Buying a new vacuum cleaner can be a confusing proposition. There are so many brands, styles and models to choose from, all claiming to be the best at cleaning up after families and tackling pet hair. And they come in prices that range from less than $100 to well over $1,000. Choosing the best vacuum cleaner for you and your home means thinking about more than just how easy it is to maneuver, what tools it comes with and how much suction it has. Consider what surfaces you’ll be vacuuming, how your home is laid out and whether you prefer a model that’s bagged or bagless, corded or cordless.
APEX Upright Vacuum Cleaner
If you prefer bagless vacuums, but still want a model that filters out tiny particles, the Shark APEX is a great option. In our most recent Cleaning Lab test, exhibited very good cleaning performance on both carpeting and bare floors and was one of the quietest models we tested.
Because it converts from an upright to a canister with the press of a button, tackling stairs and nabbing pesky dust bunnies lurking in corners or hiding behind furniture is easy to do without missing a step. We like that the entire vacuum is sealed for better dust retention and that the HEPA filter, unlike others that need replacing, is washable. Pet owners will appreciate the brush roll that’s designed to minimize messy hair tangles.
AirRam Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner
This cordless stick vacuum ran for a full 37 minutes in our Lab tests and was among the quietest we tried. We also like that the handle lays flat on the ground (by rotating it at the base), which makes it easier to vacuum under furniture and in other tough-to-reach places. The dust cup is well-placed and easy to empty. Keep in mind that it doesn’t come with any attachments and isn’t able to be converted to a handheld vacuum, but for simplicity and performance, it’s a winner.
Pet Hair Eraser Turbo Plus Upright Vacuum Cleaner
This vacuum cleaner addresses all of pet owners’ greatest woes, and it comes fully loaded with features that’ll suck up every last bit of unwanted pet hair. A tangle-free brush roll keeps pet hair from clogging the bristles, and a hair spooling system inside the canister contains the mess so emptying is easier and cleaner.
Its sealed allergen system traps fine particles, and the filter uses Febreze technology to eliminate those stale odors that vacuuming up pet hair can generate.
Roomba s9+ Robot Vacuum
In our Cleaning Lab tests, the Roomba 9+ picked up 99% of the uncooked oatmeal, sand, baking soda and small nuts and screws we spread on hard floors. It can map and remember multiple rooms and floor plans and it beat all other robot vacuums for quickly and effectively spot cleaning a small area. It detects carpet automatically to ramp up suction only when needed, and its dual rubber roller brushes won’t clog with pet hair like bristles have a tendency to do.
When it’s finished cleaning, the vacuum returns to its charging base, and dirt is automatically transferred into a large-capacity bag for mess-free disposal (it seals completely before you toss to keep dust and dirt contained).
S7 Robot Vacuum and Mop Cleaner
Robots that vacuum and mop are all the rage, but the Roborock S7 stood out for how thoroughly it covered our test areas — barely missing a speck of the debris we put down and navigating smoothly around obstacles we placed in its path. It’s fully featured and easy to use. The smartphone app was helpful and easy to navigate. In mopping mode, the Roborock uses sound waves to scrub stuck-on stains from bare floors, and the pad automatically lifts when it senses carpet to keep from wetting it as it vacuums.
V15 Detect Cordless Vacuum – Dyson
While the Dyson V15 Detect bears a striking family resemblance to other Dyson models we have recommended, it has some significant innovations that earned it a 2021 Good HousekeepingBest Cleaning Product Award. Selected as one of the best stick vacuums, the V15 conquered dirt and microscopic dust. In our review, we were very impressed with the bare floor brush that beamed a laser on the floor to spot and pick up even the tiniest bits of debris that were otherwise invisible to us. We also liked the assortment of cleaning tools that accompany the vacuum as well as the clear LCD display that indicates battery life and real-time performance like particle pick up.
Three powerful suction modes — eco, medium or auto, and boost — allow you to adjust the suction up or down to grab heavy dirt or protect delicate rugs as you move through your house. In auto mode, the vacuum senses whether it’s on bare floor or carpet and adjusts the power and runtime accordingly. It’s cordless and has a 60-minute run time, so the only reason you’ll need to stop cleaning is because the job is done!