Cordless stick vacuums are helpful 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 finish 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 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 105 vacuum cleaners, and below are our recommendations for the best cordless stick vacuums to buy. These picks were selected not only on their performance on different 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. This vacuum is very easy to maneuver thanks to its relatively lightweight construction and pivoting floorhead. You can quickly reconfigure it into a handheld vacuum for spot-cleaning tight spots, and it comes with a crevice tool, an upholstery tool, and a clip-on hard bristle brush for removing stuck-on debris from surfaces.
This vacuum does a fantastic job cleaning up a wide range of debris on bare floors, ranging from pet hair to bulky material like cereal, not to mention smaller debris like rice. You shouldn't experience a noticeable drop in suction performance as its dirt compartment fills up, either. Thanks to its bagless design and washable pre-motor and allergen-trapping HEPA filters, it also incurs very low recurring costs. Battery life is decent overall, as you can expect a maximum of 40 minutes of runtime on a single charge, though this can drop to a little over 10 minutes if you use it continuously in its high-power "MAX (BOOST)" mode.
Unfortunately, this vacuum has quite a few parts that need regular cleaning, but thankfully, they're easy to access. In addition, while you can adjust the speed of the brushroll depending on the surface that you're on, you can't stop it entirely, so the floorhead can occasionally get stuck on rug tassels. Still, its fantastic bare floor performance and maneuverable design also make it one of the best bagless vacuum cleaners that we've tested.
If you're looking for a stick vacuum with a premium build quality, take a look at the Miele Triflex HX1. This cordless vacuum takes longer to recharge than the Shark Rocket Pet Pro with MultiFlex IZ163H and has a slightly shorter maximum battery life. However, it does feel more sturdily built and has a unique three-in-one design that allows you to configure it as a stick, upright, or handheld vacuum on the fly. It also has a surface detection feature that enables it to automatically adjust its suction power depending on the floor type that you're on or stop the rotation of its brushroll if something gets caught in its floorhead. This vacuum delivers exceptional performance on bare floors and is very effective on low and high-pile carpet. Unfortunately, its dustbin is very small and consequently needs frequent emptying.
Get the Shark if you want a vacuum with a larger dustbin and longer battery life, but consider the Miele if build quality is more important to you.
The Dyson V15 Detect is the best cordless stick vacuum for carpets that we've tested. This cordless stick vacuum is incredibly effective at cleaning pet hair, fine debris like baking soda, and larger material like sand from low and high-pile carpet. Its surface detection feature enables it to automatically adjust its suction power level depending on the floor type that it's on. Its HEPA filter traps allergens as you clean, and since it's washable, recurring costs shouldn't be a major concern.
You can easily reconfigure it into a handheld to better clean hard-to-reach areas. It comes with a wide assortment of attachments, including a motorized conical turbo brush, a crevice tool, and a secondary vacuum head with a laser light to help you see small debris on bare floors. Its maximum battery life of over 70 minutes should be sufficient for cleaning most areas, though this can drop significantly if you run the vacuum continuously in max-suction 'Boost' mode. An LED display at the back of the vacuum can help you monitor the remaining battery life in real-time.
However, this vacuum's strong suction power can make it a little hard to push and pull on some carpets and can cause it to drag around lighter rugs. Also, its mainly plastic construction feels a little cheap in places. Still, if you're looking for a stick vacuum that can easily keep your carpets clean, this is a great option.
If you're looking to spend less on a cordless stick vacuum, take a look at the Simplicity S65S. This vacuum doesn't have the Dyson V15 Detect's particulate sensor or automatic suction power adjustment function, but it's significantly less expensive. It also has far fewer parts requiring regular maintenance. Its allergen-trapping HEPA filter is washable, and since it only needs to be replaced every six to twelve months, recurring costs are low. Performance on low-pile carpet is good, and this vacuum does an excellent job of clearing debris on high-pile carpets, but it struggles more with especially fine material on this surface type. Unfortunately, its selection of tools is far more limited, as it only comes with a crevice tool and a slide-on combination attachment, which has an upholstery tool at one end and a soft-bristle dusting brush on the other. Its battery life is much shorter since its maximum runtime of a little over 30 minutes might not be enough for bigger cleaning tasks.
Get the Dyson if you want a better performing vacuum with longer battery life and more attachments, but consider the Simplicity if you're looking for a cordless vacuum that's much cheaper but still does a great job of clearing debris on carpets.
The best cordless stick vacuum we've tested for those on a budget is the Wyze Cordless Vacuum. This budget-friendly cordless stick vacuum is very lightweight and easy to maneuver. It can be easily reconfigured into a handheld vacuum to help clear debris in tight corners and comes with a combination upholstery tool/soft-bristle dusting brush and a crevice tool. No turbo brush is included in the box, but you can purchase this attachment from the manufacturer.
This vacuum delivers impressive overall performance on low-pile carpet and clears a remarkable amount of debris on high-pile carpet. It does a very good job on bare floors, though very bulky debris can get caught at the entry to its dustbin. There's an LED touchscreen display at the back of the body that allows you to change the vacuum's suction power mode or monitor its battery life, which can vary roughly between 10 minutes to an hour depending on your choice of settings and attachments.
However, this vacuum doesn't feel especially sturdy, since its floorhead scratches easily and its dustbin is somewhat fragile. Many parts need regular cleaning, though thankfully, its bagless design and washable allergen-trapping HEPA filter keep recurring costs to a minimum. Overall, if you're looking for an affordable cordless vacuum that can handle debris on a variety of surfaces, this is a good option.
Dec 22, 2021: Ensured that all main picks are still available and represent the best choice for their given category.
Nov 24, 2021: Replace JASHEN V16 with Wyze Cordless Vacuum as 'Best Budget Cordless Stick Vacuum' pick. Removed Wyze Cordless Vacuum from Notable Mentions, added JASHEN V16 to Notable Mentions.
Oct 25, 2021: Ensured that all main picks are still available and represent the best choice for their given category. Added Wyze Cordless Vacuum to Notable Mentions.
Oct 01, 2021: Added new 'Cheaper Alternative' pick. Removed Simplicity S65S from Notable Mentions. Added Roborock H6 Adapt and Shark Vertex Pro to Notable Mentions.
Sep 03, 2021: Checked that picks were still accurate for their given categories; no change to recommendations.
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.