- 1 Top 7 Best Stick Vacuums
- 2 Best Stick Vacuums Buyer’s Guide
Using the below factors, we chose the incredible and highly affordable Bissell Featherweight as the best stick vacuum that you can buy today. It combines an efficient motor with a powerful battery that keeps the vac going long enough to clean your house – plus a conversion option to handheld with multiple attachments for your stairs and furniture.
What features make the best stick vacuums for your home? These vacs may be small and lightweight, but they should still generate enough power for excellent suction and filtration for a variety of tasks, such as cleaning up pet hair or cleaning hardwood or carpet. Cordless vacuum models are great, but they need powerful batteries to back up their mobility or they aren’t worth it. Stick vacuums are also the only type of vac to be easily converted into a handheld model, an excellent feature that should never go to waste. Take a look, and be sure to check out our other picks, too!
Top 7 Best Stick Vacuums
#1 Bissell Featherweight 2033 Stick Vacuum
Award: TOP PICK
WHY WE LIKE IT: This vac can move anywhere and convert to any cleaning situation with ease. It’s perfect for those tired of pushing heavier vacs around while still providing all the cleaning power you need.
Affordable enough for any home and versatile enough for any space, the Bissell Featherweight is a top recommendation for all types of cleaning situations and one of the best corded stick vacuums we’ve found.. It’s one of the most lightweight stick vacs available, weighing only 5.4 pounds. The design also makes it suitable for carpets and hard/bare floors of all kinds.
But it’s with its conversion features that the Featherweight really shines. You can snap down the longer handle for a shorter version of the vac that’s perfect for stairs – or you can detach the vac complete and use some of the nozzle attachments to clean corners, cars, pet beds and other hard to reach areas. The simple canister and filter are easy to clean out when full, too. If the vacuum doesn’t do the trick, try the best carpet cleaner detergent instead.
#2 Tineco A11 Hero Stick Vacuum
Award: HONORABLE MENTION
WHY WE LIKE IT: This incredible vacuum cleaner provides a powerful brush head, long-lasting battery, and a wealth of attachments for it’s convertible state. If you’re looking for a cordless stick vac that acts like the most powerful of upright vacuums, this is the one for you!
The 450-watt motor on the Hero supplies the power, and the excellent full-size brush head (including LED lights) provides all the cleaning action you need – but that’s just the start to this versatile model. It includes a filter and pre-filter, as well as a 0.6-liter canister to hold debris while you work. When the vac converts, it can use a mini power brush, dust brush, crevice tool, hair cleaning tool, and more in the handheld version. That makes it the best stick vacuum for pet hair around! It can also trap pet allergens with its 4-stage HEPA filtration.
The battery on this cordless model is also impressive, offering up to 40 minutes of cleaning time on a single charge. It also comes with a dual charging dock that you can mount on the wall for easy recharging whenever you’re done. For big messes, you might also want to get the best carpet cleaner too.
#3 Shark Rocket HV302 Stick Vacuum
Award: BEST FOR CARS
WHY WE LIKE IT: This versatile vac comes with a powerful brush head and a full car detail set for its handheld state, making it great for switching tasks and cleaning even the most awkward spaces. If you want a durable vac that’s more than capable away from the floor, this is it!
Shark is known for its reliable vacuums, so it’s no surprise this excellent Shark stick vacuum is one of the most durable models on our list. It’s also good at just about everything. The 8.5-inch brush head, with a swivel base, is great for carpet, and you can switch to a hard floor mode whenever you want. When you can convert to a handheld vac, you have an extension arm for cleaning drapes, a power brush for furniture, and micro tools for detailed car cleaning.
When finished, you can either keep the hand vac on the bottom of the stick, or store it on its own wall mount. However, keep in mind that while it may look and act like a cordless vac, it does have a required cord connection. If you’re looking to clean hardwood or tile, try the best floor cleaner.
#4 Dyson Cyclone V10 Stick Vacuum
Award: BEST CORDLESS
WHY WE LIKE IT: The excellent motor design and multiple suction modes allow this cordless vac to switch to any level of power you need – plus the flexibility to get anywhere. It’s perfect for switching from serious messes to light cleaning as you need to.
