Best Lightweight Vacuum of 2018 & Buying Guide

If you’re buying a vacuum cleaner then there are a lot of things you have to consider. There are tons of different features, different suction powers, and different prices you have to choose between. Among these things, you have to decide on the weight of your vacuum cleaner. The weight of your vacuum can be a deal breaker.

If you’re buying a vacuum with crazy suction power, chances are that you’re going to end up with a  pretty heavy unit. Suction power relies on the motor of the vacuum which means you’re going to need a bigger, heavier vacuum to get strong suction. Buying a lightweight vacuum can be difficult because you need to balance the function of the vacuum with the overall weight.

Fortunately, we’ve reviewed a lot of vacuums. We’ve figured out which ones are the best value, the lightest weight, and still manage to maintain a good variety of features.

How do I know whether or not I’m buying a good lightweight vacuum?

There are many things that make up the weight of a vacuum cleaner. Aside from that, there are many considerations in the type of vacuum you’re going to be buying. Let’s take a look at the basic vacuum types.

  • Standup vacuums are typically the heaviest that you’re going to buy. This is because standup vacuums have a lot more power in them – usually. It’s possible to buy lightweight standup vacuums that are still very powerful, but chance are these are going to be in the more expensive price range. Lightweight standup vacuums typically won’t boast a lot of suction power.
Oreck Insight Bagged Upright Vacuum Cleaner

Oreck Insight Bagged Upright Vacuum Cleaner

Oreck Commercial XL2100RHS

Oreck Commercial XL2100RHS

  • Canister vacuums are typically revered because you can use them to clean different types of floor that you can’t clean with a standup vacuum. Have you ever tried to clean a staircase with a standup vacuum? It’s hard. Canister vacuum can do this because they’re easy to carry.
  • Stick vacuums are great options for people who are looking for lightweight vacuum cleaners. They’re of similar height to stand up vacuums but they’re much lighter because they don’t have the same structural components. A stick vacuum will never be as powerful as a stand up vacuum, but you can control them in a similar way.
    • Stick vacuums require less storage space than a stand up vacuum. In fact, some of them can be mounted on the wall next to your closet so you don’t have to use any closet space to store them.
    • Some stick vacuums can be converted between their full size, and turned into a handheld vacuum. These handheld units are very light and easy to use. They’re great for cleaning furniture and other areas of your house that can’t be accessed with a traditional vacuum.
  • Handheld vacuums are obviously the lightest of the standard varieties. Of course, they also come with a comparable level of suction. You’ll never find a handheld vacuum that boasts the same amount of suction power as even a canister vacuum.
    • The handheld vacuum is great for cleaning furniture, or for cleaning cars. If you want to get one to clean your car or truck, you should look for one that doesn’t have a cord. Cordless vacuum relies on battery power so you can’t use them for as long as other kinds of vacuum, but you can use them for quick cleaning jobs.
    • Handheld vacuums are not very good for cleaning carpets because they’re so small. They’re very lightweight, hence the handheld tendency. However, you’re not going to be able to clean your whole house with a handheld vacuum.

These are the main type of vacuum that you can purchase. Once you’ve decided on the type of vacuum, you can start to decide on the features that you can pick.

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What sort of features should I look for in a lightweight vacuum cleaner?

If you’re looking for a lightweight vacuum cleaner, then there’s one thing you should be aware of. You’re probably going to have to sacrifice some power for weight. You’re not going to get the strongest, biggest, most powerful vacuum and have it weigh a single pound.

Likewise, you’re not going to have to buy a vacuum with the quality of a handheld vacuum and be reserved to a similar quality of uction. There are vacuum you can buy that are  comparably powerful but they’re probably going to cost a lot more.

Dirt Devil BD20035Red Cordless

Dirt Devil BD20035Red Cordless

  • Suction power is the main thing that’s related to the weight of your vacuum. If you buy a vacuum with a  lot of suction power, then it’s probably going to be powered by a very strong motor. Strong motors require lots of space and hardware to keep them safe and functional. However, there are some lightweight vacuum that boast powerful motors.
    • Some strong suction lightweight models sacrifice other features to make sure that you can keep your unit lightweight.
    • Some strong units just use high powered motor technology that’s built with more precision and care. These will be more expensive, but no heavier than weaker models.
  • Filter systems are another important factor. Not all filters are heavy, but generally, a foam filter will be heavier than a HEPA filter. Unfortunately, HEPA filters are a bit heavier than the alternatives. HEPA filters provide you with a lot of extra filtration – HEPA stands for high efficiency particulate air filter.
    • Cloth and foam filter are not totally unreliable. They can get the majority of dirt and particles out of your air but they won’t get it all. However, if you’re looking for a lightweight vacuum, you may have to consider a foam or cloth filter system.
  • A lot of vacuums advertise their adjustability as one of their main selling features. An adjustable vacuum can offer a lot of different features.
    • Adjustable height means that you can change the height of the vacuum in regards to the type of floor that you’re cleaning. If you’re cleaning a hardwood floor then you’re not going to need the same suction as you’ll need when cleaning a carpet.
    • Adjustable suction speeds are also great for different floors. Just because you can adjust the height doesn’t mean you’re set for cleaning different floor types. It’s important to adjust the level of suction as well, so you can clean dense particles or light dust.

