Get the best portable handheld vacuum for easy cleaning
Whether you want to vacuum your car seats or quickly clean up a small mess, a handheld vacuum cleaner comes in handy. Since a hand vac is lightweight, small, and portable, it is best to clean a little furball on the couch or dust stuck in the stairs’ crevices.
When it comes to choosing the best handheld vacuum cleaner, there’s no standard choice. Some vacuum cleaners are better at cleaning pet hair while others do a mighty fantastic job of removing dirt from the couch cushions.
So, how exactly do you choose the best hand vac for your home? That’s what I’m going to help you decide here.
While curating this list, I had plenty of parameters in mind to choose the best overall handheld vacuum. This Black + Decker handheld vacuum cleaner checks all the boxes: it’s cheap, lightweight, and has long battery life. That’s pretty much everything you need in a hand vac.
Being a handy popular choice among users, this vacuum cleaner has a long life and a strong suction power of up to 15.2 AW.
Have you ever spotted a fur in a corner and ignored it because getting your upright or stick vacuum is too much hassle? Well, with this movable vacuum, you can tend to the mess instantly.
The 20.6-ounce dustbowl capacity means that you can clean the whole couch or car seat without emptying. Moreover, the vacuum is equipped with Smart Charge Technology, lowering energy consumption by up to 50%.
Besides, the cyclonic action keeps the filter clean while the rotating nozzle offers thorough cleaning.
More importantly, this handheld vacuum easily fits into hard-to-reach places to clean all those spots untouched with your upright vac.
I found it particularly interesting that the vacuum could hold its battery for up to 18 months. Thus, if you have a holiday house that you occasionally visit, you can keep the vacuum there for easy cleaning whenever you’re vacationing.
Quite ironically, this battery is the same thing that the reviewers had the biggest issue with. Although the 30-minute battery duration is incredibly convenient, the battery itself does not have a long lifespan.
Even worse, the battery is not replaceable. Once the vac stops working due to its battery dying, it’s useless, and you have to buy a replacement vacuum now.
However, I’d still consider it a top choice due to its extreme convenience of use and powerful suction.
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Although all handheld vacuum cleaners are lightweight, some are lighter than others. The Bissell Eraser is ideal for a pet parent because it has been primarily designed for cleaning pet hair.
If your beloved kitty sheds hair everywhere she goes, or your dog loves sitting on the couch, it’s helpful to have a light cordless device.
Owing to the motorized foot, the vacuum offers a powerful suction with a rating of 14.4 volts.
You can tell it’s a quality handheld vacuum because it comes with additional tools. The crevice tool helps get deep into the sides of the couch cushions or between the furniture patterns to remove pet hair.
Also, there’s an upholstery tool to clean around tight spots, especially the curtains. To facilitate cleaning, the dirt bin is easy-to-empty. Thus, you can empty as you clean without using much time or effort.
The dirt cup has a capacity of 0.7 liters, which is pretty impressive for a handheld vac. I’ve seen some full-size vacuums with similar capabilities.
Besides, the Bissell Eraser has a dual-filtration system, which effectively removes dirt, debris, and pet hair.
Additionally, the motorized brush loosens the embedded pet hair from car seats and cushions.
Reviewers loved how portable and easy to move this handheld vacuum cleaner is. Plus, they were happy with the attachments as most hand vacs are deprived of this additional perk.
However, they had a similar issue with this hand vac as they did with the Black + Decker. In some units, the battery was defective, while in others, it started getting weaker over time.
While this is a cordless unit, Bissell also has a corded hand vac for pet hair. Let’s discuss that now.
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The Bissell pet hair eraser is the handheld vacuum you need if your furry friend likes to run around the house, leaving hair in every room.
You can use it for cleaning pet hair off car seats, stairs, and upholstery, as the handheld vacuum is specialized for these surfaces. With a power rating of four amperes, this hand vac has strong suction for removing even stubborn fur balls.
Moreover, it has a multi-layer filtration system which uses cyclonic cleaning for loosening and sucking pet hair.
Plus, the 16-feet power cord allows you to vacuum every space in the room without changing plugs.
Like the previous Bissell hand vac, this one also has a dirt cup capacity of 0.78 liters. Thus, you don’t need to empty the vac as often as you would with smaller dirt cups.
Take this from a pet owner; you’ll be surprised at the places where you find pet hair in the house.
Thanks to the Bissell Pet Hair Eraser’s rubberized nozzle, you can clean pet hair from tight spaces with ease. This corded handheld vacuum easily slides between crevices, scraping off pet hair that might be camouflaged against your light-colored couch.
Reviewers with multiple pets swear by this vacuum cleaner, as they claim that this vac has helped them keep their homes spotless. However, most people were disappointed that the vac only cleans pet hair and isn’t effective against dirt or debris.
However, I wouldn’t expect a vacuum under $50 to do everything, so this isn’t a concern. But if you want something with an impeccable design, you can check out my next review.
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Packed with class and quality, this Dyson V7 handheld vacuum is no less because it has a great design and incredible functionality.
First, I’ll mention the additional tools, which are quite rare on handheld vacuums. The mini motorized tool is for general cleaning while the crevice tool goes deep in the couch seats and the crevices between the furniture.
