The best vacuum cleaners 2021: 11 top vacuums from Dyson to Shark tested best vacuum cleaners 2021

The best vacuum cleaners you can buy today offer powerful suction, large dust bins, and in some cases, long-lasting batteries, to ensure they clean your floors as efficiently as possible. 

If you’re searching for the best hoover  – the colloquial term often used for vacuum cleaners  –  there’s a huge array of models on the market right now that go about sucking up the dust in varying ways. 

Knowing which type of vacuum cleaner is right for you can be daunting. For example, do you want one of the best cordless vacuum cleaners that run on high-power, high-capacity lithium batteries, or perhaps opting for one of the best robot vacuums to completely outsource the chore is more up your street? There are also corded, handheld, and stick vacuums to consider as well as choosing between wet and dry vacs too. 

Hoover may have been one of the first manufacturers of vacuum cleaners, hence why the brand name has become a generic term to describe these electric cleaners, but now there are a plethora of brands making the best vacuum cleaners, from well-known names such as Dyson, Vax, and Miele to unsung heroes like Shark and Bosch. 

The team at TechRadar has put in many dust-busting and cobweb-sucking hours to review and rate the best vacuum cleaners from those we’ve tested. 

UPDATE:  Dyson has unveiled two new vacuum cleaners, one of which looks set to be its best yet. The Dyson V15 Detect offers more suction power than the current Dyson V11 range and has a laser built into the cleaner head to highlight dust that’s usually invisible to the human eye ensuring a thorough clean of your home. We’ve been lucky enough to try it out, so read our Hands-On: Dyson V15 Detect review now, but we’ll be putting this cordless vacuum cleaner thoroughly through its paces very soon to see if it can better the results the Dyson V11 range achieves.

At the same time, it has also unveiled the Dyson Omni-glide, it’s smallest, light cordless stick vacuum that can be maneuvered in any direction. Check out our initial thoughts in the Hands-On: Dyson Omni-glide review, but just like the V15 Detect will be putting it properly to the test very soon. 

Best vacuum cleaners of 2021

Dyson V11 Absolute vacuum cleaner

(Image credit: Dyson)

1. Dyson V11 Absolute

The Absolute best vacuum you can buy

Specifications

Power supply: Cordless

Weight: 3.3kg

Bin size: 0.76L

Run-time: Up to 60 minutes

Reasons to buy

+Powerful Suction+Light-weight and maneuverable+Informative LCD Screen

Reasons to avoid

Expensive

  • Will there be a Dyson V12? Check out what we think Dyson’s next vacuum will offer

Adding another integer and two years of R&D to its V-series cordless range, Dyson’s V11 Absolute takes another giant leap forward for vacuum cleaner kind. It’s more potent than its best-in-class predecessor, cleans even better on all surfaces, is quieter, and has a properly marathon run-time of over 40 minutes on the seriously capable Auto power mode.

The powered tools ooze design class and hard-earned experience in the field, with the mini motorized tool easily outperforming air-powered equivalents, and the adaptability of the vacuum when you pair the torque head with the Auto mode makes the V11 Absolute easy to use as well as powerful. It also has an LCD screen, a first for Dyson, which tells you the exact run-time remaining, where blockages are located and how to clear them.

The V11 Absolute doesn’t come cheap, but we think it’s worth the money if you want simply the best cordless vacuum cleaner available today.

Read our full review: Dyson V11 Absolute

Roidmi S1E vacuum cleaner

(Image credit: Future)

2. Roidmi S1E

Style backed up with substance

Specifications

Power supply: Cordless

Weight: 2.4kg

Bin size: 0.4L

Run time: Up to 40 minutes

Reasons to buy

+Super lightweight+Quiet+Sleek Design

Reasons to avoid

Suction could be stronger

Roidmi has won no less than six design awards for its innovative S-series cleaners, and with a 270-degree handle they’re as functional as they are good-looking. The Roidmi S1E is the entry-level vacuum in the S series, and while it can’t pack the suction punch of our top dust busters it comes in at fraction of the price of those.

