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The 3 Vacuums I Use Every Day and Absolutely Swear By

If you have hard flooring, carpet or flat surfaces in your home, which just about covers every possibility—there are three specific vacuum cleaners that deserve your attention: an upright, a cordless stick vac and a cordless handheld. These are the worker bees that I own, love, and do not want to live without.

Once you familiarize yourself with these vacuums and their specific uses, you’ll know why each one gets my designation of for Best Inexpensive™ in its specific category. Because life is uncertain and things can change with a minute’s notice, today I am updating and republishing this post with new and exciting information.

1. Shark Professional Navigator Lift-Away

 

shark navigator pro lift away vacuum

In the decade since I met and fell in love with my first Shark upright vacuum, I’ve purchased, tested, given as gifts, and worked nearly to death (it’s really hard to wear out a Shark) many Shark vacuums because the company comes out with a new model or two about every week, or so it seems. I can say with confidence, there is no better basic corded, upright vacuum cleaner on earth.

Now throw in the lift-away feature on some models (allows user to pop off the lightweight canister to easily carry and vacuum stairs), an extended wand for high reaches, high-capacity dirt cup, anti-allergen HEPA filter and 30-foot electrical cord and you’ve got yourself a Shark Navigator Lift-Away Professional Vacuum—a fantastic piece of housecleaning equipment.

But here’s the most important feature—the price. Wow! I’d put my Shark up against any brand, anytime, anywhere and I’m talking about even those pricey European brands that come in at $1,500 and more.

When you walk into a store like Walmart, Bed Bath and Beyond or Costco looking for my specific Shark vacuum, prepare to be confused. There are so many models—and some that are unique to that particular retailer.

Each Shark model has its own small differences—it could be the color, filter style, cord length, weight, etc. However, I can help you cut through all that noise: as long as it includes the words Shark, Navigator, and Liftaway you can be super confident you’re getting my favorite. Other descriptive words like Professional and Deluxe are lovely, but not critical in my opinion. Currently, I own and use three Shark upright vacuums, and each one is slightly different depending on when and where I got it. All three are lift-away models because I have lots of stairs in my home.

NOTE: As I write, Amazon is offering is a fabulous deal on this Shark Navigator Lift-Away Deluxe NV360. As big and deluxe as it looks, it weighs in only 12.5 lbs! The lift-away canister used alone is just 7.5 lbs. Awesome. This Shark model comes with onboard upholstery and crevice tools. And it’s blue. I’m having a little talk with myself right now and dealing with that voice in my head that insists I really do need another Shark—that’s how amazing this deal is.

 


 So Disgusting I’m Embarrassed To Tell

…within minutes that canister filled to the top. I was so shocked, disgusted hardly describes the feeling. I took the canister out to the trash to dump it out hoping the neighbors wouldn’t be peering over the fence to see what was coming out of my home… read more


 

2. Hoover Linx Cordless Stick Vac

 

I’ll be honest. There are times I just don’t want to open the closet, pull out Sharkie, unwind the cord, plug it into an outlet to handle a small yet annoying situation like crumbs on my dark wood floors or dirt tracked in from the garden. I’m pretty sure those minor situations would just sit there until later—until some more convenient time. That’s how things used to be before I met Hoover Linx.

Please meet the newest member of my cordless stick vac family, Hoover Linx Cordless Stick Vacuum.

 

A collage of pictures showing the beauty and ease of Hoover Linx Cordless Stick Vacuum

 

I’ve been using Linx every day for months now—and yes, I purchased it myself as I have all of the vacuums I test. I did not receive review models from manufacturers. While we may receiving a small commission when you purchase these vacuums, you can be assured that my opinions are my own—I cannot be bought.

My new Linx (Amazon and Walmart) is remarkable in that it has every feature I could hope for. Linx stands alone, has an On/Off switch; it is lightweight, quiet, easily emptied and washed. This stick vac comes with a powerful Li-ion removable and rechargeable battery, has a “fuel” gauge, long runtime and swivel head. And if that’s not enough, it has two added features I could have only dreamed of:

Replaceable battery

Once the battery wears out and dies (which hasn’t happened for me but I’m sure one day it will), other competitive stick vacs like Eufy and Deik also die. You have no choice but to dispose of it as hazardous household waste, as the entire stick vac becomes completely useless. The batteries are not replaceable in those stick vacs. But Linx is different!

The Linx battery is replaceable! It is located at the front and pops out easily—no tools required. You can even buy Linx plus an extra battery from the get-go, or purchase a replacement battery later. Isn’t that awesome?

Brush Roll or Hard Floor Settings

This was a big surprise for me and boy, was I excited. Linx has two settings: Suction Only for hard floor surfaces and Suction + Brush Roll for low pile carpet. I love this feature! Switching back and forth is a cinch, too. Just a flick of a button.

Linx weighs in at 7.5 lbs, which is super lightweight as stick vacs go. Hoover Linx is available both at Amazon and Walmart.

NOTE: For my readers who own Eufy or Deik, let me assure you that both are still great stick vacs! Use it, love it, and keep it clean! Do not toss and replace with a Linx until the day comes that your stick vac has a total fail (the first sign is that the battery will no longer hold a charge). When you replace it, I suggest you run to a Hoover Linx. 

