Vacuum Types to Consider

Vacuum cleaners can be a big investment, and if they turn out to be too heavy and cumbersome or not powerful enough, they can be a disappointment. Alternatively, scroll down to see our reviews of the best models—from budget to high-end, lightweight to heavy-duty—that we tested and recommend. As always, a little research can go a long way toward assisting you in finding one that suits your needs; for that, continue reading below to discover the best vacuum for you.

Upright: When you think of a vacuum cleaner, you probably think of upright models. These tilt-and-push designs are available in both bagged and bagless versions. They’re typically used for deep-cleaning carpets, but if you want to use one on hardwood floors, look for options that allow you to turn the brush roll off. They’re also known for being heavier and less versatile than canister vacuums, but there are plenty of lightweight and multi-purpose uprights to choose from.

Canister: These vacuums have a tank and hose that can accommodate a variety of attachments, allowing you to clean just about anything, including ceiling corners and stairwells. Some models, however, can be cumbersome to transport around the house.

They also use a rotating brush to remove dirt and debris, though their suction power is typically lower. They are, however, excellent for quick cleaning around the house, and some even convert to a handheld vacuum. Stick vacuums are similar to upright vacuums but are much slimmer and lighter.

Handheld vacuums are lightweight and portable, making cleaning around the couch, car, and tight corners a breeze. We recommend cordless models in particular for added portability. Look for a 20-volt machine if you want something powerful enough to pick up debris in the shop.

Their power, like that of many other stick and handheld vacuums, won’t be enough to replace an upright or canister vacuum, but they can be useful for daily cleaning to save time. Robot: These intelligent, cordless machines can be controlled remotely and programmed to clean even when you aren’t at home. Prices range from $200 to over $1,000, so read our reviews of four of the best robot vacuums we tested if you’re looking for more options. They’re equipped with a variety of technologies, including bump-and-go and lidar (light detection and range) floor mapping.

More Vacuums: 9 Shop Vacs to Spiff Up Your Workshop | The Best Vacuums for Pet Hair | The Dyson Models You Should Buy

Is it better to have a corded or cordless phone?

The technology behind cordless stick vacuums is improving, but they’ll cost a lot more to get the same power as corded vacuums, and their batteries are less reliable in the long run. If cordless models allow you to clean better and more frequently, they may be worth the investment. However, there are some drawbacks to consider. If you hate tripping over the vacuum cord or find that it doesn’t reach certain corners in your house, a cordless vacuum can be a game changer. A cordless vacuum may only last half as long as a comparable corded model, according to Wirecutter, and you should expect to pay up to three times the price for a cordless model to get comparable power to a plug-in version.

How Did We Choose and Rate Them?

Finally, we took into account customer feedback from retailers such as Amazon and Walmart. We also sought advice from the Cleaning Lab of the Good Housekeeping Institute, which is based on ASTM standard test methods for evaluating vacuum models. We tested handheld and robot vacuums on carpeted, laminated, and bare surfaces, cleaning up dust, dirt, and a special debris mixture. We relied on our previous testing and eight expert sources to compile this list of the best vacuums.

Upright Vacuum is a popular vacuum cleaner.

Specifications

  • Upright and corded
  • 1.3 L Dirt Capacity
  • 14 pound weight

Shark offers a generous five-year warranty despite its low price of around $150. For cleaning hard surfaces, the brush roll can be turned off. For the past six years, it has been Wirecutter’s top pick for an upright vacuum. Its bagless, two-in-one design makes it more versatile than some upright models, which we like. The main pod detaches to be used as a canister vacuum, and it includes extendable accessories for cleaning hard-to-reach areas. The Navigator Lift-Away is known to outperform much more expensive models.

  • Canister and upright vacuum cleaner in one
  • Brush roll is switched off.
  • At 14 pounds, it’s a little heavy.

The Most Economical Upright

Specifications

  • Upright and corded
  • 1 L Dirt Capacity
  • 12 pound weight

It can handle tangles of pet hair thanks to its powerful suction and brush roll design. It has a 4.7-star rating on Amazon, thanks to nearly 22,000 reviews. The Cleanview does not have a bag, but it does have a washable filter that helps trap dust. It also cleans hardwood floors without scattering hard bits and crumbs across the room thanks to scatter-free technology. The 6-foot hose and other tools can be used to reach stairwells and ceiling corners. Consider the Bissell Cleanview if you’re on a tight budget but still want a full-size vacuum.

  • Scatter-free technology is ideal for cleaning hardwood floors.
  • Affordability
  • Not recommended for carpets.

