The 7 Best Canister Vacuums of 2020

Clean up your home in a jiffy with these powerhouses

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Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Kenmore 400 Series Bagged Canister Vacuum at Amazon

"Two-motor system to ensure adequate suction and capable cleaning power."

Best Splurge: Miele Compact C2 Electro+ Canister Vacuum at Amazon

"A 1,200-watt motor that is powerful and quiet."

Best Budget: Bissell Zing Bagged Canister Vacuum at Amazon

"Affordably-priced vacuum cleaner offers excellent suction and a compact design."

Best for Hardwood Floors: Bissell Hard Floor Bagless Vacuum at Amazon

"Rugged but compact canister vacuum to keep your hard surfaces clean."

Best for Carpet: Dyson Multifloor Bagless Canister Vacuum at Walmart

"Pairs powerful cyclone suction with turbine control on the vacuum’s handle."

Best for Pet Hair: Kenmore Bagless Vacuum Cleaner at Amazon

"Cyclonic suction design to draw out pet hair and dander."

Best Lightweight: Eureka Mighty Mite Canister Vacuum at Walmart

"This small but mighty canister vacuum is designed to be easy to use."

  • 01 of 07

    Best Overall: Kenmore 400 Series Bagged Canister Vacuum


    For a canister vacuum with plenty of features and variable suction to handle multiple surfaces, the Kenmore 400 Series Bagged Canister Vacuum takes the top spot. This best overall canister vacuum will easily handle the needs of most people seeking a canister vacuum at a reasonable price point. The Kenmore 400 Series adds a very useful telescoping wand that the entry-level version of the Kenmore canister vacuum lacks.

    Powering this canister vacuum is a two-motor system to ensure adequate suction and capable cleaning power. A motorized floor attachment gives this vacuum cleaner a helping hand on carpeted surfaces. And while some people complain about performance on the carpet being poor, be sure to adjust the suction level and height clearance on the head for maximum performance. A HEPA filter helps to ensure that common allergens like dust, pollen, and more are trapped inside.

    Though this canister vacuum isn’t as compact as some other models and weighs about 20 pounds, it has larger capacity bags than smaller units—which means less frequent replacement. Additionally, a long cord means that you won’t have to move the unit constantly. When you go to store it away, a button will automatically retract the cord. The Kenmore 400 Series Bagged Canister Vacuum offers many of the most popular features of canister vacuums matched to a powerful 2-motor system that will give you plenty of cleaning power.

  • 02 of 07

    Best Splurge: Miele Compact C2 Electro+ Canister Vacuum


    For the ultimate canister vacuum experience, the Miele Compact C2 Electro+ is a worthy splurge. This German-engineered canister vacuum doesn’t shortcut on quality, materials, or workmanship. While it costs as much as some full-featured, high-end upright vacuums, the Miele Compact C2 Electro+ has earned a reputation as a compact workhorse. This canister vacuum has a 1,200-watt motor that is powerful yet quiet enough to carry a conversation or hear the phone ring while vacuuming. People also like this feature when vacuuming after the kids are in bed or later at night.

    Allergy-sufferers will appreciate the HEPA filter and sealed air filtration system that prevents over 99.9% of trapped particles from being recirculated into the air. People also appreciate the rotary dial that allows you to choose from 1 of 6 suction settings. One final plus is the Electro Plus Floorhead that has 5 different height adjustments to clean everything from bare floors to higher-pile carpet. One thing to note is that the Miele C2 Electro+ is considered a compact unit, so the bags are smaller and will fill up more frequently. If you don’t have a large space or don’t mind more frequent bag changes, you’ll save a little money by purchasing the smaller C2 Electro+ in comparison to some larger Miele models.

  • 03 of 07

    Best Budget: Bissell Zing Bagged Canister Vacuum

    Banish dust bunnies instead of busting your budget with the Bissell Zing Canister Vacuum. This affordably-priced vacuum cleaner offers excellent suction and a compact design. The Bissell Zing Canister Vacuum weighs about 12.5 pounds and features a metal telescoping wand that people find to be easily adjustable and useful. It also is popular with users for its powerful suction and retractable cord. These are important factors when purchasing a canister vacuum, and the Bissell Zing does a good job with these features.

    One thing to note is that there are no wheels on this canister vacuum—meaning you’ll have to carry it from room to room, so older peopler or those with mobility issues might want to pass on this option. Additionally, people don’t like the cheap and inept plastic tools that are included with the Zing. But if you’re looking for a budget canister vacuum with excellent suction, it’s hard to beat the functionality of the Bissell Zing and these other drawbacks can be overlooked by most people.

