The Shark Lift Away is a wonderfully versatile vacuum that works for many cleaning scenarios, but it’s best feature is the anti hair wrap that stops hair tangling around the brush bar. This means the suction stays stronger for longer and you don’t need to tip it upside down and put dust everywhere while you try to snip away the excess hair.
The Shark DuoClean head can pick up the most stubborn hairs and the finest of dust at the same time. One roller is there for the fine dust and hair with rubber cleats to keep it clean. The high suction will suck it right in and the other traditional rotating brush can pick up the heavier dirt. Pets don’t just shed hair, they also love bringing in as much mud as possible!
For lighter duties there is a dusting tool with delicate brush needles and a crevice tool.
It’s got an ‘A’ rating for containing allergens with a HEPA filter in addition to two other filters. All the filters are washable.
The Shark is highly manoeuvrable as an upright vacuum and boasts a very bright light to see when you are trying to get under your furniture.
True to its claim of being powered lift away, the cylinder can Lift-Away and double as a canister vacuum for use on stairs or tight areas that an upright can’t reach.
One downside is the bin is small. If you are tackling a big cleaning area, you may find yourself emptying more than once since the cylinder is only half litre capacity.
It works equally well on carpet as on hard floors. Deep pile or low, it will make quick work of it since you won’t need to do multiple passes.
The DuoClean and excellent suction power make this a logical choice for best upright bagless vacuum.
This strange looking vacuum by Gtech is not even actually a vacuum. It sucks up dirt, but it uses a fan and brush system rather than an actual vacuum. The rotating brush kicks up the dirt and the fan blows it into the bagless cylinder.
But it does the job as any traditional vacuum would.
In smaller flats, it fits the bill really well. It takes up little space and with a full charge has 40 minutes of battery life. That’s more than most small cleaning jobs need. With no cord to fumble around with, it can be used for quick spot cleans.
It’s very lightweight at 3.5 kg and very manoeuvrable. It swivels so it can negotiate tight turns around furniture and low profile enough to find its way underneath as well.
The GTech cleans right up to the edge of the floor or carpet and the bright LED light makes sure you don’t miss a spot.
The dirt collection system in the cylinder is genius. It compacts the dirt and debris, then, when it comes time to empty, you simply slide out the mess. It’s easy and mess-free.
It works great on hard floors or carpet. The fact that it doesn’t use a vacuum means it won’t lose suction.
Verdict? If you prefer doing frequent, quick spot cleans over a thorough long cleaning session, then this may be the right vacuum for you. Lightweight and easy to use, it means you think less about doing the cleaning and just get on with it.
This bagless upright vacuum by Hoover is the most popular upright vacuum on Amazon.
Let’s dive in and see why that might be.
The first thing that might jump out at you is the price. With most upright vacuum models going for over £175, the fact that this model is around half that deserves a closer look.
The Hoover Whirlwind Upright delivers in performance and cost savings. Not only is the initial price going to save you money, but operating costs are also lower.
For one, being bagless means that you save on needing to buy bags for the life of the vacuum.
It has an A energy rating with a 750-watt motor. The suction is very strong, without needing to increase the wattage of the motor, saving you in electricity costs while still delivering a thorough cleaning.
Cleaning stairs are safe and effective with the 2.5-metre stretchy hose. You can keep the vacuum on the stairs behind you and clean those stairs without needing to carry a heavy vacuum up with you.
The canister is a generous 2.5-litre capacity saving you from needing to empty multiple times in a cleaning. Depending on how much dust you’re cleaning up, you could probably go through several cleanings before you need to dump it. Luckily, dumping the dust box is easy and mess free. It uses a one-touch system to open from the bottom, preventing a dust-up common with models where you need to tilt the bin.
For accessories you get a 2 in 1 dusting brush and crevice tool that is stored onboard.
How is the performance? It works well on floors and carpets. Where it does come up short is on deep pile carpets, unfortunately. If your carpet is low pile, the rotating brush does a good job of beating the deep down debris and lifting it out with the powerful suction.
If Hoover allowed for an adjustable height for the brushes, that would easily solve that problem. For the price, though, you simply can’t have it all.
The verdict? This Hoover is popular because it cleans well and suits most people’s needs for a very good price. You won’t get many deluxe features, but if you aren’t looking for a luxurious cleaning experience, then this fits the bill.