It’s lightweight, and easy to carry and use in both stick cleaner or handheld mode, and it comes with a good selection of tools, including a motorized mattress brush to make upholstery cleaning easy. The S1E excels noise-wise too, as even though its decibel levels are similar to other cordless vacuums, its softer tone feels less intrusive, and you can chat while cleaning without having to shout.

The suction could be stronger, especially when it comes to deep-cleaning carpets, but with stylish looks, supreme ease of use, and a very useful run-time of 40 minutes, it’s a great everyday floorcare option.

Should I buy the Roidmi S1E?

Miele Triflex HX1

(Image credit: Miele)

3. Miele Triflex HX1 Cat & Dog review

Miele’s first cordless vacuum his as powerful as its corded models

Specifications

Power supply: Cordless

Weight: 4kg

Bin size: 0.5L

Run time: Up to 60 minutes

Reasons to buy

+Powerful suction+Can be used as a stick vacuum or a handheld cleaner+Swappable battery means fewer interruptions to your cleaning

Reasons to avoid

ExpensiveHeavy to use as a handheld cleaner

The first cordless vacuum from floor cleaning stalwart Miele is one of the best vacuum cleaners on the market right now. It’s powerful suction can easily rival Dyson’s top-of-the-range models, and it has a similar floor-sensing cleaning head, which adjusts the speed of the brush bar for a deep clean on carpets, automatically. 

However it trumps Dyson because the main unit can be moved closer to the cleaner head converting it into a cordless upright cleaner. This makes the vacuum cleaner easier to manoeuvre and means it can be left free-standing rather than having to be lent against a wall or piece of furniture. However in this mode, we did find it struggled to get under some furniture. 

The battery lasted a respectable 60 minutes between charges on the lowest power setting – although this reduced to 16 minutes when we ran it on the highest power setting. The battery can also be swapped out if you purchase an additional battery, to reduce interruptions to your cleaning (you’ll need to purchase an extra battery). It is one of the heavier cordless vacuums we’ve tested at 4kg as well as being one of the most expensive, but we think it’s worth it. 

Read our full review: Miele Triflex HX1 Cat & Dog 

LG CordZero A9 Kompressor

(Image credit: LG)

4. LG CordZero A9 Kompressor

(US and Australia only) Save time with vacuum and mop in one

Specifications

Power supply: Cordless

Weight: 2.7kg

Bin size: 0.44L

Run time: Up to 60 minutes

Reasons to buy

+Vacuums and mops very well+Comes with two swappable battery packs+Free-standing charging base

Reasons to avoid

Large debris can be an issueHeavy and unbalanced

LG’s latest cordless vacuum cleaner can mop as well as suck and at the same time, so you’ll be able to get sparkling hard floors as well as dust-free carpets with ease. The LG CordZero A9 Kompressor certainly gives our top performing Dyson’s a run for their money when it comes to suction power, although some attachments did struggle with larger debris like cereal. 

Currently only available in the US and Australia, LG says you’ll get up to 60 minutes runtime per battery in normal mode, but during testing, we got more than 70 minutes from each battery. Even on the most powerful mode, the vacuum cleaner lasted 27 minutes. 

The dustbin has a handy compress function that when the level is pulled will compact the dirt and debris in the bin, so you’ll actually be able to suck up to 2.4 times the bin’s 0.44-liter capacity before it needs emptying.  However, we did find the vacuum cleaner felt heavy and unbalanced. We struggled to suck cobwebs from ceilings for more than a few minutes because all the weight appears to be in the main unit.

The LG CordZero A9 Kompressor is expensive but offers good suction power and replaces two devices, so we think it’s worth the investment. 