Since there’s no cord, you’re not restricted by the absence of a plug around you. Instead, you can simply power the vacuum on and take it anywhere that needs cleaning.
Boasting the Dyson digital motor, the vacuum cleaner has a run time of up to 30 minutes. The fade-free suction is strong enough to remove smaller pet hair and more significant debris with equal ease.
I was quite amazed by the dirt ejector. Dyson has designed the dirt cup and its cleaning mechanism in such a way that you don’t need to touch the dirt to empty the container.
If you suffer from allergies (1) or have sensitive skin, this is a significant plus.
Additionally, the vacuum is backed by Dyson’s 24-month warranty, so you can rest easy knowing that you can get the issues fixed without spending a cent.
Although this is a splendid hand vac with a lightweight design, I can understand why the reviewers had some reservations. The Dyson V7 is much more expensive than Bissell or other standard hand vacs that pretty much do the same job.
On top of that, you have to spend money buying a wall mount for the vac, which raises the total cost.
However, if you have deep pockets, this is a powerful hand vac with an ergonomic design that won’t disappoint.
If you want to get a practical, handy vac without breaking the bank, the Dirt Devil Scorpion should be on the top of your list.
At first glance, I was taken aback by the vac’s design. Boasting a stark red color, the vacuum has an inclined nozzle, reaching even the tightest corners.
Moreover, it has a crevice tool, which helps you clean narrow spaces between furniture and upholstery. As for the suction, the 7-amp motor ensures that not a single dust particle is left behind.
Along with being easy to use, this handheld vacuum is lightweight. So, you won’t get tired scraping dust off your living room furniture.
The 16-foot power cord allows you to reach every part of the room quickly. However, if you’re planning to deep clean your car, the cord might restrict your movement.
Considering how inexpensive this vac is, I’d say it’s perfect for students living in college dorms. While the cord is long enough to reach every corner of a small dorm room, the vacuum itself is compact enough to fit in a cabinet or under the bed.
One of the reviewers said that this vacuum was her best impulse buy. Like her, other users also loved the easy emptying and comfortable handle.
However, it’s quite loud. If you have a baby in the house, don’t run the vac during their naptime. Otherwise, you’ll have a crying baby to handle, along with a house to clean.
Apart from this tiny shortcoming, the handheld vac is a solid choice for smaller cleaning projects.
If you need a handheld vacuum for cleaning your carpeted stairs, the BLACK+DECKER Max Flex is one of the best options.
Its 24 AW suction power is one of the strongest I’ve seen on any handheld vacuum. Additionally, it comes with a pet hair brush that loosens and removes pet hair from stairs.
Can you imagine rushing to the dust bin after cleaning half your stairs because the dirt cup is full? I’d be frustrated.
Luckily, the BLACK+DECKER Max Flex has a 20.6-ounces dustbowl capacity, which allows you to clean the whole staircase in one go. Plus, the strong suction ensures that there’s no single pet hair or debris particle on the stairs after cleaning.
Got any bread crumbs or a spillage on the kitchen counter? Turn on the BLACK+DECKER Max Flex to see the magic.
Along with cleaning, emptying this handy vacuum is also a breeze. It merely takes a few minutes as you can wash the bowl in the kitchen sink. Once dry, the filter and bowl are ready for the next cleaning session.
While most other handheld vacs have a dual-filtration system, this model goes the extra mile with the triple-filtration technology. Thus, it cleans small dust particles too, ridding your home of allergens and dander.
Reviewers appreciated the Black Decker dustbuster for its powerful suction. Most people were happy with the results they got. However, some of them said that you shouldn’t expect it to vacuum your entire house, as it’s most efficient for the stairs.
While the vacuum is excellent for hard to reach areas such as stairs, it’s not your best bet for cleaning the car seats.
Worry not, I have an incredible option for people who need a handheld vacuum for cleaning their cars.
If your dog’s favorite spot is your car’s front seat or you’re too careless while eating in there, you need to get your hands on a car-friendly handheld vacuum. The Shark WANDVAC is designed for cleaning car seats, owing to its brushless motor.
With a dust cup capacity of 0.08 quarts, the vacuum is ideal for cleaning a smaller car without emptying. You’d be surprised with the exceptional suction of this handheld vac.
With the 1.4-pound design, the hand vac is perfect for cleaning your car without getting wrist pain.
It has a tapered nozzle, which can easily glide between the armrest, under the car seats, and the trunk’s corners.
Moreover, an additional crevice tool lets you zero in on the nooks and crannies of your car’s interior.
When you’re done with the car, you can attach the multi-surface tool to the vacuum to clean carpets and upholstery. Additionally, the ion-charging dock makes this handheld model the best car vacuum for regular use.
Reviewers were pretty amazed by the vacuum’s powerful suction and overall performance. However, one of them said that he could not finish vacuuming the SUV in one charge. If you have a bigger car, you may have to keep a dust bin close to you.
Another problem that some users had was the loud volume. Since you’ll be working in a confined space, the capacity will be more enhanced.
I’d suggest cleaning with earmuffs on if you don’t want to be woozy afterward.
