vacuums
  • Best of Year 2012
  • Editors' Choice

Eureka Mighty Mite 3670G Review

It’s still the same straight suction, bagged canister design that debuted back when Happy Days was still on TV.

$89.00
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Introduction

In 1982, the Eureka Mighty Mite debuted to accolades from adoring fans. Time named it one of the ten best product designs of the year, and customers snapped the little cleaners up as fast as the factory could make them.

Thirty years later, the Mighty Mite is a survivor. Though it has received some minor cosmetic updates and now sells for $89 ($60 on sale), it’s still the same straight suction, bagged canister design that debuted back when Happy Days was still on TV.

Its easy to see why not much has changed. When used as intended, the Mighty Mite is an excellent vacuum. As long as you don’t mind that it’s a little rough around the edges and keep it away from high pile carpet, it’ll deliver the same performance as similar units that cost five times as much.

Design & Usability

Built tough, but doesn’t weigh a ton.

The bright Mighty Mite is made of hard, thick plastic, yet it only weighs just over nine pounds. While its hose and wand are of a thinner grade than units made in years past, it still feels extremely substantial. That said, it may have won design awards in the early ‘80s, but it’s not going to win any beauty contests today.

It may have won design awards in the early '80s, but it's not going to win any beauty contests today.

The brush head glides over wood floors and can be adjusted to roll over carpet. It’s not perfect, but it does the job. Unfortunately, on high carpet the whole setup slides around like a Ford Mustang wearing summer tires in an icy parking lot. By comparison, the Miele S2121 remains stable and feels like twice the vacuum of the Eureka; it’s also five times the price.

Unfortunately, there’s no retractable cord on this machine. Instead, it must be wound up on two pegs beneath the canister. We bet that even the most conscientious cleaners will be tempted to bundle up the cord and toss it in the closet, unwound. Similarly, the plastic wand can only be extended by adding another piece—one that will surely get lost in the back of a closet after a few months of disuse.

The Mighty Mite’s bag setup is so simple, it almost works. Just sit the bag inside of the open canister, making sure that none of the corners of the bag are caught on the canister’s lip. Close the front of the machine, and you’re ready to go. When it’s time to change the bag, fold over a tab on the front of the bag and it will almost seal shut for disposal. It’s not as elegant as some of the self-sealing bags we’ve tested, but it does the trick better than a bagless machine—which will often leave a cloud of dust and dirt when they’re emptied.

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Features & Performance

Incredibly effective at getting dirt off floors and out of low-pile carpets.

It provided performance as good as vacuums that cost five times as much.

This straight-suction vacuum was designed for use on short carpets and hardwood floors, and that’s where it excels. On those tests, we found it provided performance as good as vacuums that cost five times as much. Short carpet, hardwood and debris pickup are all exceptional. There’s no powered brush, though, so forget about carpet, which needs a moving brushroll to agitate out the dirt.

As for noise, however, this little machine had quite the high-pitched whine to it. You'll know when it's turned on, as will nearby kids and pets.

Conclusion

Still a bargain 30 years later.

For thirty years, the Eureka Mighty Mite has been a household name for compact, straight suction canisters...assuming your household is fanatical about vacuum cleaners, that is. Found on sale for $60, the Mite certainly proved Mighty in our tests, outperforming vacuums that cost hundreds more. Just don’t try to use it on high carpet, and you’ll likely be impressed, too.

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