Miele is a German manufacturer specializing in high-end household appliances, including everything from refrigerators to washing machines, not to mention cooktop ranges and coffee machines. Miele vacuums are well-renowned for their premium build quality, strong performance on a wide variety of surfaces, and general ease of maintenance.
The best Miele vacuum that we've tested is the Miele Complete C3. Regardless of the model variant you go for, all Miele C3 models offer exceptional performance on bare floors and carpets, thanks to a potent 1200W motor and variable suction control. Build quality is also fantastic; all C3 models have an allergen-sealed body made of sturdy high-grade plastic as well as a stainless steel wand. However, going for the flagship C3 Brilliant model also nets you a bunch of extra convenience features, like an automatic surface-sensitive power adjustment setting, handle-mounted controls, a HEPA-rated post-motor filter, and additional sound insulation for its motor, which is already very quiet to begin with.
The Brilliant also comes with a trio of floorheads: an extra wide parquet tool for bare floors, a universal pure suction floorhead with retractable bristles intended for hard floors and low-pile carpet, and Miele's SEB 236 height-adjustable powerhead, so you can clean everything from hardwood to plush carpeting with ease. Unfortunately, all of this comes at a very high cost. If you don't mind missing out on the C3 Brilliant's additional convenience features and don't need the multi-surface pure suction floorhead, a cheaper C3 model like the C3 Kona will deliver similar overall performance on most surfaces.
If you aren't comfortable spending as much on a vacuum and want a marginally smaller footprint, the Miele Classic C1 Cat & Dog PowerLine is a fantastic choice. Right off the bat, it's important to note that there are a few sacrifices that come with the C1's cheaper price point compared to the Miele Complete C3, including inferior build quality, no built-in tool storage compartment, and a shorter power cord. It also doesn't have the C3 Brilliant's handle-mounted controls or automatic power adjustment settings. However, all C1s have the same 1200W suction motor, producing similarly fantastic debris pickup performance.
This C1 Cat & Dog variant sits near the top of the C1 lineup and is very well-equipped, as it comes with a parquet tool for hard floors as well as the SEB 228 height-adjustable powerhead for cleaning thick carpets. However, the latter isn't as sleek as the C3 Brilliant's SEB 236 head and lacks an LED headlight. Still, there's little to distinguish the two floorheads in terms of actual performance. This Cat & Dog variant also comes with a miniature turbo brush tool and a post-motor filter containing activated charcoal to minimize unpleasant odors as you clean.
The best Miele vacuum cleaner we've tested at a budget-friendly price is the Miele Classic C1 Pure Suction PowerLine. Of course, 'budget' is a relative term since even basic Miele models are pretty pricey. That said, this entry-level C1 variant is still considerably less expensive than almost every other model the manufacturer offers. There's a compromise to be made, however; unlike the outwardly similar C1 Cat & Dog, the C1 Pure Suction doesn't have a power socket at the base of its hose, meaning it's completely incompatible with powered floorheads. This won't be an issue if you only have bare floors or very low-pile carpeting in your home. Still, it does mean that you'll have to go for the pricier model variants if you have a lot of thick rugs to clean and need the surface agitation that only a powerhead can provide.
Like most Miele vacuums, it's also remarkably easy to maintain, and maneuverability is great. Unfortunately, the C1 Pure Suction model doesn't come with a HEPA-rated post-motor filter as standard, though air filtration performance is still superb thanks to its allergen-sealed body and thick cloth dirtbags. Besides, you can always purchase a HEPA-rated filter from the manufacturer if you need that additional level of air filtration performance.
The best Miele vacuum cleaner with a cordless design that we've tested is the Miele Triflex HX1. It doesn't feel as robust as the brand's traditional canister models, like the Miele Complete C3, and it doesn't offer the same level of air filtration performance due to its bagless design. Still, it's much easier to grab and use for shorter cleanups. It delivers remarkable performance on bare surfaces and does a great job dealing with pet hair and solid debris on carpet.
Its surface detection system allows it to automatically select the optimal brush power for a given floor type or even stop the brushroll if something gets caught in the floorhead. This makes it surprisingly easy to maneuver on thick carpeting despite the lack of floorhead height adjustment. You can use it as an upright, stick, or handheld vacuum by removing or rearranging the position of the motor unit, floorhead, and wand.
Unfortunately, this vacuum's maximum battery life of roughly half an hour is very short by the standards of other high-end cordless vacuums, so you'll have to work fast when cleaning larger rooms. Its dirt compartment is also relatively small for a vacuum of this type, and as a result, you'll need to empty it often. This basic variant only comes with a dusting brush, crevice tool, and upholstery tool; you have to upgrade to the more expensive 'Cat & Dog' variant if you want a turbo brush attachment and a filter with a HEPA rating. That said, the standard filter is rated as able to trap 99.98% of fine particulate matter, which will be more than sufficient for most people without serious allergies.
While Miele and Dyson's vacuums tend to occupy a similar premium price point, their offerings target different uses. Dyson specializes in lightweight cordless vacuums with a broad attachment set, while Miele focuses mainly on better-built canister models that are a superior option for longer cleaning sessions. You can see our recommendations for the best Dyson vacuums.
SEBO and Miele are both high-end German marques specializing in durable, high-performance vacuums. SEBO's offerings focus more on ease of maintenance and lower ownership costs, while Miele vacuums are usually sleeker in design and tend to be a little easier to use. Availability is a point in Miele's favor, with many of their models being available at most big-box retailers, while a lot of SEBOs can only be purchased directly from the manufacturer or specialized vacuum stores.
Miele offers a wide range of vacuum cleaners, though their canister lineup is the broadest. Miele vacuums are usually easier to maintain and have far more quality-of-life features than most Shark or BISSELL vacuums. They also deliver similarly strong performance on a variety of surfaces compared to alternatives from other high-end brands like Dyson and feel much better built, but their selection of included attachments tends to be a lot smaller.
Miele has a diverse lineup of vacuums, and their naming convention can sometimes be confusing.
Cordless Stick Models
Common Trim/Equipment Levels
Some of these trims are only available on some models or have slightly differing accessories bundled in the box, while others have specific designations that aren't noted here.
Apr 24, 2023: Added Miele Classic C1 Cat & Dog PowerLine as the new 'Best Mid-Range Miele Vacuum' pick. Selected Miele Classic C1 Pure Suction PowerLine as 'Best Budget Miele Vacuum' and Miele Complete C3 Brilliant PowerLine as 'Best Miele Vacuum' pick.
Miele specializes in manufacturing a wide range of high-end household appliances. Their range of vacuum cleaners mainly focuses on canister models of both the bagged and bagless variety, but they've recently branched out into building cordless stick and robot vacuums. Generally, Miele vacuums are pricier than alternatives but offer a wide range of thoughtful quality-of-life features, strong cleaning performance, and premium build quality.