The vacuum cleaner as we know it is being replaced by a robot that uses 3D mapping and artificial intelligence to get the job done. The new vacuums are so powerful, they can clean any floor without moving too much dirt or chemicals into your home’s air quality. This technology will be difficult for traditional cleaners to match in less than five years due to its ability to map out a room before working on it
The “best upright vacuum cleaner 2023” is the most popular type of vacuum cleaner. It can be used to clean a variety of surfaces, like carpets and hardwood floors. The best upright vacuum cleaners are designed with a number of features that make them easier to use and more efficient in cleaning tasks.
Upright vacuums, which are contemporary takes on old vacuum cleaners, are smaller and simpler to store than canister vacuums and more powerful than stick vacuums. They’re also simple to operate, making them ideal for spot cleaning in houses with dogs or children who want more thorough cleaning than a handheld vacuum can give.
We spent two weeks evaluating a half-dozen top rated upright vacuums to help you pick the finest upright vacuum. We put each one through a battery of tests, including cleaning up the hair left behind by two dogs and three cats and sucking up cat litter spills, all while evaluating performance, general simplicity of use, and attachment utility. Finally, we came up with three winners who are capable of managing your cleaning demands.
Overall, the best upright vacuum cleaner
The Professional Lift-Away Shark Rotator NV501 was a standout in all of our tests, with excellent cleaning power and mobility.
The best upright vacuum for pet hair is the Dyson V8 Animal.
The Pet Turboeraser tool, which has a spinning brush head with bristles that effortlessly lifts cat and dog hair off upholstery and stairs, is the outstanding feature of the Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Lift-Off Upright Pet Vacuum, making it the best of the pack for pet lovers.
The best upright vacuum cleaner for the money
The Eureka DashSprint Dual Motor Upright Vacuum was lightweight, simple to manage, and economical. It had the smoothest swivel, outstanding suction power, and didn’t get caught up on high-pile carpets or while transitioning from hard floors to area rugs.
Underscored by Lindsay Boyers/CNN
Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away NV501
Throughout our testing, the Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away NV501 stood out. Because of its swivel head and its weight, it was one of the simplest vacuum cleaners to manage. It weights 15.8 pounds, which isn’t very light, but it was simple to pick up and move about when compared to the others. It also includes a wide cushioned handle, which comes in handy when using the lift-off function, which allows you to remove the motor unit and use it as a tiny canister vacuum with upholstery and other above-the-floor attachments.
We were able to disconnect the pod from the vacuum base with the touch of a huge button and carry it independently when we wanted to vacuum the stairs or expand into the corners of the ceiling. The lift-off pod is off and ready to go in only two steps, thanks to a button next to the canister release that also releases the wand.
The Shark Rotator includes an upholstery tool, a dusting brush, and a crevice tool, all of which performed well. The attachments connect to the end of the handle, allowing you to utilize them whether the vacuum is still working or you’re using the lift-off function. The tube has a decent amount of flexibility to it, making it simpler to reach harder-to-reach spots without having to move the vacuum.
The accessories fit nicely onto the machine, which was an added advantage. They’re simple to pick up and put away, and they don’t get in the way of other features. They also securely clip into their respective holders, preventing them from falling out while you’re moving about or accidently bumping against anything.
It also comes with headlights, which come in in when vacuuming hard surfaces. While the headlights were not as useful on carpet (because dirt and debris sink in rather than laying on the top), they did assist highlight missed places on wood and vinyl floors.
The Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away NV501 received top grades across the board for suction power and performance. On all kinds of flooring, the main brush head and attachments gathered up pet hair in one pass, and the main brush head made extracting cat litter out of high-pile carpet a breeze.
We were able to clean the whole home and then some without pausing to empty the Shark’s XL dustbin, and it was straightforward to remove and empty. The design was identical to the other bagless variants on our list, with a bottom latch that opened to dump everything into the garbage can. When emptying the machine, however, there was no dust or blowback since this vacuum has three filters.
The only serious fault we discovered was that when the dustbin was removed, the vacuum would collapse backward due to unequal weight distribution, crashing hard on the floor a number of times until we figured out how to properly place it.