  • 04 of 07

    Best for Hardwood Floors: Bissell Hard Floor Expert Bagless Canister Vacuum

    The Bissell Hard Floor Expert lives up to its name and is our top choice for a canister vacuum for hardwood floors—or even tile, laminate, and low-pile carpeted surfaces. This bagless canister vacuum features a cyclonic design to provide long-lasting suction in a compact design. The unit easily glides along without damaging hardwood floors, thanks to the rubber tread of the wheels. A hard floor turbine foot with a specially-designed brush will sweep up dirt and debris without affecting floor finishes. The Bissel Hard Floor Expert does include an attachment for carpet. However, real-world users find that this vacuum’s powerful suction really shines on hardwood floors and carpets can be a bit more frustrating to vacuum with this model. If you have hardwood floors, leave it to the expert—the Bissel Hard Floor Expert. This rugged but compact canister vacuum will keep your hard surface floors spotless.

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  • 05 of 07

    Best for Carpet: Dyson Multifloor Bagless Canister Vacuum

    Dyson Ball
    Courtesy of Walmart

    Make quick work of vacuuming carpeted surfaces with a canister vacuum that is up to the task. The Dyson Multifloor Bagless Canister Vacuum is our top choice for carpet. When it comes to the tricky task of vacuuming carpet (that often plague canister vacuums), the Dyson excels thanks to its adjustable suction and maneuverability. Instead of dual wheels, this canister vacuum pivots on a large ball. When it comes to cleaning carpets, the Multifloor Bagless Canister Vacuum pairs powerful cyclone suction with turbine control conveniently located on the vacuum’s handle. Instead of having to interrupt your cleaning routine and bend down to adjust the setting, it’s at your fingertips.

    People praise this vacuum cleaner for being able to clean everything from thin jute rugs to higher pile carpeting. It even manages to transition seamlessly from rug to hard surface flooring without curling and contorting the edges of the rug. Dyson is one of the leading names in vacuum cleaners, and this canister vacuum is perfect for carpets, or any other flooring really. Though it costs more than some other canister vacuums, the bagless design and solid construction make it worthy of your consideration if you have carpet.

  • 06 of 07

    Best for Pet Hair: Kenmore Bagless Canister Lightweight Vacuum Cleaner

    Banish pet hair with a high-power model like the Kenmore Bagless Canister Vacuum. This canister vacuum for pet hair has a cyclonic suction design to draw out pet hair, dander, and dirt from carpet, cracks, and crevices. Adding to its usefulness in pet-friendly homes is the onboard HEPA filter to trap allergy triggers like dust and dander. The Pet PowerMate attachment is specially designed for lifting pet hair from carpet and upholstery and can be a valuable tool if you have furry friends.

    The Kenmore Bagless Canister Vacuum draws favorable comparisons to more expensive German-engineered canister vacuums but costs a fraction of the price. People also like the telescoping wand that makes it easy to adjust the height of the cleaning wand without having to add or remove sections. Adjust suction levels and attachments to switch between hard floors and carpets, though high-pile carpeting may still pose a problem according to some users. Overall, the Kenmore Bagless Canister Vacuum Cleaner with the Pet PowerMate attachment is a great choice for pet parents.

  • 07 of 07

    Best Lightweight: Eureka Lightweight Mighty Mite Canister Vacuum

    Courtesy of Walmart

    If you’ve ever lugged around a heavy vacuum cleaner, you know how valuable a lightweight canister vacuum can be. Save your arms and energy with the Eureka Lightweight Mighty Mite Canister Vacuum. As the name implies, this small but mighty canister vacuum is designed to be easy to use. Weighing in at 8.5 pounds, this is one of the lighter models available. While you can maybe shave off a little weight with a handful of smaller units, you’ll be losing the features and benefits that have made this one of the most popular canister vacuums. The Mighty Mite is equipped with ample power, thanks to the 12 amp motor. Extension wands make it easy to clean hard-to-reach places, like high shelves and window valances. The included cleaning tools include a crevice tool, upholstery or dusting brush, and a deluxe floor tool.

    While some people complained about the lack of onboard storage for the tools, the fact that they’re included at the affordable price point of the Mighty Mite is a plus. A blower port adds to the value of this vacuum. If finding a lightweight, easy-to-use vacuum is your priority, the Eureka Mighty Mite is worth checking out.

What to Look for in a Canister Vacuum

Power Just how heavy-duty does your vacuum need to be? That depends on the type of floors you have, the size of your home, and other factors, such as if you have pets or not. Things like HEPA filters, which some models include, can also make a vacuum more effective when it comes to trapping allergens like dust and pollen.

Size and weight Often, the more powerful a vacuum is, the bigger and heavier it will be—which isn’t ideal if your home has multiple levels. In some cases, you may even want to consider multiple vacuums, so you can keep one on each floor, but there are also some powerful lightweight models that may do the job. 

Features There’s probably nothing that’s going to make vacuuming your favorite activity, but there are some features that can make it a lot easier. Things like retractable cords and different attachments can help—just think about what matters most to you.