Which upright vacuum is best?
Every home needs a good vacuum, and many homes have more than one. The best vacuums do more than just inhale what’s on your floor — they use accessories to clean almost any surface.
One top choice for upright vacuums is the Dyson Ball Animal Upright Vacuum. The ball design makes this one of the easiest vacuums to steer and control. It’s also asthma and allergy certified by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America.
What to know before you buy an upright vacuum
Why use an upright vacuum?
Upright vacuums have perks that make them the best for regular cleaning in the average home. For starters, they have some of the strongest suctions out of all vacuum types. They also have wide heads to tackle more floor space at once, leading to less cleaning time. Most of them can be safely used on both carpet and hard floors. Finally, they’re usually a comfortable height, so there’s no need to strain your back.
Some upright vacuums use bags, while others don’t.
- Bagged vacuums use disposable bags to hold the debris they suck up. The only real benefit to bags is their increased allergy and asthma reduction. Otherwise, they become a recurring cost.
- Bagless vacuums use canisters that need to be emptied. This can save a considerable amount of money over time, but it’s impossible to prevent some of the dust and dirt from being sent back into the air during emptying.
What to look for in a quality upright vacuum
All upright vacuums have a filtration system to prevent what’s cleaned up from being spewed back out, but some are better than others. The best vacuums use high-efficiency particulate air, or HEPA, filters. Some filters are designed to be cleaned and reusable, while others must be replaced once dirtied. Unfortunately, even reusable filters will reach a point where they need to be replaced.
All vacuums generate high levels of noise — it’s unavoidable — though some vacuums generate more. Few (if any) product descriptions include a decibel rating. You might be able to find this detailed information online, but the best way to gauge noise levels is to check the user reviews.
High-quality upright vacuums include a few accessories to help clean hard-to-reach or hard-to-handle messes. Most include a mini brush head that attaches to the hose for cleaning stairs or tackling pet hair. Others might have ultra-thin tubes called crevice heads for cleaning in between couch cushions and other narrow zones.
How much you can expect to spend on an upright vacuum
The average upright vacuum costs $100-$200. The most basic models can cost less than $100 but are usually no cheaper than $75. Higher-end vacuums start at $200 and can go up to $500.
Upright vacuum FAQ
How do I know how powerful the suction is?
A. Most vacuums relate their suction power in watts. However, not all product descriptions include the watts — you’ll likely need to do some extra research to find the wattage of a specific vacuum. Aim for at least 1,000-watt strength, though less is likely enough, should you be shopping for a budget vacuum.
Why does my upright vacuum have less suction than it used to?
A. Decreased suction is almost always because of a dirty filter. Simply clean or replace it as needed. If that’s not the case, it may be an issue involving the head, such as a broken brush, or there could be a clog somewhere.
What should I look for if I have severe allergies?
A. You should pick the vacuum with the best filtration system, preferably one with HEPA filters. You can purchase a vacuum that uses bags — this increases your recurring cost, but it’s worth it to prevent aggravating severe allergies. You can also look for certification from an organization like the AAFA. Thankfully, it shouldn’t take more than an internet search to confirm that your vacuum is a good pick for handling allergens.
What’s the best upright vacuum to buy?
Top upright vacuum
Dyson Ball Animal Upright Vacuum
What you need to know: This pick comes from one of the best brands in vacuuming.
What you’ll love: It’s among the most powerful options. The ball design makes sharp turns and precise maneuvering a breeze. It’s been tested to last for up to 10 years. It’s allergy and asthma certified by the AAFA. It includes accessories to tackle pet hair and tight spaces.
What you should consider: It’s among the heaviest vacuums at 17 pounds. Also, Dyson only provides limited warranty support to products purchased through Amazon.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top upright vacuum for the money
Eureka PowerSpeed Bagless Upright Vacuum
What you need to know: This upright vacuum has a good amount of power and features for a low cost.
What you’ll love: It’s light at 10 pounds, it has an adjustable height and it comes in several colors. It won’t scratch hardwood flooring. It has a 4.1-liter dustbin and includes several accessories, such as a 7-inch crevice tool and a dusting brush.
What you should consider: It’s among the loudest vacuums. The plastic construction isn’t very durable. It isn’t self-propelled, so using it takes effort, and the suction is average at best.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
Shark Navigator Lift-Away Upright Vacuum
What you need to know: This is an excellent mid-range pick.
What you’ll love: It’s light at 14.9 pounds. It has HEPA filters for blocking allergens. It includes accessories such as a crevice tool, mini brush and pet fur brushes. It operates on a swivel for easy sharp turns.
What you should consider: The brush width is on the smaller side. Some consumers didn’t receive some accessories, and the hose has limited suction power.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Want to shop the best products at the best prices? Check out Daily Deals from BestReviews.
Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.
Jordan Woika writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
Copyright 2023 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.