We didn’t like for the red and white color scheme, however it wasn’t a deal breaker. When compared to other models, it seemed to be a little antiquated. A retractable cable would have been nice, but none of the devices we examined had one, so we can’t hold that against the Shark.
Underscored by Lindsay Boyers/CNN
The Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Lift-Off Upright Pet Vacuum is a vacuum cleaner that removes pet hair.
The Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Lift-Off Upright Pet Vacuum, which is similar in style to the Shark Rotator, lives true to its name when it comes to picking up cat and dog hair. It was almost identical to the Shark in practically every regard, including simplicity of use, design, emptying ease and cleanliness, and suction power/performance. It has a lift-off motor unit that makes it simpler to use on upholstery and other above-the-floor items.
The Bissell boasts a swivel head for ease maneuverability and a removable pod that allows you to lower the base and vacuum stairs and hard-to-reach areas more effortlessly. The wand and base detach at the push of a button, and a lever on the thumb section of the handle allows you to go from low to plush carpeting.
The Bissell’s Pet Turboeraser tool, from which it derives its name, is a notable feature. The Shark comes with a standard crevice tool, whilst the Bissell Turboeraser includes a rotating brush head with bristles that extract hair from upholstery and stairs. The cat tower and shorter pile carpets performed nicely with this equipment, while the high-pile steps required some assistance. It was a nice addition to the arrangement since it never clogged up, even while pulling up longer human hair.
Despite being more costly, this vacuum did not gain the top rank since it is somewhat heavier than the Shark (it weighs over 18 pounds), had a smaller dustbin that required more frequent emptying, and did not perform as well on hard surfaces as the Shark. However, the inclusion of the Turboeraser makes this a wonderful pick if you’re searching for a vacuum cleaner that can handle the mess created by shedding dogs.
Underscored by Lindsay Boyers/CNN
The Eureka DashSprint Dual Motor Upright Vacuum with Headlights is a vacuum cleaner with two motors.
The Eureka DashSprint Dual Motor Upright Vacuum costs less than the Shark Rotator and Bissell Pet Hair Eraser, as well as most of the other vacuums we reviewed. As a result, we didn’t have big expectations for it, yet we were pleasantly delighted in every way.
With a weight of just 12.6 pounds, the Eureka is the lightest of our picks, making it simpler to handle and carry from one level to the next. The swivel was the smoothest; it could turn on a dime and didn’t tangle on high-pile carpets or when switching from hard floors to area rugs. It also has great suction power. While it didn’t do very well on hard surfaces, particularly during the cat litter test, it did well on all carpet heights, and the attachments made cleaning the sofa and kitty tower a breeze.
It comes with a Pet Pal Turbo tool that is very comparable in appearance to the Bissell Turboeraser. While it wasn’t quite as good as the Turboeraser (it sometimes required two passes instead of one), it performed an excellent job 90% of the time.
The dustbin is bigger than the Bissell’s, measuring 1.5 liters vs Bissell’s 1.5 liters, but it required more regular emptying since the filter — positioned in the middle of the bin — is larger, so we had to clean trash caught around it more often. Emptying it was easy enough, and it followed the same procedure as the others: just open the bottom clasp, and the debris falls into the trash can. We did, however, have to go inside the canister many times to manually clean away debris.
The wand does come out of the base to clean harder-to-reach above-the-floor regions, but there’s no lift-off option, which is a shame. Because the tube isn’t linked to the wand like the others, you’ll have to separate it from the base and then connect it to the wand before using it, which is a simple enough process but still an extra step.
Upright vacuums are often smaller, lighter, and less costly than canister vacuums, as well as more powerful than stick or portable types.
Upright vacuums, which are all-in-one devices with the motor placed within the main unit, are simple to transport about the home for different jobs and, according to their name, can stand up on their own when stored. They usually come with a variety of attachments for chores such as upholstery, curtains, and stairs, however since the motor unit is integrated with the floor head, they aren’t nearly as well adapted to such usage as canister or cordless stick vacuums (though lift-off models like our top recommendations address this issue)
If you have a lot of rugs or wall-to-wall carpets, upright vacuums are a fantastic option since they feature broader cleaning heads with a turbo brush, and because there’s less material to haul about, you’ll be able to clean much greater areas in less time. Because you’re not dragging a canister behind you, pushing them seems more natural.
