Keeping your floors clean can be a challenge, especially if you have pets, kids, or like to cook (but aren’t the neatest with your chopping). And the flimsy bristles of a broom won’t always do the thorough job you’re looking for. But the good news is that you don’t have to shell out for a super high-end vacuum or a bulky and heavy appliance to maintain squeaky-clean floors. The vacuums on this list include lightweight, versatile, and easy-to-use cleaners that cover everything from hard-wood floors and thick, plush carpets to car seat crevices and crown molding. Whether you want a self-propelled robot vacuum to do the dirty work while you’re out or a super-portable hand vacuum to stash in your car or dorm room, these are the best cheap vacuums for every household, office, and vehicle.
To select the products on this list of the five best cheap vacuums, we surveyed the range of options on the market, including dozens of popular and lesser-known brands and models. We considered customer reviews and testimonials, as well as personal experience with the products and brands. In particular, we focused on important-to-consumer features such as the size and weight of each model, the battery power and cord length when applicable, dust bin capacity, and cleaning accessories. We narrowed things down to a list that offers a great vacuum for every kind of home and all levels of cleaning needs, including cars, offices, kitchens, and staircases. Whether you have multiple pets, are cleaning a woodworking studio every day, or just need something lightweight to stash in a closet and grab before guests arrive, there’s a great cheap vacuum on this list for you.
Keep the following things in mind when selecting the best cheap vacuums to keep your floors and more dust-free.
One important feature of your new vacuum is its size. If you’re short on storage space, you probably don’t want a large or bulky appliance that you can’t hide in a closet. So be sure to check the dimensions of a new vacuum to make sure that you can stash the cleaner somewhere inconspicuous and out of the way.
There are great cheap vacuums that are powered the old-fashioned way, with an electrical outlet and cord. Newer models are battery-powered, and there are pros and cons to both. With a corded vacuum, you’re limited by the length of the cord, so it’s wise to check the length before buying. On the other hand, cordless models need to be charged and have varying battery lifespans. In addition, if you go the cordless route, it’s often helpful to choose a model with a replaceable battery, so you don’t have to get a new vacuum if the battery dies.
If you’d like a vacuum that makes it easy to clean hard-to-reach areas like above appliances and between couch cushions, you may want a lighter model. These are easier to bring up and down the stairs as well if you live in a multi-level home.
Some vacuums come with handy attachments that extend the machine’s versatility. These include brush attachments for removing pet hair from upholstery and crevice tools to dig into narrow spaces.
Why it made the cut: This highly rated vacuum comes at a bargain price with the features of a premium machine making it the best cheap vacuum overall.
This lightweight Eureka vacuum is a great well-rounded choice for most homes. It has an extra-large dust cup canister, so it requires less emptying and maintenance. And though this model doesn’t have the fancy bells and whistles of more expensive models, it does offer excellent suction power.
And a 25-foot cord offers plenty of leeway to maneuver around large rooms. It works well on smooth floors and has scratch-free wheels so you don’t have to worry about damaging the wood. For rugs, the vacuum base can adjust to five different heights that accommodate thick and thin carpets, including shag.
The vacuum also comes with three handy hose attachments: a crevice tool, dusting brush, and upholstery tool to clean difficult-to-access areas like window shades and crown molding, as well as delicate fabrics. At just 10 pounds, the vacuum is light enough for one person to transport up and down stairs without issue. Plus, it’s compact enough to store in small apartments.
Why it made the cut: This is one of the most versatile and lightweight vacuums we encountered, offering three functionalities in one machine.
If you live in a small space or want a super light and nimble vacuum, this Bissell fits the bill. The versatile appliance quickly transforms from a full-length stick vacuum for floors to a light hand-held cleaner to get between couch cushions, made easier with a thin crevice tool attachment. You can even attach the floor vacuum base to the hand-held length to easily clean stairs.
