The Best Hardwood Floor Vacuum of 2018

best vacuum for bare flooring

Hardwood floors are pretty resilient. You don’t need to get down on your hands and knees and clean them daily, or even weekly. You’ll be able to get away with cleaning your hardwood floor every month or two, as long as you regularly maintain the surface.

Regular maintenance is where a good vacuum cleaner comes into play. Ahead, we’ll take a look at the best hardwood floor vacuum cleaners along with what you’ll need to know before you buy.

Which Type is the Best Hardwood Floor Vacuum

When shopping for the best vacuum for hardwood, there are several options you can choose from. A one-size fits all vacuum probably isn’t going to be the best bare floor vacuum option. At the same time, you might want something that you can use on carpet as well as hardwood.

​Upright Vacuum

An upright vacuum is probably the most common vacuum you’ll find in a given home. When you picture a vacuum, this is probably the model that comes to mind. An upright vacuum is a vacuum that stands on its own, as the name suggests.

The upright vacuum will usually have everything in one place. It usually has powerful suction when compared to other models, and adequate filtration to match. There are also several attachments that come with an upright vacuum to make cleaning different surfaces a bit easier.

If you’re only looking for a vacuum for hardwood floors, you’ll likely want to stay away from upright vacuum cleaners. These vacuums are often more focused on deep cleaning rugs and carpets, and the bristles of the cleaner could end up scratching your floors. There are some exceptions to this statement, but upright vacuums usually aren’t among the best vacuum cleaners for hardwood floors.

best vacuum for bare flooring

​Stick Vacuum

A stick vacuum cleaner is similar to an upright vacuum in design, but it lacks many of the features an upright vacuum provides. Even though the suction isn’t typically as strong for the price, stick vacuums are far more effective when cleaning hardwood floors. You don’t need the same level of suction on a bare floor as you do a rug, making these vacuums the preferred choice when cleaning hardwood.

Stick vacuum cleaners are much lighter than other options, making it easier for you to maneuver around a room. They’re usually skinnier, allowing them to fit in places that larger vacuums cannot. These cleaners aren’t as effective if you’re cleaning an entire home, but can be a good selection if you’re buying a vacuum to use exclusively on a hardwood floor.

​Canister Vacuum

Canister vacuums mark the middle ground between stick and upright vacuum cleaners. They come with a lighter head attached to a hose that connects it to the engine, filter, and canister. They’re usually quite heavy, but aren’t as much of a concern because you can roll the canister behind you as you go.

A canister vacuum is one of the best vacuum cleaners for wood floors for several reasons. They offer multiple attachments, meaning you can use them on both wood floors and carpet. Their suction is still some of the best, and you don’t have to worry about scratching your floors with brushes.

The only concern with canister vacuums is the quality of the wheels on the canister. You’ll want something that can roll smoothly across the floor. If you drag it, you may experience the same problem of scratches that we see in upright vacuum cleaners.

​Handheld Vacuum

Handheld vacuums are the most versatile of the bunch, especially when looking for the best vacuum for wood floors. Their suction power is usually limited, but their size allow you to reach places other vacuums cannot. You can use one of these to clean small messes, stairs, and even bring it to clean out your car.

Most handheld vacuums are battery operated, but there are some more powerful wired options available. In the context of hardwood floors, though, you should avoid these because they usually have a stiff brush that can scratch the surface.

Overall, it’s a good idea to have one of these vacuums around to clean small messes and stairs. You won’t want to clean an entire room with one of these, though. They’re generally safe to use on hardwood, but you’ll probably want another option when tackling larger jobs.

best vacuum for hardwood and bare floors

​Cordless Vacuum

A cordless vacuum is a step above a handheld vacuum. They’re usually very light, and allow the user maneuverability that other vacuum cleaner do not. With these vacuums, you can get under furniture and other places that larger vacuums don’t allow without bending over like you’d have to with a handheld vacuum.

Cordless vacuums are great for smaller messes, or reaching in tough places. If someone spills crumbs all over the floor, it’s much easier to pull out of of these then to get another kind of vacuum. The suction isn’t the greatest, but it won’t scratch your hardwood either.

​Robotic Vacuum

Autonomous vacuums have been around for a while, and while they’ve been fun to watch they’ve never been all that effective. Over the years, though, they’ve come into their own as some of the best hardwood floor vacuum cleaners out there.

Autonomous vacuum companies have enhanced the software in their products, which makes them one of the preferred ways to keep a floor clean. These robotic vacuums clean the floor on their own, without any effort from you.

