Thread Number: 20824
Kirby vs Miele?
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Post# 233149   5/18/2013 at 11:35 (2,012 days old) by crock ()        

Has anybody directly compared the Kirby Sentria to the Miele uprights? I know the Miele is quieter but otherwise I wonder how they stack up. My local vacuum store says the the Miele's clean carpets better, but of course he does not carry Kirby. I don't dare call a Kirby sales person for a demo!

Post# 233152 , Reply# 1   5/18/2013 at 11:59 (2,012 days old) by ned_flanders ()        
search youtube

I linked a youtube video someone made of this exact comparison: Miele s7 against the Kirby Sentria

Most people commented that it was a typical unfair test done to make the Kirby look good.

Post# 233154 , Reply# 2   5/18/2013 at 12:39 (2,012 days old) by logdog ()        

I myself prefer the Kirby, if only for the flexibility in attachments, but the Miele is an excellent machine as well. The Miele might be a better fit if you are worried about allergens or dust being thrown back into the air, as Miele is unmatched in filtration.

Post# 233165 , Reply# 3   5/18/2013 at 14:59 (2,012 days old) by Vacuumfreeeke ()        

I watched the video...  the guy may have worked for Kirby, because he used a lot of the same verbiage we were taught when I sold them.  Of course if they can't even pronounce Miele properly, I'm not sure how much they know...  it really isn't that difficult a word.  


They should have vacuumed with the Kirby first and then went behind it with the Miele with a fresh bag to see if it got anything after the Kirby.


However, I just used my Sentria on the shag rug before shampooing it and I used the dirt meter and I was shocked at how many pads it went through before I could even see the level of dirt even begin diminish.  It was still pulling out a ton of dirt when I got sick of changing them and decided to shampoo...  I echo the general consensus.  I think Kirbys have better airflow and agitation... they lift the carpet up on a cushion of air and suck through it, however, the Miele filters air better and and is easier to use the attachments on, so it really depends what you are looking for.  Vacuums were originally designed to clean carpet, and some of it do that and only that, but do it well.  I guess if you want a vacuum that is an air filter, it's OK, but I think a vacuum should be a vacuum first.  They made stand alone, dedicated air filters, if it is that much of an issue...


Here's a link to the silly video make it more convenient.  I'm almost hesitant to post it because I don't want to encourage people to waste their time :o)


Post# 233166 , Reply# 4   5/18/2013 at 15:00 (2,012 days old) by kloveland (Tulsa, OK)        

kloveland's profile picture
I would go with the Kirby. Kirby has a direct air system and powerful airflow to deep clean carpets. Plus Kirby is made right here in the U.S. Bobby is right! If you do not want to deal with a Kirby dealer you could always purchase a refurbished model on eBay.

Post# 233168 , Reply# 5   5/18/2013 at 15:27 (2,012 days old) by Vacuumfreeeke ()        

These are the dirt pads (coffee filters) that I used in the Kirby on the shag rug.  I think the rug looks really good now.  I bet the Kirby would have done even better if I'd had real dirt pads instead of coffee filters, but that is just amazing.  The carpet really looked clean and I do vacuum every day (though not always with Kirby).  The first pads were mostly hair and dust and lint... the later ones were mostly deep sand.  


This reminds me of my Kirby selling days...  Either the dirt can stay and the Kirby can go or Kirby can stay and the dirt can go.  It's your choice.  Can I have a credit card, or will you be financing this today?  Or, Madam, why don't you sit down (pads covering every surface of the house).  Oh, you don't want to sit on all that nasty dirt?  Well, you were already doing it before I showed up, you just didn't know it!  


I'd love to add the Miele upright to my collection as well, just to have as a collector, but haven't seen one that is used and for a decent price yet.  People tend to value features over quality and performance these days, so even if the Kirby cleaned better, I bet most people would prefer the Miele...  

Post# 233179 , Reply# 6   5/18/2013 at 20:57 (2,012 days old) by eurekaprince (Montreal, Canada)        

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According to Consumer Reports, the Kirby is heavier, noisier and more expensive than the low end Miele S7 uprights like the Cat and Dog model. Though the Kirby Sentria provides better airflow through the hose for tool use, switching to above-the-floor cleaning is far easier with the Miele. Deep carpet cleaning scores were the same for both. Bare floor cleaning is safer with the Miele as you can easily switch off the revolving brush with the flick of a switch.

