After the hype, we sort of expected this thing to suck a golf ball through a garden hose, which I don’t think it’d necessarily do. (Not that I have much experience with that.) But in Dyson’s defense, the selling point of the Root 6 isn’t as much that it offers more suction than that it doesn’t stop sucking. (You know, like the Pinto your Dad bought back in the day.)
And in this arena, the Root 6 does shine — at least in the house. We tried it out on all sorts of average house and office tasks ranging from vacuuming dust and finger cheese out of keyboards to dusting between the rails on the staircase. The Dyson performed all these tasks quite well — at least as well as the average canister vac and with much less hassle. And, despite its somewhat small appearance, the Root 6 will pick up things like cat food and small bugs.
We particularly liked the ease of emptying the Root’s debris bin: Just hold it over the trash can and pull the little lever. Debris falls right out the bottom, you snap it shut, and you’re good to go.
We also enjoyed the selection of nozzles Dyson thoughtfully included, especially the brush attachment. It works great for dusting, but when you need to pick up some larger crap you just pull the brush back to expose the hard plastic end. This is way better than trudging back to the other side of the house to pick up the standard plastic nozzle.
Another interesting fact: Rather than grinding down to a halt when the battery runs down, the Dyson monitors voltage and shuts off when output drops below a fixed point. At this point the red light on the side flashes, indicating that you need to visit the charging station.
How does it work out in the shop? Well, that depends on what you’re going to do with it. Read on for our experiences.
In the Shop
Important Note: As you can see in the photo, Dyson doesn’t recommend using the Root 6 in the shop. Why’d we take a $140 vac into the shop? Two reasons: 1) We wondered if it might work there anyway, and 2) it’s a great test of what the vac’ll really do. Does Road & Track test a sedan only through grocery trips to Ralphs? Think of this as the “skid pad” section of the Root 6 test.
Read on to page 3 to see what happened when the Root 6 met the Toolmonger shop.