How To Choose The Right Pet Vacuum For Your Needs
As you can see, pet vacuums come in various forms and they tend to differ significantly in terms of suction power, size, weight, maneuverability, ease of use and storage, and performance on different surfaces. In other words, a pet vacuum that works for one household may not necessarily work for another. That is why we have decided to help you choose the right pet vacuum more easily by pointing to the key characteristics of your household that you need to keep in mind when purchasing a pet vacuum cleaner.
Home Size & Layout
The size and floor plan of your home are highly important factors that determine the type of pet vacuum you need to get. If you live in a cozy little apartment, you may not have enough room to store an upright or even a canister vacuum. Furthermore, you may not have large bare floors that robotic pet vacuums are best suited for. If you have numerous pieces of furniture separated by narrow passages, you are more likely to benefit from a small, lightweight, easily maneuverable pet vacuum than a bulky upright with a wide cleaning path.
Conversely, if you live in a spacious home with large floors, you need a canister vacuum or an upright that can minimize the time you spend vacuuming due to its great suction power and the increased amount of space it covers in a single pass.
If your home features staircases, you need a pet vacuum with a long hose and preferably an extension wand. Cordless pet vacuums offer greater convenience when it comes to stair cleaning. If corded, the vacuum needs to feature a long power cord, so you can move up and down the stairs without running the risk of accidentally unplugging the device.
If you own low-pile carpets, you can go with a canister pet vacuum or an upright pet vacuum. They both efficiently eliminate pet hair from low-pile carpets. However, while canisters get the job done, uprights generally provide a deeper clean.
High-pile carpets are a bit trickier. Due to their greater depth, they are more likely to be filled with deep-embedded pet hair that is hard to remove. If you have shag rugs or any kind of high-pile carpets in your home, you should not only get an upright with a motorized brush roll but also make sure it features multiple height adjustment settings, so you can deep-clean your carpets regardless of pile height.
Pets On Furniture
Keeping your pets off the furniture can reduce the amount of effort you need to invest in upholstery cleaning. However, since pets love to rub against beds and sofas and keeping in mind that pet hair lands everywhere, you still need to have your furniture cleaned from time to time.
If your pets like to spend time on the couch and you do not like to spend a lot of cash on furniture cleaning, you should opt for a pet vacuum cleaner that comes with one or more upholstery attachments, like dust brushes. Strong suction is also necessary because removing pet hair from tightly woven upholstery fabric often requires great power.
Pets In The Car
Traveling with your furry friends is amazing. Having your car covered in pet hair is not. Getting a handheld to deal with the hair-in-the-car issue is an excellent idea. However, if you do not want to get an extra vacuum just for your car or you fear that a handheld’s suction power may not be great enough to remove all the hair, you can opt for an alternative. You can go with an upright with a long hose or a lightweight stick vacuum that can double as a handheld. Cordless is the best in this case, especially if you do not have any free power outlets in the garage.
Pet Type & Number
How often you need to vacuum primarily depends on how many pets there are in your household and whether they shed a lot. If you only have one short-haired pet, you can vacuum just once or twice per week and you do not have to change bags or empty the dirt canister that often. In that case, bagged or bagless is just a matter of preference.
On the other hand, if you have multiple pets or long-haired pets that shed excessively, you need a pet vacuum with a spacious, easy-empty dirt canister. Uprights are known for their large dirt capacity and the best of them come with handy bottom-release dirt cups that can be emptied at the push of a button. A quick and simple emptying process is of paramount importance if you vacuum on a daily or near-daily basis, so be sure to keep this feature in mind if you have multiple fluffy pets.
If someone in your household suffers from pet allergies, pet hair and dander in your home can represent a serious health hazard. With an insufficiently efficient vacuum, your home may seem clean on the surface, but it may still be filled with microscopic allergens that can be harmful even if the residents do not have any major allergy issues.
If your family members do not suffer from pet-related allergies, you can opt for any pet vacuum with multi-level filtration. Otherwise, a high-efficiency allergen filter is absolutely necessary. To be on the safe side, it is best to choose a pet vacuum with a HEPA filter or equivalent.
Not everyone can afford to spend $500 or more on a vacuum cleaner and quite frankly, it is usually not necessary to spend so much on the most frequently replaced device in the household. That being said, the price should never be more important than quality, durability, and versatility. It is always better to choose a sturdy, high-quality pet vacuum that can work on all surfaces and stay functional for years to come than opt for a cheap pet vacuum that can last for a few months at most and do a mediocre job on bare floors and low carpets at best.
