After reviewing a large number of stick vacuums we have chosen 9 for our list of Best Stick Vacuums in 2016. Machines were chosen after carefully considering consumer ratings and comments as well as length of warranty, features and cost. Vacuums that stood out scored well in most if not all of these areas.
Stick vacuums range from inexpensive to somewhat pricey and as a result we have divided our list into three categories: top-end, mid-range and inexpensive. Our choices include machines manufactured by Dyson, Eureka, Shark, Bissell, and Hoover.
|Rank||Stick Vacuum||Approx Cost (USD)|
|Best||Dyson V6 Absolute||$500|
|#2||Dyson V6/DC59 Animal||$400|
|Rank||Stick Vacuum||Approx Cost (USD)|
|Best||Shark Rocket Powerhead||$170|
|#2||Shark Rocket HV302||$200|
|#4||Shark Navigator Freestyle||$120|
|Rank||Stick Vacuum||Approx Cost (USD)|
|Best||Eureka Quick-Up 169H||$40|
|#3||Bissell PowerEdge Pet||$50|
Dyson V6 Absolute - Despite the hefty price tag this is still our first choice for a stick vacuum. It’s the pinnacle of Dyson’s stick vacs and it comes with two cleaner heads (one for carpet and one for bare floors) and even doubles as a hand vacuum. This is our go to machine around the house for quick cleanups and for stairs.
The cordless V6 Absolute only weighs about 5 lbs and is very maneuverable. It is also quite powerful for its size and is easy to use and maintain. It is bagless and all filters are washable, including the HEPA filter. It has a small footprint so it conveniently tucks away in the closet. It also has plenty of suction and recharges in about 3.5 hours. While you only get 15-20 minutes of run time, it is sufficient for small area cleaning and quick pickups.
When this stick vac first appeared on the market it was about $600 but it has come down in recent months and you should now be able to find it for about $475 if you shop around. You can check the price on Amazon if you want. You may also wish to read our Dyson V6 Absolute review.
Note: In Nov. 2016 we got our hands on the Dyson V8 Absolute stick vacuum. It is also an excellent machine (but now more expensive than the V6). You may wish to read our Dyson V8 Review.
Dyson DC59/V6 Animal - We looked at the Dyson DC59 Animal stick vac back in 2014. Since then Dyson has released their V6 series vacuums and the V6 is essentially the same machine and the DC59 – this was really more of a renaming exercise.
The V6 Animal is less expensive than the “Absolute” version and only comes with one cleaner head and doesn’t include HEPA filtration. Despite this, consumer ratings for the V6 Animal are excellent. Also being able to use the vacuum as a stick vac or a handheld is a major plus and saves on having to buy a separate handheld unit.
Like the Absolute, the Animal carries a 2-year warranty however the Animal can generally be found for less than the Absolute. You should be able to find it for under $400. You may want to check the price on Amazon. You can also read our review of the Dyson DC59/V6 Animal.
Shark Rocket Powerhead (model AH452) - The Shark Rocket Powerhead is somewhere between an upright and a stick vac but as it is lightweight and has no hose or attachments we will consider it a stick vacuum here.
The Powerhead sports some innovative features, including having the dust canister, all filters and the motor in the nozzle. It also comes with 2 brushrolls (1 for carpet and 1 for bare floors) which can be swapped out through a top-opening door on the cleaner head. Cleaning performance is quite good and the unit’s 9 lbs weight makes it maneuverable and easy to carry from room to room or up and down stairs. It also carries a respectably long 5-year warranty.
Shark Rocket HV302 - Like the Shark Rocket Powerhead the HV302 is somewhere between a stick vac and an upright. It is similar to the Dyson V6 stick vacs except the Dysons are smaller, lighter and cordless while the Rocket is heavier and has a power cord. Dysons are also more expensive.
