Avg. consumer rating = 91/100
The Shark Navigator Lift Away Deluxe model NV360 is reasonably priced for what you get. It is one of the higher consumer-rated vacuums in its price point. Owners like the strong suction, lift-away feature, rinsable filters, and swivel steering. It also has brushroll on/off controls which make the vacuum effective on both carpet and bare floors. In addition, it comes with four handy tools. However, the lack of height controls can make it difficult to push on deeper carpet, and it is also a bit top heavy so it gets pulled over easily when using the hose/wand/tools.
A thorough review of owner comments and insights has provided the following pros & cons:
What Are Owners Saying?
Most folks concur that the included pet hair tool is quite effective at pulling up pet hair. It is good on carpet and upholstery. This is also a good tool for putting on the end of the hose or wand and vacuuming stairs (it is awkward to lift the entire vacuum and to use the cleaner head on stairs). However, the hose on the NV360 is a bit on the short side so it may not be easy to clean a longer set of stairs.
The suction generated by the Shark Navigator Lift-Away Deluxe is quite strong. Many owners have highlighted how much power the vacuum has and how effective it is a sucking up dust and debris from both carpet and bare floors.
Other popular features include the easy to empty dust canister, the lift away mode (very handy for above-floor cleaning/stairs/areas an upright cannot go), and the rinsable filters (can be rinsed in water, dried and reused). Owners are also pleased that the vacuum is not particularly heavy and also not too loud.
One of the most common comments about the NV360 is how well it moves. The swivel steering is very effective
at maneuvering the vacuum around furniture and obstacles. The somewhat narrow cleaner head turns at the twist of a wrist which makes it very easy to change direction. A narrow cleaner head has both pros and cons. It is able to get into tight and cramped places, however it takes many passes of the vacuum when working on large open areas.
Finally, people like that they can turn the brushroll in the cleaner head ON and OFF. This allows the machine to perform optimally on both bare floors and carpet. We have seen some uprights that do not have the ability to turn the brushroll OFF – so when the vacuum is ON the brushroll is ON. This can be problematic when you are faced with bare surfaces like tile, hardwood, linoleum, concrete, etc. as it can result in scatter and poor pickup.
One issue that owners have written extensively about is the tendency for the machine to topple when it is pulled by the hose or jostled too much. There are many comments stating that the vacuum is top heavy so it has a tendency to tip and fall over. In addition, the hose is short and does not stretch out easily. As a result it pulls on the vacuum when you are using it and the vacuum ultimately falls over. This is particularly problematic when the vacuum falls into a wall or onto furniture. You can end up with scrapes, bumps and marks.
Also, a number of folks report that the vacuum can be difficult to move on deeper pile carpet. Some have even returned the machine simply because it is too hard to push. It should be noted that the NV360 has no height controls on the nozzle so you cannot lift the nozzle and brushroll up. Height controls would likely allow the vacuum to move much easier on deeper carpet. Many people suggest you should reduce the suction at the cleaner head by opening the suction release valve on the vacuum handle. While this solution may allow you to move the vacuum easier, it will likely reduce the machine cleaning potential (less suction) which is unfortunate.
Another issue that seems to come up a fair bit is the frequency that the pre-motor filters need to be cleaned. Apparently the pre-motor foam filter gets dirty very quickly and neglecting it can affect your vacuum suction. It can be rinsed in water but it also takes quite a while to dry (24hrs or so).
While the vacuum does excel at pulling up pet hair it also has tendency to get pet hair tangled in the brushroll. Ideally all the pet hair would get sent to the dust canister but unfortunately quite a bit of it gets tangled in the brushroll and needs to be removed (this is fairly common with a lot of vacuums). The extent of tangling is sometimes a function of the length of the pet hair – longer hair tangles more easily.
We’ve also seen a few comments from folks who do not like that the power cord exits from the bottom of the vacuum. They complain that this arrangement places the cord in the way too much and you may find yourself vacuuming over the cord unless you grab and hold it with one hand while vacuuming.
The NV360 is a bagless vacuum with rinsable filters. This design reduces consumables and helps keep costs down. The unit has 3 filters – 2 pre-motor and 1 post-motor.
The 2 pre-motor filters are located just below the dust canister (you can remove the dust canister to find them). There is a felt filter and a foam filter. They can be rinsed in cold or lukewarm water. The idea is to run water over them until the water ceases to be dark or dirty. You can then squeeze out the excess water and leave the filters to dry for about 24 hours or so – however long it takes for them to be absolutely dry. When they are dry you simply place them back in the vacuum. Shark states that you should probably clean the pre-motor filters about every 3 months. As written above however, some owners report having to clean them more often.
The post-motor filter is a HEPA filter and you will find it behind the grill on the lower front of the vacuum cleaner. It is advisable to gently tap the filter over a dustbin (dirty side down) to remove loose debris. Then rinse it in cold or lukewarm water – again dirty side down – until the water starts to run clear and clean. Leave the filter to dry and place it back in the vacuum when it is completely dry. Shark states that you should probably clean the post-motor filter about once every 2 years.
The NV360 also has what Shark refers to as Anti-Allergen Complete Seal Technology. This means the vacuum body is sealed and unfiltered air does not escape from cracks or poor seals. The air that is exhausted from the vacuum has ALL been run through the filters. Having both HEPA filtration and a sealed system makes the vacuum a reasonable choice for those suffering from asthma or allergies (although you do have to be careful emptying the dust canister when lots of dust and debris can be released).
