Thread Number: 34731  /  Tag: Recent Vacuum Cleaners from past 20 years
Kirby - Researching to buy my first Kirby
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Post# 375081   7/9/2017 at 17:11 (317 days old) by vacuumguy91 (Raleigh NC)        

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What would you recommend and why? I'm researching to buy my first ever Kirby...was never a fan of this style vacuum but my curiousity and cleaning performance (as I read through threads here) is growing on me.

My house is a mix of wall to wall and hardwood but would mainly use it for the carpeting.

I'm leaning towards the Kirby Ultimate G Diamond model...but not sure if this would be the best choice. Cosmetically for me it's the nicest (so far).

I've been scouring local craigslist, letgo and ebay ads to see the condition and prices.

What model would you recommend and why? Kirby experts please don't be shy with your opinion and advice.

Thanks guys. :)

Post# 375086 , Reply# 1   7/9/2017 at 21:26 (317 days old) by AlexHoovers94 (Manchester UK)        

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They are all the same. 😂

Post# 375087 , Reply# 2   7/9/2017 at 22:03 (317 days old) by Bimmer740 (Long Island, New York)        

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My vote is for the Diamond Edition. I bought mine new about 12 years ago and I love it! I don't use the low speed setting often but I do like having the ability to decrease the power. I haven't used a Sentria or Avalir but I've used and owned other G series machines and I like the Diamond Edition the best. You just can't beat the cleaning power on carpeting. That being said, I only use the Kirby for carpeting. I have an Electrolux canister for the bare floors and all my above the floor cleaning. You can pick up a nicely rebuilt machine on eBay for a reasonable price and a well taken care of Kirby will last forever.

Post# 375093 , Reply# 3   7/10/2017 at 00:35 (317 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        

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I would recommend getting anything from the Dual Sanitronic 50 up to the Legend II: the D50 was the first Kirby with a two-speed motor (with the hose attached, the speed is much higher) while the Legend II was the last Kirby without Tech Drive, and also the last Kirby to have both the shake-out bag and the small 13" wide nozzle as options, though both of them are quite rare.


Post# 375094 , Reply# 4   7/10/2017 at 00:36 (317 days old) by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

If you plan on using the Kirby for carpets only-try to find one without the attachments-these get turned in as trades at vac shops-and they resell them CHEAP because of the missing tools.

Post# 375096 , Reply# 5   7/10/2017 at 00:40 (317 days old) by cam2s (Nebraska)        

Most of the Generation Series are similiar, Kirby has made running updates over the years. Unless you have a preference on style I would suggest getting the newest machine you can get on your budget. My newest model is a Sentria and it's a lovely machine to use. Prior to that my newest was a G6, when I got the Sentria I was surprised at how different it is for only being a few models newer. The newer style handle is a pleasure to use, the led lights work very well and you can really feel the extra power.
Also don't forget your can upgrade parts if you get an older machine. I'm pretty sure that the new style brushrolls will work on any g series machines and you can use the cloth style HEPA bags too in any Kirby that takes bags.

Post# 375097 , Reply# 6   7/10/2017 at 00:42 (317 days old) by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

Kirby "G" series upgrades-try to get the bag assembly that has the later domed top emptor as opposed to the earlier flat top ones-G3,4,5.The domed top ones starting with the G6 actually do improve the airflow.

Post# 375100 , Reply# 7   7/10/2017 at 05:55 (316 days old) by kirbykid63 (Wilmington Delaware)        
Kirby vacuums

Hi Kevin,I have been fixing kirby vacuums for years,the ultimate G and Diamond are great models,when you purchase one I recommend replace the brush roll and belt these are the most common problems with used kirbys.If you need advice feel free to contact me and look at my ebay store "new2youvacuums" I am also on facebook.


Post# 375103 , Reply# 8   7/10/2017 at 08:35 (316 days old) by AlexHoovers94 (Manchester UK)        

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I don't think Kirby's perform much better than most other uprights.

They are not brilliant on pet hair either.

Post# 375126 , Reply# 9   7/10/2017 at 17:22 (316 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        

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I agree that any of the G-series machines will suit your needs nicely and the differences are minor. I tend to like the G5 and newer machines. The Ultimate G Diamond Edition is especially nice with its two-speed switch unique to that model. Kirbys show up at thrift stores at reasonable prices. I picked up a Gsix with a full toolkit for $50 a couple of years ago and missed out on a Classic Omega for $10 last spring. Somebody else already had their hands on it and I really didn't need it. I also walked away from an Ultimate G Diamond Edition with a tool kit for $50 as it wasn't in as nice shape as my Gsix and I already had too many vacuum cleaners.

And not meaning start an argument, but I think Kirbys do a helluva lot better on carpets than just about any other machine I've tried. You just have to set the nozzle height so it makes a positive lock and lifts the carpet a little.

Post# 375160 , Reply# 10   7/11/2017 at 12:18 (315 days old) by sptyks (Skowhegan, Maine)        

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Don't pay any attention to AlexHoovers94 as he doesn't know what he is talking about. No other brand of vacuum cleaner can clean your carpets better than a Kirby except possibly a 10 amp Royal.


