Cordless stick vacuums are useful tools when you need something lightweight and portable. Since they don't have a power cord, you don't have to worry about range or managing the cable when you're done cleaning. They're also easier to carry up and down stairs or into different rooms than traditional upright or canister vacuums. Some people may even prefer how they feel in-hand as they can be lighter to maneuver around the room. That said, they come with disadvantages largely related to their battery performance. If you don't mind the charge time or their short active battery life, they can be a suitable addition to any home.
We've tested over 85 vacuum cleaners, and below are our recommendations for the best cordless stick vacuums to buy. These picks were selected not only based on their performance on different types of surfaces but also their feature set, battery life, and price. For more buying recommendations, check out our articles for the best cordless vacuums, the best cordless vacuums for pet hair, and the best vacuums for high-pile carpet.
The best cordless stick vacuum for bare floors that we've tested is the Shark Rocket Pet Pro with MultiFlex IZ163H. It does a fantastic job on bare surfaces like hardwood or linoleum since it can pick up pet hair as well as small and large debris with little problem. It also has a self-cleaning brushroll, which can remove hair wraps while you clean.
This decently well-built model has a flexible wand, which makes it very maneuverable, especially if you need to get underneath tables or chairs. With its handheld configuration, it's easy to clean hard-to-reach areas like crevices. It also comes with a couple of extra tools and brushes like a hard bristle brush for cleaning more stuck-on debris. If you have rugs around the home, it also does a great overall job on these surfaces. Additionally, it has a manual floor setting feature to make the brushroll spin faster or slower depending on the surface type.
Unfortunately, it has several parts that need regular maintenance. Luckily, as long as it's properly maintained, there are virtually no recurring costs. While its battery only lasts around 12 minutes on its most powerful mode, you can also get over 40 minutes of continuous vacuuming time when using its default mode. All in all, it offers outstanding performance on bare floors, and it's even one of the best vacuums for tile floors.
If you want a vacuum with better build quality, consider the Miele Triflex HX1 instead. This uniquely designed 3-in-1 vacuum has a smaller dirt compartment than the Shark Rocket Pet Pro with MultiFlex IZ163H, and its battery takes longer to recharge, but it feels better-built and more sturdy. It's also easier to maintain, and you can easily reconfigure it as an upright, stick, or handheld vacuum. It has a surface type adjustment feature that allows the brushroll to stop spinning when it detects that something is caught in it, which is handy when you're cleaning rugs with tassels. This vacuum delivers an incredible performance on bare surfaces, where it easily clears pet hair as well as debris like rice and cereal. However, it's not as maneuverable as the Shark, particularly when you're cleaning under low furniture like a couch or coffee table.
If you want the vacuum that recharges faster or that has a bigger dirt compartment, go for the Shark. If you want something with better build quality or an automatic surface type adjustment feature, you may prefer the Miele.
The Dyson V15 Detect is the best cordless stick vacuum for carpets that we've tested. This lightweight vacuum delivers an amazing overall performance on low and high-pile carpets, where it effectively sucks up pet hair as well as debris like sand and baking soda. Its performance stays consistent as its dirt compartment fills up, which is helpful when you're cleaning a big room.
It comes with a uniquely designed vacuum head with a laser that can help illuminate small debris and make it easier to see. You can use the vacuum in a handheld mode by detaching the wand, and there are a few tools and brushes included, like a turbo brush for cleaning fabric-covered furniture. The vacuum has easy-clip mechanisms that make it simple to assemble the vacuum and attach tools. Depending on what tools and power settings you use, it provides between roughly 10 and 70 minutes of continuous runtime.
Unfortunately, the vacuum's high suction power can make it difficult to push around on high-pile carpets, and it can sometimes drag lighter rugs around. It also has fairly demanding maintenance needs. Otherwise, it's a great option if you want a cordless stick vacuum that can clean carpets, and it's even one of the best vacuums for carpets that we've tested.
The best cordless stick vacuum in the budget category that we've tested is the JASHEN V16. This affordable model easily picks up pet hair from all surfaces. You can also use it in its handheld configuration by removing the extension wand, which is useful when cleaning stairs or your car.
It comes with an allergen-trapping HEPA filter as well as many accessories, including a crevice tool to clean tight spaces and a soft bristle brush for cleaning delicate surfaces like curtains or lampshades. Three power settings adjust its suction level and two different brushrolls that are specialized for bare floors and carpets. Its battery also lasts quite long for a cordless vacuum, providing over 40 minutes when using its minimum power setting and over 10 minutes when it's on its max setting.
However, it struggles to clean fine debris like baking powder from carpeted surfaces and has a lot of trouble clearing large debris like cereal from bare floors. Also, it doesn't have a very sturdy build, and its dirt compartment is fairly small, so you may need to empty it while cleaning a larger area. That said, this vacuum offers a versatile performance at a more budget-friendly price.
May 14, 2021: Replaced the Dyson V8 Animal with the Dyson V15 Detect as the pick for 'Best Cordless Stick Vacuum For Carpet' because of its superior performance on carpets. Added the Dyson V8 Animal and the Simplicity S65S to Notable Mentions.
Apr 15, 2021: Confirmed all picks are in stock and still the best recommendations for our users.
Mar 19, 2021: Verified that all main picks were still in stock and represent the best choice for their category.
Feb 19, 2021: Verified that we're still recommending the best products for our users and that they're available.
Jan 22, 2021: Added the LG CordZero A9 Ultimate to Notable Mentions. Checked that we're still recommending the best products for our users and that they're in stock.
Our recommendations above are based on what we think are currently the best cordless stick vacuums for most people. We don't just base our results on overall performance, but also 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 reviews of cordless stick vacuums. 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.