Dyson Ball Animal
Upright Vacuum Cleaner Review

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The Dyson Ball Animal Compact Upright vacuum is a great option for people looking for the power and maneuverability of a Dyson, but at a lower footprint and price tag. The DC50 has a .22 gallon dust cup, 128 AW suction power, and a telescoping overall height for easy storage when not in use. It also offers a smaller ball than other full size Dyson uprights.

Continue reading below to discover if the Dyson Ball Animal is the best upright vacuum for you.

Dyson Ball Animal Upright Vacuum Cleaner

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Pros

  • Great floor maneuverability
  • Compact design
  • Cleans up pet hair nicely

Cons

  • Smaller ball means less suction
  • Limited wand maneuverability

Bottom Line

  • This vacuum has great maneuverability and is a nice option for daily cleaning of moderate to small messes.
  • The Compact Animal offers the quality and power you’d expect from Dyson, but with a small size and price.

Score

%

  • Cleaning Tests 77%
  • Usability 100%
  • Value 96%
  • Maintenance 100%
  • Maneuverability 76%

Design

The design of the Dyson Ball Compact Animal Upright is very sleek and modern. This vacuum features the iconic Dyson ball base with a roller brush vacuum head. The upright shaft extends to 43”, but can also compact down to just over 30” which allows this upright vacuum to be stored in a small closet or the lower portion of a large cabinet.

Annotated breakdown of the Dyson Ball Animal Compact Upright vacuum components

Annotated breakdown of the Dyson Ball Animal Compact Upright vacuum components

How it Cleans

The roller ball and cyclonic technology are two elements of this vacuum that are proprietary to Dyson and are critical to the way that this vacuum cleans.

Close up shot of the cyclone technology's outer shell on the Dyson Ball Animal vacuum

Close up shot of the cyclone technology’s outer shell on the Dyson Ball Animal vacuum

The roller ball design is the piece that attaches the upright part of the vacuum to the floor roller brush head. The ball increases maneuverability and allows this vacuum to make tight turns and get into difficult spaces.

The cyclonic technology used in this vacuum works like a centrifuge, in that it spins the dirt, dust and debris through its double-cone design forcing all of the particles to the outside of the cone and into the dust cup. This allows the Dyson vacuum to only use a small filter. Instead of having to replace it with new parts, you only need to rinse the filter with water once a month and lay it out to dry for 24 hours.

Image showing the interior portion of the ball on the Dyson Ball Animal Compact Upright vacuum

Image showing the interior portion of the ball on the Dyson Ball Animal Compact Upright vacuum

Size & Dimensions

The Dyson Ball Compact Animal Upright vacuum is comparable to the Dyson Small Ball Compact in terms of size and weight. Weighing only 11.9 pounds, it’s a hair lighter than the Small Ball vacuum which comes in at about 12.15 pounds.

At it’s full extended height, this vacuum is 43” tall and has an extendable reach up to 28.5 feet, when using the extension wand and cord. Collapsed, the Animal Compact sits at about 30” high.

Dyson Ball Animal Compact Upright dimensions - 43" tall at max height, 30" tall at minimum height, and 12" deep

Dyson Ball Animal Compact Upright dimensions – 43″ tall at max height, 30″ tall at minimum height, and 12″ deep

Compared to a traditional upright, the smaller size of the Compact Animal Upright makes it easier to maneuver and lighter to carry and store.

Dyson Ball Animal height differences - when fully compacted, the Dyson is 29% smaller

Dyson Ball Animal height differences – when fully compacted, the Dyson is 29% smaller

Accessories & Parts

The Dyson Ball Compact Animal upright vacuum includes the following accessories and parts:

  • Flat Surface Tool (not included from all distributors)
  • Upholstery Turbine Tool
Close up shot of the flat surface tool and upholstery turbine tool included with the Dyson Ball Animal vacuum

Close up shot of the flat surface tool and upholstery turbine tool included with the Dyson Ball Animal vacuum

While these tools do not have a way of attaching on-board, the simplicity does mean a sleeker profile and lighter weight.

The unit also comes with one lifetime filter that is washable and does not need replacing unless it is punctured, lost or somehow damaged in another way.

Cleaning Tests

The following vacuum cleaning tests are designed to show how the Dyson Ball Compact Animal Upright vacuum performs on a variety of surfaces picking up a variety of debris. For these tests we look at hard floors, low carpets, and high carpets. For each floor surface type we test the vacuum cleaner against rice, dry cereal, kitty litter, and sugar.

