A good cordless vacuum is a helpful addition to any household cleaning arsenal. When you don't need to worry about staying in range of an outlet, it's easy to clean small, out-of-the-way areas inside your home and in tighter spaces like car interiors. You also don't have to worry about a power cord getting snagged on a piece of furniture and bringing a frustrating pause to your cleaning session. However, despite recent strides in extending overall battery life, a cordless vacuum still can't offer the worry-free indefinite runtime of a corded vacuum. For many, however, this trade-off is worth these appliances' near-infinite range.
We've tested over 135 vacuum cleaners, and below are our recommendations for the best vacuum cleaners with a cordless design. We selected these picks based on their performance on different surface types and their feature set, battery life, and price. For more options, look at our lists of the best vacuums, our best cordless stick vacuums, and the best vacuums for high-pile carpet.
The Dyson V15 Detect is the best cordless vacuum we've tested. This vacuum has a 230AW suction motor, which is remarkably powerful for a cordless stick vacuum and allows it to clear away a wide range of debris on different surfaces. Its built-in piezo sensor measures and counts debris being sucked into the vacuum so that you can keep an eye on allergen levels inside your home. Also, its surface detection system lets it automatically adjust its suction power to match the floor type you're on. At about six and a half pounds, it's reasonably lightweight and fairly easy to pick up, carry, or maneuver around obstacles. Unfortunately, its strong suction force can cause it to get bogged down on thicker rugs.
If you're looking for a cordless vacuum that's even better suited for those with allergies, the Samsung Bespoke Jet is a solid option, as it comes with a charging rack that doubles as a self-emptying station; with the press of a button, debris is sucked from the vacuum's dustbin through an airtight seal into a dirtbag. However, the Samsung vacuum lacks Dyson's automatic power adjustment feature, and its twin roller floorhead is bulkier, making it less maneuverable.
The Shark Stratos Cordless is among the best cordless vacuums we've tested if you're shopping at a mid-range price. Its bulkier twin-roller floorhead and relatively heavy body make it less portable than the Dyson V15 Detect, and its suction motor isn't quite as potent. That said, it has its fair share of advantages beyond its cheaper price tag. Like the Dyson, it has an automatic power adjustment system; its Clean Sense IQ function allows the vacuum to increase its suction power automatically when passing over an area with a significant concentration of debris. It also has an odor-neutralization system in the form of a replaceable cartridge mounted in its floorhead that emits a laundry-detergent-like scent as you clean. Its max battery life of about an hour is lengthy, but note that this vacuum takes a very long time to recharge, which is inconvenient during longer cleaning sessions.
This vacuum's hinged wand makes it simple to clean under most tables and chairs without bending too much. Unfortunately, its floorhead can easily get bogged down in thick-pile rugs. If that's a problem, the Miele Triflex HX1 is a good alternative that's easier to maneuver on plush carpeting, though it has a shorter battery life and a much smaller dustbin that'll need frequent emptying.
Check out the Tineco PURE ONE S11 if you want to save some money. It's less sturdily built than the Shark Stratos Cordless, doesn't perform as well on carpeted floors, and has a shorter max runtime of around 40 minutes, but it is still very well-equipped for the price. Like the pricier Shark, it has an automatic power adjustment feature that enables it to increase its suction power setting in the presence of large amounts of debris. It also features a HEPA filter that's fairly effective in trapping allergens as you clean, though it's worth noting that emptying its dustbin can still release a cloud of dust and debris.
This variant of the S11 comes with a combination crevice tool/dusting brush and a miniature turbo brush that's pretty effective in handling pet hair on upholstered furniture. It weighs a little under six pounds, which makes it very easy to pick up and carry, though its floorhead doesn't pivot very smoothly, which makes it a little bit challenging to quickly maneuver around furniture or other obstacles. Its vertically-oriented dustbin also has a smaller capacity than the Shark's horizontal dustbin, so you'll be emptying it more often.
The Wyze Cordless Vacuum is the best cordless vacuum we've tested in the budget category. Unlike the pricier Tineco PURE ONE S11, this budget-friendly cordless stick vacuum has no automatic power adjustment feature and doesn't come bundled with a mini turbo brush. If you're okay with missing out on those features, it's worth a look. The Wyze still delivers good debris-pickup performance on bare floors and carpeting. It also does a good job of clearing away pet hair, though its brushroll has stiff bristles that are somewhat tangle-prone. Thankfully, you can still remove the roller to clear away any hair that does get stuck.
Battery life tops out at almost an hour, which is not only on the longer end of the scale for a cordless model in this price range but also manages to exceed the pricier Tineco's runtime. Unfortunately, the Wyze feels rather cheaply built, being made mainly from thin, scratch-prone plastic.
If you want a higher capacity dustbin than most stick models, the Shark Vertex Pro Powered Lift-Away is a good option and is among the best cordless vacuums we've tested. Compared to the similarly-priced Shark Stratos Cordless, you lose some maneuverability in exchange for a larger internal dustbin that won't need emptying as often. Besides, it's still more maneuverable and easier to store than the average corded upright, like the Shark Stratos Upright. Its 'Lift-Away' design lets you pick up and carry its canister body separately from its floorhead while cleaning awkward spots with its wand. It has a solid range of attachments, including an upholstery tool that cleans pet hair on fabric surfaces and a fine-bristle dusting brush for delicate surfaces.
Performance is strong, with good debris pickup on bare floors and high-pile carpet. Unfortunately, while it offers two different levels of surface adjustment, these settings only affect the speed of its primary brushroll, not its height, so the vacuum can sometimes get stuck on dense shag-pile carpeting. Need a more portable cordless upright? The Hoover ONEPWR Evolve Pet is worth considering. However, it feels considerably less robust and offers terrible air filtration performance.
Oct 06, 2023: Removed the 'Best Upper Mid-Range Cordless Vacuum' pick category due to current product pricing. Replaced Shark Pet Cordless (IX141) with Wyze Cordless Vacuum as 'Best Budget Cordless Vacuum', as Wyze Cordless Vacuum replacement parts are now available. Added Shark Cordless Pet Plus, Dyson V12 Detect Slim, and Dyson Gen5detect/Gen5detect Absolute to Notable Mentions.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are currently the best cordless vacuum cleaners. We don't just base our results on overall performance but also on factors like availability, price, and reader feedback.
If you would like to do the work of choosing yourself, here is the list of all our cordless 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.