So which ones are the best lightweight vacuums?

Best Lightweight Vacuum Reviews

1. Oreck Insight Bagged Upright Vacuum Cleaner Review

This is our first contender for the best lightweight vacuum. This is a good option because it’s an upweight unit which means it boasts the capacity for a full sized motor. But does it live up to its capability?

It sure does. This vacuum is capable of generating over a hundred mile per hour of suction. This might seem excessively powerful for general usage, but that’s okay – it also has a variable power adjustment that allows you to switch between high and low speed so you can use high speed for cleaning hardwood floor and use low speed to meticulously clean carpet.

This unit has a low profile, so it’s not very thick. This is good so you can reach under couch and chairs which other vacuums might not be able to release underneath.

One of the prime benefits from this vacuum is the fact that it has a powerful pile-lifting roller brush. These are great for cleaning debris off of carpets, especially high pile carpets, which can’t often be cleaned by the regular suction from other vacuums.


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    Great for generating powerful suction
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    A very thin vacuum
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    Great for cleaning high pile carpets
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    Has a powerful motor for a lightweight vacuum
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    Low profile


  • Not the most durable

2. Dyson V6 Motorhead cordless vacuum Review

Dyson always seems to pop up with some kind of vacuum that manages to outperform all the other vacuums in their category. Does this one live up to Dyson’s reputation? Yup.

This entire unit is a cordless vacuum, which means that it’s powered by a battery. Naturally you won’t get the same longevity out of a battery powered vacuum as you would with other corded varieties, but Dyson’s battery powered units manage to maintain their power for a bit longer than the competitors.

The trigger on this unit is used to engage the engine. If it’s not pushed, the engine’s not on – simple as that. This means, with enough focus, you won’t waste a single second of battery life on anything that’s not cleaning.

Related:  Best Vacuum For Thick Carpet of 2018 & Buying Guide

This unit has a direct-drive bristle brush that allows you to separate dust and debris that’s wedged in the hairs of your carpets. It’s also very capable at cleaning other types of floor.


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    Very versatile unit that can clean lots of floors
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    Holds up Dyson’s good image
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    Battery powered and cordless for less frustration
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    Trigger-powered engine engagement prevents you from wasting battery live
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    Direct-drive bristles for cleaning carpets


  • Battery vacuums can’t clean as long as corded ones

3. Oreck Commercial XL2100RHS Review

This vacuum is a lightweight model that’s particularly outstanding in the way that it cleans hardwood floors. It’s got a very wide cleaning path of a full twelve inches which allow you to sweep across your floor in a fraction of the time another vacuum would take.

It’s also very good for cleaning carpets, as long as they’re not too thick, as well as getting pet hair out of your carpets and off your furniture.

This unit is very helpful for elderly people or those who suffer from arthritis, thanks to an Ease-of-Use system that minimizes the strain placed on the body when moving the unit.


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    Good for cleaning many types of floor
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    Great, wide cleaning path means less time spent on cleaning
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    Great for low pile carpets
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    Good for elderly people


  • Very loud

4. Dirt Devil BD20035Red Cordless Review

This is one of the better budget units you can get if you’re looking for a lightweight vacuum. This is another cordless unit so you won’t get the full function of an upright vacuum with this unit, however it has its benefits.

You can take the brushroll off or put it on depending on the type of floor you’re cleaning – on for hardwood or other hard floors, on for carpets and soft flooring. This vacuum performs particularly well for people cleaning stairs, as it’s easy to lift between them and there’s no cord to deal with.

The debris can be emptied easily and hygienically, minimizing the chance of allergens and dust being released into the atmosphere.

On top of all this, the handle folds away. This makes this unit super beneficial for those who have minimal storage space, as it takes up less than half the space of a standard upright vacuum.


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    Great budget unit
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    Has a detachable brushroll for cleaning different floor types
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    Can empty the debris very easily and hygienically
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    Great for people with minimal storage space


  • Somewhat fragile
  • Can’t use cordless vacuums for a long time

So which one’s the best lightweight vacuum?

Surprisingly, Dyson didn’t win this round. The best vacuum out of these is the first one – the Oreck Insight. It’s not the most powerful but it’s very lightweight and boasts just as powerful a motor as some of the bulkier upright vacuums, while taking up half the storage space.

If you’re looking for a solid, strong vacuum that doesn’t rely on batteries and doesn’t take up too much storage space, this is the choice for you.