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The 5 Best Vacuums For Carpets - Summer 2022 Reviews

Updated
Best Vacuums For Carpets

Cleaning carpeted floors can be a difficult task for many vacuums. Carpeted floors tend to hold on to various types of foreign material, so it's crucial to have a vacuum with plenty of suction power and a brushroll that can dig its way into this type of surface and lift away debris. The best vacuum to clean carpet should also be maneuverable enough to navigate its way around furniture and shelves without getting stuck on shaggy surfaces.

We've tested over 115 vacuum cleaners, and below are our recommendations for the best vacuums to clean carpets. We selected these picks based on their performance on low and high-pile carpet and their design, feature set, and price. For more recommendations, look at our list of the best vacuums, the best vacuums for high-pile carpet, and the best cordless vacuums.


  1. Best Vacuum For Carpets

    The SEBO Airbelt D4 is the best vacuum for carpets we've tested. Even with only a basic straight-suction floorhead, this high-end canister vacuum does a very good job dealing with pet hair and fine and large debris on low and high-pile carpets. If you live in a home with shag-pile carpeting, it's a good idea to buy a SEBO ET-1 or wider ET-2 floorhead, either of which is highly effective on carpets. The rocker switch on the handle of this vacuum gives you a precise level of control over its suction power, allowing you to quickly adapt to different types and lengths of carpeting. Build quality is excellent, and the vacuum's three-stage filtration system is remarkably effective in trapping fine allergens. It's also incredibly easy to maintain and incurs low recurring costs for a bagged vacuum, thanks to its large-capacity dirtbags and long-lasting filters.

    Still, this is a somewhat bulky, heavy canister vacuum, and you might want to consider an alternative like the Miele Complete C3 Alize PowerLine if you're looking for something easier to maneuver. That said, the Miele uses smaller dirtbags and less durable filters, leading to higher costs of ownership. Like the SEBO, it'd also be a good idea to purchase a C3 model with an electrobrush floorhead, like the C3 Cat & Dog or C3 Kona, if you plan on cleaning a lot of very dense carpeting. Alternatively, if you want to spend less and don't mind using an upright vacuum, the Kenmore Intuition Bagged is a good option, though it isn't as well-built as either the SEBO or Miele.

    See our review

  2. Best Cordless Vacuum For Carpets

    If you prefer using a cordless vacuum to deal with messes on carpets, the Dyson V15 Detect is a good option. It delivers superb performance on low and high-pile carpets, easily cleaning pet hair as well as fine and large debris. Using it in its 'Auto' mode lets it automatically adjust its suction power depending on the surface type you're on, which is good if you have a wide mix of floor types in your home. However, regardless of the mode, its strong suction force can cause it to drag around some lighter rugs. It includes an onboard HEPA filter and a built-in dirt sensor that counts and measures the size of debris being sucked into the dustbin. That said, it feels a little flimsy in places, which is disappointing for a vacuum at this price point.

    If you're looking for a more solidly-built cordless vacuum with a larger dustbin and you don't mind using a bulkier upright, the Shark Cordless Vertex Pro Powered Lift-Away is also worth a look. It delivers impressive overall performance on low and high-pile carpets, but its twin brushroll head has a habit of getting caught on shag carpeting. If you want to spend less on a cordless stick vacuum for cleaning carpets, you could also consider the Samsung Jet 70 Pet, though it does have a shorter battery life than the Dyson and lacks its built-in dirt sensor.

    See our review

  3. Best Budget Vacuum For Carpets

    The best budget carpet vacuum we've tested is the Wyze Cordless Vacuum. This budget-friendly cordless stick vacuum delivers superb cleaning performance on high-pile carpet and clears an impressive amount of debris on low-pile carpet. Depending on the surface you're on, you can swap between three different suction power modes by tapping on the touchscreen interface at the back of its body. This vacuum's very lightweight construction makes it easy to maneuver around furniture or lift over obstructions like electrical cords. Depending on your settings and attachments, it supplies roughly 10 minutes to an hour of continuous runtime, which should be enough for cleaning most rooms.

    If you'd prefer to use a corded vacuum to clean carpeted floors, the BISSELL PowerForce Helix is a suitable option. While it feels flimsier than the Wyze and is much more difficult to maneuver, it's even cheaper and offers five levels of head height adjustment for cleaning different lengths of carpet.

