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Vacuuming isn't easy, and lugging a traditional corded vacuum between outlets makes it even harder than it has to be. Cordless vacuums, on the other hand, are lightweight and maneuverable -- without sacrificing the cleaning power of a corded model. Once you make the switch to cordless, it'll be hard to believe how you ever managed to get by without one. To help you find the best cordless vacuum for your needs and your budget, we've tested out 10 leading models from top brands including Dyson, Shark, Tineco, LG and Bissell. You can see our favorites of the bunch below.
Designed for both carpet and hardwood floors, these lightweight vacuums are easy to maneuver over various surfaces. They offer all the convenience of a handheld vacuum while maintaining the cleaning ability and powerful suction of a corded vacuum. The best cordless vacuums are also versatile: Most can handle different types of flooring, from a hardwood floor to a thick carpet, from a bare floor of linoleum to tile, both because they're easy to maneuver and because of their suction power.
When we tested vacuum cleaners, we put them through a rigorous series of floor-care tests on hardwood floor and other bare floor types, carpet and other surfaces. The process took over 150 hours to complete. It also consumed many pounds of sand and rice, plus hundreds of handfuls of pet hair. Based on that, we've determined that the products in this roundup are our picks for the best cordless vacuum for 2022. Keep checking back, because we update this best cordless vacuum list periodically.
Best cordless vacuums in 2022
Anti-Allergy Filter (HEPA)
Say hello to the best Dyson cordless vacuum, the $750 Dyson V15. As the company's flagship cordless vacuum, the V15 has a sky-high price to match. It's by far the most expensive machine in our test group. Like its predecessor the V11, the V15 ripped through our suite of vacuum cleaner tests with ruthless competence.
This cordless stick vacuum didn't just outperform competitors from other brands. The V15 demonstrated more suction power than the Dyson V11, the previous cordless vacuum champion. The V15 also achieved these cleaning performance results on our most difficult trial, sand.
It was able to remove 88.4% of test sand we placed on midpile carpeting. The V11 managed 71.6% on the same test. More impressively, the V15 pulled 95.3% of sand particles we dropped onto low-pile carpeting. That's a lot better than the 78.4% the V11 was able to muster here. The V15 is a great cordless vacuum for pet hair, too: No matter if it was vacuuming across hardwood, low-pile, or midpile carpeting, the V15 barely left a tuft in its wake.
A few other features help set the V15 Detect apart. One is the vacuum's Laser Slim Fluffy cleaner head. Designed for hard flooring, it shines a green laser out onto the floor ahead as you clean. Its purpose is to highlight dust and other small bits of debris otherwise hard to spot with the naked eye. The system does work and we observed plenty of dirt we'd normally miss. One drawback though is that the laser isn't visible under strong indoor lighting or sunlight.
Also interesting is a readout on the back of the vacuum. This report lists the ratio of dirt collected by particle size. Other than that, and a battery that's easier to remove, the D15's bagless vacuum design remains much the same. That's a good thing, since we found both models' dustbins easy to empty.
Bundled with the vacuum are seven different cleaning attachments, including the Laser Slim Fluffy. You also get a High Torque cleaner head, a Hair screw tool and crevice tool, just to name a few. All this adds up to why the Dyson V15 Detect is the best Dyson cordless vacuum, if spending lots of money is no barrier.
Anti-Allergy Filter (HEPA)
As the second-best performer in our current test group, the Tineco A11 Hero represents an outstanding deal. So much so that it has officially bumped the Shark Rocket Pet Pro Cordless out of our top pick for best midrange cordless vacuum. With an average 72.5% sand pickup from midpile carpeting, and 82.5% sand removal from low-pile carpet, the Hero performs better. This cordless stick vac also costs less than the Shark, a fact that's hard to overlook.
The A11 Hero is a good cordless vacuum for pet hair as well. Barely a trace of the material remained after the machine vacuumed midpile carpeting and hardwood floors. The Hero left some strands visible when traveling across our low-pile test carpet. Midpile carpeting usually causes vacuums more problems.