 


When Your Cordless Stick Vac Needs a Bath—Photo Tutorial

Rarely do I gush. But gush I do over my stick vac. Can’t help it. Hoover Linx is so handy, easy-to-use and serves us so well in our home, office, garage and alas, my husband’s woodworking shop. And it gets dirty. Really dirty … read more


 

3. Black+Decker Cordless Hand Vac

Black and Decker Dustbuster Cordless Hand Vac

This little sweetheart of a handheld vacuum is the best I have ever owned. That says a lot once you understand that prior to this gem, I had a Dyson handheld, an early Dustbuster, a Bissell model and a couple of other off-brand numbers. The problems were many, but the biggest one? Runtime. What’s the point of a cordless hand vac that only “vacs” for a few minutes? So annoying! And that Dyson Root weighed a ton. My arm would give out just about the time it would run out of power. Argh!

But then this Black + Decker Cordless Hand Vac with 16-volt Lithium battery came into my life. It’s the battery! Lithium is just the best thing that ever happened to the world of batteries for so many reasons, but mostly that it holds a charge until used. That gives this cordless vac a fabulously long runtime.

This Black + Decker Cordless Hand Vac is lightweight too, And cleaning? So easy. It comes apart easily, with the filter and dust cup being completely washable! I do it right in my utility sink, allow it to dry for a few hours, and we’re back in business. It helps that I have three of these babies always at the ready in different parts of the house.

Here’s the thing: Housecleaning tools like vacuums need to be handy and ready to go. If I have to go up a flight of stairs to find a vac to clean up that little sprinkling of coffee grounds I just accidentally dumped into a drawer, will I? Or will I just close the drawer and tell myself that I’ll do it later when I’m up there anyway. I think you know the answer to that.

When I’m just feet from a vacuum because it’s in a handy place, all charged up and ready to go—that just makes me happy. It makes my drawers, floors and bare feet happy, too!

 

MORE: How to Clean a Shark Vacuum and Its Filters


Everyday Cheapskate participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon affiliated sites.

There are affiliate links in this post. If you click through and make a purchase, we may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thanks! Read more here

 

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9 replies
  1. Margaret
    Margaret says:

    Hi Mary, I appreciate each and every piece of information you share, but as far as upright vacuums go, I certainly wish I could use the Shark that you have such amazing success using. But as an asthmatic with a massive allergy to dust, bagless vacuums are not recommended. If you were ever to be able to recommend a good bagged vacuum, I would appreciate that, as well. Thank you again for your immensely helpful books and website and articles!! ~Margaret

    Reply
  2. Gayle Shoemaker
    Gayle Shoemaker says:

    I bought the Lynx cordless vacuum when you first recommended it as my Eufy was on its last legs. Mine does NOT have a headlight, which I really miss! Is this a new feature? Or, am I missing something?

    Reply
    • Mary Hunt
      Mary Hunt says:

      Gayle … My apologies! You are right, and I have amended the post accordingly. No headlights on the Hoover Linx. I can’t believe I hadn’t noticed that. I guess I’m so in love with the other features (hard floor and carpet option, removable battery), those things captured my attention. In fact, as I read your comment I jumped up to check because I would’ve bet a bunch that it does have headlights!

      Reply
  3. Judi S
    Judi S says:

    And make sure the brush head is removable. While I got the Shark Lift Away at Walmart, the brush head was not removable. When I got some yarn caught in there, it was a pain to remove. I had to cut it and removed it almost bit by bit. Removable brush head is way easier – just unwind!

    Reply
  4. Gina Stevens
    Gina Stevens says:

    The movers lost the attachments to my Shark, so I’m in the market for a new one. My son’s Shark came with a long thin attachment that cleans under appliances! I’m obsessed and Shark meets my OCD requirements! Thanks, for your continued advice, Mary!

    Reply
  5. Patricia Kensel Madona
    Patricia Kensel Madona says:

    Mary, I would love to see a review on a good inexpensive canister vacuum. (I am mortified at the loss of the Euphy. I have perchased three. One as a much appreciated gift. Why would they cancel such an efficient little machine that has been so heavily promoted? I originally had a Hoover Linux but after the euphy I never looked back). My small Florida home needs a canister. I hoped the Shark pro would work as it converts but has proved too bulky and heavy for the job.

    Reply
  6. Ellen C
    Ellen C says:

    Completely agree on these choices. You didn’t mention the Eufy robot cleaner that you have written about in the past. I have all of these and love them. So many thanks to you!

    Reply
  7. Laurie Tralle
    Laurie Tralle says:

    Hey Mary – I have some Eufy/Deik advice to share! My Eufy stopped charging after 3 months (purchased in September 2018). After some troubleshooting suggestions, the company promptly emailed me a shipping label to print. However, I hadn’t kept the box and I didn’t have one on hand that would work. So my advice is to HANG ON TO THE ORIGINAL BOX. I now have my replacement (they didn’t have one to send when I returned mine and I was traveling when they did send the replacement) and I’m hanging on to the box and the inside packaging this time! I really like the vacuum otherwise and my daughter got one for her new home as well. I just hope hers lasts better than mine.

    Reply
  8. Carol
    Carol says:

    My Eufy just died. I bought it after your suggestion and I was very happy with it. I checked the Deik Cordless Stick Vacuum that you recommended, but it is not available. Do you have any other recommendations?

    Thank you!

    Carol

    Reply

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