Consumer ratings are very good for the Rocket. Owners like that the machine has strong suction, is fairly maneuverable, and is effective at dealing with pet hair. But, unlike the Powerhead, where the motor is in the nozzle, the motor on the HV302 is at the handle end of the vacuum. This makes it a little top heavy and prolonged vacuuming can be bit hard on the wrist. The HV302 is slightly more expensive than the Powerhead - check out the price on Amazon. You can also read out Shark Rocket HV302 review.
Hoover Platinum Linx Cordless Stick Vacuum - The Linx gets excellent consumer ratings, isnt too heavy at 7.3lbs, and is good on both bare and carpeted floors. In addition, it carries a 2-year warranty. It is battery operated and has decent suction and battery performance.
This machine can generally be found online for under $150. It does everything well, and while not cheap, it will not empty your wallet.
This is a great vacuum for smaller area vacuuming and it is capable of picking up dust and debris from both carpet and bare floors fairly well. It is not a full size vacuum however and it also lasts about 15 minutes on a charge. You may wish to read our Hoover Linx Stick Vac review and view the video at the bottom of the review.
Like many battery powered handhelds or stick vacuums the Linx receives some criticism regarding length of battery charge, but 15+ minutes is actually not too bad. While it may cause consumer grumbling, it is difficult to find a battery powered stick vacuum that provides more than 20 minutes of strong suction on a single charge (although some achieve this by providing low power settings). Corded stick vacs don't have this issue but these often have relatively short cords and involve plugging in the machine whenever and wherever you wish to use it. Check out the latest pricing and ratings on Amazon.
Shark Navigator Freestyle - It was a close race between the Shark Freestyle and the Hoover Linx but the 2-year warranty on the Linx won out (the Shark only carries a 1-year warranty). The Freestyle however is a great machine. At 7.2 lbs it is very lightweight and it has 2 speeds - low and high. On high it will operate for about 17 minutes and on low for about 24 minutes.
The vacuum also has a motorized brushbar and is designed for cleaning both carpet and bare floors. However some owners report that the power on/off button isnt that sturdy and it may jam or break although this isnt a common problem. For more details read our Shark Navigator Freestyle review. You may also want to check the latest pricing on Amazon.
Eureka Quick-Up 169H - This small stick vac gets excellent consumer ratings. It is also fairly durable, has good suction, and is very light (about 4.4 lbs). In addition, it has a motorized brushroll with on/off controls and can double as a handheld vacuum. This is a corded machine however and it comes with a 15 foot power cord.
The 169’s are inexpensive stick vacs and are available for around $50 (see latest price on Amazon). The warranty is only 1 year but this is pretty much standard at this price point. There are several different models of this machine but one of the highest rated at this time is the 169H. Read our Eureka Quick Up review.
Hoover SH20030 - We really like this corded stick vacuum and it isnt too pricey for such a good machine. It is typically available for under $100 (see latest price on Amazon) however we have recently noticed that prices for this machine actually seem to be going up.
It has brushbar on/off controls making it capable on both bare floors and carpet and it is not too loud. The SH20030 has strong suction, washable filters and an easy to empty dust canister. It is also a very easy machine to maneuver. As it is corded some folks indicate that they would like more than the 20 feet of power cord. However, the biggest issue here is that this vacuum is getting hard to find. Most places are no longer stocking it although some still do. Read our Hoover SH20030 review.
Bissell PowerEdge Pet 81L2-T - The 81L2-T has very good consumer ratings and the unique v-shaped nozzle is an effective design innovation. This machine also has good suction and is easy to maneuver. Weight is about 7.5 lbs. The 81L2-T is corded and has a 20 foot power cord.
Both the Eureka and the Bissell are great for quick pick-ups and small area cleaning. But for larger jobs and areas with lots of carpet they are likely not the right tools. The Bissell does not have a brushbar so carpet is certainly not its bread and butter. The Hoover SH20030 is a little better for larger area cleaning but it is still a stick vac.
Note: Something to consider when looking at consumer ratings is that expectations understandably drop with lower product pricing, so a $50 machine that gets consumer ratings of 9 out of 10 (for example) isnt necessarily a better machine than a $200 vacuum that is rated 8 out of 10 by consumers.