The most recognizable autonomous vacuum is the Roomba, but there are several options in this category. These vacuums are nice because you don’t have to do any of the work. You can just sit back and let the robot clean up after you.

Robotic vacuums are a good option for hardwood flooring, as there is much less opportunity for the vacuum to get stuck. Today’s robotic vacuum models can do a good job of picking up some of the larger debris and dirt on your flooring.

Robot vacuum cleaners are great for daily dusting, but you’ll still need a regular vacuum cleaner to handle in-depth cleaning. They don’t have the suction power of other styles of vacuums, but make an excellent supplemental cleaner if you have a pet that’s constantly shedding hair. With one of these, you can limit the amount of times you’ll have to vacuum in a given month.

Related: The Best Vacuum for Pet Hair and Hardwood Floors

​What to Consider​ for the Best Vacuum Cleaner for Hardwood Floor

When choosing the best vacuum cleaner for hard floors, there are a lot of elements to consider. There’s more elements than simply how effective a vacuum can be. On hardwood, you’ll want a product with proper suction that won’t damage the floor with hard bristles.

At the same time, each individual has different needs when it comes to cleaning. If you want a vacuum that will cover multiple surfaces, your selection might be different than someone who is exclusively looking for a hardwood vacuum. Below, we’ll tackle some of the things you should look for when searching for your next vacuum cleaner.

​Multiple Surfaces

Not many people have the luxury of buying specific vacuums for each room in their home. Most people will want something that will be just as effective on hardwood floors as it is on a carpet. Similarly, some untreated wood floors are softer than others and are more prone to scratches.

If you have multiple surfaces in your home, you may want to spend a bit more to get something that you can use on wood and carpet. Vacuums that focus on carpets alone will provide adequate suction, but hard bristles mean you’ll end up scratching your hardwood. If you choose a less-powerful hardwood option, it’s much harder to get crumbs and dirt out of your rugs.

For these instances, vacuums with multiple attachments or brushroll shutoffs work the best. A brushroll shutoff allows you to deep-clean your carpet, then seamlessly move to hardwood with the press of a button. These vacuums usually provide adequate suction for both applications.

best hard wood flooring vacuum

​Stairs

If you want a vacuum to clean hardwood stairs, you’ll want something that’s easily portable. Lugging a heavy upright or canister vacuum down the stairs can be a chore, and you may want to invest in a supplemental vacuum here. Handheld or cordless vacuums are lighter, thinner, and more portable.

These options are best for stairs, but it’s possible to find an all-in-one vacuum that’s easily portable as well. If there isn’t any rug on your stairs, you don’t need ultra-powerful suction to get into all the nooks and crannies, so keep this in mind during your search.

​Filtration

Filtration is critical in a vacuum cleaner, especially if someone in your house is prone to allergies. A bad filtration system will kick dust into the air, and can end up blowing a mess around instead of cleaning it.

All vacuum cleaners have at least one form of filtration. This filtration comes in the form of a dust bag or collection cup. You’ll need to replace a dust bag now and then, making them more of a hassle and less environmentally friendly.

For this reason, more people seem to prefer collection cups over dust bags. You won’t need to replace them unless they break, and it’s much easier to empty them once you’re done cleaning. If you don’t suffer from allergies, you can save a little money and hassle by choosing one of these options.

If you are sensitive to dust in the air, look for HEPA certified filters in your vacuum cleaner. These filters cost more to replace and require more maintenance, but there’s no other option if you can’t handle airborne dust in your home.

best vacuum for hard wood floors

​Noise Level

Noise is an essential component for most people with kids, animals, or downstairs neighbors. If the noise of a vacuum won’t bother anyone in your home, you can choose to go with a cheaper model. These cheaper options don’t usually have noise canceling features, so this is an area where you can cut corners.

If you have a noise-sensitive element in your home, such as a small child or a dog, you’ll want to pick something on the quieter side. These options can come in the form of smaller units or more expensive vacuums.

​Outlet Placement

Noise is an essential component for most people with kids, animals, or downstairs neighbors. If the noise of a vacuum won’t bother anyone in your home, you can choose to go with a cheaper model. These cheaper options don’t usually have noise canceling features, so this is an area where you can cut corners.

If you have a noise-sensitive element in your home, such as a small child or a dog, you’ll want to pick something on the quieter side. These options can come in the form of smaller units or more expensive vacuums.

Features to Look For in the Best Hardwood Floor Vacuums

If you’re exclusively looking for the best hardwood floor vacuum, there are some specific features you’ll want to look for. Many of the vacuums you’ll see a focus on carpets, so it helps to know what you need before embarking on your search.

