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The best cordless vacuums

  • Vacuums cords are a pain. Not only do they limit your range of cleaning mobility, they often get tangled or caught on furniture.
  • Cordless vacuums keep gaining in popularity, and Dyson's V Series of vacuums are the best ones you can buy with their powerful suction, reasonable battery life, and useful accessories.
  • Read more: The best vacuum cleaners
A high-quality vacuum can make a world of difference when you're trying to keep your floors tidy. And if you've ever had your ankles tangled up while vacuuming, or gotten to the end of a room only to run out of cord, maybe it's time to try a cordless model.
Limitless cleaning mobility isn't the only reason to make the switch. Normally, cordless vacuums are also a little lighter than their wired counterparts, and they're quicker to set up and tear down.
So what should you look for in a cordless vacuum? Well, they rely on battery power, so you'll want to make sure that the charge lasts long enough for you to clean the house. Normally, cordless vacuums can run from anywhere between 15 and 40 minutes. While that's enough time for most people to clean their carpets, those with larger homes may need to take vacuuming breaks.
You should also consider things like weight, accessories, extensions, and whether or not the vacuum can clean hardwood floors (some are designed for carpets only).

Here are the best cordless vacuum cleaners:

  • Best cordless vacuums overall: Dyson V series cordless vacuums
  • Best for hardwood floors: Shark DuoClean Cordless IONFlex Vacuum
  • Best for pet owners: Shark Navigator Freestyle
  • Best full-size crossover: Hoover Air Cordless Vacuum  
Updated on 6/2/20 by Connie Chen: All prices and links are up to date. We updated our best pick overall with Dyson's new V11 Outsize model and provided additional information about Hoover's warranty policy. 

The best overall

Dyson makes the best cordless vacuums hands down — they're light, powerful, and easy to use.

Dyson is a household name in the vacuum industry, and for good reason. The company has built a reputation on delivering powerful, high-quality vacuums. Sure, Dyson vacuums aren't always the cheapest options out there, but if you can swing it, the extra cash may be well worth it.
We've tried several versions of Dyson cordless vacuums, and we're always impressed by them. The older V7 and V8 models are still excellent cleaners that will get the job done. You'll get less suction power and shorter battery from them compared to the newer models, but they are still worth buying.
The more recent V10, and V11 models, including the newest V11 Outsize, are Dyson's top-of-the-line models, and we highly recommend them for people who have the cash. I've been using a V10 in my apartment for months now, and it's the best vacuum cleaner I've owned. Meanwhile, Insider members Connie Chen and Jada Wong have tested the V11 Outsize, which is perfect for large homes thanks to its size and long battery life.
Turbo mode may not last long, but when your cat knocks coffee grounds all over the floor or you break a glass and you need to clean up fast, it works like a charm. The included attachments are also great and make this vacuum versatile. I often use it as a hand vacuum for quick cleaning and only add the big carpet-cleaning attachment when my area rug needs a good cleaning.
Dyson's vacuums are among Wirecutter's top picks for cordless vacuum cleaners, too. Dyson also offers a two-year warranty.
If you're looking for the Cadillac of cordless vacuum cleaners, your search will end with Dyson. Devotees of this brand swear it's the most powerful product in its category, but there's a hefty price to pay for top quality, making this an investment that only people who truly enjoy vacuuming (yes, there are some of you out there) will go for. —Malarie Gokey
Pros: Very versatile, can clean both hard floors and carpet, relatively light
Cons: Somewhat short battery life, small dust capacity, relatively expensive

Read our Dyson V8 and Dyson V11 reviews

The best for hardwood floors

The Shark DuoClean Cordless IONFlex Vacuum is great at picking up crumbs and pet hair, plus it costs less than a Dyson vacuum.

The Shark DuoClean Cordless IONFlex Vacuum may not be as powerful or as long-lasting as a Dyson vacuum, but it is still a very effective cleaner.
It has a few key features that make it stand out, but its biggest one is the removable, rechargeable lithium-ion battery. Most other cordless vacuums have the battery built-in, so when it fails, you have to buy a whole new vacuum. With this Shark model, you can just replace the removable battery pack.
The vacuum has a cool feature that makes it flexible for reaching under furniture without having to strain your back or get down on the floor. It's also great at picking up pet hair and crumbs — especially from hard floors.
Shark's vacuum uses a bristle brush and a soft brushroll to pick up dust, hair, crumbs, and debris from carpets and other flooring. In its tests, Wirecutter found that this vacuum was best at cleaning hard floors, but good enough on carpet. That's why it earned the second place position in the guide.
The vacuum weighs 8.7 pounds, so it is a bit heavier than the Dyson. It also comes with a five-year warranty should anything go wrong. You will need to clean the filter and dust cup regularly so it performs well.
In the package, you get several accessories and tools, including the battery, charger, duster crevice tool, dusting brush, wide upholstery tool, and anti-allergen dust brush. You can buy extra batteries to replace yours when it completely stops working. If you'd like to have an extra on hand for when your battery loses juice and you need to recharge it, you can do that, too. —Malarie Gokey
Pros: Good suction, decent battery, lightweight, multiple attachments
Cons: Less effective on carpet than other models

