We've currently tested over 20 Shark vacuums. Shark is a manufacturer of homeware goods like irons and mops in addition to vacuums. Unlike other brands like Samsung or BISSELL that focus on a limited range of vacuum designs, Shark offers a little bit of everything, including robot vacuums, secondary handheld configurations, as well as corded and cordless designs. Their vacuums come at a variety of price points, so you can find something available that fits your budget.
The Shark Rocket Pet Pro with MultiFlex IZ163H is the best cordless Shark vacuum we've tested. This cordless stick vacuum delivers superb performance on bare floors, easily clearing pet hair as well as small and bulky debris. It also performs amazingly well on low-pile carpet and does a very good job on high-pile carpet, though it can struggle with very fine material on this surface type. While you can't remove its primary brushroll from its floorhead, it has angled plastic fins meant to prevent hair wraps. Suction performance remains consistent as its dustbin fills up, which is good if you have multiple messes to deal with. Depending on your choice of attachments and suction power setting, it should supply roughly 10 to 40 minutes of runtime on a single charge. Its bagless design and washable allergen-trapping HEPA filter keep recurring costs to a minimum too. It can be easily reconfigured into a handheld vacuum to deal with messes in tight spots and comes with a crevice tool, an upholstery tool, and a clip-on hard-bristle brush for dislodging stuck-on dirt.
Unfortunately, this vacuum doesn't have a brushroll on/off switch, so it can sometimes get stuck on rug tassels and dense carpeting. Also, unlike the handheld Shark UltraCyclone Pet Pro+, it doesn't come with a turbo brush in the box, which would make it easier to clean upholstered surfaces when using it in its handheld configuration, though the UltraCyclone has a very short battery life and lacks a HEPA filter. Overall, the IZ163H is a great option if you're looking for a cordless stick vacuum.
The Shark Rotator Lift-Away ADV is the best Shark vacuum for bare floors that we've tested. This corded upright easily cleans pet hair as well as small and bulky debris on flat, even surfaces like tile or hardwood. Suction performance remains consistent even as its fairly large dustbin fills up, so it shouldn't need emptying very often. There's a two-level suction power adjustment feature and two distinct surface settings for bare floors or carpets, which gives you a fair amount of flexibility if you need to clean the occasional low or high-pile rug. The vacuum's 'Lift-Away' design allows you to decouple its canister from its body and carry it around while allowing you to clean hard-to-reach areas with its wand. There are quite a few attachments that come in the box, including a turbo brush and a crevice tool. The vacuum's lack of a dirtbag and washable, reusable pre-motor and allergen-trapping HEPA filters keep recurring costs to a minimum.
Unfortunately, this vacuum has quite a few parts that need regular cleaning, though they're easy to access for the most part. This vacuum doesn't have a brushroll on/off switch, so its floorhead can sometimes get stuck on rug tassels or other obstructions. Its large front-mounted canister can also make it difficult to clean under low-lying tables and chairs. Consider the Shark Rocket Ultra-Light if you want something easier to maneuver. Alternatively, if you're looking for a cordless vacuum well-suited to cleaning bare floors, take a look at the Shark Vertex Lightweight Cordless.
The best Shark vacuum for carpets we've tested is the Shark Rotator Powered Lift-Away Upright. This upright vacuum does an excellent job of cleaning pet hair as well as fine and large debris from low and high-pile carpet. Suction performance remains very consistent even as its spacious dustbin fills up, which is good if you have several large messes to deal with. It features three levels of floorhead height adjustment and a suction slider, allowing you to adapt to different surface types on the fly. The vacuum's 'Lift-Away' design lets you decouple the canister from its main body and carry it around while cleaning hard-to-reach areas with its wand. It comes with a turbo brush, a dedicated upholstery tool, and a crevice tool for clearing debris in tight corners. The vacuum's bagless design and washable, reusable allergen-trapping HEPA filter keep recurring costs to a minimum.
