Normally you would expect consumer satisfaction with a vacuum brand to go down as breakage rates go up. But when more than 33,000 of our readers told us about their vacuums, that wasn’t always the case. Sure, they were happy with their Shark and Kirby uprights, which in our survey make the more reliable uprights. But when it came to Miele uprights, that logic didn’t track.

Although the Mieles were more prone to breaking than several other brands of uprights, complete satisfaction rates soared to 65 percent, considerably higher than any other brand of upright. “We will never even consider another brand,” a typical owner of a Miele upright told us.

We asked our survey team for an explanation. They found that Miele owners’ satisfaction seems to be far less affected even when problems occur. “Miele performance is so good that even if people experience a problem, they are still highly satisfied,” explains Steven Witten, CR’s director of Survey Research. “And those who have no problems have satisfaction levels so much higher than owners of other brands that it pulls Miele’s overall satisfaction score up.”

Many owners of Riccar uprights are also very satisfied with their vacuum, despite it being a less reliable brand.

With canisters, Miele and Panasonic are among the more reliable brands and Electrolux is among the least reliable.

The chart below compares owner satisfaction with upright vacuums to estimated breakage rates. For more information on vacuum reliability and performance see our full vacuum ratings and recommendations.