Post# 233180 , Reply# 7   5/18/2013 at 21:22 (2,012 days old) by pr-21 (Middletown, OH)        
My experience....

pr-21's profile picture
I have had a Miele S7 Tango and a Kirby G Series at the same time. I was really disappointed with the Miele S7 vs the Kirby G Series. Yes the hose was a nice thought, but had to much draw back on the S7. Also The bag holder that you push down to change the bag broke, and then the carpet switch stayed on all the time. It was also very bulky and heavy in the handle. It was under warranty, but I gave it to Goodwill. Miele may have made improvements since this was one of the very first models to come out in the US.....
Still have my Kirby and a new Kirby Sentria II. All the G series and the Sentria's are very similar. They added a two speed switch on one model and took it off. Improved the filtration as the G Series progressed and the new stiffer brush rolls clean better than the G'3's and 4's brush roll. Other than rounding out the shape and adding the led headlight and new F style adapter I don't know what else they could improve in the G Series. Oh, the tech drive was improved in about every model. The Sentria II is very smooth. The one thing I wish the G Series had was a twelve inch power nozzle head.

I need to add a note here. I take very good care of all my vacuums, they do not get abused. All my brand new vacuums still look brand new.....My vintage vacuums that I have acquired are not perfect, but sanitized and cleaned to the best of my ability and I don't use them until they have the spa treatment.....


This post was last edited 05/19/2013 at 03:16
Post# 233181 , Reply# 8   5/18/2013 at 21:23 (2,011 days old) by pr-21 (Middletown, OH)        

This post has been removed by the member who posted it.

Post# 233183 , Reply# 9   5/18/2013 at 22:08 (2,011 days old) by eurekaprince (Montreal, Canada)        

eurekaprince's profile picture
I rarely abuse my vacs, and it's rare for any of my vacs' parts to break. The Miele S7 uprights are so much easier to use, and I'd much rather work with a quieter machine that is less bulky and has a sleeker power head. :-)

Post# 233247 , Reply# 10   5/19/2013 at 15:42 (2,011 days old) by lunchboxsean ()        

Ok, so I am a great lover of both Kirbies and the Miele S7 (upright) series. For me, this comes down to a couple of questions. One: do you have a lot of furniture on carpet you would like to vacuum under without moving it? Two: what kind of budget are you working with? Three: Does anyone in your home have allergies or asthma? Four: Do you need a lot of extra accessories? No vacuum on the market filters better than a Miele ATM. Though, unless you have asthma or allergies, a Kirby filters really quite well enough. Also, Mieles new are about half to a third the price of a new Sentria 2, and they have a lot lower clearance so they can get under the couch, etc. On the downside, they have nowhere near the accessories that a Kirby does and they don't last anywhere near as long. Don't get me wrong, Mieles are very well made vacuums and you can expect to see at least a decade of use out of them, but they are not the lifetime vacuum you get when you buy a Kirby. Also, because of the longevity of the Kirbies, it really brings the concept of a used Sentria into thought. Used ones typically run around the $400 mark which is much much lower than the Miele, so that adds a whole other dynamic to it.

Post# 233291 , Reply# 11   5/20/2013 at 02:51 (2,010 days old) by madabouthoovers ()        

