To help you find the best vacuum for stairs, we have thoroughly researched a wide range of vacuum cleaners to ensure they featured easy-to-use attachments that were perfect for stairs and related surface types. We also loved vacuum cleaners that were relatively light and easy to carry throughout the home and those that were made from long-lasting and durable components. If someone’s coming down or up the stairs while you’re vacuuming, make sure you can hear them coming by getting a silent vacuum too.
The best vacuum for stairs that we researched was easily the Tineco Pure ONE S12. This stellar vacuum kit is entirely cordless and a great lightweight vacuum cleaner for stairs. It features integrated sensors for finding hidden dirt and ships with a multitude of useful attachments and accessories. Keep reading to learn more about other great vacuum cleaners available for purchase.
Top 10 Best Vacuums for Stairs
#1 Tineco Pure ONE S12 Vacuum for Stairs
Award: TOP PICK
WHY WE LIKE IT: Best handheld vacuum for stairs and pet hair, with a cordless and lightweight design and featuring integrated sensors that find and eliminate hidden dirt and debris.
- Cordless and lightweight design
- Sensors find hidden dirt and debris in carpeting
- Ships with multitude of attachments
- On the pricier side
- Requires regular maintenance
The Tineco Pure ONE S12 is the best vacuum for stairs and hardwood floors, in addition to other surface types, thanks to the inclusion of a multitude of useful attachments and accessories. This is also a relatively light and portable steam vacuum cleaner with a cordless design, adding to stair-cleaning efficiency. We also loved the integrated sensors that work to find hidden dirt and debris as you go about the cleaning process. The only drawback with any vacuum is the sound, since the best vacuums are so loud.
Related: In case you own pets, we recommend the best vacuum for pet hair.
Though this is an ultra-powerful vacuum on carpet and hardwood stairs, the integrated debris canister is on the smaller side and, as such, requires regular maintenance to ensure that dirt has not clogged up the line. Additionally, this is a high-end steam vacuum with plenty of features, so it is on the pricier side. Make sure you also have the best carpet cleaner detergent for the removal of stains in addition to all-around maintenance tasks.
#2 Dyson V11 Vacuum for Stairs
Award: HONORABLE MENTION
WHY WE LIKE IT: Best Dyson vacuum for carpeted stairs, with a cordless design that features a lithium-ion battery that can get up to 60 minutes of use out of a single charge.
- 60 minutes of runtime per charge
- Light and cordless design
- Advanced whole-machine filtration system
- Wall-mounted charging dock requires installation
- Battery replacement takes over 10 minutes
The Dyson V11 is light, portable, and cordless, with an integrated battery that can operate continuously for an hour before needing a recharge. This top cordless vacuum features an intuitive LED screen that alerts users to maintenance issues and an advanced whole-machine filtration system, which eliminates allergens, bacteria, and germs as you go about the cleaning process. There are also two motor speeds here, one for hard surface types and the other for carpeting and rugs. The variety in motor speeds makes buying a vacuum much easier.
Related: Also check the best vacuums for tile floors.
Though this vacuum comes with a wall-mounted charger for the purposes of convenience, the charger must be installed, which requires some nail screwing and the like. Also, replacing the integrated battery is a somewhat intensive process, requiring tools and around ten minutes of time. To keep hardwood, tile, and other surfaces spotless and sanitized, try the best floor cleaner.
#3 Black+Decker Max Flex Vacuum for Stairs
Award: BEST FOR ANIMAL LOVERS
WHY WE LIKE IT: Includes a dedicated pet hair brush for the removal of stubborn cat or dog hair, with a unique three-stage filtration system that ensures no dust or debris escape the confines of the vacuum.
