"It certainly does suck."
May 2, 2016 10:02 AM   Subscribe

What is the best cordless vacuum money can buy? I hate vacuuming so much and am totally overwhelmed by the market for cleaning machines. Which one will help me tolerate the most loathsome household chore since mopping?

* My floors are ~1/2 installed low-pile carpet, 1/4 "furniture finish" pine mostly covered with low-pile cotton area rugs, and 1/4 peel-and-stick vinyl tile.
* Residents are me (short-haired, moderately-shedding) and sometimes one dog (short-haired, barely-shedding).
* I am open to bagless, bagged, and robot vacuums as long as there is no cord and it isn't too heavy.
* I've read enough to be vaguely familiar with most of the big brand names, so links to specific products would be ideal.

Thank you!
posted by amnesia and magnets to Home & Garden (24 answers total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
My ex had a Roomba in his condo and it was amazing.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:15 AM on May 2, 2016


I also hate vacuuming (and have 2 shedding dogs) - it changed my life. I bought the model that Costco sells (about $300) and it has held up very well with twice weekly use for the past year. My friend had a model he bought maybe 5 years ago that has just died. If you hate vacuuming it's absolutely the right choice if you can afford it. The only caveat is that if you live in a multi story house there is more picking up and moving it about. I'm in a ranch house so it just ranges all over.

The only annoying thing about it is that when it gets stuck behind something I expect it to come when called but the technology has not reached that point yet.
posted by permiechickie at 10:17 AM on May 2, 2016

Link to the one I bought.
posted by permiechickie at 10:19 AM on May 2, 2016

I hate vacuuming, and I LOVE my Roomba 980.
posted by thatone at 10:20 AM on May 2, 2016

The Roomba really is pretty great. My only hesitation for you is the rugs on the bare floor; our Roomba has a habit of making folds in our rugs-over-bare-wood and getting stuck on said folds. This is the one we got about 6 months ago.
posted by supercres at 10:21 AM on May 2, 2016

I have a roomba that's been running 5 days a week for like 5 years. They key is cleaning after every run or two and regular maintenance, including taking it apart a couple of times a year and cleaning really well. I had to replace the battery after a few years, and I recently replaced the brush assembly. It's really easy to work on and they're constantly improving the engineering.

Warning, if your sometimes dog ever craps on the floor, maybe don't run it when it's there because cleaning crap out of a roomba and off all the places the roomba has been is a really horrific experience. Ask me how I know.

I also have a big vacuum for deep cleaning, but to be honest the roomba works really, really well, so I hardly ever use it.
posted by Huck500 at 10:23 AM on May 2, 2016 [1 favorite]

Roomba is not always great with lightweight rugs. I liked my Roomba a lot, but it would get confused by rug/floor transitions and, as supercres says, it can ruche up your rugs and get stuck on them. Also it needed to be emptied a lot, and I had to cut hair off the roller a lot (but that is true of all vacuums for me, I just shed a lot of long hairs). Eventually the battery died and I didn't love it enough to replace the battery, so I got rid of it.

We currently have a Hoover Linx which I like a lot and a Dyson cordless (not sure which model). I like the Linx because you take out the battery to charge it, so you don't have to store the actual vacuum near an outlet (and you can buy extra batteries if you want more cleaning time). But the Dyson is very good and easier to clean hair out of.
posted by mskyle at 10:25 AM on May 2, 2016

I have this Dyson and absolutely love it. Works great on both carpet and hard floors, and it sucks really hard (in a good way). I can vaccuum my entire one bedroom apartment in 10 minutes or less. (If the dog hasn't been feeling sheddy lately, more like 5 minutes.)

Also I really like pink, so having a hot pink vaccuum makes the chore a little more fun. I asked for this for Christmas a couple of years ago, and took my extreme excitement at it's presence under the tree as indication of my old age. But seriously, best vaccuum ever.
posted by schroedingersgirl at 10:28 AM on May 2, 2016 [3 favorites]

I also have the pink Dyson and Love it. It cleans up after me, hubby, two big dogs and two little cats. It's really easy to use it to clean up spills or tracked - in dirt right away before or becomes a bigger mess.
posted by Green Eyed Monster at 10:39 AM on May 2, 2016 [2 favorites]

We also have the same Dyson, though I think ours is purple. It's pretty rad.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 10:40 AM on May 2, 2016 [2 favorites]

We bought the Hoover Air Cordless 2-in-1 based on this Sweethome review, and we've been really pleased with it. It's also a hand-vac, which is a nice feature. Our condo is 780 sq feet, and the battery it comes with works for us, but you can also buy additional and/or faster charging batteries.
posted by amarynth at 10:47 AM on May 2, 2016

I have a Shark Rocket that I am especially fond of. It's super lightweight (8lbs), handles long-haired cat and long-haired human shedding, and is really easy to care for. It is corded, so that might be a consideration. Super long cord, tho!