​Lower Suction Power

Hardwood floors don’t need the most powerful vacuums available. Sometimes the best vacuum for hardwood floors is the one that doesn’t focus on suction as the main characteristic. If you find one with ultra-powerful suction, it’s probably geared towards carpet rather than hardwood.

Some untreated wood floors require more suction than treated floors, but these are rare cases. With this in mind, you can spend a little less to get a dependable product that will clean the hardwood floor surfaces you need.

best vacuum for hard wood

​Lightweight

For hardwood applications, it’s often best to choose a lighter vacuum. These options won’t dig into the floor as heavier models will. On top of that, lighter vacuums are easier to carry around the house, making cleaning that much easier for you.

​Variety of Attachments

On a hardwood floor, you’ll want to use a vacuum without a hard beater brush, as these will scratch the hardwood. The best hardwood floor vacuum cleaners will either skip the brushes altogether or have an option to turn them off.

Of course, if you’re using this vacuum to clean a carpet as well, you’ll want to have the option to turn on the brush or an attachment that handles both surfaces. The more attachments a vacuum has the more surfaces on which you can use it.

​Padding or Protection

Vacuums that are designed for hardwood floors will often have some padding to protect your floor from the plastic. Dragging around a heavy, plastic vacuum can scratch it worse than a hard brush, so it’s best to choose an option with foam or felt padding.

Our Recommendations for the Best Hardwood Floor Vacuum

Ahead, we’ll take a look at the best vacuum cleaner for hardwood floors with all of our recommended considerations in mind. These are some of the best-rated vacuum cleaners for hardwood floors at three different price points. If you’re looking for the best vacuum cleaner for hardwood, this buyer’s guide should help narrow your selection.

Product

Rating

​Type

Weight

​Price Range

​Check Price

​Bissell 3-in-1

​Corded

​4.1 lbs

​$

​Shark Navigator

​Cordless

7.5 lbs

​$$

​Deik 2-in-1

​Cordless

4.7 lbs

​$$$

​Bissell Hard Floor

​Corded

​9 lbs

$$$

​Eufy RoboVac

​Robotic

-

$$$$$

Dyson MultiFloor

​Corded

​15.6 lbs

​$$$$$

Bissell 3-in-1 Lightweight Stick Vacuum

Bissell is one of the leading companies in the vacuum industry for a reason. They know what it takes to clean all types of surfaces. ​The Bissell Lightweight 3-in-1 is by far the cheapest on this list, making it one of the best value options you can find.

The vacuum is only 4.1 pounds, so moving around with it is a breeze. This is the smallest and lightest vacuum we’ve reviewed, so if size is a concern, this may be your best bet. At 15 feet, the cord is around the average size and won’t have you scurrying from outlet to outlet every time you move a few feet in the opposite direction.

As far as the suction is concerned, it’s hard to beat this Bissell stick when you consider the size. Of course, it won’t have the suction of a larger model, but you won’t need this level of suction on hardwood floors. The Bissell lightweight stick excels at reaching smaller, flat areas.

This vacuum makes the perfect discount cleaner for a smaller apartment due to its size and portability. The removable handheld feature also makes it great for cleaning furniture and stairs. As a 3-in-1 model, you get quite a few cleaning options for the price.

The suction is perfect for hardwood floors, and Bissell’s V-shaped vacuum head funnels dirt and debris into the suction region. The 3-in-1 is not a good option on carpet, though. It will work if you go over a low pile carpet a few times, but it’s not specifically designed to clean thick carpets.

Instead, this product focuses on being the best vacuum cleaner for bare floors. The Bissell 3-in-1 won’t scratch the hardwood and provides good enough suction to clean your wood floors. 

If you’re looking for something more versatile, we’ll have some other options for you below.

Shark Navigator Cordless Stick Vacuum

The ​Shark Navigator Cordless Stick Vacuum is another strong option if you’re looking for value. Unlike the Bissell, the Shark Navigator is a cordless stick vacuum, which provides quite a bit more convenience.

Shark’s inclusion of a brushroll makes this vacuum more effective on thin carpets than the Bissell vacuum we covered above. The suction is similar, but if you need a vacuum to go from rug to hardwood, you could do worse than the Shark Navigator.

The Navigator is a bit heavier than the Bissell, but it’s hardly noticeable when moving it around. In fact, the cordless feature makes the Navigator easier to use because you won’t have to rely on being close to an outlet.