4. Best for Pets – SEBO Automatic Pet ePower Upright Vacuum Cleaner
This vacuum has everything you could need for cleaning up after pets, it’s bagged to make emptying easier without dust going everywhere and it’s got special charcoal filters that capture pet smells and leave your house fresher.
It comes with a 6 m long hose so you can more easily clean your stairs and furniture and the power cable is 10 m long to make getting around your house easier.
Great on hard floors and carpet the computer system inside senses what height the cleaning bristles should be at and adjusts accordingly for optimum performance. It also has an auto shut down if it detects a blockage allowing for a longer running vacuum.
The suction is powerful and it does a great job of cleaning up any surface dog or cat hair gets too and. You couldn’t ask for better floor cleaning from a vacuum cleaner.
5. Best Lightweight – Vax Mach Air Upright Vacuum Cleaner
This isn’t actually the lightest model on my list, the Hoover above is 500 g lighter and the Gtech is 1 kg lights. BUT, this has the best balance of being lightweight, easy to push around, suction and how the tools tidy away.
For instance, the hose tidies straight on to the back and has a longer metal tube for easy reaching of your stairs without bending over. And up into the corners for any cobwebs that appear making it a great choice for upright vacuum for an elderly person.
And it’s still half the weight of the Shark at the top and of your typical Dyson which tend to weigh up towards 10 kg.
It’s also a bagless vacuum cleaner that’s easy empty for convenience and the 1.5 L capacity is big enough to get around a modest sized house before you empty it.
Unless you have a hair pet then you’ll need to empty after each room if it’s anything like my dog! But that’s dog and cat ownership not the vacuums fault.
It does a better job on carpet than it does hard floors but it does still work on your lino or tiled kitchen floors, which is always the better way round in my opinion because you can always brush a hard floor.
Good cleaning power and easy vacuuming make this the obvious choice for the best lightweight upright vacuum.
How To Pick The Right Upright Vacuum
In general, upright vacuums are more powerful than their cylinder vacuums and can make quick work of your cleaning duties.
With that said, however, there is more to the story. There are a few things to consider when setting out on your vacuum purchase journey.
Type Of Area Needing Cleaned
The most important thing to consider is what type of area needs cleaning. If it is mainly floor and less carpet, you should pick an upright vacuum that works as well on floors as it does carpet.
Also the type of carpet you have is important. Many upright vacuums have a rotating brush to beat the debris out of the carpet. Some might be too powerful for the type of carpet you have.
If you have stairs, then you need a vacuum that has a hose attachment so you can safely clean. You don’t want to have your upright vacuum above you as they are heavy and awkward and may cause you injury.
Bagged vs Bagless
Then there is the bagged vs bagless debate. Bagless ones are usually stronger than their bagged counterparts, but the downside is that emptying the canister can be a bit messy with some models. Bagged vacuums can see some loss of suction as the bag fills, so if your area to clean is larger then this is something to consider.
Corded vs Cordless
There are also cordless varieties to consider. If your home is lacking sockets, then a cordless might be your best option to be able to cover lots of ground. If it takes you more than 40 minutes of hoovering, then you’ll need to choose carefully as this is pushing the limits of cleaning time per charge.
Let’s get right to the buying guide for the best upright vacuum. As always, if you have any questions about the models I have reviewed, please reach out and I will answer as soon as I can!
Other Upright Vacuum Cleaner Reviews
Morphy Richards Cordless Vacuum Cleaner
Brand: Morphy Richards
Charge Type: Cordless
Lightweight 3.9 kg
Cordless and holds charge for 35 minutes of cleaning
At 3.9 kg, it is so light that if you want a lighter vacuum you will have to go with a stick style model.
Though, the Morphy Richards Supervac does resemble a stick, it is a little more robust than that.
It is a cordless model so that also adds to the portability. A charge lasts 35 minutes, so long enough for most cleanups.
The collapsible handle makes it easy to store in even the tightest of places. The swivel head means it can get into the tight nooks and crannies and around furniture.
Getting the stairs can be done by using it as a handheld vacuum since it is a 2 in 1 system. Though it is lightweight enough that you could probably use it as is on the stairs. The downside is that it doesn’t have a hose, as is the case with most stick style vacuums.
It does have a crevice tool and brush head that replaces the floor head and since the unit is so light, you can get those spots over your head with no issues.