The Cyclone combines a powerful battery with multiple excellent suction modes via “direct drive” design, giving you plenty of choices. You can use lower-power modes and the excellent brush head to clean for around 60 minutes before recharging (3.5 hours to recharge). Or you can move up to higher suction modes to increase power for less battery life – up to suction III, which lasts for around 20 minutes. That powerful motor also makes it one of the best cordless stick vacuum cleaners for hardwood floors.
This versatility is backed by excellent maneuverability that allows you to get under any furniture, and a conversion option for a handheld model with a couple combination and crevice tools for more detailed work. For a similar model from Dyson, check out the Dyson V11 Torque Drive – a powerful cordless vacuum with a torque drive motorhead. The Dyson V11 is a powerful vacuum on floors and carpets. It has a hygienic bin emptying system, three cleaning modes, and a wall-mounted dock that brings organization to your home and cleaning tasks. For big kitchen messes, you might want to grab the best mop too.
#5 Moosoo Cordless XL-618A Stick Vacuum
Award: BEST FOR CARPET
WHY WE LIKE IT: The three-stage filtration of this vac can’t be beat, and it’s still powerful enough to clean up large messes, especially in its convertible form. Choose this vac to fight off allergens every time you clean your home.
Stick vacs and cordless vacuums are made to be as lightweight as possible, but if you struggle with allergies or sensitivity to dust, you also need excellent filtration, and this Moosoo vac claims the vest filtration around, with three different filter designs made to clean up 99.99% of dust particles as small as 0.1 microns. The vac’s battery lasts 20 to 35 minutes per charge depending on what you’re doing, and has two different power modes for different messes.
It’s also convertible, with a well-designed handle for cleaning up messes on other types of surfaces, while the 120-watt motor is powerful enough to take care of larger debris if necessary. In its floor mode, we like the 120-degree swivel action of the brush head for getting around furniture even easier. For smaller messes, you might want to also consider the best pet vacuum.
#6 Aposen Cordless H120 Stick Vacuum
Award: BEST CONVERSION
WHY WE LIKE IT: This vacuum can quickly switch between several different attachments for any task, with a 120-watt motor for strong cleaning, and an excellent filtration system. Choose this vac for easily switching between different tasks in the same cleaning session.
Aposen calls this vac a “4 in 1” and it’s easy to see why: The handheld version is particularly light and easy to use with a variety of attachments designed to turn it into a floor fac, curtain vac, sofa/car vac, or crevice vac as needed. You can choose between two different modes – normal suction for 35 minutes, or extra suction for 18 minutes – based on just how dirty the surface is.
The vac also includes a HEPA-like washable filter to remove as many particles as possible, plus a wall mount for easy recharging when you are finished. The battery is also detachable for easier recharging if you prefer this approach!
#7 Dodocool Cordless Stick Vacuum
Award: BETS LIGHTWEIGHT
WHY WE LIKE IT: It’s a super-lightweight vacuum that easily converts to a furniture and stair mode with two different power settings. If you have trouble hauling around traditional uprights, you’ll love this alternative!
Dodocool’s compact vac includes plenty of the features we like – it’s cordless battery can support up to 45 minutes of cleaning with two different power modes, it has a HEPA-like filtration system, and it converts to a compact version with attachments for car and chair cleaning. But what we like most is how light it is – at 4.7 pounds, it’s our lightest and most maneuverable vacuum pick!
The cac’s brush head is also well designed and powerful enough to clean up problems like pet hair, and can clean hard surfaces just as easily, too. The head also has an excellent 180-degree swivel feature to reach anywhere you want!
How We Decided
Testing highly mobile stick vacuums is a combination of seeing just how well they clean up messes, combined with their ease of use. That means starting off by testing suction and seeing just how well their motors work to pick up everyday messes. The best vacuums may also have specialties where their power really shines – like cleaning cars, drapes, carpet or pet hair.
Here, we also looked for alternate power modes to amp up suction for short periods of time to clean deeper carpets or larger messes. Alongside this is battery life and performance: How long is the run time? Can the battery sustain cleaning power for long enough to clean a room? How sharply does suction fall off when the battery starts to weaken?
