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HomeReviewDyson V12s Detect Slim Submarine review: Almost the 'Dyson' wet mop we...

Dyson V12s Detect Slim Submarine review: Almost the 'Dyson' wet mop we have been waiting for

Dyson V12s Detect Slim Submarine review: Almost the 'Dyson' wet mop we have been waiting for

Dyson’s first cordless mopping vacuum cleaner is finally here, in the form of the V12s Detect Slim Submarine. If you’re feeling a sense of deja vu here, I don’t blame you – the new mop/cleaner hybrid is essentially an upgrade to the 2021 Dyson V12 Detect Slim.

Like its predecessor, the V12s comes with a combination tool, hair screw tool, and crevice tool. The Complete version also comes with a motorbar cleaner head and a floor dock. But it does have two new head attachments that set it apart – an improved Fluffy Optic head that now has doubles the laser power to reveal dirt, dusts and hair even more clearly, and of course, the eponymous Submarine head. Oh, and it also comes with a HEPA filter, which the V12 lacks. In essense, it's also very similar feature-wise to the V15, but without the far higher suction power.

I really want to focus primarily on the V12s function as a mop with the new Submarine head, so I won’t go too much in detail about the rest of its vacuum capabilities since the V12s performs almost uncannily like the V12 in these aspects (I’ve spent the last couple of months keeping my home clean with both). But suffice to say, both cleaners will display the amount of dirt particles collected on the LCD display and both have similar battery lifespan of about 40 to 50 minutes when cleaning my house floor (est. 1270 sq ft).

In short, if you already have the V12 Detect Slim, there’s really not much reason to get the V12s unless you want the Submarine head. Because here’s the kicker; the Submarine head will simply not work with the older V12. Both are simply not compatible with the other – the V12 reported that its airway is blocked when I tried to. It’s also the reason why Dyson has not made the Submarine head available separately, but I wonder if this was solvable by way of a firmware update? But alas, unlike its air purifier range and even the new 360 Vis Nav robot vacuum cleanerthat can be connected to the Internet and update its firmware, Dyson has chosen to not build such a feature into the cordless vacuum cleaners – yet.

Anyway, I digress. How does the Submarine perform?

The Submarine – essentially consisting of a wet roller head, a water tank and a waste tray – is developed to address an array of cleaning challenges, from semi-dry spills to the daily mopping of hard floors. Yet, during a period of my testing with it (which also meant cleaning the house more than usual in the name of ‘test’), a design quirk emerged: the unsealed waste tray potentially leads to spills as it fills. To prevent this, I developed a level of “finesse” when mopping – no hard swerving and no knocking of the Submarine to objects or furniture. But this level of focus is hard work, and does make the traditional, albeit more laborious, way of mopping more stress-free.

This is compounded by the LED display's limitation, which only indicates clean water levels, leaving users guessing about the volume of dirty water collected. The V12s is simply powering the Submarine and does nothing intelligent with it. Moreover, as the wet roller continues cleaning, I discovered that at some point it can start to leave water streaks, which is especially obvious if you have white marble floors like my home. I’ve learnt to live with it and to be fair, I am not too bothered by it after a while – the Submarine keeps my floor clean, and any dirt or dried-on stains were easily cleaned. In short, it gets the job done and well. I also realised I’m saving a lot more water with the Submarine too, as compared to traditional mopping methods.

Cleaning the Submarine is easy and hassle-free too. Simply slide the water tank out of the head to top up more water. The roller head can easily slide out of its placement and be washed under running water and with your hands (no, you cannot dunk it into your washing machine).

My review unit, the Dyson V12s Detect Slim Submarine Complete, has an original SRP of $1,399(while the the standard edition goes for S$1,299) and that could be hard to stomach if you already are an original V12 owner. But Dyson does do plenty of promotions for their products, and the same model (as of writing) is now available for a 11.11 promo of $1,049. This is a pretty attractive price point, and I would recommend the V12s in a heartbeat, especially for first-time Dyson buyers or for owners of older models who want a single-solution wet and dry vacuum cleaner. For existing V12 owners, perhaps it’s more prudent to wait out for the next Submarine update.

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