SharkNinja, also known as Shark, is a company that has made a name for itself in the vacuuming world. Started in the late 1990s, they’re about to enter the 2020s with a stellar reputation. If you’re looking for a new vacuum for the holidays, or you just want a cleaner floor, Shark is a good brand to trust.
In this article, we will deep dive into the world of Shark vacuums. Which are the best of the best? Which are good for pets? Are there any good robot vacuums? Read on to learn more.
Table of Contents
- What to Look for When Shopping for a Shark Vacuum
- Our Picks for The Best Shark Vacuum of 2020
- To Summarize
- How We Picked the Vacuums
- Tips on How to Buy a Shark Vacuum
What to Look for When Shopping for a Shark Vacuum
Shark vacuums are all quality, mid-range devices, but there are a few things you should think about before you purchase one. Here are some considerations you should make.
What Type of Floors Do You Have?
Your floor type is obviously going to have an impact on what vacuum you get. Do you have deep carpets, rugs, or hardwood floors? Some vacuum cleaners are meant for a certain type of floor, while others have equal treatment of all floor types. Always look at the floor types these vacuum cleaners can cover, then purchase accordingly. This way, you can get the most out of any vacuum cleaner you purchase.
Do You Have Pets?
Pets, be it a fluffy dog or even a shorthair cat, shed. Hair gets on your floor, on your furniture, and in every other area. It’s important to suck up any pet dander your pets shed off in order to avoid allergies and irritants.
All vacuums can suck up pet hair, but some do it better. For example, there are some vacuum cleaners that have brushrolls that self-clean, meaning that the pet hair won’t get tangled up.
Do You Need a Flexible Vacuum?
Some vacuum cleaners are more flexible than others. Some have swivel steering, allowing you to move the vacuum around in tight, cramped spaces. Then, there are vacuum cleaners where you can remove the canister and go under the furniture for even more flexibility. It’s important that you leave no space uncleaned whenever you vacuum, as even dust that’s hidden can pose a problem.
What’s Your Budget?
When purchasing a vacuum, it’s always important to look at your budget and see if you can afford it. With Shark Vacuums, they are all mid-range. You aren’t going to find a super cheap vacuum for $50, but you’re also not going to find one that’s over a grand unless you buy from a third-party seller who is trying to rip you off, which is something you should avoid doing, anyway.
Cordless or Corded?
Deciding whether or not to purchase a vacuum with a cord is important as well. Corded vacuums used to be the norm, but many people are tired of having a cord that you can trip over or yank out. Cordless vacuums are quite powerful these days, and you can find one for a fair price. Shark has some cordless vacuums, and while they’re not the most powerful on the market, they are still competent and can get the job done.
Some people may care about noise level as well, especially if they have pets or neighbors. Shark vacuums tend to be good with noise level, but some will be louder than others.
Do You Need To Clean Other Areas?
Do you frequently spill things on a counter, or have a pet who makes a hairy mess on your couch? Consider buying a vacuum like a handheld, which is designed to clean up places a normal vacuum can’t reach. Or, buy a vacuum with a long hose or attachments to make cleaning everything much easier.
As we approach the 2020s, more people are looking to automation. Many vacuums have automated features, such as self-emptying, no-touch cleaning, and automatically cleaning brushrolls. This makes the process quicker and much less of a hassle, but some people may not want to pay more for a bit of convenience.
Finally, how powerful is the vacuum? Does it use your average amount, or can it go a little extra when you’re faced with some more dirt than usual.
Our Picks for The Best Shark Vacuum of 2020
From steam cleaners to robot vacuums, you want something that is powerful, but not everyone needs the same amount of power. Find the best vacuum for you.
Now that we’ve discussed that, let’s get into the vacuums! We’re going to cover Shark vacuums from all different categories, so let’s get started, shall we?
#1. Shark Apex AZ1002 (Best Overall)
The beauty of Shark vacuums is that they’re all mid-range. If you choose Shark, there isn’t a vacuum that costs almost a grand, meaning you don’t have to splurge to get quality. In the case of the APEX AZ1002, the price is about $300-$400, meaning that you can get a powerful vacuum cleaner without having to break your bank wide open. Here are its features.
- Self-Cleaning Brushroll: The vacuum cleaner’s brushroll can be a pain to use at times. Hairs, especially from shaggy pets, can get caught up in its rolls, and you have to clean it every single time. The APEX has a brushroll that self-cleans. It’s known as the Zero-M, and if you have a hairy home, the Zero-M is your Hero-M. Having a brushroll that can clean up hair and not get messy is a lifesaver, and it makes this vacuum worth it from that alone.
- DuoClean: There’s more to this brushroll than just its self-cleaning properties, though that is awesome in of itself. This vacuum also has DuoClean technology. These are dual brushrolls that polish your hardwood floors and go deep into the carpet. No matter what floor type you have, DuoClean guarantees that it’s going to sparkle.
- Great for Going Under Furniture: Many vacuums make cleaning under furniture a hassle. At best, you have to bend all the way down, and at worst, you have to move the furniture. With this vacuum, its canister can detach and the cleaner can extend because of this. It’s much easier to move underneath the furniture and clean underneath it. Even if you can’t see the dust, it’s always important to clean those hard to reach spots.
