While there are no vacuums specifically designed for vinyl plank floors, some models offer basic yet smart features that are real game-changers.
To leave your vinyl floors clean, you should look for a vacuum with strong suction. Adjustable floor heads, versatile cleaning modes, and conversion into handheld, high-tech features or larger dust bins are also worth consideration.
Whatever the model you choose from our list, we selected only the most promising ones and we tested all of them during 6 hours in our homes to clean vinyl floors.
We identified the top pick as being the Shark Navigator Lift-Away. But if you want to reduce cleaning time by half, try the Bissell Crosswave. And if you need a lighter option, the Dyson V11 is an excellent choice.
Our Top Picks
- Best Overall - Shark Navigator Lift-Away Professional Vacuum
- Best Stick - Dyson V11 Torque Vacuum
- Best Cordless Vacuum - Tineco Floor One S3
- Best Wet Dry - BISSELL CrossWave All in One Wet Dry Vacuum
- Best Canister - Miele Classic C1 Pure Suction
- Easy to steer
- Excellent HEPA filtration
- Sturdy construction with metal parts
- Unconvenient clips to detach the canister
- LCD display screen
- Extremely maneuverable
- Five helpful attachments
- Small dust bin
- Self-cleaning feature
- Quiet operation
- Voice guidance
- The machine still needs to be cleaned regularly
- Separate tanks
- Multiple brush rolls
- Compatible with carpets and rugs
- Straightforward to use
- Remarkably efficient on upholstery
- Light and quiet
- Suction power,
- Adjustable floor heads,
- Various cleaning modes,
- Versatile accessories,
- as well as any additional bonuses like ergonomic features, comfort and level of noise.
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It performed excellently during our cleaning tests on vinyl floors. This Shark was capable to pick up the most common types of debris – from breadcrumbs, cereals to rice grains – on just one pass (or a few tops).
Not only this model is a superstar on vinyl plank floors, but it’s intended for carpets too. Thanks to a brush roll shut-off located on the powerhead, you can easily switch off from bare floor to carpet cleaning.
The bare floor setting won’t send debris across the room – confirmed by our tests. And the carpet cleaning feature blew us away, with an equally strong suction on vinyl and carpets. However, because it’s difficult to move around high-pile carpets, we didn’t select it as one of our best picks for plush carpets.
Still, we didn’t categorize it as a hefty machine. Weighing 12.5 pounds, it’s relatively a lightweight option for an upright. It’s also quieter and easier to handle than other upright options we could test, partially due to its maneuverable swivel head.
This stellar feature made it easy to steer on vinyl floors with less pressure on our wrists.
We also appreciated the detachable pod. Combined with the extra tools, we could clean the hard-to-reach areas in our homes.
And even though it’s one of the most affordable vacuums on the market, the metal parts are made to last a lifetime. If you compare it to the Dyson V11, which is more expensive and has plastic parts, you know you have a top model in your hands.
It’s not perfect, though. We found the 1.2 dry quarts dustbin quite small – still a good fit for small cleaning jobs. And the 25-feet long cord is also on the shorter side.
But these minor flaws shouldn’t prevent you from investing in this Shark Navigator vacuum considering the number of incredible features for such a low price point, in our opinion.
What Customers Are Saying
Many satisfied customers praised the Shark’s ability to pick up any type of debris on luxury vinyl plank flooring at a budget-friendly price. They also found the dual brush particularly convenient – both powerful and safe to use on this type of floor.
They also noted that the bag-free design with a see-through window allowed them to know when it was time to empty – which they valued.
But negative reviews suggest that there are too many latches and releases that all look alike. This design choice is quite confusing and makes it hard to figure out which one you need for which job.
Price at time of publish: $199
|Bin Volume:||0.55 gallons|
|Cord Length :||25 feet|
|Compatible floors:||vinyl, tile, hardwood floors, carpets|
|Accessories Included:||pet hair power brush, crevice tool|
The Dyson V11 is the most ideal stick vacuum to use on vinyl floors out of any stick vacuum cleaners we’ve tested.
Weighing just under 7 pounds, it’s light and maneuvers smoothly on vinyl floors, but in awkward spaces and tight corners too.
Convertible into a comfortable handheld model and combined with its mini motorized brush, we selected it as our best pick for cleaning stairs.
In terms of suction and cleaning power, we found that it rivals expensive models like the Dyson Outsize+. It excelled at picking up small dust and debris on vinyl plank floors. During our test cleaning session, we spread backing soda and flour on the floor. It sucked up 100% of them that other cordless stick models missed.