However, since everything is integrated, they may be more difficult to move around furniture or obstructions in the area than a canister vacuum’s wand and floor brush. They’re also not the greatest for carrying up and down stairs, and since the engine is directly in front of you, they’re a little louder while in use.
Many modern uprights (including two of our top-rated models) include a “lift-off” mechanism that alleviates these problems while also improving overall performance. These let you to disconnect the vacuum’s motor unit from the vacuum’s frame, allowing you to operate it as a tiny canister vacuum with a hose, wand, and above-the-floor accessory heads.
We combed through user reviews and product specifications to find six vacuum cleaners marketed toward pet owners, not only because pet hair is such a common application for vacuum cleaner buyers, but also because these vacuums are typically more powerful and feature-rich overall, and include upholstery tools that work equally well in pet-free homes.
We evaluated each vacuum based on its setup, design characteristics, and performance, taking into account factors such as suction power and efficacy on various kinds of floors and pile heights.
Setting up and putting together
While setup was a factor in our ranking, we didn’t give it much weight since the vacuum only has to be assembled once over its lifespan. We did make a note of which ones were the most challenging to put together.
- Ease of use/maneuverability: How simple it was to vacuum various locations. We took into account whether the vacuum could rotate, lay flat to fit beneath sofas, and how heavy it was. We also took into account if the vacuum pulled, dragged, or became caught on the carpet. We looked to see whether a lift-off canister made a difference in the overall experience.
- Emptying ease: How simple it was to empty the vacuum and how dirty (or clean) the procedure was.
- Size of the dust canister/capacity: How frequently you have to empty a vacuum depends on how much debris you’re gathering up, but the larger the canister, the less times you’ll need to stop to clear it out. This was also taken into account throughout our testing.
- All of the vacuum cleaners on the list come with a variety of accessories. We considered whether or not there was a place to neatly store each of the attachments as part of our evaluation.
- One of the most important concerns was suction power. We tested the main brush head and each attachment on pet hair and cat litter on various sorts of flooring since these vacuums are designed for pets. We looked at whether the vacuums could draw larger kitty litter particles out of high-pile carpet, as well as if the material was effectively sucked into the canister or spat out the rear and didn’t make it into the canister. When utilizing an attachment, we also investigated if the heavier particles could traverse the length of the tube or whether they flowed out the front of the attachment after the vacuum was turned off. We measured suction power while the canister was empty and full to determine whether the vacuum became less effective as the canister filled up, and if it was essential to empty it during usage to maintain the vacuum working properly.
- Effectiveness on various floor kinds: We have four distinct types of flooring in our house: carpet, hardwood, tile, and vinyl, and we used pet hair and cat litter to evaluate the vacuums’ suction strength on each. When appropriate, we utilized both the main brush head and the different attachments to observe how they worked.
- Effectiveness on various pile heights: In addition to evaluating different kinds of flooring, we used a high-pile carpet, a medium-pile area rug, and a low-pile area rug to evaluate the vacuum on various pile heights.
- Effectiveness on diverse surfaces: While we tested the attachments’ effectiveness on various floor kinds, the purpose of this test was to examine each attachment’s specialized functionality. On a cat tower, a fabric sofa, high-pile carpeted stairs, low-pile carpeted stairs, and hard surfaces, as well as in corners, we employed the attachments (both on the floor and ceiling).
- Tangling/clogging: We also looked at whether longer hair became twisted in the brush roll after a few usage, and if the canister became clogged, reducing suction strength.
- Noise level: While noise level was not a big consideration in our testing, we did examine it and noted whether one model was much quieter or louder than the others.
Hoover WindTunnel 3 Pet Upright Vacuum ($168.25 on Amazon; $179.98 on Walmart.com; $179.99 on BestBuy.com)
The Hoover WindTunnel 3 High Performance Pet Vacuum was a close second, but it was beaten out by the Hoover WindTunnel 3 High Performance Pet Vacuum owing to its hefty weight and lack of agility. It was a little cumbersome and difficult to carry up and down the stairs compared to the other versions on the list. It was also difficult to use on the stairs since it has the lift-off features of our top recommendations and instead relies on attachments and a tube that isn’t long enough. It also doesn’t swivel. Because the canister is fastened to the head, mobility is more difficult even on level ground, particularly when paired with the larger weight.