One of the features that sets this vacuum apart from many other uprights (from other brands) is the “Lift-Away” feature. This ingenious idea allows you to detach the dust-canister/motor assembly from the vacuum. You can then carry this with one hand while using the hose/wand/tools to clean with the other hand. This approach adds a level of versatility to the NV360
and one can now more easily vacuum stairs, get in behind furniture, do easier overhead cleaning, etc. Essentially you can now clean anywhere you can walk – as opposed to being limited by the mobility of the upright unit.
The Lift-Away feature is simple to use. You can release the wand (with the wand release button) or you can release the handle (with the handle release button). You press a button near the dust canister and the entire dust-canister/motor assembly lifts up and away. You are still tethered by the power cord but that’s about it. The dust-canister/motor assembly goes back just as easily – it clicks back into place and you once again have an upright vacuum. We have several of the lift away units and they work great.
However, the Lift-Away feature does add a bit of bulk to the upright vacuum and some folks complain that the lift away assembly makes the vacuum a little difficult to get under low furniture (the machine doesn’t have a particularly low profile). This is true and we have noticed this on all of our lift away vacuums. But at least the NV360 does have very good swivel steering. Many owners have commented on how very easy the vacuum is to turn and maneuver.
It is important to ensure you have the brushroll OFF when using the hose/wand/tools or using the lift away feature. The vacuum has an ON/OFF power switch with three settings:
- setting “0” turns the vacuum power OFF
- setting “I” turns the brushroll OFF
- setting “II” turns the brushroll ON
The dust canister itself has a capacity of 3 dry quarts but it is only 1.2 dry quarts to the maximum fill line. Shark suggests you empty the canister when it reaches the maximum fill line. The canister is bottom empty and you simply press the bottom door release button. Most of the dust & debris should fall out but as is the case with many bagless vacuums you may have to reach in and pull some of the materials out – they sometimes gets stuck. Folks do complain that emptying the dust canister can be messy and sometimes negate the effects of the HEPA filter and sealed system. To some extent this is true and some people actually empty the dust canister inside a plastic bag while others empty the canister outdoors.
You get 4 tools with the NV360:
- Pet power brush (good for pet hair and dirt on upholstery, and cleaning stairs)
- Dusting brush (for removing dust/debris from shelves, furniture, blinds, etc)
- Crevice tool (5.5 inches long. Good for vacuuming in tight areas and corners)
- Under appliance wand (Very long. Able to reach under appliances and furniture)
The tools fit on the end of the hose or the wand. The Pet Power Brush is not a motor-driven tool. This tool is driven by vacuum suction. There is a small turbine inside that spins via airflow and in turn spins the brushroll. These kinds of tools can work well but they are not as powerful as motorized units and can get bogged down in deeper pile carpet or if too much pressure is applied. They also slow more quickly than a motorized unit when they start to get clogged with hair. Fortunately this one is designed to come apart for cleaning.
The under appliance wand is a unique tool
. We first got one with our Shark Rocket Complete HV382
and prior to this we had not seen anything like it. We have used ours to vacuum under the stove and the fridge – areas no other tool could reach. The under appliance wand has something like a 3 foot reach and this can be adjusted (made shorter if need be).
The NV360 weighs in the neighborhood of 16 lbs. This is perhaps about average for an upright. You can see lighter vacuums in our list of lightweight vacuum cleaners
if you wish. The lift away feature (dust-canister/motor) weighs about 7.5 lbs.
No Height Controls
While the Shark Navigator Lift Away Deluxe is easy to move on low pile carpet and smooth flooring, it can be difficult to push on deep pile carpet. One of the reasons for this is that the NV360 does not have height controls
. Height controls lift the vacuum nozzle up and down thereby allowing it to move easier on deeper carpet. These kinds of controls sometimes appear as a height setting dial on the vacuum nozzle – see the example on our Bissell CleanView Rewind Deluxe 1819
If movement gets difficult it may help to use the suction release collar on the NV360. This is a suction release valve located at the base of the handle and turning it opens and closes an opening from which suction can escape. This is designed to reduce suction at the cleaning end of the vacuum. This “MAY” help if the vacuum becomes difficult to push. The suction release valve is also handy if you simply want less suction when you are vacuuming more delicate items.
Cleaning reach is perhaps a little on the short side given the vacuum has a 25 foot power cord. We prefer to see something like 30 feet or more. Coupled with a hose that doesn’t stretch out easily the overall reach is less than some other units on the market.
Other Features & Warranty
The vacuum has several other features including a lifetime belt, a power shutoff switch that will engage should the brushroll be blocked (saves motor and belt), and filters that are designed not only to be rinsed in water but to last the lifetime of the vacuum.
The Shark NV360 carries a 5-year manufacturer's parts and labor warranty.
Vacuum Cleaner Manual
The manual for the Shark Navigator Lift Away Deluxe provides:
- A description of all the different pieces and parts of the vacuum
- Instructions on how to use the vacuum in upright mode
- Instructions on how to use the vacuum in lift-away mode
- Instructions on above-floor cleaning
- Storage & maintenance information
- Troubleshooting tips
- Safety instructions
- Warranty information
You can see a copy of the manual here if you like: Shark Navigator Lift Away Deluxe Manual