The dust cup is one of the largest out of the lightweight vacuums we’ve reviewed. If you’re cleaning up a larger mess, you may prefer the larger capacity of the Navigator to the smaller dust cup in the Bissell.

Battery charge with the Shark Navigator isn’t an issue either. It has one of the longest charge times we’ve seen for cordless options, and you can probably tackle your whole house before it needs a recharge (depending on the size of course).

If you don’t want to use a handheld option for stairs, the size and weight of the Navigator provides a suitable alternative. It’s unfortunate that Shark didn’t make this a 2-in-1 model to include a handheld vacuum, but we understand why given the amazing price.

The Shark Navigator has received our vote as one of the best cordless stick vacuum cleaners, and easily ranks as one of the best hardwood floor vacuum cleaners in it’s price range (especially if you’re looking for a cordless option). Like the Bissell vacuum listed above, the Navigator has some trouble with thicker carpets.

If you’re cleaning a hardwood floor that also includes some area rugs and low pile carpet, theShark Navigator Cordless Stick Vacuum is near perfect. It can tackle messes on smooth surfaces and thin rugs with ease. It’s only when you move to thicker rugs that you may start running into problems.

Still, this vacuum is one of the better options in the price range.

Deik 2-in-1 Cordless Upright Vacuum Cleaner

The Deik 2-in-1 is another extremely lightweight option that can tackle both rugs and hardwood floors. Unlike other upright vacuum cleaners, this one avoids scratches by allowing you to raise it with a push of a button. Pay attention here, though, because it will cause scratching if you fail to switch modes when moving from carpet to hardwood.

At 4.7 pounds, the ​Deik 2 in 1 Cordless Vacuum Cleaner is only slightly heavier than the Bissell vacuum we reviewed above. There’s a small chance you’ll notice the .6 pound difference. Like the Bissell, you can transition the Deik into a handheld vacuum, though the Deik is admittedly a bit smoother as a handheld option.

Although it’s double the price of the Bissell, there are a few features the Deik has that the Bissell does not. First and foremost, the HEPA filter is essential for those who suffer from sensitivity to dust in the air. And, if you have pets in the house, you’ll appreciate the work a HEPA filter will put in to keep the dander out of the air.

On top of that, the Deik 2-in-1 has much stronger suction, which allows you to navigate carpets.  The Deik is also cordless, giving you a wider range of flexibility.

The suction of this vacuum isn’t going to be as good as some of the high-end vacuums you’ll find. Still, for under $150 it’s hard to find a lightweight, multi-surface vacuum that will compete. The HEPA filters require more care but are necessary if anyone in your home has allergies, so it’s hard to complain about that.

You might be looking to compare the Deik 2-in-1 up against the Shark Navigator we mentioned previously. You’ll pay a little more for Deik, but you get a stronger motor (which means stronger suction), allowing you to do more work on thicker carpets. The Deik is also lighter weight, and has a shorter battery charge time.

Overall, the cordless ​Deik 2 in 1 Cordless Vacuum Cleaner is a step above both previous vacuums regarding suction and versatility. The thickest rugs will take a little extra effort, but it’s a dream on hardwood floors.

Bissell Hard Floor Expert Vacuum

The ​Bissell Hard Floor Expert Vacuum is the only canister vacuum that made our list. It is a fantastic selection if you’re looking for the best vacuum for hard floors. The wheels on the back of the canister vacuum move gently across hardwood floors, so there’s no worry about leaving scratches behind.

Although this vacuum is bigger and heavier than the other vacuums we reviewed, it still doesn’t take up much space in the closet. At 9 pounds, it’s not light enough to hang on the wall, but most of the weight is in the canister. Since the Hard Floor Expert canister sits on the floor, it doesn’t take too much effort to take it around the room.

The main reason this vacuum made our list is it’s incredible suction power. The Hard Floor Expert comes with a powerful 9.2 amp motor. To put that in perspective, that is almost five times more powerful than the Bissell 3-in-1 (2 amp motor). This is the most powerful hardwood floor vacuum we reviewed.

Clearing the dustbin is much easier than some canister vacuums, and is on par with the rest of the vacuums we looked at. The capacity is much bigger than the Deik, so you can likely vacuum your entire house before you need to empty it.

Like most of the cheaper options on this list, the Bissell Hard Floor Expert isn’t the best option for carpets, though it’s better than any of the previous three listed. It works well on area rugs, but if you bring it to a thicker carpet, you may be disappointed. Still, we’re looking for the best vacuum for wooden floors, not the best vacuum for carpets.