While the small size means that this vacuum has less room for dust than other options, it also makes this one of the lightest and easiest to maneuver full-length vacuums we reviewed for the best cheap vacuum. And emptying the dust bin is as simple as pressing a button (there’s no fussy or wasteful bag). This is a great vacuum for RV living, as it’s easy to store, has enough cord length for small spaces, and is highly versatile for cleaning hard-to-reach and small areas.
Why it made the cut: This budget-friendly robot vacuum is quiet, hard-working, and gets smarter the more you use it.
This smart robot vacuum offers a totally hands-off cleaning option at home. It’s battery-operated so there’s no messy tangle of cords to deal with. Of course, the machine does need to charge between uses. Depending on the condition and type of floors, the battery can last up to 100 minutes, though a home that’s mostly covered in rugs will drain the battery faster.
Users love how thoroughly this little roving machine cleans their floors. It offers exceptional suction abilities, making quick work of dog hair, fine dirt particles, and food scraps. Plus, the vacuum does its thing without causing disruption. The more you use it, the better it understands your home’s layout so it can avoid traps. At first, expect to have to reorient the machine if it gets stuck under the couch or on a door frame. It’s also quiet, so you won’t be bothered by the constant humming of a machine. Due to the vacuum’s small size, you will have to empty the dust bin more frequently, but that’s about the only work this robot requires of you, making it one of the best cheap vacuums for anyone that hates hassle.
Why it made the cut: This upright battery-powered vacuum has several features that set it apart from competitors, including a removable cleaning brush and a large dust bin capacity.
Skip the jumble of a cord and vacuum without inhibition with this cord-free option from Hoover. It’s exceptionally lightweight, making it easy to clean stairs, furniture, and high-up places. Though the machine doesn’t come with any attachments for narrow places, it does have a unique swiveling ability to work into awkward spots without twisting your arm.
The vacuum performs well on both hard floors and carpets. It’s easier to maintain and keep clean than other budget-friendly vacuums because you can remove the rotating brush in the base to get rid of hair, dust and other clogging debris for a more thorough clean with less work.
The Hoover battery lasts about 35 minutes, which is plenty for most homes. However, if you have especially thick rugs that demand a lot of suction (and battery), you may need to recharge before you finish your entire space. If that’s the case, the vacuum does have space to add additional batteries (it comes standard with 4 Ah batteries included) for a longer run-time. From empty, the batteries take about two-and-a-half hours to recharge.
Why it made the cut: This is the best handheld vacuum because it gives you the ability to hold major suction abilities in one hand to clean small areas with little effort.
Hold maximum cleaning power in your hand with this small, dextrous vacuum from Black and Decker. This is one of the best cheap vacuums for dorm rooms, offices, and campers. It has a smaller dust capacity than standing vacuums, but the clear sides make it easy to see when the bin needs emptying, which takes a quick flip of the lid.
The machine is even washable, so you can avoid the build-up of dust and residue on the inside of your vacuum. Clean the plastic casing right in the kitchen sink with warm, soapy water.
A narrow tip attachment helps reach into crevices, which can be especially hand in the car or between seat cushions. The vacuum also has a brush attachment to remove hair from fabric without causing damage or wrinkles. And better yet, you don’t have to worry about losing any small parts. The brush attachment is permanent, so you can simply flip it up and down when you want to use it.
While Shark didn’t make our initial top five, the brand is known for its reliable vacuums. If you’re looking for an upright vacuum that can challenge models costing much more, the best Shark brand vacuum under $200 is the Shark NV352 Navigator Lift Away Upright Vacuum.
If you’re looking for a simple spot/stairs cleaning solution, the best and cheapest stick vacuum is the BISSELL Featherweight Stick Lightweight Bagless Vacuum.
All of the vacuums on this list are rated highly for their suction power. In particular, however, customers love the strength of the Eufy robot vacuum.
If you’re looking for one of the best cheap vacuums under $100 that’s easy to use, lets you clean hard-to-reach areas on your home and car, and is built to last, you really can’t go wrong with the Eureka NEU182B PowerSpeed Bagless Vacuum. It has a large dust bin capacity, so there’s minimal maintenance, and the machine weighs just 10 pounds for easy transport up and down stairs.