Brush Rolling at its Finest

Specifications

  • Upright and corded
  • 1.5 quarts of dirt capacity
  • 16 pound weight

This vacuum not only performed well in the cleaning test, but it was also one of the quietest models tested by Good Housekeeping. It has all of the expected accessories to convert from upright to canister use, and we love that the vacuum is sealed with a washable HEPA filter. Shark Apex has the best self-cleaning brush roll that can handle both carpets and hard floors.

  • Brush roll DuoClean Cleaning by itself
  • Design with two upright canisters
  • Complete Anti-Allergen Sealing Technology

For a Variety of Floor Types

Specifications

  • Upright and corded
  • 1 L Dirt Capacity
  • 15 pound weight limit

Dyson is well-known for producing powerful, albeit pricey, vacuum cleaners. When you move from a carpeted to a hardwood floor, the cleaner head will automatically adjust. However, not all of the brand’s models may be out of your price range. For those who want a single machine to clean a variety of floor types, this upright corded vacuum is a great investment at $400. The vac comes with a five-year warranty and features Dyson’s ball technology for easy steering.

  • Adjustable Pile Height
  • Simple steering
  • Expensive
  • hefty

Canister vacuum with a lot of power

Specifications

  • Type: corded canister
  • 3.5 L Dirt Capacity
  • 18 pound weight

Wirecutter and Good Housekeeping both gave the Miele Complete C3 Series high marks. This Compact C2 model is slightly less expensive than the C3 models, but it still packs a punch for the money. The 1,200-watt Miele motor is impressively powerful, and the C2 comes with HEPA filtration, six suction settings, three clip-on accessory attachments, and a parquet floor head.

  • a strong motor
  • There are numerous settings and attachments to choose from.

Best Canister Vacuum for the Money

Specifications

  • Type: corded canister
  • 2.5 L Dirt Capacity
  • 8 pound weight

All of the filters and components are also simple to remove and clean. The 8-pound machine is easy to pick up and carry around the house, and thanks to the automatic recoil, the long 16-foot cord won’t get in the way. If you’re set on getting a canister model, the Eureka WhirlWind is a promising option that won’t break the bank at under $100. It’s simple to empty the dust bin because it’s bagless.

  • Affordability
  • Automatic recoil on a long cord
  • Some attachments are missing.

Cordless Stick Vacuum with All the Features

Specifications

  • Stick type: cordless
  • 0.9 L Dirt Capacity
  • 6 pound weight

When it comes to a cordless stick vacuum with sufficient power, both Good Housekeeping and Wirecutter recommend Dyson’s V11 series. This Dyson also has a Dynamic Load Sensor, which can switch between motor speeds for different surfaces automatically. Despite being one of the more expensive options on this list, you won’t be able to argue that all of the extra features aren’t worth the money. The V11 Torque is the most powerful model in the line, with a high-torque head with stiff nylon bristles for deep cleaning and an LED screen to switch between cleaning modes. The charging dock provides a convenient location to mount it to the wall for easy storage and charging when not in use.

  • Long battery life of 60 minutes
  • Excellent filtration
  • Suction and power adjustments are made automatically.

Best Cordless Vacuum for the Money

Specifications

  • Type: cordless, upright
  • 1 L Dirt Capacity
  • 9 pound weight

If you’re looking for a more affordable cordless vacuum, the Hoover ONEPWR is a good option. It’s slim and light, weighing in at under 9 pounds, and it works on a variety of surfaces. This vacuum is a powerful hair and dirt remover for pet-friendly homes, with an antimicrobial pet filter and brush roll that is completely removable for easy cleaning.

  • Affordability
  • Large capacity for dirt
  • There are no attachments.

The Best Vacuum Cleaner for Handhelds

Specifications

  • Handheld and cordless
  • 75 mL Dirt Capacity
  • 2.4 pound weight

In our testing, this 20-volt battery-powered Dustbuster provided plenty of power to suck up dust and debris for your home, workshop, and car, weighing in at under 3 pounds. It has a nozzle that extends an additional 7.5 inches for greater reach, which we like. It’s also simple to empty and has high and low settings.

  • Nozzle that can be extended
  • There are two speeds available.
  • Every 6 to 9 months, the filter should be replaced.

The Best Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Specifications

  • Robot type
  • 0.4 L Dirt Capacity
  • 12 pound weight

This Roborock can vacuum and mop in addition to vacuuming in efficient routes. Its most useful feature for pet owners, however, is that it understands how to avoid poop. The Roborock S6 MaxV comes with a powerful set of features, including a Reactive AI obstacle avoidance system, lidar, and vSLAM (Visual Simultaneous Localization and Mapping), all of which work together to locate and navigate around objects in your home while also creating sophisticated maps.

  • Learns how to read floor plans and avoid stumbling blocks.
  • For pet owners, poop avoidance technology is available.

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