The best cordless vacuum cleaners

We’ve put together a list of the best cordless vacuum cleaners on the market right now, from Dyson, Hoover, Numatic and more, to help you find an appliance that is effective as it is convenient

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Take a poll of one hundred people, and we’d put good money on the fact that the majority of them hate doing the hoovering more than any other household job (with taking out the bins, we suspect, a very close second). 

But cleaning the floors needn’t be such a bore with the right tools: namely, a powerful, portable cordless vacuum cleaner. The cylinder vacuums we might be used to can be a bit on the cumbersome side, and tend to be less energy efficient than upright vacuums. Uprights, on the other hand, are more efficient, but also even more unwieldy, and a great deal heavier, which can prove difficult and even painful for people with back pain or mobility issues.

Enter, then, the cordless vac. No more being tethered to the nearest socket (which as we all know, in a pinch, is never nearly near enough) or lugging heavy hoovers up and down the stairs or outdoors to the car, just thorough cleaning with no back-breaking effort. Now that it’s not the newest kid on the block in terms of tech, the cordless vacuum cleaner has come on leaps and bounds, with Hoover, Dyson, Numatic (that’s the parent company of Henry and Hetty, of course) all getting in on the action and making great portable options.

When it comes to finding the right one for you, keep a close eye on our spec items below, which will tell you how long the battery lasts on default mode, how long it takes to recharge, how much dust it can gobble up before needing a trip to the bin, and what we think each one is best suited to.

1. Dyson V8 Absolute Cordless Vacuum Cleaner

The absolute best for power, portability and versatility

Best for: Lightweight and portable
Battery life: 40 minutes
Charging time: 5 hours
Capacity: 0.54L
Reasons to buy
+Incredible power+Really lightweight and easy to manoeuvre 
Reasons to avoid
-Hugely expensive 

The Dyson V8 Absolute is right up there at the top of the price range, but it’s more than earned its place. The V8 has an unbeatable 40 minutes of battery life, a highly efficient filter intended to capture allergens, and an extremely lightweight body that makes it easy to cart up and down stairs, even for users with mobility issues. It also claims to offer more suction than any other cordless cleaner on the market, and reports from owners seem to back that up, with overwhelmingly positive comments on the V8’s cleaning prowess. Very expensive, but — we think — a worthy investment when it makes cleaning such a breeze. 

2. iRobot Roomba 605 Vacuum Cleaner

This futuristic little robot hoover takes it upon itself to clean your pad, no questions asked

Best for: Time-saving simplicity
Battery life: 60 minutes
Charging time: Nobody knows
Capacity: 0.6L
Reasons to buy
+Just push a button and watch it go +Gets under low items of furniture 
Reasons to avoid
-Not the best at getting into corners 

The original robot vacuum cleaner is still going strong, and from what we’ve heard, it’s making quite the name for itself. Users with hectic lives love that they can simply push the button and let the Roomba go about its business — it even trundles back to its charging port when it starts to run low on battery, no intervention required. While not as versatile as the Dyson cordless or handheld vacs for getting into nooks and crannies, it does clean tricky areas under sofas and beds with ease, and means you don’t have to bend down, so for its thorough and unsupervised cleaning, it’s a very respectable second place. 

3. NUMATIC Henry Hoover Cordless Vacuum Cleaner - Red

Henry’s back in a brand new form for convenient, cordless cleaning

Best for: Industrial-level cleaning
Battery life: 30 minutes
Charging time: 3.5 hours
Capacity: 6L
Reasons to buy
+Classic Henry design, but cordless +Two speeds for ground-in dirt 
Reasons to avoid
-A bit cumbersome 

Numatic’s Henry Hoover now comes in a modern cordless incarnation, good news for everyone who loves the friendly-faced fella, but doesn’t want to be tethered by wires. Surprisingly for a cordless model, it’s just as powerful as the regular corded Henry, with reviewers marvelling at the suction and the two-speed function that allows you to dial up the power for more determined dirt. Unfortunately, where Henry falls down is his manoeuvrability. He’s more cumbersome than a few other vacs on our list, so we wouldn’t recommend him for people who have trouble lifting, but for price and power, he’s still a great buy. 

4. Shark DuoClean Cordless Vacuum Cleaner with TruePet and Flexology [Single Battery] IF200UKT

A flexible, foldable vacuum for easy storage in small homes

Best for: Small houses
Battery life: 22 minutes
Charging time: 3.5 hours
Capacity: 0.33L
Reasons to buy
+Works wonders on pet hair +Very easy to manoeuvre and store 
Reasons to avoid
-Not the best battery life 

Admittedly it doesn’t look quite as sleek as the V8, but for almost half the price we can overlook that. By all accounts, the Shark DuoClean certainly gives powerful cleaning a good go, with dual brush rolls that work together to whisk away bits both big and small, and a Motorised Pet Tool that’s adept at picking up stubborn hairs. But the DuoClean’s big seller is its flexibility. It hinges in the middle, meaning you can clean under furniture without having to bend down, and folds in half for easy storage. It doesn’t have the best battery life, but considering it’s engineered for small houses, it’s ample. 

5. Dyson V6 Trigger Pro Cordless Handheld Vacuum Cleaner

Clean on the fly with this ultra-portable handheld vacuum cleaner

Best for: Cleaning the car
Battery life: 20 minutes
Charging time: 3.5 hours
Capacity: 0.4L
Reasons to buy
+Small but powerful +Great for detailed cleans 
Reasons to avoid
-20 minutes isn’t a huge amount of time 

If you’re generally happy with your upright or cylinder vacuum but want something small, quick and light for top-up jobs and quick cleans, give this handheld Dyson vacuum cleaner a go. Promising fade-free suction to rival its larger siblings, and packing 2 Tier Radial cyclones in a body that’s just 1.6kg and 40cm end to end, the V6 Trigger Pro seems ideally suited to cleaning car upholstery, skirting boards and other hard-to-reach places, while the mini motorised tool is specifically engineered to deal with pet hair. A great little nifty vacuum for last-minute run-arounds and thorough detail cleaning.

6. Hoover Freedom Cordless Vacuum Cleaner FD22G

Total cleaning freedom for a surprisingly small price

Best for: Affordability
Battery life: 25 minutes
Charging time: 6 hours
Capacity: 0.7L
Reasons to buy
+Very affordable  +Shares lots of features with the V8 
Reasons to avoid
-Long charging time 

Following Dyson’s shining example, Hoover have picked up a lot of cues from its premium-priced cousin in this budget-friendly model. The rotating brush bar, intended to pick up nearly invisible bits of dirt and fluff from carpets; the handheld mode for convenient cleaning around the house; and the easy-empty dust bin all ring a bell, which is good news if you’re looking for a cordless vacuum cleaner on a budget. It takes longer to charge and doesn’t last as long in the field, but apart from that, it’s a pretty good substitute if you can’t quite stretch to the slightly more convenient Dyson.