Some of the best pet vacuums can cost less than $100. However, what matters is that the vacuum of your choice does not only fit your budget but also comes with a lengthy warranty, so you can have it repaired free of charge for 2 or more years. Furthermore, it is wise to pick a pet vacuum that comes with a money-back guarantee, allowing you to return it if it does not work for you. Even if a vacuum seems to tick all the boxes, you need to try it out to know if it is the right fit for you.
How We Rank The Best Pet Vacuums
Now that you know how to pick the right pet vacuum for your needs, it is time to find out how we choose the best pet vacuums that are likely to suit the needs of the vastest majority of our readers. This is far from an easy task, with all the variables to keep in mind. Still, we have managed to identify 5 key criteria that a pet vacuum needs to satisfy in order to qualify as the closest approximation to a one-size-fits-all solution. These criteria include superior design, useful features, stellar performance, superb user experience, and reasonable pricing. Here is what we mean by all that.
In terms of design, the characteristics that matter most are convenience, lightness, ease of use and storage, and maneuverability. We want the best pet vacuums on our list to be lightweight and easy to navigate. They should not take up a lot of space and they should not take a lot of effort to store. Furthermore, they should have all the buttons and pedals in the right places, allowing for effortless use. The design should be ergonomic so as not to hurt your back.
In sum, a lightweight, compact, user-friendly, ergonomically designed pet vacuum with a swiveling head for easy maneuvering and no cord or a retractable cord for easy storing is likely to get a high score on this criterion. An attractive design wins extra points, but it is not necessary for a high rating.
Just because a pet vacuum boasts a bunch of seemingly fancy features, that does not mean that it necessarily excels at pet hair removal. Pet vacuum manufacturers have skillful marketing experts working for them and coming up with bombastic names for something as simple as a short air hose or a removable dirt canister.
The kind of features we look for in the best pet vacuums include those useful tools and advanced technologies that make vacuuming easier and provide great pet hair removal results. These may include mighty multi-cyclonic suction, scatter-minimizing technology, air-flow optimization, efficient filtration system, versatile and handy attachments, easy-empty dirt canister, advanced brush roll with a switch, height adjustment, automatic cord rewind, swivel steering, steam sanitization, odor control, and many other innovative features that enhance the vacuum’s performance and functionality.
While some of the best pet vacuum cleaners are suitable for a limited range of surfaces, we primarily look for pet vacuums that provide superior performance across nearly all kinds of above-floor surfaces, bare floors, and carpets. The score pet vacuums receive on this criterion is complex, as it comprises multiple scores assigned based on the vacuum’s performance on different types of bare floors, low-pile carpets, high-pile carpets, stairs, upholstery, and car interiors, if applicable. We rate each pet vacuum’s performance based on both the vacuuming results and the range of surfaces covered in order to provide an adequate assessment of its usefulness and efficiency.
Even the best-performing pet vacuums can suffer from malfunctions and diminished functionality after prolonged use. That is why a brief test conducted by an expert is not entirely indicative of a pet vacuum’s quality. Keeping this in mind, we always want to know what users have to say about each of the pet vacuums we review, particularly the ones that are competing for a spot on our top list.
To make our scoring more accurate, we factor in user opinion and experience, focusing on both praises and complaints. We weed out the extreme and vague statements and base the user experience score on what customers say about the key qualities of the pet vacuum in question, such as performance, durability, and ease of use. That way, we ensure that a pet vacuum that only performs well at first but is prone to malfunctions that may arise earlier than anticipated does not receive a higher score than it deserves.
Our primary goal is to find the pet vacuums that offer the best value for your money. Thus, a low price does not necessarily result in a high score on the pricing criterion. The price needs to correspond to the quality and it is deemed reasonable if it is approximately equal to or lower than that of other pet vacuums of similar quality and performance.
Along with the price tag, we take into consideration the length of the warranty period, warranty terms and limitations, and the existence and applicability of the money-back guarantee. We ensure that all the essential parts are covered by the warranty, that you can have your pet vacuum quickly serviced and repaired free of charge for at least 2 years after you have purchased it, and that you can easily return the product and get your money back if you are not satisfied.
Only if all of these requirements are met can the pet vacuum in question qualify for a spot on our list.
Best Pet Vacuums Cleaners Of 2021
To help you get a better sense of what each of our top picks has to offer, we have created concise feature overviews for all the pet vacuum cleaners on our list. Discover their main advantages and the crucial differences between them and easily decide which one of our highest-rated pet vacuums is the right choice for you.