Hardwood Floor

Each of the following substances was spread out across a hardwood testing area. After spreading, we proceeded to complete the vacuum test. This test consisted of forward and backward passes through the various debris of debris.

To measure the amount of debris picked up by the vacuum, we first measure dust bin before running the vacuum. Next, we vacuum up the mess and take a new measurement of the dust bin, which in turn gives us the total amount (in ounces) of debris picked up by the vacuum.

Bear in mind, some of the debris may have been picked up but did not make it all the way into the dust bin. For example, there may be pieces of debris stuck in the brushes or hoses leading to the dust bin.

  • Hardwood – Rice 95%
  • Hardwood – Cereal 0%
  • Hardwood – Kitty Litter 95%
  • Hardwood – Sugar 92%

Dyson Ball Animal Compact hardwood floor cleaning tests

Low Carpet

The low carpet test is virtually identical to the hardwood floor test, except the debris is spread out across low pile carpet. Measurements are recorded in the same way and the same number of passes are made through the debris fields.

  • Low Carpet – Rice 96%
  • Low Carpet – Cereal 8%
  • Low Carpet – Kitty Litter 89%
  • Low Carpet – Sugar 74%

Dyson Ball Animal Compact low pile carpet cleaning tests

High Carpet

The high carpet test is virtually identical to the hardwood floor and low carpet test, except the debris is spread out across high pile carpet. Measurements are recorded in the same way and the same number of passes are made through the debris fields.

  • High Carpet – Rice 40%
  • High Carpet – Cereal 4%
  • High Carpet – Kitty Litter 26%
  • High Carpet – Sugar 17%

Dyson Ball Animal Compact high pile carpet cleaning tests

Usability

The solid red button is used to compress the vacuum down from full height to storing height. As a side note, there is no way to lock the vacuum in this lower height so you can’t really carry it by the handle once it has been compressed.

The larger red, more transparent, button is used to turn the vacuum on and off. The silver button is used to turn the roller brush on and off. The roller brush heads are designed with the technology that automatically adapts to different floor heights without having to manually adjust the vacuum settings.

Ultra close up shot of the power power button and surface selection button used on the Dyson Ball Animal Compact Upright vacuum

Ultra close up shot of the power power button and surface selection button used on the Dyson Ball Animal Compact Upright vacuum

To release the dust cup, press the red button directly in front of the setup buttons. This unlocks it from the body of the vacuum. Walk over to a trash bin and press the button again, which will open the cover and release the dust down into the can below. When full, the dust cup can store up to .22 gallons of dirt, dust and other debris.

Setting up this vacuum is relatively simple. The unit comes with the filter already installed and a clean dust bin ready for vacuuming. Simply remove the vacuum from its packaging, plug it in, and you’re good to go.

Maneuverability

The roller ball at the base of the Dyson Ball Compact Animal allows this vacuum to make tight turns and shimmy into tight corners. Compared to other full size Dyson’s, the DC50 has a ball about ⅔ of the size which made it a little easier to make those tight turns and slide under some chairs and furniture.

Weight

11.9 pounds

Power

25′ cord

Hose

48″ max length

Turning

8″ turning radius

Height

dyson animal compact cleaning deck

3.5″ cleaning deck

Y Pivot

dyson animal compact reach

165° back pivot

X Pivot

dyson animal compact side pivot

30° side pivot

Width

dyson animal compact cleaning path

9.5″ cleaning path

As an upright vacuum, the maneuverability was excellent. Where this vacuum struggles a bit is when using the wand for cleaning tight areas or upholstery. The flexible suction hose is attached to a longer rigid wand that makes it easier to access high or hard to reach places. You can spot clean particular areas without ever bending down.

By the same token, the long rigid wand can also be a burden when you don’t have a lot of space to work with, like getting into couch crevices. Furniture or seating between 18-48″ is a little awkward because the long wand demands that you use the tool from a distance, which feels a little unnatural.

The maneuverability of the Dyson’s Ball Animal Compact Upright vacuum is great for high and hard to reach spaces, but a little awkward for medium height surface or seating.

Maintenance

The following table indicates the frequency at which you will likely want to replace the various maintenance components of the vacuum. The following replacement frequencies are what the manufacturer recommends. However, your individual experiences may vary.

Accessory / PartReplacement FrequencyReplacement Cost
Spinning BrushAs needed$26 / per
HEPA FilterLifetime$20 / per
HoseAs needed$24 / per
It sounds obvious, but emptying the dust cup is the first way to keep your vacuum running smoothly. The dust cup provided can hold 0.22 gallons of dust, dirt and debris.

