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Vacuum Wars Best Upright Vacuums

The current Vacuum Wars Best Upright Vacuums ranking based on our own independent evaluation.

Shark Stratos AZ3002 Upright Vacuum

Shark Stratos

Best Upright Overall

Dyson Ball Animal 3 Upright Vacuum

Dyson Ball Animal 3

Dyson’s Top Upright

Shark Rotator ADV LA702 Upright Vacuum

Shark Rotator

Strong Suction

Hoover WindTunnel All-Terrain Upright Vacuum UH77200V

Hoover WindTunnel All-Terrain

Hoover Top PeRformer

Shark Vertex AZ2002 Upright Vacuum

Shark Vertex

Another Strong Shark Option


Top 5 Upright Vacuum Picks: Unparalleled Power and Value for Every Home

Discover the Best Upright Vacuums for Every Need

When it comes to keeping your home clean, choosing the right vacuum is crucial. Today, we’re focusing on the ever-popular upright vacuum cleaners, known for their power, value, and versatility.

Why Choose an Upright Vacuum?

Upright vacuums offer a perfect balance of affordability and efficiency. While they range from budget-friendly to moderately priced, they are generally less expensive than high-end cordless or robot vacuums, making them an excellent choice for value-seekers.

All of our upright vacuum cleaners at Vacuum Wars
All of our upright vacuums at Vacuum wars. © Vacuum Wars

Unmatched Power

The standout feature of upright vacuums is their power. Plugged directly into a wall, they harness greater power than battery-operated models, allowing for larger motors and superior cleaning ability. Our tests reveal that corded uprights have almost double the airflow at the head and about 13% more sealed suction on average compared to their cordless counterparts.

Ideal for Carpets and Hard Floors

While uprights are a go-to for homes with wall-to-wall carpeting, don’t underestimate their capability on hard floors. Models like the Shark DuoClean series, with soft rollers in the front and regular rollers in the back, offer excellent performance on hard surfaces, effectively picking up pet hair and larger debris.

Upright Vacuum on Hard Floors
Upright Vacuum on Hard Floors © Vacuum Wars

What to Watch Out For

However, be cautious when choosing a budget upright vacuum, especially for hard floors. Many low-priced models lack essential features like a squeegee or the ability to turn off brush rolls, leading to ineffective cleaning.

Versatile Cleaning

Modern upright vacuums are designed not just for power but also for versatility. Many models now include lift-away features, allowing the main unit to detach from the base and function as a portable cleaner. This innovation extends their utility beyond floor cleaning, enabling users to tackle furniture, stairs, and even ceiling corners with ease. Coupled with a variety of attachments, such as hoses, crevice tools, and dusting brushes, these vacuums can reach virtually every nook and cranny, ensuring a comprehensive clean.

The inclusion of extendable hoses further enhances their versatility, providing the reach needed to address curtains, shelves, and other above-floor surfaces without cumbersome setups. This blend of power and adaptability makes upright corded vacuums a go-to solution for those seeking a single device that can address a multitude of cleaning challenges.

Innovative Features for Enhanced Maneuverability

The maneuverability of upright vacuums has seen significant advancements, making them not only powerful but also easier to handle and navigate around the home. Innovations such as swivel heads, lightweight designs, and additional features like LED lights on the floorhead have greatly enhanced their user-friendliness and efficiency in cleaning.

  • Swivel Steering for Easy Navigation: One of the key features that has improved the maneuverability of upright vacuums is the inclusion of a swivel steering mechanism. This design allows the floorhead to pivot effortlessly around furniture and other obstacles, reducing the need for heavy lifting or awkward repositioning. Swivel steering makes it possible to clean around corners and under furniture with minimal effort, enhancing the vacuum’s ability to tackle a wide range of cleaning scenarios.
  • Lightweight Construction: Modern upright vacuums have also benefited from advances in materials and design, resulting in lighter machines that are easier to push and pull across various floor types. This lightweight construction significantly reduces strain on the arms and back, making vacuuming less physically demanding and more comfortable, especially during extended cleaning sessions or when moving the vacuum between floors in multi-story homes.
  • LED Lights on the Floorhead: The addition of LED lights on the vacuum’s floorhead is another innovative feature that boosts maneuverability by illuminating the path ahead. This lighting is particularly useful for spotting dust, pet hair, and small debris on dark surfaces or in poorly lit areas, ensuring no dirt is missed. The visibility provided by LED lights helps users navigate more efficiently and confidently, ensuring a thorough clean across all environments.
  • Adjustable Height and Speed Settings: The ability to adjust the height of the vacuum’s floorhead and the speed of the brush roll further enhances maneuverability and effectiveness. By tailoring these settings to the specific floor type being cleaned, users can ensure optimal contact with the surface and easier movement, whether transitioning from hard floors to carpets or tackling high-pile rugs.
  • Ergonomic Handles and Controls: Ergonomically designed handles and intuitively placed controls contribute to the overall maneuverability of upright vacuums. These features allow for comfortable grip and easy access to switches and buttons, enabling quick adjustments to settings without interrupting the cleaning process.

