The greatest thing to ever happen to vacuum cleaners was tossing away the cord, making them slimmer and trimming the fat. Dyson may have revolutionized cordless stick vacuums, but the manufacturer is no longer the de facto brand when it comes to getting a good stick vac. Nearly every home appliance brand has a line of cordless stick vacuums these days, and it's easy to see why everyone loves them — they're lightweight, convenient and efficient.
While cordless stick vacs tend to be fairly expensive, we've found that the pros outweigh the cons. A good stick vacuum, like any good vacuum cleaner in general, should be able to work efficiently across multiple surface types and, of course, it should a really good job at sucking up dirt, dust, hair and whatever grime is in your home. To help you find the best vacuum cleaner for yourself, we did some spring cleaning to help you find the eight best models worth your time and money.
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The Best Stick Vacuums
- Best Overall Stick Vacuum: Dyson V8 Absolute
- Best Splurge Stick Vacuum: Dyson V15 Detect
- Best Budget Stick Vacuum: Tineco A10 Hero
- Samsung Jet 90
- Shark Wandvac System
- Black + Decker Powerseries Extreme
- Tineco Pure One X
- Miele Triflex HX1
Best Overall Stick Vacuum: Dyson V8 Absolute
Of course the best cordless stick vacuum cleaner has to come from Dyson, which continues to innovate its vacuums year after year. However, the one that offers the most bang for buck is the V8 (and opt for the Absolute, which provides a variety of attachments to get a truly deep clean). While the Dyson V6 and V7 are great cleaners in their own right, the V8 has the best wide appeal. You get up to 40 minutes of runtime, a washable filter and powerful suction. Dyson's older models, which includes the V8, are constantly on sale, so it's easy to scoop a good deal on this model. And if you're looking for an even greater deal, go refurbished — Dyson refurbs are certified to run good as new, and you'll save yourself a nice chunk of change.
Best Splurge Stick Vacuum: Dyson V15 Detect
The V15 Detect is Dyson's latest cordless stick vac, and also its most extra. The thing has a laser in its head. The Laser Slim Fluffy cleaner head uses a green light to illuminate dust particles, as small as the size of human red blood cells, that are naked to the human eye. Watching those tiny particles get sucked up make vacuuming incredibly satisfying, like an IRL version of Space Invaders. To further let you know it's doing its job, the V15 Detect uses something called an acoustic piezo sensor, which turns the vibrations of dust being sucked up into electric signals, which help the V15 relay just how many particles you've vacuumed. It's then displayed to you through the LCD display. We told you this thing was extra.
Best Budget Stick Vacuum: Tineco A10 Hero
Tineco's entry-level vacuum offers just about everything you need from a vacuum: it's one of the lightest models we tested (a little under three pounds), high-powered and easy to clean. The motor is also supremely quiet, though our tester mentions that the wheels of the brush head make a notable sound against hard floors. The design of the vacuum means it won't lie flat against the floor, so you can get completely under furniture, but our tester said it worked well on his hardwood and linoleum floors, as well as his rugs.
Samsung Jet 90
Samsung's cordless stick vacuums are recent additions to the product category, and its Jet 90 is a worthy competitor to high-end stick vacs, like those from Dyson. As our tester says, it has "good suction, including multiple power levels, and many different attachments [that] make it easy to clean just about any surface in the house." The battery has a 60-minute runtime, and purchasing a spare battery means you can charge one while still vacuuming to essentially doubling your runtime. It has a decently sized dust bin, with almost a three-and-a-half cup capacity, plus it's lightweight — just six pounds — so you can reduce arm fatigue while vacuuming, and reaching high surfaces is a little less strenuous.
Shark Wandvac System
This lightweight, compact stick vacuum offers pretty good suction for its size. It has a "Star Trek design," as our tester noted, and it certainly is sleek with a retro sci-fi look. Seemlessly transition between carpets and hard floor thanks to Shark's PowerFins technology, which is also just really good for picking up all types of crap. The only problem with this vacuum its its tiny dust bin, which has a half-cup capacity. If you're an everyday vacuumer, you may find that's ample dust storage, but if you're vacuuming only when "the color of the carpet has started to shift," as our tester says, you'll be running to the trash bin more often than you'd like.
Black+Decker Powerseries Extreme
Black+Decker's power tools are still the brand's cream of the crop, but its Powerseries Extreme vacuum is worthy of a purchase. It has a pretty decent battery life, clocking in at 55 minutes, and can transition from hard floors to carpets almost seamlessly. Its LED brush head lights aren't particularly special because they don't illuminate naked-to-the-eye particles like the Dyson V15 does. We do appreciate that the vacuum is self-standing, which is convenient for storage and for those who don't want a charging dock that screws into the wall. And if you're a Black+Decker fan, all of the batteries are interchangeable if that does anything to influence your purchase.
Tineco Pure One X
Tineco's Pure One lines of vacuums are its line of stick vacuums, and the Pure One X is a surprisingly affordable option for its functionality. The Pure One X can sense what it's suctioning and adjust its power to ensure everything is getting picked up. To ensure that you know it's doing its job, the main body features an LED ring to communicate when it's suctioning (a red ring) and when the area is cleared (a blue ring). Sync up your vacuum to the Tineco app to get realtime performance monitoring, cleaning reports, maintenance reminders and customer support. We especially like that Tineco offers the option to lock the trigger button so you don't have to continually squeeze to vacuum, which is how Dyson's stick vacuums operate. It means you won't get fatigued from having to constantly keep the trigger depressed.
Miele Triflex HX1
Miele has an old-school cool feel to it mainly because it feels like the vacuum brand your grandparents (or great-grandparents) had. In 2021, its cordless stick vac makes it a worthwhile purchase for those who want consistently good vacuuming abilities and a better-than-most customer service line. The Triflex HX1 has a gimmicky self park feature, which basically inches itself against a wall to prevent scuffs and scratches. The power hub can be configured to different uses, whether you need to vacuum upright, above the head or stick-less (for cramped spaces like your car's interior). The dust bin is a bit finicky, but a minor pain point.