Canister vacuums are the middle-ground between stick and upright vacuums. They are lightweight (similar to sticks) but have a better capacity to tackle difficult messes similar to or better than upright vacuums. However, canister vacuums are not created equal, and picking the best canister vacuum is demanding. One wrong move and you will have paid a fortune for the wrong appliance.
That’s why I wrote this guide. Here I have compiled a list of the 15 best vacuums in the market. There is a little bit of everything for everyone; for people on a budget, and even those looking to splurge. I have also included a buying guide of what to look for when looking for the best canister vacuum.
Advantages of Canister Vacuums
While upright vacuums have been the most popular vacuums, canister vacuums are slowly gaining popularity. And rightfully so given what they offer. Here are some few advantages of canister vacuums.
- Power – There is no limitation of the motor size, and thus canister vacuums tend to be more robust than upright units. The suction is often better as is the cleaning performance.
- Ease of use – Unlike upright vacuums, the weight of canister vacuums is in the canister. Therefore, you use minimum energy in the back and forth vacuuming. Moreover, most of these units have large wheels or caster wheels. The former helps when moving on carpets while caster wheels offer 360-degree movements.
- Silent – Canister vacuums have more room for insulation and thus are quieter compared to upright and stick vacuums. They are ideal for pets as they will not frighten your pets given their keen sense of hearing.
- Better indoor air quality – Again, this boils down to the fact that canister vacuums have more room and stronger vacuums. With more room, they can accommodate more filters, and the stronger motor can drive air through larger filters. The body is also sealed, reducing places where dust can leak out.
- Less maintenance – Finally, canister vacuums are easier to maintain. Similar to backpack vacuums, they have fewer moving parts and thus have lower repair costs.
But why aren’t these as popular as upright? Well, we are creatures of habit, so canister vacuums tend to be cumbersome to a populace that is used to uprights.
Canister Vacuums Near You
Finding a great canister vacuum shop near you is as important as getting the best canister vacuum. The online space is a great place to find the best outlets for canister vacuums. A quick “canister vacuum shop near me” search will give you a result of the best retail shops in your location. You can also change the search terms for diversity. Here are some search terms you can look at:
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- Canister vacuum shops in my area
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However, I have made your work easier and provided a map with all the shops in your location.
Canister Vacuums Comparison Chart
Comparing the appliances once we get to the review will be difficult. Here is a quick comparison guide to see how each performs against the other.
|Best Canister Vacuums||Bagged/ Bagless||Cord length in ft.||Weight in pounds||Dimensions in inches||Reach in ft.||Warranty|
|Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Canister Vacuum - Best Overall||Bagless||21t||17.6||12.1 X15.7 X 13.6||35||2|
|Miele Marin Complete C3 Canister Vacuum - Best Splurge||Bagged||24||12||19.5 X 8.9 X 11.2||36||7|
|Eureka Mighty Mite 3670G Canister Vacuum - Best Budget||Bagged||20||8.6||17.5 X 11.3 X 9||35ft||1|
|Miele Complete C2 Hard Floor Canister Vacuum - Best for Hard Floors||Bagged||21||13.5||19 X 10 X 8.5||33||7|
|Miele Classic C1 Cat and Dog Canister Vacuum - Best for Pets||Bagged||18||9.11||18.2 X 8.7 X 11||30||7|
|Oreck Commercial BB900DGR XL Pro 5 Canister Vacuums - Best Lightweight||Bagged||30||5||8 X 6 X 15||35||1|
|EyeVac Pro Touchless Stationary Canister Vacuum - Best for Commercial Use||Bagless||-||15.41||13 X 7.5 X 20.5||-|
|Kenmore 81614 600 Series Canister Vacuum - Most powerful||Bagged||28||22||27.9 X 16.2 X 13.8||38.5||1|
|Bissell 1547 Hard Floor Expert Canister Vacuum - Great for Edge Cleaning||Bagless||18||9.3||19.2 X 15 X 12.9||23.8||2|
|Ovente ST2000 Featherlite Canister Vacuum||Bagless||15.7||12.9||11.5 X 15.5 X 10||23.2||1|
|Electrolux UltraFlex EL4335A Canister Vacuum - Best for Plush Carpets||Bagless||21||11.6||13 X 11.5 X 20||33||5|
|Hoover Quiet Performance SH30050 Canister Vacuum - Quietest||Bagless||22||14||13.6 X 12.8 X 22.7||3|
|Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Multi-Floor Canister Vacuum - Best For Automatic Transitioning Between Surfaces||Bagless||21||17.54||12 X 15.7 X 13.7||35||2|
|Miele Blizzard CX1 Bagless Canister Vacuum - Most Hygienic||Bagless||25||14.4||12 X 20 X 12||33||7|
|Sanitaire SD3681D Canister Vacuum - Best For Tight Spots||Bagged||20||10||19.5 X 18 X 11.5||27||2|
What is The Best Canister Vacuum Cleaner?