My house is too cluttered/small for a Roomba, but I would be tempted to get one otherwise because I have a Mint (floor washer robot) that I use in the kitchen and bath and it's pretty good. Roombas are p. expensive, so it's definitely a commitment.
posted by clone boulevard at 10:55 AM on May 2, 2016

I have the little dyson. the thing is magical. cordless has changed my cleaning life
posted by ibakecake at 11:17 AM on May 2, 2016 [2 favorites]

I love my dear little Roomba! I have several large, extremely hairy dogs and I have to clean Roomba's brushes by hand after each use. This takes 5 mins tops. It's a small chore I'll happily do in exchange for the convenience of having Roomba work on his own. He does a great job getting everything really clean. I've had two Roombas in 10 years and replaced a battery twice so I guess I would say he's not the most durable of vacuums, but still, totally worth it in my opinion.
posted by WalkerWestridge at 11:38 AM on May 2, 2016

Response by poster: Thanks everyone for the suggestions so far!

The #1 thing that has stopped me from pulling the trigger on a Roomba thus far is the stories from folks whose hardwood floors were scratched up in the course of its robotic machinations.

Has that been anyone's experience, or does anyone know how I might be able to ensure that would never happen? I'm moving from the house I currently own and can damage/fix however I please into a rental apartment, so I'm newly paranoid about anything that might damage my future LL's property.
posted by amnesia and magnets at 12:29 PM on May 2, 2016

I love the cordless Dyson (linked to the cheapest model I see on Amazon).
It lives in its charging station on the wall, and it takes seconds to grab it, clean up a mess, and put it back. There are no bags, and the air filter is just a sponge you wash in the sink every few months. With the default motorized brush attachment it does carpet and hard floors with no adjustment.
posted by w0mbat at 12:34 PM on May 2, 2016 [1 favorite]

Another vote for the Dyson. Fair warning, the battery does run out after 15 minutes (on Turbo), which irritated me when I was first using it, but then I have a 2 story house and had spent a good deal of those 15 minutes working on the crevices in the stair runner. Now, I don't mind having a time limit on my vacuuming.
posted by sarajane at 1:29 PM on May 2, 2016 [1 favorite]

We have two cordless vacuums, a Roomba and a handheld purchased after reading Sweethome recommendations. Maybe I'm just lazier than the average cordless vacuum owner, but if I had to do it again I'd spend more time assessing the size of a vacuum's dirt and dog hair collection receptacle. I feel like I have to empty those things out every second time I run the things, which just makes me loathe to vacuum at all.
posted by deludingmyself at 1:42 PM on May 2, 2016

"The #1 thing that has stopped me from pulling the trigger on a Roomba thus far is the stories from folks whose hardwood floors were scratched up in the course of its robotic machinations."

I have the Roomba and hard wood floors and I have no problems at all. I love it, just recently put a new battery and bin in it and it's working great again.
posted by okieangel at 2:18 PM on May 2, 2016

I also have the roomba + dyson cordless stick combo. No scratches on my floors.
I never thought I would spend that much money on vacuums but I dislike cleaning and the first 2 vacuums I bought were insufficient or too annoying to use or both. I waited for a sale before buying.
posted by captaincrouton at 2:30 PM on May 2, 2016

Can Roomba get up over the edge of a fairly thick area rug? TIA.
posted by JimN2TAW at 2:57 PM on May 2, 2016

Jim: mine does.
posted by Stewriffic at 3:20 PM on May 2, 2016

You can pry my Dyson out of my cold, dead hands.
posted by Dressed to Kill at 6:44 AM on May 3, 2016

We have used a Neato Signature series on carpet and cat hair. The newer Botvac is better. just ETA, I run the Botvac on parquet flooring and it is fine.
posted by ssri at 7:50 AM on May 3, 2016

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