If you want your floors to sparkle, a quality vacuum with strong filtration and great suction is essential. While brands like Dyson and iRobot can be pricey, there are more affordable options that are just as highly rated, a fraction of the price and from Select favorite brands. If you’re a first-time buyer or you’re looking for a vacuum to replace your old one, you should consider the type of vacuum that will work best with your household needs before purchasing.
SKIP AHEAD Best affordable vacuums
Types of vacuums
There are five main types of vacuums to consider, depending on your different cleaning needs and preferences. Below, we’ve described the differences between the five types of vacuums available: canister, upright, stick, handheld and robot, according to our experts’ guidance from previous reporting.
- A canister vacuum has a separate canister that contains the motor and receptacle and equips a long hose that can be fitted with interchangeable attachments.. This is a great option for the homeowner who has a mixture of stairs and surfaces to clean because canister vacuums are much lighter and far easier to maneuver than upright vacuums. But with all its extra parts, it may be difficult to store.
- An upright vacuum is a great option for homes that have large, wide-open spaces, since they are typically easier to maneuver than canister vacuums. Uprights also tend to be heavier than canister vacuums—weighing as much as 20 pounds—making it difficult to lift them up and down the stairs. Some, but not all upright vacuums come with a wand attachment, which can clean vertical surfaces, like walls, upholstery and curtains.
- A stick vacuum is slim and lightweight, making it a good option for both quick cleanups and homes with minimal storage space. These are best for people with smaller spaces to clean, since they’re not as powerful as canister vacuums. Sticks are also good for those who have kids and are constantly cleaning up spills and messes.
- A handheld (or cordless) vacuum is a compact, portable option that is typically referred to as a Dustbuster. They are a good option for vacuuming out your car or spot cleaning but are typically less powerful than traditional models. For that reason, handhelds should not replace a larger, heavier-duty vacuum for all your home cleaning but instead be used as an extra option.
- A robot vacuum is a "smart" counterpart to the traditional vacuum and can run at any time — even when you’re not home — and reset themselves to charge. They help tackle forgotten corners and clean under furniture that larger models may not be able to. However, they tend to be slower than most other types of vacuums, so they’re not the best option if you’re looking for a quick cleanup.
- Bagless vacuums employ a container, called a dustbin, that collects the dirt and debris that you need to empty. Bagless models are great for those who don't want to have to worry about buying and changing out bags, but they are not the best option if you have severe allergies.
- Bagged vacuums, on the other hand, keep the particles contained in a bag, but these bags need to be replaced after they are full, so it is an additional investment. Both canister and upright vacuums come in bagged and bagless models.
With that in mind, we found a few of the best affordable vacuums from well-known brands in the cleaning space, including Hoover, Bissell and Shark.
Best affordable vacuums
Below are a few affordable vacuums — all under $100 — that are highly rated at retailers like Amazon, Target and Walmart.
Best affordable overall vacuum: Bissell
Bissell Featherweight Stick Lightweight Bagless Vacuum
This Bissell vacuum has a three-in-one design — it can clean carpets and hard floors and converts into both a handheld version and a shorter, stair vacuum (via a floor nozzle attachment). The bagless vacuum’s canister can be emptied directly into your trash can. While it does have to be plugged in, the vacuum has a 15-foot cord, allowing you room to maneuver. It currently comes in four colors: black, blue, lime and purple. This bestselling vacuum has a 4.4-star average rating across more than 88,000 reviews on Amazon.
Best affordable canister vacuum: Eureka
Eureka WhirlWind Bagless Canister Vacuum
With swivel steering, this canister vacuum is meant to be easy to maneuver around furniture and up and down stairs. You can choose between three different suction controls on the handle, depending on the surface: carpet, upholstery or hard floors. The vacuum, which weighs approximately 8 pounds, also has an automatic cord retractor and quick dust release on the side of the canister. While bagless, this vacuum includes a filter that the brand recommends rinsing as needed. This vacuum has a 4.3-star rating over more than 24,000 Amazon reviews.
Best affordable upright vacuum: Hoover
Hoover WindTunnel Corded Bagless Upright Vacuum
This Hoover vacuum comes with a tool kit of attachments — which includes a crevice tool and dusting brush — for things like pet hair and cobwebs. The bagless vacuum also has settings for different surfaces, such as bare floors and carpeting, that you can toggle between. There’s also an extension wand to clean hard-to-reach surfaces, like your ceilings. A 25-foot cord automatically retracts with the touch of a button, says the brand. Keep in mind, though, this vacuum weighs about 18 pounds, meaning it’s heavier than other options on this list and likely difficult to hoist up and down the stairs. Nevertheless, it’s a popular pick on Amazon, where it has a 4.3-star rating from nearly 8,000 reviews.
Best affordable cordless vacuum: Black+Decker
Black + Decker Handheld Vacuum CHV1410L
This No. 1 Amazon bestseller and Select favorite weighs just 2.6 pounds and has a crevice tool, which pulls out to provide an extra-long reach to get into high spaces and under appliances. It also comes with a removable slim nozzle that can rotate 180 degrees to give you optimum control and a 16-volt lithium-ion battery that the brand says can hold a charge for up to 18 months. Its one-way flap valve keeps debris securely inside the vacuum. This Black + Decker option has a 4.5-star average rating from more than 80,000 reviews.
Best affordable stick vacuum: Dirt Devil
Dirt Devil Power Swerve Pet, Lightweight Cordless Stick
If you’re tight on space, consider this Dirt Devil, which has a brush roll that can tackle deeply embedded pet hair on carpeting and hardwood floors, according to the brand. Weighing just over 5 pounds, this Dirt Devil has a low-profile nozzle that swerves, so it can maneuver under and around furniture. The easy-empty canister is extra large, at 0.5 liters, so that means less trips to the trash can. It comes equipped with a 16-volt lithium battery and an LED indicator light to let you know when the battery is fully charged. It has a 4.3-star rating on Amazon across more than 3,500 reviews.
Best affordable robot vacuum: Kyvol
Kyvol Robot Vacuum Cleaner E30, 2200Pa
The strong suction on the Dopinmin Robot Vacuum has earned this affordable vacuum 4.2 stars on Amazon. It is designed to clean hardwood floors, short-haired carpets and pet hair on either surface, says the brand. It has a runtime of 150 minutes and a self-charging dock and can be controlled via voice, app or remote. According to Dopinmin, the vacuum is equipped with navigation sensors to avoid collisions with furniture and cleans in a zigzag path to clean more thoroughly and efficiently.
Best affordable vacuum mop: Shark
Shark VACMOP Pro Cordless Hard Floor Vacuum Mop
Unlike the other aforementioned vacuums, this Shark model can both suction up dirt and debris and mop wet messes a regular vacuum couldn’t tackle. But keep in mind that the disposable mop pads need to be replaced after about two to three uses with Shark’s compatible refills, says the brand. The battery-operated vacuum, which weighs less than 5 pounds, comes with a magnetic charger and includes LED headlights for any dust or debris you might miss. The vacuum has an average 4.5-star rating from more than 24,500 reviews on Amazon.
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