Eureka Airspeed Unlimited
Eureka Airspeed Unlimited pet vacuum belongs to the category of bagless, upright pet vacuum cleaners. It features a modern, attractive, ergonomic design, it possesses exceptional suction power, and it provides a deep clean on bare floors, stairs, upholstery, and different types of carpets.
Measuring 43.5’’ x 12.5’’ x 13.5’’ (HWD) and weighing 15.5 pounds, it is somewhat bulky, although rather lightweight for an upright pet vacuum. The vacuum comes with a 27-foot retractable cord and a 12-foot hose. It is equipped with a powerful 12-Amp motor, with a voltage of 120 V. It features a washable foam filter and an additional high-efficiency allergen filter that prevents allergens from escaping the canister. Its cleaning path is wide at 13 inches, but its noise levels are somewhat high at 89 dB.
The most prominent features of Eureka Airspeed Unlimited include proprietary Airspeed technology that minimizes power loss and maximizes airflow and hair and dirt removal, 5-setting height adjustment for different carpet depths, automatic cord rewind, motorized brush roll switch that allows you to vacuum both bare floors and carpeted surfaces, and soft rubber wheels that prevent floor damage.
Eureka Airspeed Unlimited pet vacuum comes with on-board crevice and dusting brush tools, as well as an extension wand and a turbo nozzle for stairs and upholstery. This reliable pet vacuum cleaner is rather affordable and comes with a 3-year limited manufacturer’s warranty and Amazon’s 30-day money-back guarantee.
Hoover WindTunnel 3 Pro
Hoover WindTunnel 3 Pro pet vacuum cleaner is an elegantly designed bagless upright with a good motor and strong suction. It can be used to clean all types of bare floors, low-pile and high-pile carpets, carpeted stairs, upholstery, mattresses, and virtually any floor or above-floor surface where pet hair and dirt can accumulate.
It measures 44’’ x 13.75’’ x 13’’ (HWD) and weighs 17.8 pounds, which means it is a bit heavy and bulky, which is quite common in uprights. It comes with a 10-foot hose and a 27-foot retractable cord. Its cleaning path is 13.5 inches. It features a solid 12-Amp motor and in terms of filtration, it uses a rinsable primary filter, a carbon filter, and a powerful HEPA media filter.
The key features of Hoover WindTunnel 3 Pro include multi-cyclonic technology, proprietary WindTunnel® 3 technology that creates 3 channels of suction for easy removal of deep-embedded dirt and hair, 5-level height adjustment, excellent multi-surface performance, handy bottom-release dirt cup, and automatic cord rewind.
The vacuum’s accessory pack includes a crevice tool, a dusting brush tool, a turbo tool for stairs and upholstery, and a telescoping extension wand that allows you to clean anything within a 12-foot reach. Hoover WindTunnel 3 Pro is budget-friendly and comes with a 2-year manufacturer’s warranty and Amazon’s 30-day money-back guarantee.
Bissell Powerglide pet vacuum cleaner can be classified as a portable bagless upright that doubles as a stick vacuum thanks to the Lift Off technology that lets you detach the dirt canister and motor from the vacuum’s body. This dual functionality makes it equally suitable for vacuuming bare floors and carpets and cleaning stairs and above-floor surfaces. Its most valued qualities include great lightness, easy navigation, and great efficiency in removing pet hair from bare floors, low-pile carpets, carpeted stairs, upholstery, and even car interiors.
The fully assembled vacuum weighs 11 pounds and measures 43.89 x 11.02 x 10.43 inches (HWD). Its cleaning path measures 10.75 inches. Its hose is only 6 feet long, but the vacuum comes with an extension wand that (together with the hose) provides a cleaning reach of about 10 feet.
Bissell Powerglide is a cordless vacuum equipped with a rechargeable lithium-ion battery with a voltage of 36 V. The battery delivers up to 45 minutes of run time with a single charge and takes 2-4 hours to fully recharge.
The key features of this vacuum include dual-cyclone technology that ensures invariable edge-to-edge suction, Lift Off technology that lets you detach the canister and the motor from the vacuum’s body, which is particularly useful in stair and car vacuuming, swivel steering for easy navigation around furniture, easy-empty, bottom-release dirt cup, automatic height adjustment, and power brush on/off switch for effortless transition from bare floors to carpets and vice versa.
In addition to the extension wand, the vacuum’s accessory pack includes a 2-in-1 crevice and dust brush tool. Bissell Powerglide comes with a 2-year limited warranty and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Bissell Symphony is an all-in-one hybrid appliance that allows you to vacuum and steam hard floor surfaces separately or at the same time (hardwood, marble, tiles, linoleum, vinyl, and others). It is not designed to clean carpets, upholstery, and similar materials.