The cord length isn’t as long as some would like, but is the same as the other Bissell vacuum we reviewed at 15 feet. This should be long enough to cover a room without switching outlets.

Overall, theBissell Hard Floor Expert Vacuum is the most powerful vacuum for hardwood floors that we reviewed, and you won’t be disappointed in it’s ability to clean your floors. We don’t find the canister style to be quite as convenient as some of the cordless stick vacuum options, but nothing can replace this vacuum’s suction power.

Eufy RoboVac 11 Robotic Vacuum​

If you’re looking for the best vacuum cleaner for wood floors that maximizes convenience, the ​Eufy RoboVac 11 Vacuum has you covered. This was the only autonomous vacuum we included in our hardwood floor vacuum review. It’s surprisingly powerful for such a small machine, and works for you by automating the cleaning process

The charge lasts for about an hour and a half before it needs to return to the charging station, but you don’t have to worry about this. Since the vacuum is fully autonomous, it will return to its charging station when it’s finished the job.

Previous versions of the autonomous vacuum just didn’t work. They were fun to watch, but would often fall off ledges, get stuck on obstacles, and were louder than regular vacuums. Dramatic improvements in battery technology have allowed these vacuums to provide comparable suction and longer run time, making them a viable option for the everyday consumer.  

Not only are these automated vacuums quiet, but they can get rid of daily messes with hardly any effort on your part. In our testing, we found the Eufy to do a great job picking up 80% of the dirt, dust, and debris that a house picks up, leaving you with a lot less vacuuming.

The Eufy RoboVac can handle area rugs and low pile carpet quite nicely. However, it will get stuck in thicker carpet, and isn’t able to vacuum them.

It’s worth mentioning that the Eufy RoboVac is one of the cheapest robotic vacuum cleaners on the market. Many of the higher-priced options do have increased performance. However, we’ve tested them, and their slight increase in performance does not justify their dramatically higher prices ($400-$600).

If you have a pet that’s constantly shedding, the ​Eufy RoboVac 11 Vacuum will stay on top of it. Overall, purchasing a Eufy will allow you stay on top of keeping your hardwood floors, without any effort on your behalf.

Dyson Ball Multi-Floor 2 Vacuum

Dyson is one of the first brands that comes to most people’s mind when they think of vacuum cleaners. They dominate the high-end vacuum market, and their Dyson Ball Multi Floor vacuum shows why. They are constantly on the cutting-edge of design, and this vacuum is no different.

If you have multiple surfaces in your home, this product is one of the best you’ll find. Out of our list of best hardwood floor vacuum cleaners, this is the only one that was able to grab dust and dirt from thicker carpets. The vacuum is at its best when it’s on hardwood, but it’s still an all-in-one that you can use in your whole house.

The reach of the Multi-Floor is unmatched. At 40 feet, the cord is almost triple the length of the closest vacuum we reviewed. The ball technology allows you to move throughout our house easily, and multiple attachments mean you can get under furniture with only a few clicks.

At 15.6 pounds, the Dyson Multi-Floor is a bit on the heavier side. The adjustments make up for it, though. The stair attachments allow you to bring the vacuum with you relatively easily, and the extended reach provides you with more slack than any other vacuum we reviewed.

If you can afford the price point of just under $250, the Dyson Multi-Floor is the best vacuum cleaner we reviewed when it comes to tackling multiple surfaces. The automatic adjustment is fantastic, and it allows this vacuum to remove more dust from carpets than any other vacuum on this list.

​Final Votes

All six of these options will fit your needs as a hardwood floor vacuum, but we still wanted to give you a brief overview of the best-rated vacuum for hardwood floors in each of these categories:

Best Cordless Vacuum for Hardwood Floors:
​Deik 2-in-1 Cordless Upright Vacuum Cleaner

Best Discount Vacuum for Hardwood Floors:
​Bissell 3-in-1 Lightweight Stick

Best Lightweight Vacuum for Hardwood Floors:
​Deik 2-in-1 Cordless Upright Vacuum Cleaner

Best Multi-Surface Vacuum (Focus on Hardwood):
Dyson Ball Multi-Floor 2

​Conclusion

There are multiple selections when looking for the best hardwood floor vacuum. It all depends on your budget and your home as to which one is best. If you have carpeted rooms in your home, it might be better to spend some extra money. If not, you can spend a little less and buy a hardwood-only vacuum.

One of these options is sure to fit your budget and specifications. Everything depends on your specific needs, but with this guide, you’ll have everything you need to find the best vacuum cleaner for wooden floors in your home.

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