 

After emptying the dust cup, it’s also important to check the filter. The latch for the filter check is located at the front the unit. This vacuum is unique in that it comes with a “lifetime filter” that never needs to be replaced. To clean this piece, Dyson simply recommends rinsing it out with water and allowing it to air dry for 24 hours before using it.

Dyson's Ball Animal Compact Upright vacuum includes a lifetime washable filter

Dyson’s Ball Animal Compact Upright vacuum includes a lifetime washable filter

Lastly, proper maintenance of the spinning brush head will help keep your compact vacuum in good order. Regularly checking the roller brush for long hairs (pet or human), strings or other debris is the best way to properly maintain this brush.

Noise

All vacuum cleaner reviews on Modern Castle are put through our standard noise test. For this test, we use a sound meter to measure noise in terms of decibel level 3′ away from the vacuum.

Dyson Animal Compact- Decibel Test Scale

Dyson Animal Compact- Decibel Test Scale

Value

The Dyson Ball Animal vacuum offers a good value to most consumers. The price point is reasonable at $350, allowing consumers to spend a little less than Dyson’s higher end models all while still receiving an extremely nice vacuum.

Included with the purchase of the Ball Animal upright is a 2-year warranty and 30-day return policy. Dyson states the following about this vacuum’s warranty:

This warranty provides, at no extra cost to you, all labor and parts necessary to ensure your machine is in proper operating condition during the warranty period.

Additionally, the 30-day return policy begins as soon as the product is received. That said, the return shipping and restocking fees are the consumers responsibility.

Specifications

Below is a complete list of important specifications and features included on the Dyson Ball Animal upright vacuum:

Specifications 
TypeCompact upright vacuum
ManufacturerDyson
ModelBall Animal upright
Height (inches)43
Width (inches)10
Weight (pounds)11.6
Floor TypeAll (indoor)
CordlessNo - 25 foot cord
BaglessYes
Corner CleaningYes - crevice tool
Edge CleaningYes - regular brush head
Returns30 days via Amazon. Varies by retailer
Warranty2 years

Who Should Buy the Dyson Ball Animal upright vacuum?

People looking for the bells and whistles of a Dyson, but wanting a lower price tag or footprint, may really like from the Dyson Ball Compact Animal Upright. This vacuum cleaner is extremely powerful considering it’s size and offers the quality and technology that Dyson is known for.

Larger homes or homes with large family may benefit from a full-size upright which offers double the suction, and could mean less time vacuuming for you.

I would recommend the Dyson Ball Animal Compact upright if you’re looking for the following features in an upright vacuum:

  • Compact: Compared to other uprights, the Compact Animal is very small and the telescoping upright wand is an unique feature to this model. This allows the whole unit to transform from a 43” high upright vacuum to a 30” high compact vacuum when stored.
  • Maneuverable: The smaller Dyson ball in this vacuum allows for tighter corners, harder to reach places, and even a bit of cleaning under sofas and furniture, without having to tack on a bundle of accessories.
  • Easy to Maintain: Empty the dust cup, rinse out the filter, and check the roller brush for hair/debris. The Dyson Animal  Compact is easy to maintain and doesn’t require frequent trips to the store for replacement parts.

For more information on the Dyson Ball Animal Compact Upright vacuum, see Amazon.com.

Quality product for the price
  • 77%
    Cleaning - 77%
  • 100%
    Usability - 100%
  • 96%
    Value - 96%
  • 100%
    Maintenance - 100%
  • 77%
    Maneuverability - 77%
  • 100%
    Company - 100%
  • 85%
    Returns - 85%
  • 96%
    Warranty - 96%
89%

Summary

The Dyson Ball Animal Compact upright vacuum is a versatile unit good for pet owners and the every day user who is looking for a compact vacuum. Although this is not Dyson’s top of the line vacuum, it has more than enough power to meet the needs of most consumers. If you’re in the market for a new vacuum, the Dyson Ball Animal Compact upright is a well-rounded product that should not be overlooked.

Derek Hales

Derek Hales

Editor-in-Chief

Derek Hales is the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of ModernCastle.com. He is a passionate perfectionist when it comes to testing and reviewing products for the home. When he is not testing new products, Derek enjoys golf, tennis, and PC gaming. Derek lives in Phoenix, Arizona, with his wife, Samantha, and poodle, Tibbers.

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