After you’ve cleaned your cars, it’s time to go inside and clean other surfaces. For overall cleaning, I have a fantastic vacuum with multiple accessories.
I’ve included this Dirt Devil Plus simple hand vacuum for its attachments, but there’s a lot more to appreciate.
Firstly, it has a 16-volt battery, which charges twice as fast as other vacuums. Thus, the handheld vacuum is ready to use whenever you need it.
Besides, it has a QuickFlip crevice tool, which gets into tight corners and picks up dirt and debris. For quick cleaning, you can attach the turbo tool to the vacuum and clean the stairs or car.
Since there’s a power indicator on the vacuum, you’ll always know when it’s time to charge it.
Reviewers were happy with how easy to clean the dirt cup is. However, there are a few things that you need to know before buying this vacuum.
The filters inside the vac are disposable, and they get dirty pretty quickly. Although that’s not unheard of in handheld vacs, the problem with this model is that you won’t find replacement filters online.
Instead, you have to order them from the company at 1-800-321-1134. You can tell them your vac’s name to get the filters or ask them for model F-101 as it fits the said vac perfectly.
Some reviewers also wished that the handheld vacuum came with a mount as it makes storage easier.
Apart from these minor issues, the vacuum is an excellent choice to clean the floor, stairs, car seats, and upholstery.
With that, I’m done with the selection of products for this guide. Let’s get to the criteria for buying the best handheld vacuum cleaner for your home.
Even though handheld vacuum cleaners are much smaller than your average canister vacuum, you still need to consider many features when buying one.
A significant consideration in which handheld vacs differ from full-sized cordless models is the run time. Most handheld vacs work for merely 15 minutes, which isn’t always enough.
Before you choose a vacuum, you must determine its purpose. Are you going to use it to clean your car? Is the vacuum for cleaning occasional pet accidents?
Depending on use, determine if you can settle with shorter battery life or need a vac that can at least run for half an hour.
But battery duration isn’t the only thing to consider. You have to ask yourself a few other questions too.
Answering all these questions won’t instantly bring you to a decision, but it will help you narrow down your choices.
Apart from these personal preferences, you also have to factor a few other features.
When I say versatility, I mean, is the vacuum for one task only, or can it be used for multiple surfaces?
For instance, the Shark WV201 WANDVAC Handheld Vacuum is specifically designed for cars. So, you won’t get desirable results when using it inside the house.
However, the BLACK+DECKER dustbuster Handheld Vacuum Cleaner is a versatile option that you can use on different surfaces.
If you’re planning to use the vacuum cleaner just for your stairs or the car, you can work with minimal versatility. In contrast, if you intend to use it in all rooms, look for a higher versatility model.
Especially if you live in a dorm room, you should buy a versatile handheld vac. Since you most probably won’t have a full-sized vacuum, you need a handheld version covering all your cleaning needs.
On average, a cordless handheld vacuum is more versatile than its corded counterpart. For one, it allows you to move freely, without a cord limiting your movement.
Also, cordless models are better for cleaning cars. Most people don’t have an outdoor plug, so they can’t use a corded vacuum outside.
However, corded models are generally more powerful. If you’re planning to deep clean the living room upholstery, a corded model can do a pretty fantastic job.
Another factor to consider in terms of versatility is filtration. A dual-filtration vac like Bissell Pet Hair Eraser can effectively remove dirt and pet hair.
Whereas, a triple-filtration system, such as that in BLACK+DECKER 20V Max Flex, can help get rid of smaller dander and allergen particles.
A heavy handheld vac beats the whole purpose of not using a full-sized vac. Unfortunately, this is a design flaw that you’ll find in some handheld vacs.
Although they aren’t as heavy as cordless stick vacuums, some handheld models can be pretty tough on your wrists. If you’re planning to use the vacuum for deep cleaning your car or patio furniture, make sure it’s lightweight.
You wouldn’t want to hold a four-pound machine for 30 minutes, would you?
The Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Cordless Hand is the most lightweight vac on my list. If you need a vacuum for closet spring cleaning or deep cleaning your car, this is the one.
Lastly, you should check how powerful the vacuum is. A vacuum with higher power will give a better cleaning performance and do the job quickly.
You can find many options in this regard. For example, the Dyson V7 is the only handheld vacuum on our list with two power modes.
Although it isn’t the best vac for cleaning narrow spaces, the Dyson V7 is mighty. Thus, it leaves minimal debris behind.
The normal power mode is cleaning smaller messes while the max mode helps you get rid of stubborn dirt and embedded pet hair.
You can determine the power of a vacuum cleaner from its wattage.
A handheld vac with a higher wattage will use more power and perform better. You’ll notice that more powerful vacs are much pricier.
Wrapping it up, I’m confident that I’ve imparted enough knowledge about handheld vacuums to help you decide. If you’re struggling to find the best models, you can choose one from my list.
Keep in mind that you need to consider some crucial factors before buying a vacuum. Making the right choice means bidding farewell to all your cleaning issues.
Now, it’s time for you to give me your feedback:
If you have any queries, leave them in the comments below. Till then, happy vacuuming!