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Shark Vacuums: Which One Is Right for Me?

Shark Vacuums: Which One Is Right for Me?

Shark vacuums are quite noteworthy. As somebody who has reviewed several vacuums over the past decade, I can say that Shark is one of the very few brands that deliver the right combination of features, technology, and affordable price.

What is the best Shark vacuum? The Shark Apex is considered the best overall Shark. It has the latest features, cleans thoroughly, and is reasonably priced. However, it may not be the right one for you. Some Sharks work better on wood, while other models are ideal for carpet. Sharp also offers cordless and robot vacuums.

So what is the perfect Shark vacuum for your needs?

What Shark Vacuum Is Best for Carpets?

Carpets need a vacuum that has strong suction power. It is necessary to dig deep into the fibers and lift out the dirt that’s embedded there.

Pro tip: if you want the strongest vacuum cleaner, then get those that are designed to clean carpets.

When it comes to deep cleaning on carpets, there is nothing better than the Shark APEX upright vacuum.  This corded vacuum cleaner has the DuoClean technology, which uses two brushrolls that work in tandem to sweep up all the nasty particles that have settled deep into your carpets.

If you have pets, the Zero-M self-cleaning brushroll will be your best friend. Say goodbye to hair wraps and tangles with this brush.


What’s more, you will appreciate how versatile this upright vacuum is. With the MultiFLEX feature, you can separate the pod from the hose part and be able to reach under furniture and other hard-to-reach areas.

You can also use the above-floor cleaning mode to clean walls, windowsills, and areas other than the floor.

Of course, the upright mode is ideal for cleaning floors and carpets.

Other Shark models that are great for carpets

Aside from the Shark APEX, there are several other models that you can choose for carpeted floors. These vacuums are also ideal for homes with pets.

Each one of these models has DuoClean technology, anti-allergen filters, and the self-cleaning brushroll. But you can choose the ideal one for you based on your budget and how big of an area you have to clean.  

The prices for each differ. Select the right model for your needs, and you can save a lot of money.  You really don’t have to pay top dollar for a feature that you don’t need. For instance, the Shark APEX is around $100 more expensive than APEX UpLight.

The main difference between these two models is that the UpLight only has half the dust cup capacity as the APEX. If you have a smaller home, you will be able to save with the cheaper UpLight model.

Model Current Price (as of December 2019) Dust Cup Capacity
Shark APEX $300 17.1
Shark APEX UpLight $200 10.7
Shark Rotator Pro $260 17.7
Shark DuoClean $280 14.5

Table 1. Selected Shark upright models that are ideal for hardwood floors

Which Shark Vacuum Is Best for Hardwood Floors?

The best thing about hardwood floors is that you really don’t need all that power to clean them. As such, you can save money by getting a Shark vacuum without the ultra-advance technology needed for a thorough clean on carpets.

The Shark Navigator Swivel Pro Complete Upright Vacuum is one such product.

This Shark corded upright vacuum can clean your hardwood floors gently. It has a HEPA filter and can seal allergens in the dustbin instead of allowing them to recirculate in the air that you breathe.  HEPA filters can trap 99.97 percent of particulates that are at least 0.3 microns. It can trap spores, molds, most bacteria, and even pet dander.

What’s more, it’s not just for your hardwood floors. With attachments and tools already included in the package, you can use this vacuum cleaner to tackle dirt in hard-to-reach areas and crevices, and in upholstery.

Which Shark Vacuums Are Cordless?

The thing about Shark vacuums is that you have a range of options that allows you to get the best model for your needs. In the cordless category alone, you have five stick and two handheld vacuum models to choose from.

Cordless vacuums are great for everyday cleaning. You will probably want to do some thorough vacuuming on the weekends, but still do some light vacuuming for the rest of the week to keep your floors spotless.

It doesn’t make sense to have to deal with bulky upright vacuums with cords that can get in the way. Out of the cordless stick options, you cannot go wrong with the Shark ION F80 MultiFLEX Cordless Stick Vacuum.

What we like about the Shark ION F80

  • Runtime of up to 80 minutes, which is double the runtime of Shark’s other cordless stick vacuums
  • A dustbin that can hold up to 0.3 quarts of dirt, which is enough if you vacuum daily

Shark Rocket Pet Pro: Another noteworthy cordless Shark vacuums

For heavy-duty jobs without the tangles of power cords, you have the Shark Rocket Pet Pro Cordless Stick Vacuum.

What we like about the Shark Rocket Pet Pro

  • Designed for homes with dogs, cats, and other furry pets
  • Has a wide cleaning path of 10.63 inches, which means it takes you less time to clean your floors
  • Washable HEPA and foam filters

Other Shark cordless vacuums

Other cordless stick Shark vacuums do not have a HEPA filter. However, they deliver roughly the same level of clean as the Shark Rocket Pet Pro and the Shark ION F80.

Shark Rocket Pro

  • $50 cheaper than the ION F80 and the Rocket Pet Pro
  • 40 minutes of runtime
  • Self-cleaning brushroll
  • MultiFLEX

Shark Rocket

  • 40 minutes of runtime
  • Removable batteries
  • Lightweight at only 6.9 pounds
  • Wide cleaning path at 10.6 inches

Shark Navigator

  • Half the price of both ION F80 and Rocket Pet Pro
  • Ideal for smaller homes and less demanding cleaning jobs like hardwood floors

Handheld Shark vacuums: For quick cleanups

Toddlers, pets, and clumsy family members often have accidents that leave cereals, soil, and other debris on the floor. With Shark’s handheld vacuums, you no longer have to drag your upright vacuum out from storage just to pick up small spills.