Here is an in-depth review of the best canister vacuums. There is a little bit of everything for everyone so, at the end, you should have identified the perfect unit for you.
1. Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Canister Vacuum Cleaner
Topping this list of the best canister vacuums is the Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Animal. Features that stood out for me include the fact that it is bagless, saving you the cost of consumables, and the technology that separates microscopic dirt that could clog the system. The latter eliminates the need for filters.
The appliance also has a self-righting tech when toppled. As for cleaning performance, you will appreciate the carbon fiber turbine tool. The filaments pick up the finest dirt. Moreover, the cleaner hear is self-adjusting for different surfaces. As for pet hair, the Cinetic includes a tangle-free pet hair tool that I believe you will love.
Being a bagless unit, it relies on a dustbin, which I found has enough capacity for a full house cleanup, and allows for mess-free disposal. The large ball allows for smooth steering, and the wand articulates 360-degrees improving the ease of use.
- The rollerball increases the ease of use
- It has strong suction
- It picks up pet hair with ease
- Easy to maintain as there are no consumables
- The cord is short
- It is loud
- It is expensive
If you are curious about the self-righting tech, I welcome you to watch this video to get a feel and know how handy it is.
2. Miele Marin Complete C3 Canister Vacuum Cleaner
Were it not for the fact that this is a pricey unit; the Miele Marin Complete C3 would be my best canister vacuum. It is light at 12-pounds and has 360-degree caster wheels that allow you to pull in any direction. It is powerful with a 1,200W motor and will make quick work of any dirt. However, despite the power, it is a rather quiet unit.
With a total reach of 36-ft, there are few areas you cannot clean. It is well-accessorized, but what caught my eye were the two cleaner heads. The standard motorized brush is excellent for carpets, while the hard floor parquet twister is for hard floors. The former has LED lights to illuminate dark areas, while the latter is perfect thanks to the advanced swiveling.
Finally, it has a telescopic wand, and you can customize the length.
- It has a full bag indicator
- You can switch off the brush roll to vacuum hard floors
- It is completely sealed and has a HEPA filter increasing indoor air quality
- It has a rotary dial to adjust the suction
- It has a retractable cord
- • It is pricey
Here is how the Miele Marin C3 performs on carpets and hardwoods. See it in action and know if it is worth investing in.
3. Eureka Mighty Mite 3670G Canister Vacuum Cleaner
(Best Budget Pick)
If you are on the hunt for the best canister vacuum but are on a budget pick, I present to you the Eureka 3670G. It is a bagged unit and costs a fraction of the cost of our previous picks. But how does it compare?
Yes, it is a low-cost device, but there is nothing cheap about the Eureka 3670G. It has a powerful suction thanks to the 10amp motor; the suction is adjustable thanks to the slip ring on the hose.
Included accessories are the crevice tool and the combo tool which you can store onboard the device.