It is an upright model that weighs 9.7 lbs, which means it is heavier and bulkier than your regular vacuum cleaner. Its cleaning path is 11” and it comes with a 25’ non-retractable cable. It features a rinsable Bissell filter model 1250.
Its main features include VAC & SHINE and Dry Tank Technology, which polish hard floor surfaces and keep the tank dry at all times, respectively. Its ergonomic design and adjustable handle make it much easier to maneuver the vacuum/steam mop. It also controls unpleasant odors and removes up to 99.99% of germs from your home.
Bissell Symphony does not come with a lot of accessories, which is common for upright models. It features a white pad for regular cleaning and a scrubbing pad for more demanding tasks. The hybrid comes at a reasonable price and with free shipping. It has a 30-day satisfaction guarantee and a limited 2-year warranty.
Bissell Powerlifter is a lightweight bagless upright pet vacuum cleaner designed for easy pet hair and dirt removal across a variety of surfaces, including hard floors, low-pile and high-pile carpets, upholstery, and carpeted stairs. It does not suffer from loss of suction and comes with handy pet-related tools.
Measuring 31.7 x 14.7 x 11.5 inches (HWD) and weighing 14.5 pounds, this pet vacuum is compact and easy to maneuver. It does not come with a retractable cord, but its dimensions allow for easy storage. It features a 30-foot cord and an 8-foot hose and comes with an extension wand that extends its cleaning reach beyond 10 feet. Its cleaning path is 13.5 inches. It is equipped with an 8-Amp motor and uses multi-level filtration with Febreze filter that eliminates pet odors.
Although not feature-rich, Bissell Powerlifter has several highly useful features, including multi-cyclonic suction that maximizes dirt and hair pickup and prevents suction power fluctuations, Scatter-Free technology that prevents dirt dispersion, Triple Action brush roll that loosens, lifts, and removes embedded dirt and hair, and 5-level height adjustment that allows for a thorough clean on bare floors and carpets of different depths.
Apart from the extension wand, the vacuum’s accessory pack includes a flexible crevice tool, the rotating Pet TurboEraser® tool with rubber flaps that removes pet hair and dirt from upholstery, and the Pet Hair Eraser tool with a velvet strip that pulls deep-embedded pet hair from upholstery and carpeted stairs.
Bissell Powerlifter pet vacuum cleaner comes with a 5-year limited warranty and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Bissell BOLT is a cordless, bagless handheld pet vacuum best suited for vacuuming car interiors and doing quick cleanups on a daily basis. It is powerful for a handheld, it is perfectly lightweight and easy to use, and it efficiently removes pet hair from multiple surfaces, including bare floors, low-pile carpets, countertops, stairs, upholstery, and cars.
The vacuum measures just 17.2 x 5 x 5 inches (HWD) and it weighs a mere 2.5 pounds. Its cleaning path is 3 inches wide. It uses a 16 V rechargeable lithium-ion battery that provides up to 25 minutes of run time and takes about 4 hours to recharge. It employs 1-stage filtration and features a washable mechanical air filter.
The most important features of Bissell BOLT pet vacuum include powerful cyclonic suction, long run time, large dirt capacity of 0.6 liters, Clean Turn filtration for easy removal of excess debris from the filter, and LED display that provides information on battery level and charging progress.
The vacuum comes with a combination crevice/dust brush tool and efficient pet hair nozzle with rubberized teeth that pull, lift, and remove deep-embedded pet hair from soft surfaces. Bissell BOLT comes with a 1-year limited warranty and a 30-day money-back warranty.
bObi Pet is a robotic pet vacuum that does far more than just vacuuming. It is a compact, durable, attractively designed device that sweeps, vacuums, mops, and sanitizes your floors while also employing HEPA filtration to eliminate over 99% of allergens from your environment. It is a great choice for cleaning virtually all types of bare floors and low-pile carpets. It does not clean stairs, upholstery, and other above-floor surfaces.
The vacuum weighs about 10 pounds and measures 12.6 inches in diameter and 3.35 inches in height. Its dust capacity is 0.35 L. It uses a 14 V 12-cell lithium-ion battery that provides up to 90 minutes of run time and takes 4 hours to fully recharge. It is unusually quiet, with a noise level of just 60 dB.
The key characteristics of bObi Pet include remote control, scheduled cleaning sessions, 3 work modes, 2 speed modes, auto charging station locator, virtual boundaries, auto surface adjustment, 80+ edge and obstacle sensors, multi-level brushes, and waterproof, washable dustbin.