These ultra-portable devices might come in small packages, but they have the power you need for neat and tidy floors. There are two handheld cordless vacuums from Shark:

Shark WANDVAC: Powerful yet portable

  • Weighs only 1.4 pounds
  • Has the power of bigger and bulkier vacuums
  • Uses a high-speed brushless motor that delivers a strong suction
  • Beautifully-designed
  • Easy access with a charging dock that is also a cradle
  • Four color choices: black, blue, gray, and red

Shark Cordless Pet Perfect: To tidy up pet hair

  • Uses a large lithium-ion battery for longer runtimes
  • The crevice tool can get the dirt out of even the narrowest nook
  • Uses a 0.6-quart dust bin, which is perfect for heavy shedding

Shark robot vacuums: You can now forget about vacuuming

Another category of cordless Shark vacuums is robot vacuums. These are devices that look like colossal hockey pucks that glide across your floors.

To the casual observer, they look like they just aimlessly bump from wall to wall, but in truth, they are actually cleaning the floor.

Shark offers several robot vacuums, but you will probably like the latest one best. The Shark IQ Robot Vacuum delivers a thorough sweep and vacuuming of your floors without giving it too much attention.

The robot vacuum launches off the charging dock, creates a map of the room it is about to clean, and then proceeds to vacuum row by row and inch by inch. You don’t even have to be at home for the robot vacuum to do its job.

Maps and navigation

This robot saves the maps it creates, and you can name each one for every room in the house. This way, you can order it to clean a particular room, such as the kitchen or the master’s bedroom.

Yes, by ordering it to clean a specific room, we mean you can do it verbally as it works with Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant.

Other features we like about the Shark IQ

  • Uses a combination of  a self-cleaning brush roll, powerful suction, and side brushes to deliver a thorough clean
  • Comes with a mobile app that allows you to operate the robot even when you’re not home
  • Cleaning maps on the app show you where the robot has cleaned
  • Runs on a lithium-ion battery with a runtime of 90 minutes of power
  • Auto recharge and resume feature
  • Cleans itself: You don’t have to worry about emptying its dustbin for an entire month

Other Shark robot vacuums

Shark’s other robot vacuums deliver a thorough clean, but you will need to take care of the dustbin after each cleaning session. The earlier models, the ION R87 and ION R72, also does not have the IQ navigation technology.

However, they both have a wider cleaning path at 5.9 inches, compared to only 5.6 inches for the Shark IQ.

Model Shark IQ R101AE Shark ION R87 Shark ION R72
Self-empty base Yes No No
IQ Navigation Yes No No
App and voice control Yes Yes No
Self-cleaning brushroll Yes No No
Weight (pounds) 5.87 5.4 6.6
Dimensions (L x W x H, inches) 12.9 x 12.6 x 3.5 12.8 x 12.6 x 3.5 12.4 x 12.6 x 3.5
Cleaning path (inches) 5.6 5.9 5.9
Non-washable filter Yes Yes Yes

Table 2. Comparing the robot vacuums from Shark

How Much Is a Shark Vacuum?

Although prices for Shark vacuums vary widely, there is no debate that these models are for the budget-conscious. You can own a Shark vacuum anywhere from $80 to $450.

Here are the price ranges for each type of vacuum offered by Shark:

  • Corded upright: $160 to $300
  • Corded stick: $170 to $280
  • Cordless: $80 to $299
  • Robot vacuum: $320 to $450

How Good Are They?

So now that we’ve established that Shark vacuums are the budget options in a sea of vacuum cleaners, the more pressing question is: Is it any good?

After all, what’s the use of owning an affordable vacuum cleaner if it can’t pick up dirt and dust from your floors?

Well, the good news is that these vacuum cleaners don’t just save you money, but they also save you from frustration. Reviewers for several Shark models have given them excellent ratings.

For instance, the Shark Rotator Pro Lift-Away gets 8.0 stars out of 10.0 from CNET.

Consumer Reports also found that Shark products often excel in their lab tests. The brand, they say, often beats out other more established names such as Dyson, Kenmore, and Hoover.

How Long Do They Last?

More than just being good, Shark vacuums are also durable.

Consumer Reports has reviewed 15 Shark upright vacuums, and most of them end up on top of their list of recommendations as far as reliability and customer satisfaction is concerned.

The same thing is true for the company’s canister and stick vacuums.

Additionally, the review site also noted that the belts that Shark uses typically do not break. As such, Shark is probably one of the most dependent and long-lasting vacuum brands out there.  Moreover, one of the best indicators that these Shark models are going to be with you for a long time is the manufacturer’s warranty.

The company stands by its products and gives you a warranty of up to seven years, depending on the model you buy:

  • Handheld: 1-5 years
  • Corded upright: 5-7
  • Robot vacuum: 1 year
  • Corded stick: 5 years

Get a Shark Vacuum Today

It’s difficult not to get excited about Shark vacuums. There’s one that is perfect for whatever you need at a price that the competition cannot match.

If you need something for that weekly or monthly cleaning, get an upright model with DuoClean and self-cleaning brushes. For those times in between, there are cordless options that can keep your floors tidy.

For quick clean-ups, you’d love the handheld vacuums that they offer. They even have robot vacuums for those who hate to vacuum.

Get the Shark that fits your needs and get cleaning!