As for the cleaner head, you can use it on hard floors as well as carpets. It has some soft fabric on the bottom to protect your hard floors, but you can raise the bristles for extra protection. Finally, the cleaner head is telescopic, and you can customize the height.
- The most significant advantage of Eureka is that it is affordable
- It is powerful
- It has onboard storage for the accessories
- It has a long reach
- It does not have a HEPA filter
- It snowplows large debris on hard floors and plush carpets
4. Miele Complete C2 Hard Floor Canister Vacuum Cleaner
(Best for Hard Floors)
Miele is one of the best canister vacuum manufacturers, and they have some affordable machines in the C2 series. However, they did not compromise power. The Miele C2 hard floor is powered by a 9.5-amp motor and thus has enough power to pick dirt. Moreover, it has a 33-ft cleaning radius, which is enough for most tasks.
As for the cleaning heads, the Miele Complete C2 Hard Floor has a combination tool for hard floors and low carpets, and a parquet twister for hard floors. It also includes a dusting brush, and an upholstery tool, for above-floor cleaning. As for the dirt bag, it can hold 1.19-gallons of debris and is diaper thick, ensuring no dirt escape. The bags have a spring seal, and the unit cannot close until you insert a bag. Here are some more pros.
- It is a fully sealed system
- The cord is retractable for easy storage
- You can clip the cleaner head to the side of the device
- It has a rotary dial to adjust the suction
- It is silent
- It is powerful
- It does not have a HEPA filter though you can buy that separately
I loved this review thanks to the information it offers. Watch this device to learn more about the unit and why I consider it the best canister vacuum.
5. Miele Classic C1 Cat and Dog Canister Vacuum Cleaner
(Best for Pets)
My pick for the best canister vacuum for pet hair is the Miele C1 Cat and Dog. Miele is renowned for its focus on the little details, increasing the overall performance of the unit. The C1 Cat and Dog is lightweight, and ideal for medium to high-pile carpets as well as hard floors. The Electro Plus floorhead has a 5-level height adjustment and thus can handle plush and medium carpets.
As for the reach, you have a 30-ft cleaning radius, which is enough for most tasks. As for cleaning after pets, it has a filter which will trap 99.9% of allergens as well as store eliminate nasty odors.
We know pet hair has a foul odor. Moreover, the appliance has a handheld mini-turbo brush that you can use to get rid of pet hair on upholstery.
- The hose is customizable to fit your height
- The cord is retractable
- The tools store onboard the device
- It has edge to edge cleaning
- The bags have 9-levels of electrostatic material, ensuring no dust escapes
- The cord is short
- It is pricey
6. Oreck Commercial BB900DGR XL Pro 5 Canister Vacuum
The Oreck Pro 5 canister is renowned for its weight. It weighs less than half of most units here, and as such, I have to be on this list of best canister vacuums. At 5-pounds, you can carry the Pro 5 anywhere without fatigue. It is not a wheeled device but a strapped unit, and thus you will have to carry it on your shoulders, but that should not worry you.
As for the cord, you have a 30-ft cord and a 4-ft hose increasing the cleaning radius. As a bagged unit, it uses pkbb12dw bags which are triple-layered and are hypoallergenic. They reduce the allergens in the air.
As for the tools, it has a dusting brush, a crevice tool, an upholstery tool, and a floor tool ensuring you can clean all surfaces. Finally, it is affordable and has clips to hold the hose.
- It is perfect for overhead cleaning
- It has a long power cord
- It has strong suction
- It is extremely lightweight
- Though tools can be stored on board, they are easily knocked off during cleaning
- It cannot clean deep pile carpets
The Oreck Pro 5 sounds too good to be true. Well, here is a complete unboxing and review. Be sure to tell me what you think of the device in the comments below.
