 15, 2016, 8:36 pm

We recently bough the C3 Cat & Dog. We have 2 large heavy shedding northern dogs and a concern was also how fast we would go through bags. We were told that the hair and debris compacts inside the bag and can hold much more than it appears. I was told that we should go through about 3-4 bags a year. We shall see.

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