Read Full Review: BLACK+DECKER Max Flex
- 3-stage filtration system
- Handheld design weighs only 3 lb
- Washable debris bowl and filter
- 20 minutes of use per charge
- Battery cannot be replaced
The Black+Decker Max Flex is a great choice for animal lovers, as it includes a dedicated pet hair brush that makes short work out of animal-related dirt and debris. This vacuum includes a three-stage filtration system to ensure that hair follicles, dust, and related allergens do not escape the debris canister. We also loved that both the filter and debris canister can easily be removed and hand-washed, for efficient maintenance. If you want to clean your fireplace alongside your stairs, be sure to pick up the best ash vacuum too.
Though this is a cordless design with a built-in lithium battery, you’ll only get around 20 minutes of continuous use per charge, which is on the lower end, which you can avoid if you opt for a corded stick vacuum that gets power from a power outlet. Also, this battery is hardwired into the vacuum itself, so it cannot be replaced should it break down the line. You may also like the best stick vacuum with multiple attachments for your stairs and furniture.
#4 Black+Decker Dustbuster Vacuum for Stairs
Award: BEST PORTABLE DESIGN
WHY WE LIKE IT: Highly portable and compact handheld design with a robust feature set that includes a long-lasting and powerful integrated battery that can last up to 18 months on a single charge.
Read Full Review: BLACK + DECKER CHV1410L Hand Vac
- Holds a charge for 18 months
- Large 21oz dust bowl
- Easy to clean, as most components are washable
- Takes 4 hours to reach max charge
- Internal battery not replaceable
The iconic Black+Decker Dustbuster is extremely light, weighing just two pounds, and portable, with a cordless one-handed design that is easy to use on stairs, corners, crevices, and just about any surface type. The integrated lithium battery can hold a charge for up to 18 months, which is a fantastic metric, and the large 21-ounce dust bowl can go through several cleanings without needing to be emptied. This is also an easy to clean vacuum, as each of the components can easily be removed and hand-washed. After vacuuming, if you want to shampoo your carpeted stairs, consider using the best portable carpet cleaner.
Though we appreciated that the battery can hold on to a charge for 18 months and that this can be operated without a power cord, it does take around four hours to reach a maximum charge, which is on the lengthy side. Additionally, this internal battery is not replaceable, should it malfunction down the line during runtime. Once you’re done vacuuming your home, consider the best leaf vacuum mulcher which is another long-running vacuum that can mulch up leaves in your yard.
#5 Dirt Devil Plus Vacuum for Stairs
Award: BEST ON A BUDGET
WHY WE LIKE IT: Budget-friendly vacuum with plenty of high-end features, including a bagless design that is easy to clean and a useful stairs attachment that doubles as an upholstery cleaner.
Read Full Review: Dirt Devil Quick Lite
- Extremely light and portable
- Bagless design is easy to clean
- Stairs attachment also excels with upholstery
- Not the most powerful vacuum on market
- Battery cannot be replaced
The Dirt Devil Plus comes in at a budget-conscious price while offering a robust feature set in line with more expensive competitors, such as a completely bagless design that makes it easy to empty debris and clean. This is also an extremely light, 2lb, and portable vacuum that can easily be operated with one hand, thanks to needing no power cord during use. This vacuum comes with several useful attachments, including an excellent tool for cleaning stairs that also does a decent job at vacuuming upholstery and similar surface types. And, while bagless vacuums are easy to clean, bagged vacuums trap more dirt and dust, as you’ll see in our Hoover Windtunnel Max UH30600 review.
The portability on offer here is fantastic, as there is no power cord, but it does come at a slight price, as this isn’t the most powerful vacuum on the market and does not do a great job with severely caked-in debris. Also, the lithium battery lasts for over an hour per charge, but cannot be replaced should it fail down the line. For more options that are great at cleaning upholstery, give the best upholstery steam cleaner a try.
#6 Tineco A11 Hero Vacuum for Stairs
Award: BEST QUALITY
WHY WE LIKE IT: High-quality vacuum that is packed with high-end features like a cordless and lightweight design, a powerful 450w motor, and a series of useful attachments for stairs, crevices, and corners.