Though the suction is not as strong as a full-fledged upright, it does have a rotating brush on the floor head so it can get stubborn debris and most pet hair.
If your needs are not complex and you just need a convenient way to do some quick clean up, then this is a good option. Most people seem to use it as a second vacuum, but if your area to clean is pretty straightforward and using a full-sized, heavy vacuum seems like overkill, then this should be a good option.
Shark Rocket True Pet Ultra-Light Handstick Vacuum Cleaner
It should come as no surprise that Shark makes the list for best lightweight vacuum. This Rocket vacuum is an exceptional vacuum that cleans wonderfully and as a bonus also weighs only 3 kg.
It is a stick style vacuum that doesn’t have many of the limitations of other sticks. It works as well or better than most fully upright vacuums and weighs less than half as much. An added feature is that it is transformed into a handheld to use either in your car or on your stairs.
The fact that it is tailored towards pet owners means you can be sure to get an exceptional clean even without any pets. The motorised brush head has two rows of rollers that can break up fine to heavy debris.
Besides the excellent suction, the accessories are the star of the show. It’s what sets the Rocket apart from other stick vacuums.
The main floor head has a swivel feature to get around your furniture and under some tight spots.
The crevice tool is telescopic and flexible making it ideal for those hard to reach overhead areas. There is a smaller motorized floor head with rotating brush that is ideal for use when in handheld mode. That means you can get the pet hair off of furniture, pet beds or for any type of hard to handle mess in areas where a standard upright can’t go. In addition, you get a smaller upholstery tool and a dust brush.
The unique Dust Away hard-floor head can trap fine particles with the soft padded area that helps that fine dust get sucked up into the vacuum. The pad can be washed and replaced if need be.
All this adds up to a very fine vacuum that gives your house a professional level clean while being insanely convenient to use.
The Vax Air3 vacuum was very, very close to making the list of best lightweight vacuum. At only 4.9 kg it is lightweight, manoeuvrable and versatile.
But it is not just a lightweight upright vacuum, it is also one of the best bagless vacuums. The nice price tag is what places it firmly on this best of list.
You’ll get a very thorough clean thanks to the multi-cyclonic suction technology. And, as I like to point out often when a vacuum is designed for pet owners, you can expect very good performance all around.
With settings on the floor head for low pile carpet, hard floor and deep pile carpet, you can ensure you get a good clean on all surfaces.
The hose is also very convenient as it is stored in the body of the vacuum. This gives it a slim profile and allows you to get into some hard to reach areas. Other accessories include a crevice tool, an upholstery brush and a turbo brush for pet hair and stubborn debris.
The 2-litre cylinder is large and easy to empty. It’s a one-touch operation that keeps your hands and the air clean. A HEPA 12 filter is great for people with allergies. In most scenarios where a pet is involved, having a HEPA filter is indispensable.
It isn’t loaded with bells and whistles, but it gives a superior clean and the bagless technology means you get great suction power for a low price.
The Dyson animal is runner-up in name only as it does an equally good job at pet hair vs the Shark.
Bagless vacuums, in general, are always a good bet for when you have pets since they don’t lose suction as quickly as bagged ones. When dealing with pet hair and the type of dirt you deal with daily, this is important. It’s no surprise then that Dyson is a great choice since you have pets.
As you often find with pet-centric vacuums, it includes a turbo pet brush for use on upholstery and furniture as well as pet beds.
The ball technology makes it easy to use so cleaning up after a pet doesn’t need to be as big of a chore as it used to be. It also works great on stairs with the turbo brush since it has a rotating brush. The extra long hose means you can leave the vacuum at the bottom of the stairs in most cases.
The self-adjusting floor head makes it easy and brainless to clean up too. No need to change the setting for floor type.
And the filter system is highly rated to trap particles up to .5 microns leaving your air free from dust mites and dander as well as bacteria.
There are two reasons this didn’t place first in my roundup of best pet hair vacuums. The price for one. It is out of reach of many consumers. The other is the accessories that you get with the Shark Lift-Away. Both are equal when it comes to performance, so it makes sense to spend less and get more accessories in most cases.
And there we have it, these are mostly bagless models and you’ve got other good choices like the Dyson V11, and I don’t have any Bosch vacuums which are also great, but all of these are superb choices and will certainly see you right.