7. EyeVac Pro Touchless Stationary Canister Vacuum
(Best for commercial use)
Stationary vacuums are new, but they are perfect for small business. I consider this the best canister vacuum for pet groomers, and hair salons. You can put the device under a desk or in the corner of the office, and seeing as it is a stationary unit, weight should not be a concern.
It is a touchless vacuum and works with infrared sensors. The sensors detect the debris, and turn on the vacuum and will shut it off once the dirt has been collected. And speaking of picking trash, you will appreciate the strong motor as it can pick any debris. You have to sweep the trash to the mouth of the appliance, but it is a small cost given the quality of this device.
As for filtration, it has dual filtration, ensuring the air in your house is ever clean.
- It is robust and picks even large debris
- As a stationary unit, you can tuck it under a desk or in a corner and forget about it. You don’t have to worry about storage, or how you are going to move it around
- • You have to sweep dirt to the mouth of the vacuum
I don’t think you will get a complete feel of the EyeVac until you see it in action. Here is a short review for a better understanding.
8. Kenmore 81614 600 Series Canister Vacuum Cleaner
Following on this list of the best canister vacuums is this gem from Kenmore. I loved it thanks to the power, and I think you will like it too. It has a 2-motor system that increases the power of the unit, making cleaning a walk in the park.
Other than the power, it has a telescoping wand that you can customize it to your height. Moreover, the floor head has a pop-n-go design such that you attach the head when you need it, and detach it when you want to use the hose.
As for attachments, the Kenmore 81614 has a dusting brush, a crevice tool, and a pet PowerMate. The pet tool makes it easy to get rid of dander and pet hair off upholstery and other surfaces. Other terrific features include the no-lose suction design and the variable suction design.
- It has triple-HEPA filter
- It is powerful
- With the bagged system, disposing of debris will be a walk in the park
- It never loses suction
- The hose exits the canister vertically, and it will be problematic to pull
9. Bissell 1547 Hard Floor Expert Canister Vacuum
(Great For Edge Cleaning)
Bissell is not famous for its canister vacuums, but it does have one that can compete with the best canister vacuums; the Bissell 1547. It is reasonably priced, but how does it fare against the other appliances here.
First, it has two cleaning heads; the turbine foot attachment with soft bristles which is friendly on hard floors but tough on dirt, and the multi-surface tool which works on area rugs as well as hard floors. The latter has soft felt surfaces to protect your hard floors, but you can also lock the bristles for extra protection.
As for the attachments, it is a rather basic package as it only includes a dusting brush and a rather short crevice tool. The latter though should be enough to get into tight spots. Finally, it is a powerful unit powered by a 9.2 amp motor.
- As a bagless unit, it is cheaper to maintain as there are no consumables
- It is excellent on hard floors and even polishes
- It is quiet
- It has a cord retraction functionality
- It struggles when cleaning medium and deep-pile rugs
- It is not as powerful as other devices here
I love the following review of the Bissell 1547 as it shows performance on different floor types and when cleaning different debris. You will have made up your mind about this appliance after watching this.
10. Ovente ST2000 Featherlite Canister Vacuum
Following on this list of the best canister vacuums is the Ovente ST2000. The ST2000 is a rather simple device, but it has all the necessary features.
First, it has HEPA filtration, ensuring the air in your home is ever clean. The HEPA filter is washable although you might want to replace it after some few washes. Next, it uses cyclonic tech to separate the dirt to keep the vacuum from becoming clogged. As for the bin, this is a bagless unit and has a clear bin, so you know when to empty.
Another terrific feature of the Ovente ST2000 has to be the cleaning head. It swivels 360-degrees allowing you to get into any tight spot. It is also mighty and will pick up most dirt. As for convenience features, it has a retractable cord that stores in the device, and the wand is telescopic meaning you can customize it to your height.
