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Cover image for Giving my Vacuum a "Laser" Upgrade
Chai Jia Xun
Chai Jia Xun

Posted on • Originally published at on

Giving my Vacuum a "Laser" Upgrade

Dyson just announced the v15, an upgrade to their vacuum series, and one of the most notable additions was a new laser feature that would help you see all the dust that you were too lazy to vacuum up. Honestly this would have seemed like a really cool idea and somewhat magical to me. Except that a previous cheap vacuum I owned achieved this same effect by placing some LEDs on the front of the device and it worked pretty well too.

Now I do own a Dyson v7, and I believe it’s possible to upgrade just the head without having to fork over 700 bucks to Dyson for a completely new vacuum. It would only be 120, but that is still an expense that I wasn’t willing to pay for what was effectively a green LED. (Also it's sold out right now.) So I figured I’d do it myself. After all, if I insist that all it is is an LED, what’s stopping me from sticking an LED strip to my current vacuum?

Giving my Vacuum a
Left: official v15, Right: "v15" at home

The planning process

Step 1: LED strip, batteries and wires I reckon.

Step 2: Hot glue

Step 3: ???

Step 4: Profit

Build process

Not that I really needed to test this, but I threw some LEDs I had lying around onto a breadboard and wired them up in parallel. Then I found a spare battery housing I had lying around the house. Finally I stuck 4 rechargeable AA batteries in it and turned it on.

Giving my Vacuum a
yep, electricity still works

Next I needed to find a way to make a strip of LEDs. I could have just gotten a cheap 5050 5v LED strip off eBay or Aliexpress, but I was not in a spending money sort of mood today. Instead, I had this perfboard lying around which happened to be just about the right size for my vacuum head. The next step was just soldering the bits together. I used the excess of the LED legs as wires.

Giving my Vacuum a
LEDs, Resistors and Soldering

Next up is to cut the perfboard to size and put some masking tape on the front of my dyson so that I don’t actually damage it by sticking this abomination to it.

Giving my Vacuum a

Finally, we test the light and see how well it illuminates the dust.

Giving my Vacuum a
It works surprisingly well!

Step ???, Hot glue gun

Giving my Vacuum a

Luckily for me, the battery holder had a built in switch, so I didn't need to install a switch, but that would have been pretty easy to fix as well.

Giving my Vacuum a
And here's a gif of it in action


Cost : effectively $0 and 1 hour.

This works just as well as the $120 version that Dyson provides on their website. I guess I get to keep my money.

Giving my Vacuum a
Seems like it's pretty popular too

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