In summary, the maneuverability of upright vacuums has evolved to offer a more user-friendly cleaning experience. Features like swivel steering, lightweight design, LED lights, and adjustable settings not only make these vacuums more efficient at removing dirt and debris but also make the task of vacuuming less cumbersome and more enjoyable. These advancements ensure that users can easily navigate their cleaning spaces, making upright vacuums a preferred choice for maintaining a clean and inviting home.

Superior Filtration

Another advantage of upright vacuums is their advanced filtration systems. Thanks to their larger size, they accommodate more substantial filters and increasingly feature entirely sealed systems, even in budget models. This is particularly important in a vacuum cleaner, as it picks up dust and particles from the floor and can potentially recirculate them into the air if not properly filtered

HEPA filtration and a sealed system are the main filtration features to look for in vacuum cleaners, especially for those concerned with air quality and allergen reduction in their homes. These features are increasingly common in upright vacuums. Here’s a detailed look at both:

HEPA Filtration

  • Definition: HEPA stands for High-Efficiency Particulate Air. A HEPA filter is designed to meet a specific standard of air filtration, removing at least 99.97% of particles that are 0.3 microns in diameter from the air that passes through it.
  • Benefits: This level of filtration is highly beneficial for people with allergies, asthma, or any respiratory conditions, as it can significantly reduce the amount of dust, pollen, pet dander, and other allergens in the indoor environment. By capturing fine particles, HEPA filters also help improve overall indoor air quality.

Sealed System

  • Definition: A sealed system in a vacuum cleaner means that it is designed in such a way that all the air sucked into the vacuum passes through the filter(s) before being expelled back into the room. This system ensures that unfiltered air does not escape through gaps in the vacuum’s body.
  • Benefits: The primary benefit of a sealed system is that it ensures the effectiveness of the HEPA filtration. Without a sealed system, even the best HEPA filter would be less effective, as some unfiltered air could escape back into the room. A sealed system is crucial for trapping allergens, dust, and particles inside the vacuum and preventing them from being released back into the air.

Together, HEPA filtration and a sealed system provide a powerful combination for improving indoor air quality. They ensure that the vacuum not only picks up dirt and debris from your floors and surfaces but also captures fine particles and prevents them from being redistributed into your home environment. This is especially beneficial for homes with pets, children, or residents with allergies or asthma.

Exploring filtration quality of upright vacuums.
Exploring filtration quality of upright vacuums. © Vacuum Wars

Perfect for Pet Owners

For households with pets, upright vacuums are a standout choice. Their enhanced filtration and larger bin capacity make them ideal for tackling pet hair and dander.

Hair entanglement around the brush roll or other motorized parts can lead to increased resistance and reduced vacuum effectiveness. It can also hinder the brush roll’s ability to sweep up debris. To combat this, certain vacuums feature technology to either remove or prevent hair from wrapping around the brush roll. This can be an integral part of the brush roll or the floorhead design, making these vacuums particularly appealing to households with pets or individuals with long hair.

Upright vacuums and pet hair.
Upright Vacuums for Pet Hair © Vacuum Wars

Our Top 5 Picks

Stay tuned as we continue to update our 5 upright vacuum picks in various categories, each handpicked for their exceptional performance, value, and suitability for different home environments. From tackling pet hair to mastering hard floors, our selections cater to all your cleaning needs.

Remember, a clean home is a happy home. Choose the right upright vacuum to make your cleaning routine more efficient and effective!

Upright vacuum shopping? Check out our upright vacuum reviews, comparisons and guides.

Best of the Best

Current Vacuum Wars product rankings:

Best Cordless Vacuums
Best Robot Vacuums
Best Upright Vacuums
Best Carpet Cleaners
Best Air Purifiers