Best Vacuum Cleaner for Hardwood Floors of 2018 & Buying Guide

If you have hardwood flooring in your home and absolutely love it, you are not alone. According to the numbers from the National Kitchen and Bath  Association, 35% of designers were planning to increase the use of hardwood flooring in their projects in 2016. The National Wood Flooring Association has reported that in the last twenty years the amount of money spent of wood flooring grew up around 400%.

Vacuum manufacturers are keeping up with the demand by creating machines with features designed specifically for hardwood floors. For this reason, if you are looking for a hardwood floor vacuum today, you have plenty of options when it comes to models, makers, features and prices.

We created this guide to help you navigate hardwood floor vacuums and reviewed some of the best models available on the market today.

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CLEANNERHUB RANKING

PRODUCT

CLEANNERLAB SCORE

CHECK PRICE

#1

BISSELL 81L2A

99/100

#2

Shark Rocket Ultra Light

97/100

#3

Eufy RoboVac 11

96/100

#4

iRobot Braava 380t

94/100

#5

Bissell 1161

91/100

Buyer’s Guide:

How do I choose the best hard floor vacuum?

There are several things that make a good hard floor vacuum.

The first one is powerful suction.

The second one is special attachments. Various brands have different attachments that they create specifically for hard floor vacuums. You will learn about them when reading about different vacuums in this review.

The third one is special features that manufacturers create so that their vacuums can do a better job with hardwood floors. For example, Bissell 81L2A has a unique V-shape. IRobot Braava 380t is a two-in-one appliance that does mopping and sweeping of the floors. This allows it to not only remove the dirt and dust but also to wet clean the floors. You can read more about the special features in the descriptions of the vacuums below.

The only commonality that all hardwood floor vacuums have between them is wheels that do not damage the floors. Other than that, they all accomplish their goals slightly differently.

What should I pay attention to when choosing a hard floor vacuum?

One of the questions that you have to think about has to deal with what else you plan on cleaning with your vacuum. Certain vacuums are great for hardwood floors but the issue is that you won’t be able to clean carpets or furniture effectively with them. This means that you will be able to use your vacuum only for your hard floors and you will need a different vacuum if you have carpets or plan to be cleaning your furniture.

Other vacuums do a great job with hardwood floors and also work well with other kinds of surfaces. This means that you will be able to use your vacuum to clean your entire home.

This review offers both kinds of vacuums.

What types of vacuums work well for hardwood floors?

The quality of cleaning does not really depend on the type of a vacuum. As stated above, various manufacturers come up with various solutions that work for hardwood floors. You may go with an upright vacuum or a canister vacuum or even get a robotic vacuum that will clean your hardwood floors for you. This review will tell you about all these types of vacuums. They all have their own pros and cons, which means that your choice will depend on your preferences and priorities.

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1. BISSELL 81L2A

BISSELL PowerEdge 81L2A has a head with a unique V shape. Because of the shape, the vacuum collects all the dirt and debris without having to use any brushes. The V shape also allows for easy cleaning around the legs of the furniture.

The vacuum is lightweight and easy to move at only 7.5 pounds. It picks up cat litter, pet food, dirt from plants and all and any kinds of messes.

For its size, BISSELL 81L2A offers a lot of suction, which, together with the V-shape, are the reason why this vacuum works so effectively.

If you have pets, you know that pet hair can get stuck in vacuum brushes and make them spread dirt instead of cleaning it. Because this vacuum doesn’t have any bristles, all the hair and litter go directly into the dirt collector.

On the other hand, since the vacuum doesn’t have any brushes, it will not clean any carpets well.

Pros:

  • Because of its unique design, this vacuum captures debris both along the edges of hardwood floors and in tight spaces without using any extra attachments
  • Cleans even around furniture legs
  • Well-designed and easy to empty dirt cup
  • Long 20-foot power cord
  • Does a great job with pet hair

Cons:

  • The head is somewhat small
  • The vacuum makes a lot of noise
  • Will not suck up long feathers and large chunks of pet hair
  • Does not work well on any kinds of carpets

BISSELL PowerEdge 81L2A is a powerful hard floor vacuum but if you need to clean the carpets even occasionally, this is not a model for you.


2. Shark Rocket Ultra Light

As its name suggests, Shark Rocket Ultra Light is an extremely light vacuum. It weighs only 8 pounds. This is a two-in-one vacuum and you can use it as a stick vacuum to clean the floors or as handheld vacuum to clean all kinds of surfaces. Because of its weight, the vacuum is very easy to carry around and maneuver. The vacuum is great for hardwood floors because it has a dedicated hard floor attachment and a microfiber pad.

At the same time, this vacuum not just good for hardwood floors. It offers enough versatility so that you’d be able to clean other surfaces, too.  It is very powerful and it will pick up dirt and debris from both carpets and hardwood floors.

Shark Rocket Ultra Light can easily switch between different speeds. It comes with three attachments that go directly on the handheld part. The hardwood floor cleaner goes on the wand.