The best for pet owners

The Shark Navigator Freestyle is great for both standard cleanups and for sucking up pet fur.

Perhaps the only things worse for your floors than crumb-dropping kids are hair-shedding pets. But not to worry, the Shark Bagless Navigator Freestyle will restore your floors to furball-free status in minutes.
Pet owners face a special kind of necessary cleanup, and a good vacuum can mean a world of difference in making that cleanup a quick and easy process. The Shark Navigator Freestyle has been highly rated for all kinds of uses, but it's especially good at cleaning up rogue pet fur.
The Shark Navigator Freestyle stands out among other cordless vacuums with its ability to easily swivel around furniture and other household items. The vacuum is also relatively lightweight, and instead of a bag, it has a large dust cup, which is easy to take off and empty.
The Shark Navigator Freestyle is also pretty well-built. It features rubberized wheels to help minimize any scratching on hard floors, and the battery, which will run for around 17 minutes, is replaceable — so if it eventually wears out you won't have to get rid of the vacuum altogether. It also has a one-year warranty.
What makes this vacuum stand out from others in its category is the longer run time (nearly an hour), and the fact that it only takes four hours to recharge.
There are a few negative things to consider about the vacuum before you buy it. For example, the vacuum is somewhat bulky despite being light, and it doesn't come with any attachments to clean up areas above the ground — this is a floor-only vacuum.

Pros: Easy swivel, well-built, replaceable battery, relatively inexpensive
Cons: Relatively short battery life, no above-ground attachments

The best full-size crossover

The Hoover Air Cordless Vacuum looks like a full-size vacuum, and it comes with plenty of accessories and features like two batteries.

Looking to go cordless, but don't like the smaller design of all the others on this list? You'll forget you're using a cordless vacuum (apart from the convenience of no cord) with the Hoover Air.
From the front, the Air looks just like any other full-size vacuum, and it has the accessories to match. The vacuum even comes with a second battery. Both of those batteries last around 25 minutes, meaning you'll get a hefty 50 minutes of use if you stop to do a battery switch in the middle of your cleaning session.
At 10 pounds, it's heavier than most cordless vacuums. Depending on how long you spend vacuuming, it could feel cumbersome. As you would expect from a vacuum of this size, the Hoover Air has a brushroll on the bottom, meaning it can be used for both carpet and hard floors.
Along with Shark, Hoover has the best warranty policy of the bunch — five years — so you can rest easy that your purchase will be covered.
Pros: Two batteries, full-size, lots of accessories, two filters, long warranty
Cons: Expensive, heavy, have to switch batteries for full 50 minutes of cleaning time

Check out our guides to more great vacuum cleaners

The best robot vacuums

Vacuuming is a real pain, but robot vacuum cleaners do most of the work for you. You can buy robot vacuums for as little as $220, but the high-end models are typically $1,000 or more. We tested out a number of highly reviewed models that run the price gamut to find the best robot vacuums.

The best vacuum

The best vacuum for your home depends on a number of things, the most important ones being the size, floor plan, floor material, and inhabitants of your abode. Whether you're chasing a toddler around the house and vacuuming up dropped cereal, or trying to get cat hair off of every rug in your house, these are our top picks for the best vacuums.

The best affordable vacuum cleaners

A good vacuum doesn't have to cost a fortune. In fact, you can buy an excellent vacuum cleaner with nearly as many bells and whistles as the more expensive models for just $300 — in some cases, a lot less. These are the best vacuums you can buy that won't break your budget.

For cleaning the rest of your floors, check out these guides

The best mops

For regular upkeep of hard surfaces — wood, laminate, concrete, stone, etc. — a mop is an effective tool. These are the best mops you can buy.

The best floor cleaners

Taking care of hard floors is a never-ending job. Sweeping or vacuuming can capture much of the loose dirt and hair, but eventually, some of the mess will stick and the floor is going to need to be tidied up with a mop and a good cleaner.

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