    See our review

  4. Best Vacuum For Spot-Cleaning Carpets

    The best vacuum cleaner for carpets with a handheld design that we've tested is the Shark UltraCyclone Pet Pro+. This cordless vacuum is light enough to be carried wherever you may need with minimal effort and has a compact body that you can store in a cupboard, closet, or drawer. It also feels fairly robust and has an easy-to-maintain design that incurs few recurring costs. It does an exceptional job sucking up debris on low and high-pile carpets. It also comes with a crevice tool for tackling messes in hard-to-reach areas and a miniature turbo brush, which has a brushroll that the manufacturer advertises to be self-cleaning. However, it lacks an allergen-trapping HEPA filter, making it a poor fit for those who have allergies. Its short battery life also limits its usage to short cleaning sessions.

    If a HEPA filter and a longer battery life are must-have features, you could also look at the Dyson Humdinger. It does a significantly better job of sealing in fine particles and can run for up to almost 30 minutes on a single charge. That said, it's also far more expensive and has a much smaller dirt compartment that needs emptying a lot more frequently.

    See our review

  5. Best Robot Vacuum For Carpets

    If you're looking for a hands-free way of keeping your carpets clean, the iRobot Roomba S9 is a good option. This robot vacuum delivers impressive performance on low pile carpet and does a good job dealing with debris on high-pile carpet, though it might still need to make another pass to fully clean finer debris. Its surface detection system lets it automatically change its brushroll height depending on the surface that it's on, which is handy if you have a mix of high and low-pile carpets in your home. It stores a permanent map of its cleaning area, allowing it to resume a cleaning session from where it left off if it needed to return to its dock to recharge. You can also use its companion app to set up virtual boundary markers or direct it to clean a specific room.

    Still, this is a somewhat pricey robot vacuum. If you're looking for something more affordable that's also reasonably effective on carpeted floors, you could consider the Neato D8, which also incurs lower costs of ownership. However, it also has a shorter battery life than the iRobot and gets stuck around furniture more frequently, despite its fairly advanced LIDAR mapping sensor.