- The air pressure control is on the handle for ease of use
- It includes a sofa brush for cleaning upholstery
- It is inexpensive
- • Disposing of the dirt is a dirty job as you have to run your fingers on the inside
11. Electrolux UltraFlex EL4335A Canister Vacuum
(Best for plush carpets)
The Electrolux EL4335A is best for plush carpets. Plush carpets are challenging to clean as they have more material to be sucked in. Thus moving the cleaner head becomes difficult. The Electrolux has adjustable suction to reduce the power struggle, and it also allows you to clean delicate surfaces. The flexible suction also enables you to clean drapes and fabric.
Other than adjustable suction, you can adjust the cleaner head to three-different positions to accommodate different carpets. Finally, the head is motorized and will get too deeply embedded dirt, and the unit has large wheels for moving on plush carpets.
Another feature that landed this device on this best canister vacuum list is the self-cleaning head. Now you can clean hair without worrying about it collecting on the brushroll. It also has a HEPA filter improving the indoor air quality.
- The unit is completely sealed, and no pollutants will escape back into the air
- It has an automatic cord rewind
- Though it is best for plush carpets, it excels on other surfaces too
- It has a small dirt bin
- The onboard tools often fall off
Being an Australian company, Electrolux products are not easily available in the USA. Therefore, most people are not familiar with these devices but this review should help you get a better understanding.
12. Hoover Quiet Performance SH30050 Canister Vacuum
The next best canister vacuum is the Hoover SH30050. It is a somewhat futuristic-looking unit and one that is aesthetically pleasing. Let’s start with the attachments. Included in the package are a crevice tool, a hard floor tool, a dusting brush, and the standard cleaner head.
The cleaner head is motorized and eliminates deeply embedded dirt with ease. It is perfect for use on carpets. However, you can turn the brushroll off to clean hard floors if you don’t want to change floor heads.
The hard floor tool is exclusively for hard floors, and it does a remarkable job. However, I think it is unnecessary as the standard cleaner head suffices. As for the cord, it has a 22-ft cable, but the reach is more extended thanks to the hose and wand. As for weight, it is 14-pounds, but this is no concern as you will be pulling it behind you.
- It is quiet, and you can vacuum at night without waking the kids
- The power cord is retractable
- It is easy to assemble
- You can adjust the suction to 5 different speeds
- You cannot adjust the height of the beater bar
- Tools easily fall of the vacuum
13. Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Multi-Floor Canister Vacuum
(Best For Automatic Transitioning Between Surfaces)
The Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Multi-Floor is a powerful, versatile, and reliable device. First, it is easy to maintain, as it does not have filters. However, the Cinetic tech ensures it traps all allergens and pollutants.
The Cinetic big ball sits on a ball and thus is easy to maneuver around obstacles. The cleaner head also swivels for ease of use. Another feature that piqued my interest was the active musclehead floor tool. The head adjusts to different surfaces, ensuring that no suction is lost. You can move from carpets to hard floors automatically and without damaging your hard floors.
The quick-release design allows you to attach tools and detach effortlessly. The click design ensures all accessories click-fit, and there is no possibility of them falling off. Finally, the articulated handle rotates in 3-directions allowing for 360-degree movement.
- It has the self-righting tech for when it topples over
- It is lighter on the hand as most of the weight is on the ball
- It is mighty with 250AW suction
- It is heavy
- The plastic build is a bit flimsy for such a pricey unit
Dyson sure has some amazing products. Here is the Dyson Cinetic Multu-Floor reviewed.
14. Miele Blizzard CX1 Bagless Canister Vacuum Cleaner
The next best canister vacuum is the Miele CX1. This is a bagless unit but has all the fancy features available on other Miele vacuums. One shortcoming of bagless vacuums is that the fine dust flies back into the house when emptying. This is not the case with the Miele CX1 as it stores fine dirt in a separate compartment from the heavier debris.
When emptying the more massive debris, it will be ABC easy as that is less likely to fly around. As for the fine dust, you will empty the compartment every six months. However, you first have to fill the chamber with water to rinse the filter and prevent the fine dust from flying around when emptying.