Yet what amazes me, is that Kirby try to sell you on the notion that the Kirby is a lifetime machine and you will never have to buy a new one again - and a year later when your new Kirby is due for a service, they ring you up and try to sell you another new Kirby!
Kirbys are great cleaners for carpets, but they are damn inconvenient when you need to keep going from carpet to hose for cleaning the furniture - the fact that they have so many attachments does not get away from the fact that you still have to turn it off, get down on your hands and knees, lift the hood, turn the belt lifter, disengage the head lock, remove the head, then attach the hose - and vice versa afterwards.
I have both the Miele S7 and 2 Kirbys, one pre-G and a G7. I can honestly say that of all of them I prefer using the Heritage 1. Its cleaning ability on carpet is excellent, and I can feel the carpet vibrate when the Kirby passes over it, not to mention the deep hum of the carpet being beaten clean.
I use the type 2 yellow bags with my H1 and as long as the outer bag gets washed every year or so, the filtration is adequate for me.
The Miele S7 costs a fortune to buy Hepa filters every year for, and bags are also expensive - its overkill on filtration if you don't suffer from allergies.
Kirbys pre-1991 are so simple and reliable, and also very robust - I think that the Generation models are OK, and nice to look at, but I just don't like the tech drive, or the horrible whine it makes when going back and forth - and not to mention if there is any resistance like the head being to low it causes the tech drive to slow the main motor down or even to cause the cogs to slip with a horrid clunking noise. Tech drive made a moderately heavy machine much heavier, and when I sold Kirbys, I was told never to let a woman pick the Kirby up or that would be a sale gone.
Kirbys are a love or hate machine, and take some getting used to - some might say that they are too old fashioned and much of a hassle to use the hose, but I think that they are a good, sturdy, well made and durable carpet sweeper.
Kirby salesmen don't help the Kirby's image though and the pressure we had to exert on people to get a sale - even calling the boss to get him to pressure the potential buyer on the phone was just totally unjustified.
Kirby need to change their sales model now as door to door sales are very unpopular in this day and age and most people would rather buy a Kirby on Ebay than have a pressure demo from a Kirby salesman and pay way more than the Kirby was worth in commission to the salesman.

Post# 233413 , Reply# 12   5/20/2013 at 22:34 (2,009 days old) by crock ()        

I just bought a Kirby G7 Diamond on ebay. I guess I just could not bring myself to buy another promise of German engineering excellence. The Kirby has to be more difficult to use but you can't discount pride of ownership. Now in the internet age I think Kirby will be forced to adjust their sales tactics as people can check the prices paid on their phones while the sales person is the living room.

Post# 233430 , Reply# 13   5/21/2013 at 04:32 (2,009 days old) by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

I will go with Kirby-I own a Meile S7 Upright-the Kirby is better for me.The video is kinda dumb-the man says you can pick up rocks,nails,quarters with the Kevlar fan---NOT TRUE-you pick up these sort of items you will DESTROY your fan.The Meile powernozzle suction inlet looked clogged.That is the problem with Meile and many other clean air machines-their complex airpaths can clog easily.the Kirby is more simple-less prone to clogging and larger diameter airpath.I do remember a Meile demo video that shows the Meile S7 upright picking up one pound of drywall nails with the hose-they did this to show the durability of the bag.A paper bag would have been destroyed.I would go with the best filter bags as possible with the Meile or any other clean air vacuum-to protect the motor from fine dust and dirt.

Post# 233546 , Reply# 14   5/22/2013 at 10:02 (2,008 days old) by oreckman ()        

Both good vacs but I would go with the Miele. 1/3 the price and every bit as good a product.

Post# 233589 , Reply# 15   5/22/2013 at 15:11 (2,008 days old) by sebo_fan (Scotland, UK, member AKA ukvacfan, & Nar2)        

sebo_fan's profile picture
I had the Miele S7 for a short time. Didn't like it and the bottom hose requires screws to undo if there's a clog - SEBO's X series has none of that nonsense. There's a direct rival because both are clean fan, both have tools on board and both are priced well against each other. Miele offers a more modern take with its swivel built in but I always found it too clumsy and having to pedal the floor head onto rugs and off etc is a bit of a faff. One can argue that the sensor head on the SEBO isn't perfect, but in my home I don't have thick pile carpeting where the floor head might not sense the height properly - and unlike Miele - the brush roll on the SEBO can be taken out.

Yet, the Miele is a lot easier- for a quick clean around the home,, the Miele would be better because of everything being on board.

Having used Kirby in commercial cleaning settings, I find them to do the job they're designed to do well for general carpet care - and they'll always be much better built due to their metal construction - I find them to be far more effective.

However, trying to put a Miele S7 against a Kirby upright isn't really that fair.

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