- Ships with a multitude of attachments
- Cordless design gets 40 minutes of use per charge
- Powerful 450w motor excels with suction
- No digital display
- Wall-charging mount must be installed
The Tineco A11 Hero is of exceptional quality with a robust feature set that includes a cordless and lightweight design complete with an integrated battery that can clean for over 40 minutes on a single charge. This vacuum also boasts a powerful 450 watt motor with up to 120 watts of pure suction power, making it a great choice for pet owners and those with caked-in debris throughout the carpet just like the best cordless vacuum for pet hair. We also loved the useful attachments this vacuum cleaner ships with, including a stair cleaner, a crevice cleaner, and a corner cleaner, among others.
Another great feature for most high-end vacuums is Turbo mode, which you can learn more about in our write-up of the Hoover H Free 800.
There is no digital display on this vacuum, however, so you won’t be getting easy-to-understand notifications regarding maintenance and the like. Additionally, this vacuum does come with a wall mount, but it must be installed and can take up to one-half hour. Also for the dog owners out there, be aware that your dog might be scared of your vacuum.
#7 Dibea F20Max Vacuum for Stairs
Award: BEST VALUE
WHY WE LIKE IT: Value-conscious vacuum with a hefty feature set that includes an integrated filter to remove 99.9 percent of allergens and dust particles and a large motorized brush that resists tangling.
Read Full Review: Dibea F20 Max
- Filter removes allergens and dust particles
- Large motorized brush resists tangles
- Cordless and handheld design
- Not as many attachments as some models
- Battery is detachable but takes several hours to charge
The Dibea F20Max comes in at a value-friendly price while offering features that rival more expensive competitors, such as an integrated filtration system that removes more than 99 percent of allergens and dust particles. There is also a large motorized brush that resists tangling from pet hair and related debris. We also loved that this is a cordless and relatively lightweight design, making it excel as a handheld option for stair cleaning.
Though this vacuum does come with attachments for crevice and stair cleaning, the accessories that ship with this unit is fairly minimal. Additionally, we appreciated that the battery here is detachable, for the purposes of remote charging, but the charging process does take at least three hours.
#8 Eureka EasyClean Vacuum for Stairs
Award: BEST MULTI-USE
WHY WE LIKE IT: Versatile handheld vacuum that excels on stairs, in automobiles, on upholstery, and in the garage, thanks to a lightweight design and a useful suction hose.
- Powerful dual-motor design
- Proprietary Riser Visor system great for stairs
- Easy to empty and clean debris canister
- Corded design, though power cable is lengthy
- Exhaust vent blows vigorously
The Eureka EasyClean is a highly versatile handheld vacuum that excels on stairs, in automobiles, in the garage, on upholstery, and on just about any surface type, be it carpeting or hardwood floors. This is an extremely light corded vacuum design, weighing just around five pounds, with an easy-carry handle and a lengthy suction hose that can get into hard-to-reach spaces. We also loved the powerful dual motor design and the easy-to-empty debris canister. There are guides to help you maintain your vacuum too, like how to fix a vacuum hose.
Though this handheld vacuum is indeed light, it is not a cordless design, despite the power cord clocking in at an impressive 20 feet, just like one of the best car vacuum cleaner. Also, we appreciated the exhaust vent for its heat-reduction purposes, but it does blow vigorously which could knock around dirt and debris.
#9 Holife Handheld Vacuum for Stairs
We’re sorry, this product is temporarily out of stock
Award: BEST FOR LIQUIDS
WHY WE LIKE IT: Cordless and compact handheld vacuum that not only excels with dirt and debris but can easily handle liquid messes, thanks to powerful suction and a nozzle specially designed for liquid.
- Extremely quiet during use
- Convenient cordless design
- Filters can easily be removed and washed
- Battery takes 4 hours to charge
- Does not ship with too many accessories
The Holife Handheld vacuum is a great choice for cleaning up liquid spills on stairs or anywhere else throughout the home, thanks to a specially designed nozzle and a motor that boasts powerful suction capabilities. The motor here is not only powerful but also extremely quiet during use, which is always appreciated, and the cordless lightweight design allows for one-handed operation.
