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Thread Number: 33883  /  Tag: Brand New Vacuum Cleaners
Sebo K3 to Miele C3?
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Post# 367754   3/2/2017 at 22:50 by Mixman (Central NJ)        

I just received a gently used Sebo K3. While I am having a little problem with the low level warning light on the ET-1, otherwise to my surprise, I am into canisters after almost 40 years when I was a child and my mother made me do the vacuuming with some old canister I cannot remember now.

Now, my place is about 75% carpet, but I feel I am a little too upright heavy right now and need another canister. To that end I am looking at a Miele C3 Brilliant/Uniq or Homecare Plus. I am going to try to find a demo or used one first to soften the financial blow. The thing is, I would like one with at least the suction controls at my fingertips rather than playing footsie with the canister, so I have narrowed down my choices to the above. If you know of any others please suggest.

So would a Miele C3 with the SEB 236 be an improvement performance wise over the K3? Bag size I don't really care about, but better performance I do care about.


Post# 367755 , Reply# 1   3/2/2017 at 23:15 by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        
miele c3

I believe the seb236 is a rebranded Wessel Werk ebk 340, or ebk 360, one of those two. These are both good power nozzles. Actually, those are two of the best power nozzles you can get, another one is made by Lindhaus. The bags for the Miele c3 series are fairly large, I have a Miele C1 and both series use the same bags. If you are able to get a Miele C3, definitely let us know how the two compare with each other. I have a Sebo D1, the D series is the larger canister series, both Miele and Sebo vacuums are well made, so you shouldn't go wrong with either brand.

Post# 367758 , Reply# 2   3/3/2017 at 00:25 by Mixman (Central NJ)        
Wessel Werk with C3?

Can you use a Wessel Werk directly with a Miele C3 or do you need an adapter? I see they are a little cheaper and if I find a used Brilliant or Uniq without a PN then perhaps I can get a Wessel Werk instead of a SEB 236.

Post# 367759 , Reply# 3   3/3/2017 at 00:49 by Mixman (Central NJ)        
Another question....

Can you use an Miele SES 131 wand/hose, the one with suction and on/off controls on other C3's like a Marin or Kona or will it only work on the Uniq/Brilliant?

Post# 367798 , Reply# 4   3/3/2017 at 18:52 by Mixman (Central NJ)        
Any more thoughts on K3 vs C3

Any more thoughts as to whether a Miele C3 will outperform a Sebo K3?

Post# 367812 , Reply# 5   3/4/2017 at 01:21 by kirbylux77 (Orillia, Ontario, Canada)        
Mike / Mixman

kirbylux77's profile picture
Buying a used Miele & buying a Wessell Werk powerhead won't save you any money. Generic Wessell Werk EBK340 & EBK360 powerheads that central vacs & certain canister brands use are made for 1 1/4, 32mm wands, which until recently was the standard size for canisters & central vac hoses & wands. You would have to buy the powerhead neck & wiring for the SEB228 if you wanted to convert a EBK360 or SEB236 neck if you wanted to convert the EBK340, & that neck runs about $120 at most vac shops that carry Miele vacs & parts. It would be more economical to just buy a new replacement Miele powerhead instead.

The Miele canisters, as long as it has the 1200 watt Vortex single motor that was introduced in 2004, will outclean a Sebo K3. It has nothing to do with the suction power, airflow or powerhead brushing action on either Sebo or Miele, both are roughly the same. Unfortunately, in this case, Miele's advantage is the 9 layer Airclean 3D Efficiency bag in both FJM & GN styles for their canisters. Most other manufacturer's genuine OEM bags, including Sebo's, are only 3 ply cloth bags. Even generic aftermarket Miele cloth bags are 5 ply bags, which is better than most OEM & aftermarket cloth bags, although some are 3 layer bags too, depending on the manufacturer. In addition, Miele's bags also have airflow straps inside the bag that allow the dirt coming into the bag to be evenly distributed ALL OVER the entire surface of the bag, not just part of the bag's surface area as most other cloth bags do. This allows a Miele canister to retain consistent airflow & cleaning power till the bag is 3/4 full, which ultimately means the vacuum is picking up more dirt than it's competitor with a regular cloth bag as it fills up. The only other canister & bag system that can offer anywhere close to the performance of Miele's bags is the Panasonic OptiFlow / Kenmore Elite with PowerFlow canisters, & this is due to a specially designed bag chamber that allows for even air distribution throughout the bag chamber & lets the air escape from all sides of the bag, the bag itself is a ordinary 3 ply cloth bag. However, please note this is if you are picking up lots of sand & fine dust & dirt that would normally clog any kind of bag, whether paper or cloth, quickly....if you are picking up pet hair or you have carpets that shed lots of carpet fibers & fill bags quickly, since there will be additional surface area for dirt & fine dust to cling to inside the bag, that will enhance the airflow performance longer & allow the vacuum to perform at a higher level for a longer period of time before a bag change is required, so you won't notice as much of a benefit from Miele's bags or the Kenmore / Panasonic bag chamber design if you were directly comparing to a conventional canister & bag design such as your Sebo. It really all depends on the type of carpeting you have in your home & type of dirt you are picking up if either system will have an advantage for you.