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • Dyson Ball Animal 2: The Dyson Ball Animal 2 is a bagless upright vacuum that delivers superb performance on low and high-pile carpet and comes with a wide selection of tools and accessories. Its strong suction force makes it very difficult to maneuver on low and high-pile carpet. See our review
  • Dyson V7 Animal: The Dyson V7 Animal is a cordless stick/handheld vacuum with an impressive performance on carpet and plenty of cleaning brushes to help you reach closed-off areas. Unfortunately, it doesn't perform as well as the Dyson V15 Detect or Samsung Jet 70 Pet. See our review
  • Shark APEX UpLight: The Shark APEX UpLight is a stick/handheld vacuum that delivers great overall performance on low and high-pile carpet, but it isn't as versatile as the Dyson V15 Detect. See our review
  • Shark Rocket Pet Pro with MultiFlex IZ163H: The Shark Rocket Pet Pro with MultiFlex IZ163H is a versatile cordless stick/handheld vacuum that's easier to maneuver than the Dyson V15 Detect but offers inferior performance on low and high-pile carpet. See our review
  • Shark Vertex Pro: The Shark Vertex Pro is a cordless stick vacuum that feels better-built than the Dyson V15 Detect, has a larger dustbin, and is a little easier to maneuver, but it doesn't perform as well on low or high-pile carpet. See our review
  • Shark Rotator Lift-Away ADV: The Shark Rotator Lift-Away ADV is a bagless upright vacuum that's a viable alternative to the Shark Cordless Vertex Pro Powered Lift-Away if you prefer going with a corded model. It doesn't do as well on high-pile carpets and is more of a hassle to maneuver, especially in tight spaces. See our review
  • Miele Classic C1: The Miele Classic C1 is a corded canister vacuum with very good performance on high-pile and low-pile carpet, but it has a shorter power cord than the SEBO Airbelt D4, doesn't feel as well-built, and lacks an allergen-sealed construction. See our review
  • Miele Complete C3 Alize PowerLine: The Miele Complete C3 Alize PowerLine is a great alternative to the SEBO Airbelt D4, thanks to its more maneuverable design and lighter construction. It incurs higher recurring costs and has a much shorter overall range. See our review
  • Neato D8: The Neato D8 is a robot vacuum that outperforms the iRobot Roomba S9 and has less demanding maintenance requirements, but it doesn't do as well on low-pile carpets, has a shorter battery life, and gets stuck more often. See our review
  • Eureka FloorRover Elite NEU630: The Eureka FloorRover Elite NEU630 is an upright vacuum that performs very well on high-pile carpet and incurs low recurring costs. It isn't as easy to maintain as the Wyze Cordless Vacuum and isn't nearly as maneuverable. See our review
  • Eureka Whirlwind Bagless Canister: The Eureka Whirlwind Bagless Canister is a budget-friendly canister vacuum with a lightweight design and practically no recurring costs. It's outperformed by the Wyze Cordless Vacuum on carpeted surfaces. See our review
  • Miele Triflex HX1: The Miele Triflex HX1 is a cordless vacuum with a unique three-in-one design. It's well-built and great on carpets, but the Dyson V15 Detect has a better performance on low-pile and high-pile carpets, a longer battery life, and an allergen-trapping HEPA filter. See our review
  • Simplicity S65S: The Simplicity S65S is a basic cordless stick/handheld vacuum that delivers excellent cleaning performance on high-pile carpet. It can be a bit of a hassle to store and has a significantly shorter maximum battery life than the Dyson V15 Detect. See our review
  • yeedi vac station: The yeedi vac station is a robot vacuum with a self-emptying feature. It does better than the iRobot Roomba S9 on high-pile carpet, but it struggles more on low-pile and incurs higher recurring costs. See our review
  • BISSELL PowerForce Helix: The BISSELL PowerForce Helix is a budget-friendly bagless upright vacuum. It delivers excellent performance on low-pile carpet and cleans an impressive amount of debris on high-pile carpets. However, it feels very cheaply built and can be hard to maneuver. See our review
  • Kenmore Intuition Bagged: The Kenmore Intuition Bagged is a bagged upright vacuum that delivers very good overall performance on carpets, though not quite to the same degree as the SEBO Airbelt D4. Its bulky design also makes it harder to maneuver. See our review
  • Shark Cordless Vertex Pro Powered Lift-Away: The Shark Cordless Vertex Pro Powered Lift-Away is a cordless upright vacuum that delivers great overall performance on low and high-pile carpets. However, it can be a little challenging to maneuver in tight spaces due to its somewhat large dustbin and twin brushroll head, which has a habit of getting caught on shag carpeting. See our review
  • Samsung Jet 70 Pet: The Samsung Jet 70 Pet is a great alternative to the Dyson V15 Detect if you're looking to spend less on a cordless stick vacuum. However, it has a much shorter battery life and lacks the Dyson vacuum's automatic power adjustment capability. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. May 25, 2022: Article rewrite to better align with user expectations. Recategorized SEBO Airbelt D4 as 'Best Vacuum For Carpets' pick. Recategorized Dyson V15 Detect as 'Best Cordless Vacuum For Carpets' pick. Recategorized Shark UltraCyclone Pet Pro+ as 'Best Vacuum For Spot-Cleaning Carpets' pick. Moved Kenmore Intuition Bagged, Shark Cordless Vertex Pro Powered Lift-Away, and Samsung Jet 70 Pet to Notable Mentions.

  2. Apr 25, 2022: Substantial article restructuring to align with test bench update. Replaced Shark Rotator Powered Lift-Away Upright with Shark Cordless Vertex Pro Powered Lift-Away as 'Best Upright Vacuum For Carpets'. Recategorized Kenmore Intuition Bagged as 'Corded Alternative' pick. Added Samsung Jet 70 Pet as new 'Cheaper Alternative' pick. Replaced Miele Complete C3 Alize PowerLine with SEBO Airbelt D4 as 'Best Canister Vacuum For Carpets' pick. Added Miele Complete C3 Alize PowerLine and Shark Rotator Lift-Away ADV to Notable Mentions.

  3. Mar 23, 2022: Verified that all main picks are still available and represent the best option for user needs and expectations.

  4. Feb 21, 2022: Verified that all main picks are still available and represent the best option for user needs and expectations.

  5. Jan 21, 2022: Verified that all main picks still represent the best choice for their given category.

All Reviews

Our recommendations are based on what we think are currently the best vacuums for carpet. We don't just base our results on overall performance, but also factors like availability, price, and reader feedback, so it isn't as though there's a single best vacuum cleaner for carpets to suit all needs.

If you would like to do the work of choosing yourself, here is the list of all our vacuum reviews, ranked by their performance on carpet. 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.

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