Best Cordless Vacuum Cleaner Reviews
Your Ultimate Guide
Cordless Vacuums are great because there are no cords that get in the way, get knotted up or trip if you’re not careful plus these only weigh less than 10 pounds – perfect for spot cleaning.
We’ll feature all types of cordless cleaners and how to choose the right one for your cleaning needs. You’ll also find a review section that explains how each vacuum works, its strengths and weaknesses and how it’ll help in cleaning different parts of your home. You’ll even find out how each one performs on different surfaces such as carpet, hard floor and rugs.
And without further ado here’s the comparison chart of 5 of the best cordless vacuums available today based on the factors laid out below:
Do you need something more specific?
The list above is broad and includes a mix of handhelds and stick vacs but don’t worry, I’ve prepared something more targeted based on factors such as the surface you’ll clean on, type of dirt that needs to be removed, budget, and much more. Stand by as I work on the pages, I’ll update it as soon as I can.
Keys in Comparing the Top Cordless Vacuums
- Battery – states the type of battery whether it uses an older nicad or a modern lithium ion plus how much voltage it cranks out. Take note that battery voltage will not accurately reflect on the power, it merely tells you how much volts the motor needs to function. Refer to the air watts for suction power
- Charge time – how long it takes to fully charge – numbers are based on either manufacturer claims or customer reviews to give you a baseline figure
- Run time – how long the charge will last – these are also based on either manufacturer claims or customer reviews to give you a baseline figure
- Power (Air Watts) – It measures the suction power directly on the vacuum inlet and not from the motor. If you’re a gearhead think of it this way watts = bhp, air watts = wheel hp, bhp measures power from the crank, wheel horsepower measures power directly from the wheels
- Motorized brush – this is a powered brush that helps the vacuum pick up more stubborn dirt like pet hair off hard floor and carpet. A must have if you want to remove hair and dust
- Attachments – lets you know if it has any attachment included in the package such as a pet hair, crevice or brush tool, the type of charger included and if it has any extra batteries
- Cleaning Path – this refers to the width of the cleaning head where all the dirt gets sucked in
- Weight – how heavy the product is (in pounds)
- Price – Since prices in amazon change frequently because of promotions, availability and various other reasons, we will not list the prices. Refer to these instead – $ = below $50, $$ = $51 – $100, $$$ = $101 to $200, $$$$ = $201 and up
- Rating – Rating in amazon
Do I really need a cordless when I already have a corded one?
A cordless cleaner isn’t meant to fully replace a corded vacuum because it isn’t as powerful. Even models with the best run times give you around 45 minutes max per charge so you cannot realistically expect this to clean the whole house in a single charge.
Fully carpeted homes will need at least one upright or a canister that has enough power to deep clean. A cordless only becomes a necessity if you need to spot clean an area in your home. It also comes in handy if you want to tidy up your car’s interior.
For homes with hard wood floors, it is plausible to only use cordless because no deep cleaning is needed.
What is the best cordless vacuum to buy?
There isn’t a one size fits all model that’s the best, you’ll have to look at your needs.
Are you primarily using it to clean floors? What type of floor does your home have? carpet, tiled or wood? There are vacuums designed specifically for non-carpet like the Dyson Hard and there are more versatile models that can work on both carpet and hard surfaces like the GTech AirRam.
Do you have pets? Then you’ll need something that won’t clog up easily and has enough power to suck up pet hair. To remove pet hair on upholstery, you’ll a vacuum equipped with a flexible hose like the Black & Decker BDH2000FL, or something that has a motorized brush like the Dyson DC44.
Are you using this in your vehicle? Then look for something small and lightweight that’s easy to carry around and can fit in tight areas, particularly areas between and under the seats.
What to look for?
Look at the list above and compare features such as power, battery life, charging time, weight, etc. We’ve gathered all these information from different sources so you don’t need to go back and forth between sites just to look for it. All you need to do is read the reviews, compare the features and then make an informed choice before splurging on your next purchase.
We’ve created a guide to help you understand the features listed and how to use that information to narrow down which one to buy.