Read our full review: LG CordZero A9 Kompressor

Dyson V11 Outsize vacuum cleaner

(Image credit: Dyson)

5. Dyson V11 Outsize

Better for bigger homes

Specifications

Power supply: Cordless

Weight: 3.5kg

Bin size: 1.9L

Run time: Up to 60 minutes

Reasons to buy

+Covers more ground+Much larger bin+Helpful LCD screen

Reasons to avoid

Quite heavyVery expensive

If you’ve got a bigger home, a bigger dust bin is a necessity, and thankfully the Dyson V11 outsize offers just this – at 1.9-liters it can hold 150% more debris than the Dyson V11 Absolute (above). Combine this with a wider cleaning head and you’ll never have to abandon cleaning halfway through because the vacuum cleaner 

The same suction and cleaning performance as its smaller sibling meant during testing it whipped away discarded biscuit crumbs, ground-in dirt, and even cereal and cat biscuits, almost instantly.

The High Torque cleaner head can automatically adjust the suction power needed based on the floor type, or you can opt to manually adjust it. The power settings, along with the remaining run time and any blockages and where they can be found, are displayed on the vacuum’s LCD screen. 

Considerably more expensive than the Dyson V11 Absolute, this vacuum could be worth the extra investment if it means your floor cleaning isn’t interrupted. 

Read our full review: Dyson V11 Outsize 

Lupe Pure Cordless vacuum cleaner

(Image credit: Lupe)

6. Lupe Pure Cordless

A vacum to rival Dyson from former engineers at the company

Specifications

Power supply: Cordless

Weight: 4.6Kg

Bin size: 1L

Run time: Up to 60 minutes

Reasons to buy

+Can be used as a stick vacuum or handheld cleaner+Large 0.2 gallon/1-liter dust canister means fewer interruptions to cleaning+Swappable batteries let you keep cleaning for longer

Reasons to avoid

Not the most stylish of designsBulky compared to other cordless vacuumsHandheld mode requires two hands

A relative newcomer to the floorcare market, Lupe Technology was founded by two former Dyson engineers, and their first cordless vacuum certainly rivals those from their former employer, and other rivals like Miele, when it comes to suction power. It sucked up fine dust, biscuit crumbs and cereal with ease on it’s most powerful setting, although the suction was so powerful it meant the vacuum became a little more difficult to manovre on hard floors.

The vacuum has a modular design so it can either be used as an upright cordless vacuum with either the cleaner head or a one-meter extension hose . Alternatively, the main body detaches from the main tube and floor head assembly to create a lightweight, portable vacuum for cleaning stairs or up high.

In our tests, the battery lasted just under 60 minutes on the lowest power setting, and took around 3.5 hours to fully recharge. The battery is swappable, too so if one charge isn’t enough for you to clean your whole home, you can purchase an additional battery. It’s heavy (4.6kg), and can be as loud as a diesel truck travelling at 40mph, but we think it’s worth it. 

Read our full review: Lupe Pure Cordless Vacuum Cleaner 

Dyson Cyclone V10 vacuum cleaner

(Image credit: Dyson)

7. Dyson Cyclone V10 Animal

Older but no less capable

Specifications

Power: Cordless

Weight: 2.6kg

Bin size: 0.75L

Run time: Up to 60 minutes

Reasons to buy

+Unrivaled design+Powerful suction

Reasons to avoid

Battery drains fast on highest settingExpensive

The Dyson Cyclone V10 Animal is one of the predecessors to the Dyson V11 range, and even though it’s getting on for three years old now, the vacuum cleaner can hold its own when it comes to cleaning power. With a slightly more affordable price tag than its newer sibling, although not quite as competitive as other models on the market, it’s worth considering.

From fine dust and pet hair to cereal and cat litter, the vacuum cleaner sucked up everything in its path with ease. It’s got a bin capacity to match the Dyson V11 and can equal Dyson’s newest vacuum when it comes to runtime – although this isn’t on the most powerful setting, unlike the V11. 

There’s no LCD display or High Torque cleaner head which adjusts the suction automatically based on the floor type, but it is lighter and as we’ve said already, a little cheaper too.