The design of the Hero isn't too shabby either. Its dustbin is almost as easy to empty as the Rocket Pet Pro. The bin's release valve is tricky to engage compared with Shark's model. That said, its battery pack is removable. There's also a handy trigger lock lever to keep the vacuum running without constant finger pressure.
Anti-Allergy Filter (HEPA)
If you'd like to own a Dyson vacuum but you'd rather not spend top dollar, consider the Dyson V8 Absolute hand vac. This step-down cordless model is a few years old, but it still has powerful suction and performs like a champ. On our floor-cleaning tests, the V8 came in a respectable third. In our test group, only the Dyson V11 and Shark Rocket Pet Pro scoured floors better than the V8.
On a hard floor, the vacuum managed to pick up an average of 98% of the sand we dropped. For low-pile carpet, that average fell to 68.3%. The average slipped further across midpile carpet, though it remained at a respectable 52%.
Pet hair didn't faze the V8 hand vacuum much either. The stick vacuum pulled hair away from midpile and low-pile carpets completely. It did fail to remove a small amount of dander on hardwood. Additionally, some fibers became wrapped around the vacuum's brush roll. But the washable filter was handy.
And like the V11 Torque Drive, the V8 Absolute upright vacuum comes with a generous assortment of add-ons. That includes gadgets for dusting, a crevice tool for reaching into narrow areas, a soft cleaning head for bare floors, a motorized brush roll for grabbing ground-in dirt and debris and a docking station for charging the battery. So for those who'd like to own a Dyson-brand stick vac for a little less cash, the V8 Absolute is worth a look.
It's a little pricier when you buy from Dyson directly, but you'll also get a free $75 toolkit as a bonus.
Anti-Allergy Filter (HEPA)
Moosoo isn't exactly a household name. Nevertheless, the Moosoo XL-618A cordless vacuum packs a respectable punch, considering its low price. Despite costing much less than competing cordless vacuum cleaner options, the M X6 was the fourth-best performer in our test group of eight models.
The stick vac picked up 99% (on average) of our test sand from hardwood. On low-pile carpet, that figure sank to 41.3%. The M X6 fared better across thicker midpile carpet, earning a higher sand pickup average of 52.2%.
Black rice, our large particle test soil, was a breeze for the Moosoo vacuum. It managed pickup averages above 90% on hardwood, low-pile and midpile carpet (95.4%, 96.8% and 94%, respectively).
Don't buy the Moosoo XL-618A if you're a pet owner, though. At least some visible dander remained after vacuuming, no matter the test surface. The brush roll tends to wrap strands of hair around itself as well.
If you want cordless vacuuming on a tight budget, however, do consider the Moosoo XL-618A. This cordless stick vacuum cleaner just does what you need, and for much less cash than many models.
How we test cordless vacuums
Putting cordless vacuums through their paces isn't as complicated as, but it still takes lots of time and careful effort to find the best cordless vacuum.
We hauled in 10 of the latest models from leading vacuum brands with high user ratings and reviews, and ran them through a series of tests designed to measure overall proficiency. We also tested cordless vacuums in a range of prices to see how much of a difference you can expect when you opt for a pricier model over a budget pick.
Testing cordless vacuums on different flooring
We run each vacuum in a straight line across three different surfaces (hardwood, low-pile carpet and midpile carpet). On all three test beds, the test area is 30.25 inches long.
The width of the test bed is proportional to the vacuum's nozzle width. We measure this width ourselves. We also use nozzle width, plus the flooring type, to calculate the soil density for each test, per International Electrotechnical Commission guidelines. The IEC is a global standards body responsible for managing testing procedures, among other things, for vacuum manufacturers.