Remember to always look at the facts first before believing in all the hype that you see on TV and on Youtube.
Here’s a short review of the top 5 cordless vacs
A glance at the features, strengths, weaknesses and why they rank as such:
Our Pick – Dyson DC44
Dyson is probably one of the more popular vacuum brands in our generation because of its futuristic looks. The DC44 combines this futuristic style and functionality albeit a very high cost – close to 400 bucks. But you get a lot for your money – a total of 5 attachments at your disposal to help clean every nook and cranny of your home.
You get one full sized floor attachment to clean floors and stairs, a mini motorized tool for upholstery, a crevice tool for crevices, a brush tool for taking off dust and a wand that turns this into a stick vacuum.
Features at a glance:
- 22.2 volt nickel cobalt manganese battery
- 20 minute run time (8 minutes on max)
- 5-1/2 hour charge time
- Floor attachment can be swiveled
- Carbon fibre brushes remove static filled dust
What makes the DC44 stand out from the rest?
If you look past the style, there is a lot of functionality that comes along with this product. First you have two attachments with motorized brushes – this is the only cordless vacuum that has this, others only have one. The design of the brush roll also in itself unique to Dyson – it has two brushes, one made from soft carbon fibre that picks up statically charged dust and a stiffer nylon that agitates more stubborn debris trapped in carpet.
Are there any potential issues or downfalls?
The biggest issue I see here is the price, 400 bucks is a lot to fork out for a cordless and a lot of people aren’t willing or simply can’t afford it – one solution is getting a refurbished unit from Amazon for a hundred bucks off and it comes with a 6-month warranty. Other issues you may encounter is the rather small dirt bin and a non-locking trigger that you need to squeeze for the unit to function.
Update (Jan. 28, 2014): Just published a review on the Dyson DC59, their latest cordless vacuum that has 3 times more power, half a pound lighter, a few inches longer and Dyson was able to extend its run time to 26 minutes.
The Best HandHeld – Black & Decker Platinum BDH2000FL
At first glance, the BDH2000FL doesn’t look anything like a cordless vacuum but the weird design has a purpose – portable cleaning! It has a 4-foot hose that you can pop out and use to clean up your car’s interior or the creases around your sofa bed. The 20-volt lithium battery gives you roughly 15 to 20 minutes of run time that will take 5 hours to recharge.
Features at a glance:
- 20-volt lithium ion battery
- 5 hour charge time
- 4 foot flexible hose
- Pet hair attachment
Why did this make it to this list?
The unique design of the hose is clever and adds to the versatility – pop it back in if you’re cleaning wide open areas like your floors or tables but if you need to get in tight spots like your car’s interior the flexible hose comes in handy. It also has a pet hair tool that helps you clean pet hair off upholstery.
Are there any potential issues?
Biggest issue at least for the long term is the built-in battery. As with most battery powered tools – this can be the weak link if it breaks pre-maturely. Fortunately the B&D Platinum series comes with a 3-year warranty so you’re guaranteed at least 3 years of service life.
Looking for a Floor Cleaner? – GTech AirRam
The GTech AirRam is a relative newcomer in the market so don’t be surprised that it has less than 50 reviews so far in Amazon. But in the UK it is one of the bestselling cordless vacuums with rave reviews from different publications like the Daily Mail. You can also read reviews from UK-based sites like Amazon.co.uk, Argos, Lakeline and John Lewis.
Features at a glance
- 22-volt lithium ion battery
- 40-minute run time
- 3-hour charge time
- 45-degree swivel
- only 7.7 pounds
Why did the AirRam make it here?
Nick Gray, founder of GTech was able to minimize power loss by moving the motor all the way down to the base, as close as possible to the inlet where all the dirt comes in. By doing this air doesn’t have to go through a long hose or tube. This design minimizes power loss.
Moving the motor down allows it to be as close as possible to the motorized brush where it is powered directly by a drive belt, this ensures maximum power delivery. This allows the brush to spin faster and is able to pick up more dirt in the process. In fact GTech claims that the AirRam will produce enough power that matches, if not exceed that of an upright vac while using less electricity. This is a lofty claim but reviews have backed this up.
