Bagged vacuum cleaners are a good option if you prioritize air quality and ease of maintenance. Unlike a bagless vacuum, debris is stored in a disposable container, virtually eliminating the risk of a plume of dust being released when you empty your vacuum. Even though dirtbags tend to need frequent replacement, driving up recurring costs, they effectively act as air filters, keeping fine debris from being released as you clean. Since the onboard filters don't have to work quite as hard as those in a bagless vacuum, user maintenance tends to be a little less demanding, too.
We've tested over 90 vacuum cleaners, and below are our recommendations for the best bagged vacuums to buy. These picks were selected not only based on their design but also their feature set and price. For more buying recommendations, take a look at our list of the best vacuums, our best canister vacuums, and the best laminate floor vacuums.
The best bagged vacuum with an upright design that we've tested is the Kenmore Intuition Bagged. This corded upright vacuum delivers fantastic performance on bare floors, where it easily cleans bulky debris like cereal as well as small debris like rice, though it may take an extra pass to clear pet hair on this surface. It does an impressive job of clearing large debris like sand and fine material like baking soda from low and high-pile carpets.
You can toggle the brushroll on and off to avoid scratching bare floors. Its 'Lift-Away' design allows you to pick up and carry the canister with one hand while holding its extendable wand in the other, making it easier to clean tables, shelves, and furniture. It comes with a turbo brush to clean fabric-lined surfaces, a hard bristle brush to dislodge stuck-on debris, and a 3-in-1 combination tool, which features crevice and upholstery tools and a sliding dusting brush. This vacuum is also easy to maintain and has a long power cord, enabling you to clean relatively far away from any electrical outlets.
Unfortunately, despite its rotating vacuum head, on-board tool storage, and more portable alternative configuration, this vacuum can still be hard to maneuver in tight spaces because of its large dirtbag compartment, which gets in the way when cleaning under tables and chairs. Its dirtbag and filters also need periodic replacing, though it has a HEPA filter to trap allergens as you clean. Overall, if you're looking for a versatile bagged upright vacuum, this is a solid choice.
If you're looking to spend a little less on a bagged upright vacuum, consider the Hoover WindTunnel Tempo Bagged. Unlike the Kenmore Intuition Bagged, it lacks an allergen-trapping HEPA filter and doesn't have a more portable alternative configuration, but it is a little bit cheaper and doesn't get stuck on rug tassels quite as often. Performance on bare floors is still excellent, and the vacuum does a good overall job of clearing debris from both low and high-pile carpet, though it doesn't perform quite as well. You can use its hose to better clean shelves, counters, tables, and other kinds of surfaces, and it has a turbo brush, a crevice tool, and a combination hard bristle brush/upholstery tool. Unfortunately, it incurs higher recurring costs.
Get the Kenmore if you're looking for a better-performing upright vacuum, but consider the Hoover if you're looking to save some money.
The Miele Complete C3 Alize PowerLine is the best bagged vacuum cleaner with a canister design that we've tested. It's an amazingly well-built vacuum, with smoothly-rolling rubber wheels, an aluminum wand, and LED lights on its handle so you can see what you're doing in shadowy corners. It delivers an incredible performance on bare floors like hardwood or linoleum and does a great job cleaning carpets.
It uses a spacious dirtbag, and its performance stays consistent as it fills up. It's easy to maneuver and has seven different suction power settings, so you can easily adapt to different surface types as you clean. You can use it in a semi-handheld configuration if you want to clean stairs, your car's interior, or another out-of-reach area. It's an exceptionally easy vacuum to maintain, and since it doesn't have a brushroll, you shouldn't have to worry about detangling hair from the vacuum.
Unfortunately, while it feels light in your hand, it's a pretty heavy vacuum overall, which isn't ideal if you need to carry it between floors regularly. It also incurs quite a few recurring costs since the dirtbag, HEPA filter, and pre-motor filter all need regular replacing. Otherwise, it's a great choice if you like its canister design, and its versatile performance makes it one of the best multi-surface vacuums we've tested.
If you're looking for a canister vacuum with a more spacious dirtbag, consider the NaceCar HVR 200 Henry. Unlike the Miele Complete C3 Alize PowerLine, it lacks an allergen-trapping HEPA filter and struggles notably more with clearing debris on carpeted floors, but its dirtbag is several times larger, meaning that it doesn't need to be replaced as often and resulting in much lower recurring costs. Its power cord and hose are also notably longer, giving you a much longer overall range. It performs very well on bare floors, though it doesn't clean pet hair quite as effectively. Its larger body also makes it harder to store and a little less maneuverable, especially in cluttered areas. It lacks some more advanced quality of life features, with no onboard LED light and a more limited range of suction power and surface type adjustment levels.
Get the Miele if you want a fuller-featured, better-performing vacuum, but consider the NaceCare if you're looking for a vacuum with a much larger dustbin.
The best bagged vacuum that we've tested at a budget-friendly price is the Eureka Mighty Mite. This canister vacuum is lightweight and compact, making it easy to pick up and carry to other rooms or maneuver in cluttered areas. It's remarkably easy to maintain, with the few parts requiring easy maintenance being very simple to access.
This vacuum delivers superb performance on bare floors, where it easily cleans pet hair, small debris like rice, and bulky material like cereal. It also does a very good job of sucking up most kinds of messes on carpets, though you may need to make several passes to fully clean fine debris, like baking soda, from these types of surfaces. Performance doesn't drop by a noticeable degree as its spacious dirtbag fills up, so it shouldn't need replacing very often.
However, it's worth noting that this vacuum doesn't come with an allergen-trapping HEPA filter, which could be disappointing if you have heavily shedding pets. In addition, parts of its all-plastic construction feel somewhat cheap. If the two plastic tubes that make up its wand aren't forced together with sufficient force, the wand could fall apart during use. Its power cord is short, so you may need to swap outlets when cleaning bigger rooms. Otherwise, if you're looking for a vacuum that can handle most messes at a value-conscious price point, this is a very good option.
Sep 28, 2021: Ensured that all main picks are still in stock and represent the best choice for their given category.
Aug 02, 2021: Replaced Miele Dynamic U1 PowerLine with Kenmore Intuition Bagged as 'Best Bagged Upright Vacuum' due to current availability. Replaced Kenmore Intuition Bagged with Hoover WindTunnel Tempo Bagged as 'Cheaper Alternative' pick. Removed Hoover WindTunnel Tempo Bagged from Notable Mentions. Added Sanitaire PROFESSIONAL Upright to Notable Mentions.
Jun 03, 2021: Verified that all main picks are still in stock and represent the best choice for their given category.
Apr 06, 2021: Checked picks to ensure that we're still recommending the best products for our users and that they're in stock.
Mar 16, 2021: Checked picks to ensure that we're still recommending the best products and that they're available.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are currently the best bagged vacuums. We don't just base our results on overall performance, but also factors like availability, price, and reader feedback.
If you'd like to do the work of choosing yourself, here's the list of all our bagged vacuum reviews. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. While no vacuum is perfect for every use, most are good enough to please almost everyone, and the differences are often not noticeable unless you really look for them.