Testing the cleaning ability of each cordless vacuum
We use three types of soil. To simulate small particle size, we use a mix of play sand and landscaping sand. To emulate larger dirt particles, we use uncooked black rice. To see how vacuums deal with pet hair, we use our mixture of clippings sourced to us through our local pet groomer.
We perform three runs (at minimum) on each floor type. We also test suction power with sand and rice separately. That comes to at least 18 tests per vacuum. We weigh the vacuum's dust bin both before and after each run.
From there we can calculate the percentage of dirt and debris pickup for every run and the average amount of soil a vacuum manages to remove. Additionally, we run anecdotal (visual) pet hair tests for each vacuum, on all three floor types, to help us select the best cordless vacuum.
Other considerations when choosing a cordless vacuum
When choosing the best vacuums in various categories we considered other factors associated with each. We noted any vacuums with especially short battery life or a particularly heavy weight that might make them a less desirable option.
Cordless vacuum battery life and runtime
Most of the vacuums on our list feature a runtime of 40 minutes before needing another charge. Thewas the exception with a full 60 minutes of runtime. In truth, it's a rare occasion that one would need more than 40 minutes of runtime for a single vacuuming session. Because of this, battery life was not weighted as heavily as other features.
Cordless vacuum weight, size and bin capacity
All of the cordless vacuums were between 4 and 6 pounds, but none were so heavy that it affected our recommendation. All of the vacuums on this list were also very similar in height and overall size. The Dyson models are both roughly 49 inches while theis shorter at just 43 inches tall.
The Dysons and Tineco all have bin volumes of about 0.6 liters. Our budget pick, the, has double that capacity (1.3 liters) so you'll need to empty the bin less often.
Cordless vacuum warranties
The standard warranty for cordless vacuums is a two-year limited warranty and each vacuum on this list meets that standard. In general, you should expect your cordless vacuum to last longer than two years but it's nice to have a backup plan in case something breaks within that time frame.
Other cordless vacuums we tested that didn't make the cut
Here's a list of the other cordless stick vacuums we tested besides the models we've recommended above.
Cordless vacuum FAQs
Which cordless vacuum has the most suction power?
Right now, based on our tests, the cordless vacuum with the best suction power is the Dyson V15 Detect. It removed the most sand, rice and pet hair out of all the stick vac cleaners we've evaluated so far. And it did so across multiple floor types.
Are pricey Dyson vacuums worth the money?
One company, in particular, saw this cordless trend coming. British company Dyson was the first to pioneer this field with a series of capable -- yet pricey -- Cyclone V series stick vacs designed with impressive suction and cleaning power to leave the competition in the dust. Rivals have since followed suit and now sell cordless vacuums of their own. Some manufacturers of cordless vacuum cleaners have even shamelessly cloned Dyson products. Others are distinctive new riffs on the cordless vacuum, with innovative dust-busting features all their own.
Despite the many knockoffs, Dyson vacs still perform at a higher level than other brands, in our experience. Perhaps it's the head start it's had in refining these smaller machines or the extensive research and development that goes into making them.
Dysons are pricey, but worth the money if you have it to spend. If not, there are plenty of cheaper cordless vacuums that will do the job and keep your home clean.
How long should a cordless vacuum last?
Each of the cordless vacuums on our list includes a two-year limited warranty but a quality model should last you significantly longer than that. That said, cordless vacuums do take a beating and you shouldn't expect any model to last much longer than five years if used regularly. This is certainly something to consider when selecting a model.
Having your vacuum serviced after the warranty has expired may not also be worth the money, depending on the particular issue. To suss out any potential lemons, we dig through buyer reviews on multiple retailers to see if any vacuum brands or models have consistent breakage issues, either with the motor or external parts.
Why you should trust us
Our team of CNET experts, editors and lab technicians has been testing vacuums in a smart home and testing warehouse located in Louisville, Kentucky, for over 10 years. In that time, we've refined our testing methods and assessments in a controlled environment to measure the proficiency of, and cordless stick vacuums alike. For more check out this detailed article on .