Links to related vacuums here:
Best Overall Cordless Vacuum
#1 Dyson V10 Absolute
#2 Shark Ion P50
#3 Dyson V8
Best Budget Cordless Vacuum
#1 Dirt Devil
#2 Bissell Multi Reach
Eureka Power Plush
Deik Cordless Vacuum
Hoover React Whole Home
Our Favorite Vacuums:
See all the vacuums we recommend on our Amazon Shop Page (the best of the best): https://www.amazon.com/shop/vacuumwars
After weeks of testing cordless vacuums, we are finally ready to hand out awards for the best cordless stick vacuum. Though I did decide to split this competition up into two categories—he best overall cordless vacuum and the best budget cordless vacuum—for reason I will discuss.
So, links above to all the individual reviews we have done on these vacuums as well as links to Amazon for current prices.
Let’s get started!
With the budget cordless vacuums, the main thing that separates them from the premium vacuums like the Sharks or Dysons (besides the price) is their lack of HEPA filtration and/or a sealed system. All five of the budget vacuums we tested did not pass the fog test, which either shows a lack of HEPA filtration, an unsealed system, or both, but this is typical of any type of vacuum under a certain price range.
That being said, there is a lot to like with the budget vacuums. Here is a quick summary from our tests:
The Hoover React had the most power with 37 cfm at the wand and the Dirt Devil Reach Max Plus came in second at 33 cfm.
The Dirt Devil had the best battery life at 24:06 with the Deik second and the Hoover React third, though it should be noted that the Dirt Devil’s battery life number was on its low power setting which tested at 29 cfm. It was also the only budget cordless that had two power settings.
The best budget cordless vacuum for hard floors was probably the Eureka Power Plush with its soft roller, but that is about all the Eureka Power Plush was good for as it was terrible with carpets, and it had the worst battery life. But the second place for hard floors was the Bissell Multi-Reach which was really good, followed by Dirt Devil Reach Max Plus.
On carpet, most of them did good with the pickup tests with surface debris, whether that was fine debris, pet hair, or large debris, but deep cleaning carpets is hard for all cordless vacuums. That being said, the three that did the best were the Dirt Devil, the Hoover React, and the Bissell Multi-Reach Plus.
So, our choice for the best budget cordless vacuum was the Dirt Devil Reach Max Plus. It also comes with good attachments and is extremely inexpensive, with the main negative being that it is prone to clogs and can lose power easily. The next choice would be the Bissell Multi-Reach which is a bit more expensive but is really solid overall.
You can see our full reviews of both at the links below.
Let’s move on to the premium vacuums.
All three of the premium cordless vacuums we tested proved to be sealed systems with HEPA filtration, so, that is a huge plus—especially if you have asthma or allergies.
As far as the specs, the Dyson V10 had the most power on high power, and the Shark Ion P50 had the most power on Low Power.
Battery life numbers require some explanation. All these numbers are with the cleaner head attached despite the fact that you can get higher battery life numbers if you test them without the cleaner head attached.
Also, notice the amount of power in cfm that each vacuum is using in each setting. All three have a low and a high power, but only the V10 has a medium power setting.
It seems that the Dyson V10 and Shark Ion P50 have basically the same battery capability, but the V10 gives you more options, including its low power setting which takes the CFM way down to 24 but give you 46:16 of runtime which is by far the longest, and we found that 24 cfm was sufficient for most tasks. So, you have to give the V10 the edge here.
On hard floors, it also depends. If you get the more expensive “Absolute” versions of the Dyson V8 or V10 which come with the soft roller or Fluffy brush, then it’s pretty close to even since soft rollers are amazing with hard floors, picking up just about anything and everything they come into contact with. However, the Dyson V8 or V10 with the standard Motorhead only would lose big to the Shark Duoclean system which has both a soft roller and a standard brushroll on the same cleaner head.
On carpets, despite the fact that the Shark Duoclean does better at sheer ability to gobble anything on top of the carpet, the Dyson V8 and V10 with their standard motorheads attached do much better with deep cleaning carpets as we saw in the flour and black carpet test.
The build quality on all three premium vacuums was top notch, with no edge to any particular one, and the only other consideration is that I like how the Shark Ion P50 does not require changing cleaner heads when you switch from hard floors to carpets, though, technically, you can use the standard motorhead on hard floors as well as carpets. It’s just not as good at hard floors.
To make a long story short, I have to give the premium cordless crown to the Dyson V10 Absolute. It is the most expensive of all three, but the price has come down considerably since its release early in 2018, and it’s a much better value these days.
But a close second place would go to the Shark Ion P50. I love its versatility and its handling, and I really love the Duoclean technology, so, it’s a really good utilitarian choice.
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