One other innovation they’ve developed is using air to compress dirt into “bales”. This in theory makes it less-messy to dispose though I’ve read reviews that say otherwise.
Are there any potential issues?
Biggest issue would be the price, hovering around $300 but still cheaper than the Dyson DC44.
This is strictly a floor vacuum since it doesn’t have any attachment that comes along with it and the wide base won’t fit in tighter spaces, so you may need a smaller handheld vacuum for these spots.
Battery is quite expensive at around $80 so if it breaks after the warranty period it’s a big ouch.
Overall this is a very good stick vacuum that will clean your bare floor and carpet all the way to the edges. If you own a small home, apartment or even a mobile home this would be perfect for your needs.
Cleaning Edges and Corners – Rowenta Delta Force
The first thing you’ll notice about the Rowena Delta Force is the shape of the base. It has a pointed shape instead of a traditional rectangle used by other brands but that’s by design for it to be able to clean corners better. Rowenta calls this the “Delta Head”. Underneath the pointed shaped head are four wheels that makes it easy to move around.
Features at a glance
- 18 volt nickel cadmium battery
- delta head reaches corners better
- 40 minute run time
- self standing
Why did it make it to #4?
Combine the pointed head with the swivel feature and you have a good multi-purpose vacuum that you can use to clean up tough to reach spots like corners and spaces underneath tables or chairs but you may have some trouble reaching deeper spots under a bed because the body can get in the way. This will work on both bare floor and low pile carpet.
The 18-volt nicad battery has a maximum 40 minute run time on a full charge that needs around 12 to 16 hours to fully charge. You can keep this plugged if you’re not using it. But expect that number to drop when you use it on carpets or rugs. Several reviews have confirmed the 40 minute run time claimed by Rowenta.
What are the potential issues?
Since the Delta Force uses a Nickel Cadmium battery, longevity is a question mark and Rowenta recommends that if the batteries are past its service life you’ll need to bring it to a service center to have it replaced.
Though it can stand on its own, it slightly leans forward so if you have kids at home, you may want to keep this away from them so it doesn’t topple over.
At this price range, it would have been nice to have attachments to clean more areas like the sofa and chairs but it doesn’t. A lithium battery would be a great addition too.
The Old Reliable – Hoover Linx Cordless Stick
One great thing about the Hoover Platinum Linx cordless stick vac is its ability to swap batteries with the Platinum Handheld. One of a very few that has this sort of interchange-ability. If you combine the price of the two, it’ll still be over$100 below the Dyson DC44, so if you can’t afford a Dyson this is would be a very good alternative.
Features at a glance
- 18-volt lithium ion battery
- Motorized brush
- Edge cleaning bristles
What did this make it to #5?
Even though it uses a removable Lithium Ion battery, it still ranks below the Rowenta Delta Force because it doesn’t swivel and it has a shorter run time of around 15 minutes though it makes up for this with a quicker 3-hour charge time.
It is equipped with a brush roll that helps pick up dirt on carpet and edge bristles that work great on corners. Hoover in fact claims upright performance on hard floors and a lot of consumers will agree with this. As with most cordless cleaners, don’t expect deep cleaning power.
Are there any potential issues?
Even with more than 1500 5-star reviews, there are some gaping holes here. First you can’t swivel this which means less maneuverability. Second you can’t reach deep into areas under furniture because its body is bulky. And lastly, there is the issue with the handle breaking as reported by a lot of consumers.
It’s Your Turn
Now, after reading our reviews and top picks about the best cordless vacuums in the market, it’ll be up to you to pick up something that’ll meet your needs and help you keep your home as clean and as dirt free as possible and do so without breaking the budget.
Since this is a consumer product, there will always be new models that’ll be introduced every year by manufacturers so we’ll be updating the chart once that happens. If you think we’ve missed out on any particular model in our list, let us know by posting it in the comments section below – we want to be as objective as possible and appreciate your input.