The three suction modes add to the overall convenience: the eco mode is lower suction whereas the boost is stronger suction. In the middle, there is the auto mode that we find particularly helpful. This mode is capable of triggering increased suction power only when necessary.
Also equipped with an LCD screen showing maintenance reminders and remaining runtime, these innovative features made our cleaning chore almost enjoyable.
What’s more, we loved the Dyson 45 minutes autonomy on a single charge, longer than most similar models.
Like many Dyson models, it has an embarrassing trigger to hold the whole time you’re cleaning. And unless you install the docking station, the vacuum doesn’t stand on its own. Still, these downsides are only design flaws to us that aren’t dealbreakers.
All in all, we think that this vacuum is a great option to clean vinyl floors.
What Customers Are Saying
Many happy reviewers expressed how powerful this vacuum is to clean vinyl plank flooring. They also found the cordless design very convenient. And because it’s so lightweight, they could just walk with it from room to room.
But some users confirmed our opinion by finding the handle uncomfortable to hold during cleaning. Many reviewers say that it hurts the top of your hand and thumb, especially during big cleaning sessions.
Price at time of publish: $699
|Bin Volume:||0.2 gallons|
|Cord Length :||Cordless|
|Compatible floors:||vinyl, all floors, upholstery|
|Accessories Included:||crevice tool, dust brush, mini motorized tool|
The Tineco Floor One S3 is a decent vacuum mop combo cleaner that we found incredibly convenient to use on vinyl floors.
First, it’s cordless and battery-powered so we didn’t have any cord to wrangle. Second, it did a good job of sucking up debris and dust from various bare floors including luxury vinyl plank floors during our testing sessions.
Since it’s a vacuum mop combo, we challenged it with both dry and wet messes. We scattered ketchup, jam, breadcrumbs, and ground coffee on the vinyl floor. We had to make several back-and-forth passes but it cleaned up every spill.
We didn’t find it as effective as the Bissell Crosswave at removing sticky spots but it’s usually the case when you compare corded and cordless models. We also noticed that going more slowly over spills helps.
A feature we appreciated the most is the ability of the Tineco to run almost automatically. Basically, we just pushed a button and it started mopping and vacuuming instantly.
It’s cordless which means the battery life depleted as we used it. After our cleaning session in our 1000-foot square home, the battery drained only by 15% which is less than many other battery-powered vacs we considered.
Plus, the sensor indicator gives information about the battery status on an LCD screen with a clear percentage of remaining autonomy. Of course, we used the automatic mode which decided for us when to use the max mode. If you run on the max mode the whole time, the battery won’t last that long.
We were also satisfied with its maneuverability. Being cordless, we could vacuum around chairs and table legs more easily than with a corded vacuum cleaner.
But there is a downside we quickly identified. It left streaks on the vinyl plank flooring several times. Still, our testing confirms that this machine is easy to use and powerful on the vinyl floor.
What Customers Are Saying
Pleased customers really enjoyed the self-cleaning cycle that cleans the brush roller extremely well. They even recommend using the cleaning feature and drying the brush roll in between use to avoid mildew smell and bad odor.
However, many reviewers complained about the slow charge time. It takes up to four hours of charging time for 35 minutes of continuous run-time. But since the Tineco has a dock that serves as a charging base, we always had a fully charged vacuum cleaner.
Price at time of publish: $399
|Bin Volume:||0.16 gallons|
|Cord Length :||Cordless|
|Compatible floors:||vinyl, bare floors (unsuitable for carpets)|
|Accessories Included:||3-in-1 cleaning tool, two brush rollers|
The Bissell Crosswave has everything you should expect from a wet-dry vacuum to clean and wash vinyl floors simultaneously.
Plus, this vacuum mop combo seems to be more durable than its cordless counterparts (it’s not uncommon for battery-powdered models to stop working after a few years only).
Being tied to a power outlet isn’t a situation we treasure, but we forgot about it quite quickly. Our tests revealed that the Bissell CrossWave could clean all kinds of messes, including sticky spots and stuck on grease, from vinyl floors – where other models failed.
The power of this model relies on its incredible suction, which we clearly identified as one of the strongest for this kind of appliance.
It’s also able to suck up medium-sized solid debris such as spaghettis or cheerios where the Tineco Floor One S3 lacks performance.
The machine also let us control how much cleaning solution we wanted to dispense – and most importantly when – thanks to a practical trigger. We’re not the kind of people preferring control over automation but we found it particularly convenient.
We also enjoyed its 12.5 pounds light weight and the two tanks system so dirty water never mixes with clean water.