Unfortunately, this vacuum has many parts that need regular cleaning. Its bulky front-mounted dustbin can make it hard to clean under chairs and tables. Its brushroll can also sometimes get caught on rug tassels or other loose obstructions, though thankfully, there's a brushroll on/off switch. If you're looking for a Shark vacuum that's easier to maneuver, you may want to consider the Shark APEX UpLight, though be aware that it lacks any suction power or surface type adjustment features.
The best Shark Vacuum for pet hair we've tested is the Shark Vertex Pro. This cordless stick/handheld vacuum easily clears pet hair on bare, even surfaces like hardwood or laminate, not to mention low and high-pile carpets. Its allergen-trapping HEPA filter is washable, so recurring costs shouldn't be a significant concern either. This vacuum's floorhead uses two brushrolls, and while the primary unit isn't designed to be removed, it is advertised to be self-cleaning. The secondary soft brushroll is easily removable, meaning you can clear any tangled hair wraps without too much effort. The vacuum's lightweight construction and pivoting vacuum head make it easy to maneuver in cluttered spaces, while its flexible wand lets you clean under tables and chairs without needing to crouch very deeply. Depending on your choice of attachments and suction power setting, you can expect roughly anywhere between 10 minutes to an hour of runtime on a single charge, which should be sufficient for most spaces. You can keep an eye on the estimated remaining battery life with the LED 'IQ Display' at the back of the vacuum.
However, while this vacuum feels quite sturdy overall, it does have a couple of fragile-feeling components, like its clear plastic dustbin. Many parts need periodic cleaning, though they're easy to access. Consider the Shark ION W1 WANDVAC if you're looking for a handheld vacuum with a HEPA filter to deal with pet hair, though be aware that it has a tiny dustbin and a short battery life.
The best robotic Shark vacuum we've tested is the Shark EZ Robot Self-Empty AV911S. This robot vacuum has a fairly advanced suite of automation features, most prominently its self-emptying function, which lets it dump debris from inside its dustbin into an external dirt compartment on its charging dock without needing any manual intervention. This vacuum also performs very well on bare floors and high-pile carpet, though it can struggle somewhat with especially fine debris on low-pile carpet. Thankfully, it has very little issue clearing pet hair regardless of the surface that it's on. It offers superb battery life, as you can expect roughly anywhere between 70 to 140 minutes of runtime on a single charge, depending on your choice of suction power mode and usage habits. You can also use its companion app to change its suction power mode, schedule cleaning sessions in advance, or check its cleaning history.
Unfortunately, unlike the Shark AI Robot, you can't set up virtual boundary markers using its companion app, and it doesn't come with any physical boundary strips. It also doesn't have an allergen-trapping HEPA filter. Also, like many robot vacuums, it incurs high recurring costs and has quite a few parts that need regular cleaning.
Shark produces a variety of different vacuum types at different price points. They're smartly designed to be reconfigured into a handheld design should you need a closer clean, and there are cordless options available. When comparing their stick vacuums to Dyson's offerings, Shark vacuums feel better built and sturdier. However, they also tend to have a similar but slightly worse performance on carpet. Their upright vacuums usually perform better on all surface types than BISSELL vacuums. Note that Shark doesn't currently make canister vacuums.
Jan 06, 2022: Replaced Shark APEX UpLight with Shark Rotator Powered Lift-Away Upright as 'Best Shark Vacuum For Carpet' category pick.
Dec 10, 2021: Ensured that all main picks are still in stock and represent the best choice for their given category.
Nov 12, 2021: Ensured that all main picks are still in stock and represent the best choice for their given category.
Oct 15, 2021: Replaced Shark Rotator Powered Lift-Away Upright with Shark APEX UpLight as 'Best Shark Vacuum For Carpet' pick due to current availability. Replaced Shark APEX UpLight with Shark Vertex Pro as 'Best Shark Vacuum For Pet Hair' pick.
Sep 17, 2021: Added new 'Best Shark Vacuum For Pet Hair' pick.
Shark is a good household manufacturer that produces items like mops and irons alongside a selection of vacuums at different price points and styles. You can also use many Shark vacuums as handhelds, which is nice if you need to clean hard-to-reach places. If you want an easily portable model, Shark also sells some cordless vacuums. However, they tend to have quite a few maintenance needs, and some models can be a little more tricky to clean.