It is cheap to maintain as there are no filters or bags to replace.
As for the performance, it has a patented 180-degree swivel head. The head has natural bristles to protect your hard floors and can clean medium pile carpets too.
- It is quiet
- It has an easy to empty canister
- It is easy to store and pull
- The exhaust vent may kick-up dust
- It is not ideal for deep pile carpets
15. Sanitaire S3681D Canister Vacuum Cleaner
(Best for Tight Ppots)
Finally, I choose the Sanitaire SD3681D to end this best canister vacuum list. It is an affordable unit but one that can go pound for pound with the rest of the devices thanks to the 1400W motor. It has a 20-ft cord, but a 7-ft hose and a wand increase the total reach.
It has a wide range of tools that can be attached to the wand and thus is perfect for areas with tight spots and crevices that cannot be cleaned with standard vacuums. It has an allergen filtration system that will trap the finest dirt and an impressive 2.6-quart bin.
As for the noise, it has a 68db decibel level, and you can work or sleep as someone else cleans. As for the cleaner head, you can use it on hard floors or carpets. It has a lever on top that allows you to change the settings.
- It is robust, thanks to the 12amp motor
- It has a large bin, and the bags are easy to change
- It is quiet
- It gets hotter with continued use
- It is expensive as you have to order bags
Canister Vacuum Buying Guide
Together with the list I compiled above, the guidelines below will help you get one of the best canister vacuums.
Bagged or Bagless
When looking for a canister vacuum, you will have to choose between a bagged unit and a bagless vacuum. Bagged canister vacuums happen to have better filtration and trouble-free disposal. However, they are expensive to maintain owing to the cost of consumables.
Bagless vacuums, on the other hand, are cheaper to maintain, but their filtration is not as proper as that of bagged appliances. Moreover, disposing the dirt can be a messy job.
You also have to stop and consider the filtration of the device. You don’t want dust collecting on your upholstery and other surfaces after vacuuming. Bagged vacuums have better filtration though there are some bagless units which are given them a run for their money; case in point the Miele Blizzard CX1.
Ensure the device has a HEPA filter as these have the best filtration, and that it is completely sealed minimizing the areas where dust can escape through.
Ease of Use
All vacuums should be easy to use, and the best canister vacuums are not exempted from this. First, they should be light between 10 and 16 pounds. Ensure the device has large wheels or 360-degree caster wheels. The former is for moving on plush carpets while the latter allows the device to follow you in any direction.
A great canister vacuum should have a carrying handle. It is the only way you can carry it up or down a flight of stairs. The handle should be ergonomic for ease of use. As for the power cord, it should be close to or at least 20-ft long; the longer, the better.
The hose should be crash-proof, and the wand telescopic. As for the controls, they should be easy to reach, and finally, it should have a protective bumper to protect the unit and furniture.
Warranty and Durability
You cannot tell the shelf-life of a unit when purchasing it, and thus you should buy a device with a long warranty. A good warranty signifies that the manufacturer backs his product and is a reliability indicator.
You should also stop to consider the cleaning heads included and the accessories. Canister vacuums fall short compared to uprights and stick vacuums as they have fewer accessories. However, ensure the unit has all the necessary attachments.
Get a device with a dusting brush, a crevice tool, and a hard floor cleaning head. These are the bare minimum. However, a motorized roller head will come in handy when cleaning carpets, and a motorized sofa head is excellent for getting rid of pet hair off your upholstery.
By and large, accessories increase the versatility of the appliance.
We have finally come to the end of this review. Good job. I know it is a long review, but allow me to answer some few frequently asked questions. I welcome you to read through as I believe there is something you can learn.
If picking the best canister vacuum for you was demanding before, I am confident, or I hope I have simplified the task for you. There is something for everyone here. If there is something I missed, let me know in the comments below.