Read our full review: Dyson Cyclone V10 Animal

Shark DuoClean Powered Lift-Away Upright NZ801UKT vacuum cleaner

(Image credit: Shark)

8. Shark DuoClean Powered Lift-Away Upright NZ801UKT

Say goodbye to hair tangles

Specifications

Power supply: Corded

Weight: 6.5kg

Bin size: 0.71L

Cord length: 8m

Reasons to buy

+Great for pet hair+Good cleaning on all surfaces+Fantastic tool selection

Reasons to avoid

A little heavy

Another great corded option, the Shark DuoClean Powered Lift-Away Upright NZ801UK is a powerful cleaner that picks up both pet and human hair with ease – and Shark’s Anti Hair Wrap tech means fewer hairs getting tangled around the brush.

It comes with a quirky selection of tools including a car detailing kit, dolls-house sized mini tools for super-precise cleaning, and a long under-appliance tool that’s ideal for getting the fluff out from under the fridge. Sharks’ regular tools are all present and correct too, including an air-powered turbo brush.

The NZ801UKT is a little on the heavy side, but it moves over all floor types easily, and in Lift-Away mode it’s much lighter and great for stair-cleaning. If you’re looking for a corded machine that can tackle a wide array of vacuuming tasks, this Shark is a great bet.

Should I buy the Shark DuoClean Powered Lift-Away Upright NZ801UK

iRobot roomba i7+ robot vacuum cleaner

(Image credit: iRobot)

9. iRobot Roomba i7+

Automated cleaning and emptying

Specifications

Power supply: Cordless

Weight: 3.4kg

Bin size: 0.3L

Run-time: Up to 60 minutes

Reasons to buy

+Imprint Smart Mapping+Digital assistant integration+Automatically empties dust

Reasons to avoid

ExpensiveRecurring operating cost

Want to leave the vacuuming to someone else? The Roomba i7+ is the best robot vacuum you can buy in our eyes. The dust pick-up on floorboards, tiles and other hard surfaces as well as carpet is some of the best we’ve seen from a robovac. 

In fact, it’s so automated it can even empty it’s own dust bin, too. The dock will suck up and store any debris from the vacuum every time it returns to its home, storing it in a disposable bag. These bags need changing every 30 days depending upon how often the vacuum is cleaning your floors. When the bag needs replacing, you’ll get an alert on the app. This does mean there’s an on-going cost with this robot vacuum. The bags will set you back  $14.99 / £21.95 / AU$59 for three. 

It’s circular design and rotating body means it has no problems manoeuvring through narrow areas. It’s even got Alexa and Google Assistant integration so you get the cleaning started just by uttering a few words. It’ll also store maps of every room in your home in a secure area online, speeding up cleaning time too.

Read our full review: iRobot Roomba i7+

Hoover H-Upright 500 Sensor Plus vacuum cleaner

(Image credit: Hoover)

10. Hoover H-Upright 500 Sensor Plus

A time-saver thanks to its automatically adjusting head

Specifications

Power supply: Corded

Weight: 6.25kg

Bin size: 1.25L

Cord length: 10m

Reasons to buy

+ Floor sensor technology + Swivelling head 

Reasons to avoid

 Heavy up the stairs 

If you’ve got a range of different floor types in your home from carpets to laminate and floorboards, this vacuum could be the time-saver you’re looking for. It can detect the type of floor you’re cleaning and adjust the suction power and brush bar speed automatically. 

The cleaning head swivels, which ensures it glides around easily and is good for getting into nooks and crannies. It’s got a smattering of LEDs too, so you can see exactly what you’re vacuuming when the light levels are low, while the washable HEPA filter means it’s a good option for allergy sufferers too. 

We were impressed with the suction power and dust pick up on all floor types, although it struggled with larger debris like small pieces of cardboard. It’s got a 4.5m hose and we found it could stretch enough to clean up 13 stairs at a time, but with all the tools stored on the vacuum itself, it’s a bulky and heavy machine. 