Then, for ease of use, we took a close look at how the vacuum feels to move around. Is it lightweight enough to easily lift and position? Are the controls easy to understand? When the time comes to empty the canister, is it fast to remove and dump so you can get back to work? Does the brush cleaning head rotate or swivel easily? Does it come with plenty of useful accessories such as crevice tools, dusting brushes, etc? Is the brush roll self-cleaning? These questions provide a good look at usability as a whole.
Finally, there were several features we awarded extra points for. The first is cordless models: Stick vacs especially benefit from cordless designs that make them even more effortless to use. Second, we looked for convertible vacs that could transform into handheld models whenever you want – a really ideal way to clean furniture or window sills on your way through a room. Third, liked to see good filtration options that help the stick vacs and cordless stick vacuums capture as much dust and allergens as possible.
Best Stick Vacuums Buyer’s Guide
The Most Important Features to Consider
Suction and power help all vacuums clean up large debris and hair tangles, but they’re especially important for stick models, which can be a little weak unless you pay attention to the model you’re buying. Look for versions from brands known for their great motor design, and larger motors designed to provide more power. This is also where alternate “turbo” modes come in handy for temporarily increasing the power in a short burst.
Not all stick vacuums are cordless. In fact, some of our top picks still have cords! But cordless models are very popular in this field, and that means taking a close look at battery life. The average well-made stick vacuum has a battery that usually lasts 20 to 25 minutes in normal mode. They then have modes to save power, which can increase battery life up to 40 minutes, and turbo modes, which tend to use all your battery up in under 10 minutes. Look for “fade free” batteries that don’t weaken suction as they lose juice.
- Maneuverability and Weight
Stick vacs are made to be lightweight and handle well. Ideally, the best vacuum models should be between 6 and 8 pounds. Also look for brush heads with swivel steering and great control. Brush head lights are a nice addition too, especially if you’re vacuuming under a lot of furniture.
Attachments aren’t as common in stick vacs, but some do have attachment options for crevices and brushes. Much more common is a conversion feature that turns the vac into a handheld model for furniture, cars, and so on. Conversion features should be quick to use and effective when present. It’s so handy, all of our top picks are convertibles (although some also come with attachments for those handheld conversions).
Stick Vacuums FAQs
How Do Stick Vacuums Work?
Stick vacuums work very much like larger upright vacuums, but they are designed to be lightweight and especially easy to move around. That means that their motors and brush heads tend to be smaller: Stick vacuums make up for that with compact, air-tight designs that help to increase suction. They empty into canisters that need to be frequently emptied out, and often convert into handheld versions for cleaning hard-to-reach areas. Many run on battery power.
Are Stick Vacuums Worth It?
Today’s stick vacuums are good enough to get the job done in most homes. However, there are two important limiting factors every buyer should be aware of. First, the battery life means that any cordless model can only be used for around 20 to 25 minutes, at the most, at full power - which limits how large of an area you can clean at once. Second, the smaller canisters on stick vacuums do need to be emptied more often, which is a factor in cleaning larger, messier areas. In other words, stick vacs are best fit to smaller homes with fewer people living in them - but here they can make excellent substitutes. Some people also prefer them as a “backup” or substitute vacuum for lighter cleanings.
Which Stick Vacuum Has the Best Suction?
Go with Dyson on this one. Stick vacuum suctions have consistently improved in recent years, but Dyson remains at the top of the list thanks to its focus on powerful motors and airtight designs. For stick models, Dyson typically uses a drive cleaner head with the motor up near the handle and the roller brush down at the bottom. This allows Dyson models to easily detach into handheld vacs, where power is even more concentrated for better suction.
Are Stick Vacuums as Good as Uprights?
In smaller spaces, yes - and their ease of use may make them even better, depending on what you are looking for. But uprights do have larger brush heads for tackling serious messes, and more capacity to hold debris for longer vacuuming projects. You also have a wider variety of attachment options with most uprights if you prefer to use accessories. Finally, uprights can also come as bagged vacuums, which is not an option that’s available for sticks.
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