Links to related vacuums on Amazon and reviews here:
#1 Shark Apex Duoclean Zero M
#2 Shark Rotator True Pet NV752
#3 Dyson V10 Absolute
#4 Kenmore Elite 31150
#5 Sebo Felix 1
#6 Dyson Multifloor 2
#7 Bissell Pet Hair Eraser 1650a
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
Welcome to our competition to see which is the best vacuum cleaner for pet hair and pet owners in general. We put these vacuums through about sixteen tests on things that are important for pet owners like pet hair pickup, deep cleaning, and filtration and gave them scores based on the results. We have a lot to do, so, links above for current prices and our individual review on each vacuum, and let's get started!
First, a little about our competitors and why I chose them - we have the Kenmore Elite which we chose because of its really high rating on Consumer Reports, the Sebo Felix 1 which is the most expensive vacuum in this competition, and the darling of many vacuum enthusiasts, the Shark Rotator True Pet which shows up on many lists of best vacuums for pets, the Bissell Pet hair eraser, which Bissell says they engineered for homes with pets and has a special brush that resists pet hair tangles. Of all the Shark Duocleans we own, I chose the new Shark Duoclean Apex Zero M because it’s currently the only Shark Duoclean with Zero M technology which, like the Bissell, prevents pet hair tangles on the brush. And, finally, we have two Dysons - the Dyson Multifloor 2 and the Dyson V10 Absolute cordless vacuum which won our best cordless vacuum competition and is the only cordless vacuum that cleans well enough and has long enough battery life to compete at this level.
So, let's start with the power. Here, we measure suction as well as airflow at the hose and at the cleaner head. We then added the numbers and found that the Kenmore Elite is leading with pretty much a three-way tie for 2nd place.
With the pickup tests, we tested all types of debris, from fine debris like sand to medium and extra-large debris, but with an emphasis on pet hair pickup on both hard floors and carpet.
Here, the big winners were the Shark Apex and the Dyson V10 Absolute, in part, because of their amazing hard floor performance with their soft rollers. But the Apex is basically unparalleled with both hard floor and carpet pickup. Some quick points on the losers in this area - the Dyson Multifloor 2 was not good at all on hard floors with pet hair and other debris, and the Bissell was only decent with pickup, and it also has a pretty major blind spot due to the belt being near the middle of the roller.
The carpet deep clean test, where we rub sand deep into the carpet, is done on a pretty thick medium pile carpet, so it's actually two tests in one. When we tested cordless vacuums, the V10 was the only one to get a perfect 100. In this test, I rubbed the sand even deeper, but, even so, there were four perfect scores with the Apex getting a 98. The Sebo Felix and Kenmore were the only ones with a slightly lower score here at 92 and 90, respectively.
As far as thick carpet performance, the main loser was the Dyson Multifloor 2, which was incredibly difficult to push on thicker carpets, and it stalled out several times. The Shark True Pet also stalled out a few times on thick carpet, but at least with the Shark it has a switch which reduces the suction for thick carpets, and when we tested it on its thick carpet setting, it ran perfectly. All the others passed this test with no issues.
Two other tests that are important for pet owners are the filtration and the attachments set. With the filtration, The Kenmore Elite, Shark Apex, Dyson V10, and Shark True Pet all had sealed systems with HEPA filters and passed our test with a perfect score. The Sebo and Bissell have sealed systems but not Hepa filters, and the Dyson uprights have never really done well with this test, presumably, because of bad design of the seal around HEPA filter.
With the attachments the Shark True Pet Nv752 and Dyson V10 came out on top, with, among other useful tools for pet owners, a really cool motorized pet brush included in the base model that works well on upholstery or stairs. The Apex has one of these motorized tools available as an optional upgrade, but it doesn’t come with the base model. Some of the others come with similar tools only suction powered instead of independent motors, like the Bissell and the Kenmore, though the Kenmore tool was really prone to clogs. And, like the Apex, The Dyson Multifloor 2 base package has an optional pet tool sold separately.
With the weight, ease of use, and maneuverability tests, vacuums like the Kenmore Elite lost big as it's incredibly heavy and not maneuverable at all. The Bissell also lost a lot of ground here for being just plain hard to use. The Sharks picked up points here for having the lift-away mode for suction based tasks, and the powered lift-away mode for lightweight vacuuming and getting under hard to reach places, and the V10 got a lot of points for being both maneuverable and very light-weight.
We also found that the anti-tangle technology of the Shark Apex Zero M and Bissell Pet hair eraser really did work. They didn’t get any pet hair wrapped around the roll during all of our tests, and they got 30 points each for this really helpful feature.
There were other things we factored in like our crevice pickup test, cord length, and, of course, the current list prices, where they got points inversely proportional to their cost. We added it all up and here are the results.
The Apex Zero M with DuoClean won with the Shark True pet and Dyson V10 Absolute coming in right behind it.
I should say that some of these vacuums are pretty pricey, so along with all the other links to our individual video reviews and prices above, I also included a short list of our favorite more budget friendly vacuums there as well.
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