Also, note that if you use a Miele with generic aftermarket cloth bags, they WILL NOT allow the Miele to maintain continuous airflow as well as the genuine OEM bags, due to having only 5 layers of material & also not having the airflow straps in the bag as the OEM Miele bag does. They will work well, just not quite as good as the OEM bags. It's also important to point out that the Kenmore / Panasonic canisters are less costly to replace bags than Miele canisters....generic aftermarket Kenmore / Panasonic bags run about $2 per bag, which are the same quality as OEM, unlike OEM Miele bags which cost about $5 per bag when purchased in the 4 bag pack, or $4.38 per bag if purchased in the 8 bag value pack, & the generic aftermarket bags for Miele are NOT the same quality as OEM Miele bags.

For alternatives to a Miele, I would suggest looking at the following options:

1. Kenmore Elite Ultra Plush canister, or if you want the convenience of the floor brush built into the powerhead, the silver Kenmore Elite Crossover. It seems Kenmore has finally solved the issues with the wand, hose & powerhead connections burning out that plagued past models, & the quality of the vacuum & tools included are really nice. One nice feature is the Powermate Jr, the mini powerhead that can be used to clean furniture & stairs, & cleans pet hair easily off surfaces. And it not only has the speed control you desire, but also the 3 way off/floor/carpet switch on the hose handle, which is very convenient. I own the Ultra Plush canister myself & have been very pleased with it. Cleaning performance is very comparable to Sebo, Miele & Riccar / Simplicity canisters. Just make sure you buy the extended warranty, & also make sure NOT to store the vacuum with the hose on the wand, always detach the hose & coil it up on the floor to avoid getting cracks & breaks in the hose material.

2. Riccar Prima / Simplicity Wonder mid sized canisters. Running costs for bags & HEPA filters should run about the same as owning a Miele. Cleaning performance is the same as a Miele or Sebo, as long as you get the premium powerhead with the 3 row brushroll & dirt sensor. One big advantage Riccar / Simplicity canisters have over Miele is the hose, wand, powerhead & included attachments. The Riccar / Simplicity canister hose is a regular crushproof hose that is nice to work with, has nice tight seals to ensure airtight connections at the wand & powerhead, much longer than Miele's hoses, & unlike Miele, Sebo & Electrolux's (not Aerus Electrolux) hoses, it is not the stiff plastic "cord welded" hose that has the cord welded on the inside of the hose instead of imbedded in the material like crushproof hoses are made like. Since you are new to owning & using canister vacuums, you will find the crushproof hoses much easier to work with and, especially with the Miele & Electrolux hoses, you will find with how short & stiff they are that the vacuum is a pain to use & annoying. In addition, the bottom plate on the powerhead on Riccar / Simplicity is METAL, the brushroll is METAL, & the handle release & height adjustment levers are METAL, whereas with Miele you get PLASTIC!!! Not acceptable in my mind, especially since you're paying $950 to get a Miele C3 Cat & Dog with a comparable powerhead & performance. One nice thing too is the powerhead on the Riccar / Simplicity canisters are super easy to take apart, clean out & perform your own maintenance at home instead of lugging the vacuum into the shop, which you would have to do with Miele since the design of the Wessell Werk powerheads is extremely complex, & they are annoying & difficult to take apart & reassemble. If you decide to go with the compact powerhead (the one that resembles the Miele SEB217 powerhead) instead of the full size powerhead, the brushroll is more aggressive & grooms better than Miele's compact powerhead. There is a mini powerhead available for the Riccar / Simplicity canisters for cleaning stairs & pet hair, something Miele doesn't even offer as a option. The wand is extra long, & much lighter than Miele's wand, this will make a difference using the wand for overhead tasks such as cleaning ceiling fan blades, getting cobwebs in corners, cleaning walls, or using the wand & hose to clean stairs. The 2 in 1 combo tool is a exact copy of the Aerus Electrolux combo tool, works well on furniture & has a nicely sized horsehair dusting brush that gently dusts furniture without scratching. The crevice tool is nice & long compared to Miele's small crevice tool that is a bit of a joke. The floor brush on Riccar / Simplicity is very nice & more practical than Miele's floor brushes, it is more narrow on the inside to concentrate the suction & clean well, & the microfiber pad polishes & makes sure no dust is left behind. The tool size is 35mm, same as Miele, but it will take standard 32mm tools if desired with a optional adapter. The bag closure system on the Riccar / Simplicity bags is much better than Miele's AirClean bag with the closing flap, which doesn't always work well & has a tendency to stick & stay open, since the dirt collects around the bag collar & closing flap inside. With Riccar / Simplicity's bags, the collar is plastic with a nice silicone seal where the collar meets the bag door tube, & you can manually pull up the bag door & close the bag shut completely. I own a Simplicity Gusto, one of the TOL full size models, & have been extremely pleased with it's quality, design, features & performance. The only reason I would not suggest one for you is they are large & heavy canisters compared to the Miele, that's something you might find annoying being new to canisters & getting used to pulling one behind you. The Prima & Wonder are more compact while having the same bag capacity, & while they don't have the speed control on the hose handle, they do have a suction control valve on the hose handle, just like a old Aerus Electrolux or Eureka canister has, which works just as well, as well as a sliding variable speed control on the canister. You will also find some situations where a suction control valve to reduce suction works better than reducing motor speed, such as vacuuming curtains. If you do buy one, I would strongly suggest waiting until this summer & buy one directly from Dysonman1, Tom Gasko, at the Tacony Museum, since they will be starting production in America in early summer.