Read our full review: Hoover H-Upright 500 Sensor Plus

SEBO Felix Wild ePower vacuum cleaner

(Image credit: SEBO)

11. Sebo Felix Wild ePower

A quirky old-school option

Specifications

Power supply: Corded

Weight: 6.8kg

Bin size: Bagged

Cord length: 9m

Reasons to buy

+Fantastic carpet cleaning+Cool looks

Reasons to avoid

Extra costs for bag and filter replacementsAverage cleaning on hard floors

Sebo has built up a loyal fan base for its quirky vacuums, and the Felix Wild ePower is likely to gain it a few more. The fabulously eccentric design and animal-print bag-wrap decorate a solid old-school corded cleaner that feels like it could withstand a nuclear strike.

Its cleaning chops are equally robust. The Felix Wild ePower delivers a super-deep clean on carpets, with all the dust kept inside the cleaner thanks to filtering bags and a separate washable filter assembly. It’s far from a lightweight option though; it feels weighty to push around, and using it as a portable cleaner without the floor head is rather cumbersome.

One for Sebo fans, and those looking for something different to brighten up the cleaning chores, the Felix Wild ePower is proof that there’s life in the bagged vacuum cleaner yet.

Should I buy the Sebo Felix Wild Power?

Which type of vacuum should I buy?

As we’ve mentioned already, there are many different types of vacuum cleaners to choose from these days; cordless vacuums, traditional corded vacuum cleaners, handheld devices that are great for sucking up crumbs on a daily basis, and robot vacuums that take the hard work out of the chore completely. 

Cordless options make cleaning your home easier than ever, enabling you to dart around your home with (mostly) the same suction power as a corded model – sometimes even more. 

However, there’s still a place for corded vacuums. These usually come with wider floor heads making them the best vacuum cleaners for carpets as they ensure your floors are dust-free in just a few sweeps. We’ve even found models with extra-long hoses so you can clean the stairs without moving the vacuum. You don’t have to deal with the worry of the battery running out mid-way through cleaning either, which can be a common occurrence with cordless vacuums.    

For those of you that want to outsource the chore of vacuuming completely, a Robot vacuum is the perfect companion. Just set it cleaning from an app on your smartphone, while you put your feet up for a well-earned rest. The best robovacs also have built-in sensors so they can navigate furniture and walls with relative ease too. 

If you live with furry friends and are seeking the best vacuum cleaners for pet hair, it’s worth noting that most brands offer animal variants of their top-performing models that come with dedicated tools for removing hair from carpets and upholstery. 

 Want to know more? Check out our types of vacuum article to discover just what tasks the different models are best suited to. 

How to vacuum

If you want to keep your floors clean, and your home free from allergens like dust and pet hair, regularly vacuuming your house is a must. While knowing how to vacuum may seem obvious, darting back and forth across a room isn’t going to provide a thorough clean and subsequently is a waste of effort.  

Instead, a more methodical approach, which includes dusting surfaces first so it doesn’t settle on your clean floor, is in order. Start in the corners of your room, and using the crevice tool make your way around the edges of the room. Then switch to the usual cleaning head and traveling from one side of the room to the other, push the vacuum forwards and backward in a slow sweeping motion. When you reach the other side, repeat in the opposite direction to ensure any debris that was missed initially is collected.

Find out even more vacuuming tips and tricks in our How to vacuum article.

How often should you vacuum?

Vacuuming when the floor looks dirty may be the obvious answer to this question, but if you want to keep your home allergen-free and as clean as possible, then this isn’t enough. Especially, if you have carpeted floors, as the longer dust is left, the more it becomes embedded in the fibres making it hard to fully clean. 

We recommend vacuuming once a week and areas such as hallways and doorways, which get more traffic, should be cleaned twice a week. It may seem like a lot but by vacuuming more often, there will be less dust to suck up each time, making the process quicker that if it’s not completed as often. 

For more on this, head to our full feature on how often should you vacuum? 

Source: TechRadar

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