The vacuum is generally praised for its great functionality, usability, and durability, strong suction, excellent hair pickup results, easy maintenance, great battery life, and sophisticated design. bObi Pet comes with a 1-year limited warranty, a 30-day money-back guarantee, a lifetime of after-sale support, and 5 years of subsidized repairs.
bObsweep is a highly popular robotic pet vacuum characterized by an excellent performance on low-pile and high-pile carpets and hard floors of different types. Its 5-in-1 functionality allows it to keep your floors free from pet hair, dirt, germs, and bacteria by sweeping, vacuuming, mopping, UV-sanitizing, and HEPA-filtrating all at once. It is best known for its powerful suction and extra-large dustbin.
The vacuum weighs 7.72 pounds and measures 13.78 inches in diameter and 3.94 inches in height. Its cleaning path is 12 inches and it boasts an area coverage of 1,000 square feet. Its dustbin capacity is 1 liter.
bObsweep uses a 2,200 mAh lithium-ion battery that provides a run time of up to 75 minutes and takes up to 5 hours to fully recharge. It is relatively quiet, with a noise output of 67 dB. Its filtration system includes a mesh filter for large particles, an electrostatic filter for fine particles, and a HEPA filter for sub-micron particles.
The key features of this robotic pet vacuum include 4x boosted suction, 5-in-1 functionality, 6 cleaning modes, edge and obstacle sensors, dirt sensor, virtual boundaries, remote control, scheduling, LED display, and large dustbin. Its accessory pack includes the FullCommand remote control, the blOck Plus device for digital barriers, a mop attachment with microfiber mopping cloths, and a cleaning tool. bObsweep comes with a 2-year warranty and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Dyson DC39 is an oft-praised bagless canister pet vacuum. Due to its suction power of 290 AW, coupled with Radial Root Cyclone technology, it is able to easily lift hair and dirt particles. It provides the best results on bare floors, low-pile carpets, stairs, and upholstery. The vacuum weighs 16.89 pounds and measures 14.5 x 19.9 x 10.2 inches (HWD). It comes with a stretchable hose that is 5.5 feet long and 2 inches wide. Its cord is retractable and measures 21.7 feet in length. Its cleaning path is 10.3 inches and its cleaning reach is 33 feet.
The dust capacity of Dyson DC39 is 2 liters. The vacuum uses 2-stage filtration, with 1 washable filter and 1 HEPA filter. It is Quiet-Mark-awarded and certified asthma- and allergy-friendly by Allergy Standards Limited. The key features of Dyson DC39 include Radial Root Cyclone technology for maximized airflow and hair and dirt pickup, Ball technology for easy maneuvering, dual-mode floor tool for easy switching between different floor types, acoustic engineering for high sound quality, and easy-empty dustbin.
The vacuum’s accessory pack includes a 4-foot extension wand with a detachable handle, a combination dusting brush/crevice tool, a stair/upholstery tool, and the unique Tangle Free Turbine tool for stairs, upholstery, and hard-to-reach places. Dyson DC39 comes with a lengthy 5-year limited warranty and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Samsung POWERbot is one of the most advanced robotic pet vacuums currently on the market. It does an outstanding job vacuuming hard floors and low-pile carpets and it is highly efficient at removing embedded pet hair and dirt from medium-pile carpets. It is incredibly easy to program and maintain and it is designed to perfectly conform to your vacuuming needs.
The vacuum weighs 9.5 pounds and measures 3.8 x 13.4 x 13.7 inches (HWD). Its cleaning path is 11.4 inches and it can cross doorsills and obstacles up to 0.5 inches in height. Its dirt capacity is 0.3 liters and it uses 2-stage filtration. It boasts a suction power of 20 watts. Samsung POWERbot uses a 21.6V lithium-Ion battery that allows the vacuum to work for 90 minutes on a single charge. A full recharge takes just 160-180 minutes.
The vacuum’s incredible efficiency is the result of 40x boosted suction, self-cleaning brush that prevents hair tangling, CycloneForce technology that prevents clogging and suction loss, and smart mapping that ensures that this vacuum never misses any important spots.
Other important features of this vacuum include 4 cleaning modes, automatic and manual suction control, edge cleaning master, cliff, bumper, and obstacle sensors, extended cleaning path, one-time and daily scheduled self-start, WiFi connectivity, remote control, and large EasyPass wheels that allow it to easily move from hard floors to carpets and cross doorsills.
Since Samsung POWERbot does not use virtual boundaries, it comes with magnetic tape that you can use to instruct the vacuum to steer clear of areas you do not want it to clean. Samsung POWERbot comes with a 1-year limited warranty and a 30-day money-back guarantee.