Speaking of tanks, we valued how easy the clean water tank is easy to fill. The flat bottom avoids to spill water and detergent on the vinyl floor. Instead, we made it sit on our countertop and filled it with the cleaning solution. The informative lines for measuring the water and detergent quantity make the process very clear, too. No guesswork and no mess.
That being said, the 25-foot cord isn’t exactly the longest you could find and the 0.26 gallons bin capacity is on the shortest side. Even if it will contain more dirty water than the Tineco S3, you’ll probably have to empty it several times in one session.
What Customers Are Saying
Positive reviews confirm that this vacuum is excellent for cleaning vinyl plank flooring. They also added that the multi-surface brush roll works well on floor mats and rugs too. And because the vacuum suctions excess water while cleaning, they could attest that this model doesn’t leave streaks.
But some users regretted that this cleaner doesn’t have swivel steering. Many complained that it was hard to clean corners and other tight spaces with this model.
Price at time of publish: $258
|Bin Volume:||0.26 gallons|
|Filter :||Foam Filter|
|Compatible floors:||vinyl, carpets, rug areas, mats|
|Accessories Included:||Multi-Surface Brush Roll, a bottle of cleaning formula and a storage tray|
The Miele Classic C1 has been built with bare floors – and vinyl floors – in mind. As the name suggests, this “suction-only” model doesn’t come with a brush roll, more suitable for carpet cleaning.
Instead, it has a TurboTeQ soft bristle-cleaning Floorhead that glided smoothly across vinyl floors during our tests. The Miele brush also features two modes: hard floors and low-pile carpets making it an excellent choice if your home has vinyl plank floors and low-pile rugs.
In our homes, we tested the vacuum cleaner on vinyl flooring of course, but on low-pile carpets, too.
The wide floor head combined with extremely strong and effective suction and 6 different modes from the motor did an excellent job at removing all sorts of messes. No crumbs, pet hair, or dust bunnies resisted this Miele machine, even in one single pass.
Even though the model looks basic (and low-priced), we were impressed by the myriad of other stellar features it offers.
We could automatically rewind the 21-foot cord as soon as we were finished. We also found the 3.75 quarts capacity comfortable and convenient since it’s a bagless model.
The handle and the telescopic extension wand are ergonomics bonuses. And the low-profile, lightweight construction made it easy to maneuver around the living room, under furniture, and into corners. It felt sturdy in our hands, without feeling cumbersome.
A former French Miele employee we interviewed confirmed that the company produces vacuums built to last several decades. Our experience confirms this – since we’re owning a Miele C1 for over 10 years now and it’s still going strong.
Now, it’s a bagless model and a canister vacuum cleaner. This means that the canister may feel heavy to drag, especially on stairs, and you’ll have to buy additional replacement bags. But in our homes, the filter bags last for months, and 6 bags cost less than $20.
What Customers Are Saying
Happy users witnessed the Miele C1 efficiency on both vinyl floors and carpeted areas. The vacuum could handle both with ease. And many reviewers asserted that – even though it’s a canister – this model is meant for houses with stairs due to its light weight.
Disappointed customers emphasized that it’s not a good fit for high-pile carpets or pet hair. And even if the machine itself is excellent, quiet, and with very strong suction, they regretted the quality of the attachments. They found them too small to be really helpful.
Price at time of publish: $338.87
|Bin Volume:||4.76 quarts|
|Filter :||Filter bag|
|Compatible floors:||hard floors, vinyl, low pile carpets|
|Accessories Included:||Floorhead, crevice tool, upholstery tool and mini dust brush|
How We Selected And Tested
To choose the best vinyl floor vacuum, we scoured the web and made extensive research. Our goal was to identify the most essential criteria buyers should consider when purchasing a vacuum cleaner for vinyl floors.
To achieve this, we thoroughly examined multiple articles from reputable vinyl manufacturers like Mohawk and Shaw Industries, as well as sought insights from experts in hard floor cleaning and cleaning enthusiasts who shared their experiences and knowledge on private blogs and social media platforms.
Based on the information gathered, we then analyzed a wide range of vacuum cleaner models available on the market.
Our evaluation process involved refining the list to include the most highly recommended vacuums, taking into account feedback from customers, insights from experts, and considering the best features offered by each model.
These features included considerations such as:
We also took different price ranges into consideration, keeping in mind that there is a budget for everyone. The brand reputation was factored in our evaluation too.
Finally, we conducted thorough testing of the selected models in our own homes, assessing their effectiveness in removing dirt, dust, hair, and various sizes of food messes, both on vinyl floors and carpeted areas. For models equipped to handle wet messes, we also evaluated their efficiency in removing liquids.