Though the integrated battery can get around 30 minutes of continuous use out of a single charge, which is decent, it does take a while to reach a maximum charge, around four hours. Additionally, this vacuum is somewhat light on attachments and accessories, but it does ship with several brushes and a charging cradle.
#10 Moosoo Cordless Vacuum for Stairs
We’re sorry, this product is temporarily out of stock
Award: BEST FILTRATION
WHY WE LIKE IT: Features a high-grade multi-tiered HEPA filtration system that eliminates 99.99 percent of dust, bacteria, and allergens, with an ergonomically designed handle that makes it easy to reach out-of-the-way areas of the home.
Read Full Review: Moosoo Cordless Vacuum Cleaner
- Filters can easily be removed and washed
- Ergonomic handle makes it easy to adjust vacuum head
- Lightweight and cordless handheld design
- 4 hours to reach max charge
- Wall mount requires some tools
This vacuum model by Moosoo comes with a best-in-class filtration system, which uses a four-stage HEPA filter to eliminate 99.9 percent of dust, debris, bacteria, and other potentially harmful particulates. These filters are easy to remove and clean, which is great, and the ergonomically designed handle of this vacuum makes it easy to angle it into tough spots, such as tight corners and crevices like with a crevice tool. This is also an extremely light vac, weighing less than three pounds, with a convenient cordless design.
Though this vacuum can work continuously for around thirty minutes on a single charge, which is decent, it does take around four hours to reach a maximum charge once placed on the cradle. Also, this charger can be wall-mounted, with screws and anchors included, but you will need to do the job yourself and have the necessary tools.
How We Decided
To help narrow down to the above list, we thoroughly researched a number of well-regarded vacuums, ensuring that they were feature-packed and that they excelled as stair cleaning tools. To that end, we liked vacuums that could function well on both carpeting and wood, as those are the two primary surface types that accompany staircases.
We liked powerful vacuums that could easily suck up caked-in debris, dirt, pet hair, and dust particles. Vacuums that featured heavy-duty filtration systems were awarded bonus points, as these systems allow for the filtration and removal of bacteria, germs, and dust, among other potentially harmful particulates.
We admired vacuum systems that shipped with all manner of useful attachments and accessories. They include lengthy hoses, crevice tools, automobile kits, extender wands, and much more. Finally, we liked vacuums that were fairly light and often cordless, so as to help with the stair-cleaning process.
Best Vacuum for Stairs Buyer’s Guide
The Most Important Features to Consider
One of the most important features to consider while shopping for a stair vacuum is portability. Look for vacuums with compact form factors that are light enough to be operated with just one hand. You’ll also want to take a look at cordless variants, as lengthy staircases are often far away from power outlets that usually stick around flat surfaces, though this isn’t a problem for cordless models that have decent battery life. During your shopping, look at vacuums with adjustable handles and power heads, so as to better reach all of the nooks and crannies typically found on staircases so you can get some efficient cleaning done. Canister vacuums have heads that are easy to maneuver, but they’re generally not ideal for stairs since the bulkier dust container remains stationary and has to be moved every so often.
Many high-quality stair vacuums have built-in filtration systems that do a great job at sucking up dirt, debris, but also smaller particles like germs, bacteria, and dust. If filtration is important to you, err on the side of quality and choose something with a genuine HEPA filter and multiple levels of filtration. Washable filters help reduce waste generation and filter replacement costs. You’ll also want to make sure the debris canister is optimized for easy removal and cleaning.
- Additional Attachments
Modern vacuums typically ship with a bevy of useful attachments and accessories. Look for vacs that come with lengthy hoses, to make short work out of cleaning stairs, and those that ship with crevice tools, extension wands, extra filters, and more. Some vacuums also come with brushes and brush attachments, to help loosen up debris before cleaning with strong suction, and specialized padding that allows the vacuum to excel on both carpeting and harder surface types, such as tiling and linoleum.