On the plus side, it performed well in all of our performance tests. On carpet and hard surfaces, the suction power received great reviews. It efficiently sucks up cat litter from hard floors without spitting it out the rear and pulls up cat litter and pet hair from high pile carpet in one pass. The brush roll’s 7-position height adjustment makes it simple to go from hard floors to area rugs to carpets without having to change components. All of the attachments have a place on the machine, so when you’re not using them, they’re neatly stowed away.
It was easy to empty it. The procedure was similar to that of the other machines—just remove the canister and empty it using the bottom latch—and the canister is large enough that we were able to clean 900 square feet of high pile carpet without pausing to empty it.
TL;DR: If you’re seeking for sheer suction force and aren’t concerned about mobility, this may be an excellent option.
Kenmore AllergenSeal Bagless Upright Vacuum (Amazon.com: $149.98; Walmart.com: $149.98)
The Kenmore AllergenSeal Bagless Upright Vacuum is a good choice, particularly considering the price. Although it did get caught up on the plush area rug, the performance was decent and it was able to handle all sorts of floors. While the attachments struggled with cat litter (they’re meant for upholstery), the main brush head had no trouble cleaning heavier dirt from wood floors or carpets.
It was penalized in two areas: swivel capability and attachments. The swivel was a little rougher than the other alternatives. It flowed smoothly from side to side, although not as freely as the top selections. If you’re a purist about vacuuming in straight lines, this may not be a big deal, but we were spoilt by how smoothly some of the others moved.
The two attachments — a 3-in-1 combination tool and an upholstery tool — were likewise inferior to the others. Both tools had the rough surface quality of an old-school lint brush, but using them required more physical scraping from us, and they became blocked halfway through cleaning the sofa and cat tower. A rotating brush, like some of the other pet models, would have been nice. There are no other features, such as a lift-off pod or a detachable wand, either.
If you only need a basic vacuum for fast cleanups, this one will suffice; but, if you have a home full of dogs or children, it may not be up to the task.
Kenmore Intuition Bagged Upright Vacuum ($199.99 on Amazon; $199.99 at Home Depot)
The Kenmore Intuition looks like a typical bagged vacuum cleaner. Of course, it has advancements, but it seemed a bit lacking when compared to other models, particularly at this price range. Because it is relatively lightweight and simple to move about, it received good grades for portability and mobility. It also features a lift-off canister, so you can drop the base and take the canister and wand around with you if you need to vacuum the stairs or other hard-to-reach areas.
Its significant flaw was that when used as a standard upright, it stumbled over high-pile carpets, which cover the whole second story. While it has enough suction power and runs on a swivel, making it (in principle) simple to handle, it dragged over plush carpet instead of effortlessly gliding like the others. As a result, little clumps of hair were sometimes left behind, necessitating a second pass. However, it was one of the best on hard floors and short pile area rugs, so if that’s all you need, this vacuum can handle it.
The attachments are fairly basic — there’s a specialist pet tool, a 3-in-1 combination tool, and a dusting brush — but they all functioned well. There were no real standouts in this group.
It’s also worth mentioning, in case you missed it from the name, that this vacuum uses bags that are thrown away and subsequently replaced. Keeping a regular supply of bags in the home seemed impractical, apart from adding to the total expense of their usage. Of course, this is a question of personal choice — it was simple to remove the full bag and replace it with a fresh one — and not something we considered carefully since we were aware straight away that it was a bagged vacuum.
More from CNN Underscored’s hands-on testing may be found here.
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The “best upright vacuum for carpet” is a topic that has been talked about recently. The best upright vacuum will be released in 2023, and it’s going to be amazing.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which upright vacuum is the best?
A: This is a difficult question to answer, as there are many different types of upright vacuums. The best way I could recommend is by saying that you should go with the vacuum that has the features and quality level which most interests you.
What upright vacuum has the most suction?
A: Most upright vacuum cleaners are designed for picking up dust and debris, so they dont usually have a lot of suction. However, many vacuums with attachments (like the hoover cylinder) will have higher levels of suction.
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