We looked at how maneuverable they are, how they’re constructed, and if they were loud. After this extensive testing process, we documented the results in spreadsheets and assigned each model a rating on a scale of 1 to 10.
By considering and evaluating these diverse factors, we were able to determine the top choices for vinyl floors and categorize each model accordingly.
What To Look for in a Vacuum for Vinyl Plank Floors
Ultimately, the choice of the type of vinyl vacuum belongs to you, your home’s needs, and your cleaning preferences.
You can find canister, stick, wet dry, upright but also handheld vacuums (not listed in our top picks) that can tackle any messes on vinyl floors. But each type offers particular advantages.
Canister and stick vacuums like the Miele C1 Pure Suction or the Dyson V11 tend to be more suitable for small cleaning jobs and homes with a variety of floor surfaces. Whereas an upright vacuum cleaner such as the Shark Navigator Lift-Away is a better fit for larger homes with a mix of vinyl and carpeted areas.
Wet-dry vacuums like the Tineco Floor One S3 and the Bissell Crosswave All in One can save you time and storage space. And if weight and portability matter a lot to you, a handheld vacuum is worth consideration.
How strong your vacuum cleaner is going to be is a determining criterion of how performant it will be at sucking up debris, dust, and fine particles from the vinyl plank floor.
During our research, we noticed that the vacuum’s strength or suction can be gauged in many ways.
Some manufacturers and brands indicate the wattage while others refer to air watts. We found it difficult to compare models with each other when the measurement unit was different.
Thankfully, there are other ways to judge whether a vacuum for vinyl has a powerful suction or not. The ability to pull out all the messes, from the smallest to the largest debris is a good proof of performance and power.
The power source is also a trustworthy indicator. Generally speaking, corded models boast more power than cordless vacuums.
Weight and Maneuverability
Other criteria for choice and comparison include weight and maneuverability, which are closely related to the type of vacuum.
Due to their lighter weight, stick and handheld vacuums are easier to maneuver and handle on vinyl floors compared to bulkier vacuum cleaners. However, they typically have less power on vinyl.
There are also uprights, wet-dry, and canister vacuum cleaners. These machines are usually heavier, but some options still offer maneuverability. Plus, with weight comes power.
Canister vacuums have the advantage of having wheels, making them easier to drag while cleaning the floors.
Weighing just 1 pound, the Miele C1 is the lightest option on our list, making it an excellent choice for users with mobility issues.
Floor Heads & Attachments
A vacuum for vinyl should be versatile enough to clean other surfaces, areas, corners, or crevices. Useful attachments for these cleaning tasks are crevice tools, dusting brushes, or upholstery tools.
Some vacuums on our list can also be converted into handheld which is quite useful to clean stairs, couches, or upholstery.
Regarding the floor head, you have plenty of options. Vacuums with no brush rolls or suction only are good for vinyl because the vacuum will glide smoothly across vinyl floors.
Other vacuums offer several brush heads such as a brush roll – particularly helpful on carpets. If these types of brushes have the ability to be turned off, they’ll be more practical on vinyl floors. And if you have a mix of vinyl and carpeting in your home, this type of pick us valuable.
How Often Should You Vacuum Vinyl Floors?
As a general rule, you should vacuum vinyl floors once per week. But if you have lots of traffic or if you have a household full of life or pets, you may need to vacuum more frequently, three times a week being a reasonable rhythm.
Is It Better to Vacuum or Sweep Vinyl Plank Floors?
Sweeping is better if you have large debris to clean since vacuum heads aren’t usually able to suction large debris.
On the other hand, vacuuming vinyl floors is more suitable when there’s fine dust or small debris as a broom may end up spreading the fine dirt or dust around the floor.
Vacuuming is also a better option if you have allergies.
Why Trust The House Wire?
This article was written by Claire Onidi, a professional editor, writer, and product tester for TheHouseWire since 2018. However, she has extensive experience in writing and editing since she started in 2013. In parallel, she has also been working as a professional tester for years and developed a true interest in the cleaning area. When researching the best vacuum for vinyl floors, she gathered information from technical articles, industry forums, real-world consumers, and product testers. She also tested all the models from the list for 6 hours in her own home and in real-life conditions. Additionally, she interviewed Zoe, a former Leroy Merlin (a French home improvement retailer) employee, about vinyl floor cleaning maintenance and vacuuming strategy.
She also reached out to vinyl manufacturers like Mohawk flooring and Shaw Industries and spoke to their customer support. She asked them for advice on the most valuable features a vacuum should have to clean vinyl floors. After this productive exchange, she considered a wide range of vacuum styles, as well as extra features, attachments, cleaning methods, and so on.
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