I would recommend getting the newest Kirby you can afford because the newer machines, specifically the Sentria II and Avalir, have more airflow which means better cleaning performance. Although any Kirby after the G5 will deep clean your carpets very well.


Keep an eye on ebay as some very good bargains show up there from time to time. I bought a Sentria in almost brand new condition with all the attachments including the shampoo system for $125.00 on ebay. Although I own 6 Kirby's, the Sentria is my Daily Driver. Sometimes you can get an even better deal at thrift stores like Goodwill, Salvation Army and Saver's.





Post# 375180 , Reply# 11   7/11/2017 at 19:35 (315 days old) by AlexHoovers94 (Manchester UK)        

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I said "personally" meaning it was my opinion...

They are too loud, too big, too heavy, clunky, inconvenient... I would take a dirty fan Hoover any day over a Kirby, same performance, easier and more convenient to use.

Post# 375193 , Reply# 12   7/11/2017 at 22:45 (315 days old) by myles_v (Fredericksburg, VA)        

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I'd definitely go with the Ultimate G Diamond Edition. I like the regular/low speed switch option, and the speed switch is the only major change compared to the newer models. Of course, I believe they updated the mini emptor with each of the last few models to increase airflow. But my personal favorite Kirby is the Diamond Edition.

Post# 375244 , Reply# 13   7/12/2017 at 16:36 (314 days old) by S2_82 (Columbus, Ohio)        

I have a G3.. but I can't upgrade to the newest style brushroll that Sentrias and Avalirs come with since the BPI indicator is on the opposite side..

Not only that.. but from what I hear, the newer models have more power as well.. I'm thinking my G3 moves about 120 CFM whereas the Sentria and Avalir move just under 140 CFM.

I agree with Stan, spring for the most recent model that you can afford. Kirbys are wonderful machines that have stood the test of time, and will clean circles around many machines, especially those plastic junk "vacuums" which come from big box stores nowadays.

Post# 375246 , Reply# 14   7/12/2017 at 17:10 (314 days old) by ralph123 (Little Rock, AR)        

While Kirby's are wonderful vacuums, the Simplicity Freedoms and Riccar 9-pound vacuums have a lot of advantages if are are just going to use the vacuum to clean carpeting and rugs.


Post# 375400 , Reply# 15   7/15/2017 at 03:06 (312 days old) by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

Simplicity and Riccar 9 lb vacuums-have a few variants of these machines and very impressed with their performance even when compared to the Kirby beast!Those Tacony machines pack a LOT of power in their small size!Esp the cordless one-try one and you will see!Their motors and fans are larger than Oreck vacuums-and the airpath is larger.

Post# 375401 , Reply# 16   7/15/2017 at 05:28 (311 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        

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Sptyks - bit rude to say Alex doesn't know what he's talking about, don't you think? Alex has a great collection and has used & owned many vacuums over the years. Given you only own 6 vacuums, 4 of which are Kirby's, I'd say Alex has had way more experience & variety of vacuums.

I both agree & disagree with Alex - never had a problem with Kirby's shifting pet hair though I do agree that they're cumbersome, loud & inconvenient. However the question wasn't "should I buy a Kirby?" it was "which Kirby should I buy?" Personally, I like the Legend & Legend 2. They're smaller & lighter than models that came before and after. I find them more nimble and manoeuvre. The tech drive added a lot of size & weight to the cleaner that, IMO, was unnecessary had Kirby carried on with the size and weight of those models.

I have both a Legend 2 & G6. The performance is pretty much the same but I prefer to use the L2 as it's lighter and smaller.

Post# 375428 , Reply# 17   7/15/2017 at 21:11 (311 days old) by wyaple (Pickerington, OH)        
Kevin, if you want totally insane cleaning power

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Get a Sentria II or Avalir. My airflow box readings are 137 CFM at the nozzle with a HEPA bag installed. That is so much cleaning power, it can completely clean the carpet UNDER the carpet. I got mine for $55 at a thrift store last year. It needed a new power switch. I've also heard people are starting to find Avalirs for around $125-ish.

Kirby Sentria II Flour Under the Carpet Test

One Pass Deep Clean Test Kirby Sentria II


Post# 375497 , Reply# 18   7/17/2017 at 15:21 (309 days old) by dermacie (Pittsburgh )        

I have never owned one brand new but I love my Kirby. I currently have the G6 and have all the attachments. I use it mostly as a canister since I don't have much wall to wall carpeting anymore.

Post# 375656 , Reply# 19   7/21/2017 at 12:32 (305 days old) by vacuumguy91 (Raleigh NC)        

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Thank you everyone for your input...still attempting to locate a Kirby...I want one in pristine condition, attempting to locate the Ultimate G Diamond in my area or on Ebay...don't need the attachments, just the vacuum itself as I will only use this on carpeting. Thanks again. I will post/update once I find it. :)

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