3. Aerus Electrolux Guardian. The original one, NOT the newest Guardian Platinum.
This one has the speed control on the hose handle, & like the Kenmore's it also has the 3 way off/floor/carpet switch on the hose handle to control the entire canister at your fingertips. Nice durable lightweight plastic wands, nicely designed crevice, dusting, upholstery tool & floor brush that are a pleasure to work with, & long wire reinforced hose that has a nice substantial weight to it like the Kenmore hose & won't get easily damaged. Powerhead has a headlight & automatic height adjustment, does a nice job grooming & cleaning the carpet when you upgrade the brushroll to the newest designed 10 degree chevron brushroll. Like Kenmore, it comes with a mini powerhead called the Sidekick II which works great on furniture & stairs & picks up pet hair with ease, & unlike the Kenmore Powermate Jr has a geared belt that doesn't require constant replacement belts. Suction power through the hose isn't quite as strong as the Riccar / Simplicity, Miele, Sebo & Kenmore canisters which pull about 100" waterlift, the Guardian pulls about 90" waterlift, but very strong nonetheless & can hold it's own & very capable of getting the job done, you will feel satisfied it is doing a good job & pleased with it's performance. Bags can be had in regular generic 4 ply paper bags or cloth bags, very reasonably priced, & hepa filters are easily found in generic aftermarket versions & replaced inexpensively. The Aerus Guardian would be one of your best choices if you are a pet owner, due to the Sidekick II & cost per bag.

If you do buy a Miele, buy it new, & make sure you buy it during the 10 year promotional warranty event that Miele holds once a year. You will want the warranty with all the circuit boards inside & how complex it is. It would also be a good idea to buy a second straight suction telescopic wand & whatever you do, NEVER EVER REMOVE THE WAND FROM THE POWERHEAD!!!!! One signifigant design flaw the Wessell Werk powerheads have is they use thin, brittle wiring in the powerhead, if you use the quick release & are constantly removing & inserting the powerhead wand, the wiring they use cannot hold up to it & breaks easily, it's best to just leave the electric telescopic wand in place & not to touch it.

Good luck in finding a canister that works for you. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me via email.


This video here illustrates the Miele bag design:

This older video for the previous Kenmore Intuition illustrates the Kenmore PowerFlow bag chamber system:

Kenmore Elite Ultra Plush canister:

Post# 367832 , Reply# 6   3/4/2017 at 10:58 by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        
prima and Kenmore vacuums

I do have the prima, it's a great vacuum, very quiet, powerful, and it's very good at following you around, especially when the canister needs to turn corners. I'm not sure how they did this but when the canister needs to turn, it feels like it's almost on air, it spins very easily.
Beware of many of the new Kenmore vacuums, they use a nonstandard hose end so you will be limited to the provided attachments and will not be able to use the many standard attachments that are available.

Post# 367839 , Reply# 7   3/4/2017 at 16:37 by Mixman (Central NJ)        

Thanks Kirbylux77 for the extensive write up. Did learn a lot, especially about the importance of filter bags on the vacuums.

As far as the vacuums themselves.....Doubt if I would go with a Kenmore, while their performance seems to be good. The durability does not. Read too many horror stories of them breaking down within a couple of years or even months after buying. Seems like their reliability is no better than a Shark, plus they cost more.

The Riccar/Simplicity vacuums seem like good performers. The only problem being that with the list price the upper models cost more than the top Miele C3's and it's more likely I would prefer the upper models because of the added features. Perhaps I would be able to get a significant discount on these from a dealer?

The older Lux Guardian also looks like a good performer, although a little old school looking and it seems like I would have to get it used at this point. Too bad the Lux Platinum does not have any controls on the handle. Not only that the suction controls looks like they can be only operated by hand on the canister, as operating them by foot seems to be rather difficult. That's inexcusable in a vacuum that costs as much as the Lux Platinum! The ergonomics suck on this model.

I will keep reading up on the various models and may ask a few more questions in the meantime.

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