Pros:

  • Weights under 8 pounds
  • Comes with washable microfiber pads for hardwood floors
  • Fingertip controls
  • Dual storage options

Cons:

  • This vacuum has a lot of weight on the top, which is why it won’t stand on its own
  • You will need to store the attachments separately
  • The dirt bin is small and needs to be emptied frequently
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Shark Rocket Ultra Light is a powerful vacuum that will do an excellent job cleaning hardwood floors and will also clean the carpets


3. Bissell 1161

Bissell 1161 is a canister vacuum for hardwood floors. Its cleaning tool has been specifically designed for delicate surfaces, yet it does offer powerful suction. Because the vacuum is a canister machine, it is easy to move and maneuver.

Bissell 1161 has rubber wheels that will not leave any marks on expensive floors. The brush of the vacuum comes with extra-soft bristles for the same reason.

The cord of the vacuum has an auto-rewind feature. The controls of the vacuum are located at your fingertips and allow you to change the power of suction for delicate areas. The handle has a remote control in it, which is why it requires two AAA batteries. The remote control is for suction power. It can also temporarily turn the vacuum off.

The canister of the vacuum is very well designed and traps the dirt well. When you open the door of the canister, you can empty the container with dirt directly into the trash bin and not have any contact with the dirt. There is also no dirty filter that you will need to scrub.

The parts of this machine attach and detach very easily and you won’t have to work hard to pull them together or push them apart.

The floor head has a very low profile and you will be able to reach under the furniture. The motor of the vacuum is really quiet and if you have pets, they probably won’t even realize that you are using a vacuum.

Pros:

  • Dedicated hard floor vacuum
  • Compact
  • Lightweight
  • Fingertip controls
  • Dirt cup is easy to clean
  • 2 year warranty

Cons:

  • Vacuum arm is somewhat short
  • The dust bin is small and fills up quickly
  • Short cord

Bissell 1161 is a great hardwood vacuum that has a number of limitations.


4. Eufy RoboVac 11

Eufy RoboVac 11 is a robotic vacuum cleaner that does the cleaning for you. All you have to do to get it started is push a button. The vacuum has a low-profile design that allows it to clean open spaces and also get under the furniture such as TV stands, tables and chairs.

Eufy RoboVac 11 has a high-capacity lithium-ion battery that lasts for over 1.5 hours of operation.

The vacuum has been specifically designed for hardwood floors and thin carpets. It has soft side brushes, a rolling brush and delivers powerful suction.

In the box you will find the vacuum, a remote control that you will need to buy 2 AAA batteries for, a charging base, a power adaptor, a HEPA filter and a welcome guide.

Eufy RoboVac 11 comes with a 12-months warranty.

The machine has three cleaning modes: edge, spot and max that provide different types of cleaning and get rid even of the most stubborn dirt in difficult to reach places.

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One of the benefits of this vacuum is that it is extremely quiet, even when it’s working in the max mode.

Eufy RoboVac 11 does a good job of avoiding things instead of bumping into them, but it is not perfect and occasionally it may bump into a furniture leg or get stuck under a TV stand.

Pros:

  • Robotic vacuum that does the job for you
  • High capacity battery that allows the machine to work for 1.5 hours
  • 3 types of cleaning, including a special system for hardwood floors
  • A remote control
  • Infrared sensor for getting around obstacles
  • Automatic recharging

Cons:

  • May get stuck in certain areas such as under a TV stand
  • Internal battery is not replaceable
  • Dedicated hardwood floor vacuum. Will not clean thick carpets
  • Not as intelligent as some other robotic vacuums

Eufy RoboVac 11 is an excellent choice if you are looking for your vacuum to do the work for you. It comes with certain limitations such as internal battery that is impossible to replace. It may also occasionally get stuck.


5. iRobot Braava 380t

iRobot Braava 380t is a robotic vacuum that will maintain your hardwood floors in shining condition because it has two modes: dry sweeping and damp mopping.

Even though this device is being labeled as vacuum as you will mostly find it in the “robotic vacuum” category, it is not a traditional vacuum in the sense that it does not suck the dirt in. This device comes with removable magnetic cleaning pads that you can attach to the vacuum to make sure that the vacuum sweeps off all the dirt off the floors. There are different pads for dry sweeping and wet mopping.

iRobot Braava 380t comes equipped with NorthStar Navigation system that works in a similar way to a GPS. It helps the vacuum to keep track of the places it’s been to.

The vacuum will cover your entire floor in a single pass. The microfiber cloths will pick up hairs, dirt and dust.

Pros:

  • Has navigation that works like an indoor GPS
  • There are two modes: indoor sweeping and damp mopping
  • Uses disposable cloths to pick up the dirt
  • Recharges in two hours
  • Mops hardwood floors on its own

Cons:

  • Doesn’t self dock
  • The water reservoir doesn’t last long
  • The Velcro for the pad may peel off

iRobot Braava 380t is an excellent choice if you are looking for a robotic vacuum for hardwood floors with wet/dry functionality.


Conclusion:

Today there are many great hardwood floor vacuums available on the market. If you are looking for a regular vacuum, you can choose one that has unique features for hardwood floors. Some robotic vacuums also do an excellent job with hardwood floors. They are a good choice if you are looking for an appliance that will do the work for you. Some robots even have scheduling functionality and will clean your floors at a set time when you are not at home.