- Heavy: This is a vacuum that’s a bit heavier than other models. It’s 16 pounds, so it’s not the heaviest vacuum in the world, but if you’re someone who isn’t into lifting, then it’s something you should prepare for.
- The Bin is a Little Problematic: The dustbin isn’t the worst or anything, but it does have a few flaws that a higher quality vacuum cleaner shouldn’t have. For example, this vacuum cleaner has a dustbin that could be bigger. One thing we do like about the bin is that even when it’s about to fill up, its suction is still powerful. However, its problems aren’t just in its size. This dustbin also has the problem of the dust sticking to its sides, which can be a bit of a nightmare in regards to cleaning.
- Wheels Aren’t the Best: The wheels aren’t the worst thing ever, but for a higher priced vacuum, we are a little surprised with how the wheels feel. They’re plasticky and do feel cheap. They work, but some people may be a little skeptical with how long they last.
With Shark, even their cheaper vacuum cleaners are high-quality, but they do cost more than your average budget vacuum. You’re going to have to pay over $100, unless you want a refurbished or used vacuum. We cover vacuums that you can only buy new, and the hottest budget in the market today is the Shark Navigator UpRight NV352.
It has a stellar rating on Amazon for a cheaper vacuum (averaging about 4.3 stars as of this article.) The price varies, but it’s usually a little bit over $100. However, you get quite a bit for that amount, and we’ll show you the pros and cons now.
- Easy To Steer: Cheaper vacuums can be a bit hard to steer. Controlling them can be a bit clunky, especially when you move around furniture and tight corners. However, the NV352 has swivel steering, making controlling much more of a breeze.
- Lightweight: This upright vacuum has power to it, all while being lightweight. Many budget vacuums, despite improvement over the years, can be a little bit clunky, but not the NV352. This vacuum weighs 12.5 pounds, making it easy to carry for most. When you have to move the vacuum from one floor to the next, you should have no problem doing so.
- HEPA Filter: The NV352 has a HEPA filter, meaning that almost all allergens and dust are history. It traps the tiniest microbes, keeping your home fresh. In addition, this vacuum has sealing technology to make sure no allergens escape. When you have someone allergic in your house, or a house that is prone to dust and dander, it’s important you have a vacuum with a good filter. This one covers you, and then some.
- Cleans Both Floor Types: The NV352 works well for deeper carpets and hardwood floors. It can be strong, or gentle if your floor is bare. Having a vacuum that works for all floor types is a smart move, because even if your house has only one type of floor, environments can change and you want to make sure your vacuum is there for those times when you need it.
- Not Too Loud: Okay, it’s not the quietest vacuum in the world, but for a budget, we’re impressed with how quiet it can be. It’s not a vacuum that you want to blast at midnight, but it is a vacuum that manages not to be too loud when all is said and done.
- Big Dustbin: This vacuum has a surprisingly large dustbin for being so lightweight and cheap. If your house is dirty, or you have a bigger home, there’s less of a chance of you having to empty it.
- Long Warranty: With some vacuum cleaners, you only have a few years until the warranty expires. It almost feels planned, where you have to buy a new vacuum because your old one died right after the warranty expired. This vacuum gives you quite a bit of peace of mind by having a vacuum that has a five-year warranty. That’s quite a lot of time, and you do get your $100 worth for sure.
- It Could Swivel Better: The swivel steering is a nice touch, but it’s not like turning the wheel in the smoothest car you can imagine. Other vacuums, even ones around the same price, can steer a little bit better in our opinion.
- No Controls on the Handle: This is a minor inconvenience, but having controls on the handle is convenient, and it’s something many vacuums are migrating to. We’re a bit disappointed over the lack of handle controls, but it doesn’t break this vacuum.
#3. IONFlex IF251 (Best Cordless)
A cordless vacuum can make your world much easier if you have a bigger home. Cordless technology has gone a long way, and the cordless vacuum is no longer underpowered. One of the best vacuums that you can get in the Shark lineup that lacks a cord is the IONFlex IF251. It doesn’t have a cord, but it has all the power. Here are some of its features.
- Comes With Two Batteries: With some battery-powered devices, the battery is built-in and you can’t swap them out so easily. With the IF251, you have an extra battery to use in case the other one needs recharging or dies. Having an extra battery lets you clean longer.
- It’s Compact: This is a stick vacuum, so the compactness is there by default. The IF251 makes things even more compact by allowing you to fold it or keep it upright when you store it. Folding it is a breeze, too. You just hold down the button to unlock it, and then you fold it. Its handle allows you to carry it around in quite a few places.
- It’s a Great Cleaner: This vacuum, most importantly, is powerful. You wouldn’t want an underpowered vacuum, and the IF251 makes sure that you get what you pay for. It uses DuoClean technology as well, lapping up both big and small pollutants. It’s indeed one of the best cordless vacuums in the Shark line of things.
- It Has Quite a Few Accessories: If you’re looking for a vacuum cleaner that has various attachments and accessories, you’ve come to the right place. The IF251 has a dusting brush to stop allergies, a multi-tool for your pets, duster crevice tools, and much more.
- Short Battery Life and Long Charge Times: The battery life is about 30 minutes, which is a little underwhelming. For a smaller house, this may be plenty of time, but even then, if you forget to charge beforehand, it can throw off the rhythm of your cleaning session. This vacuum does include an extra battery, but swapping them out is just as annoying as swapping power outlets. If you want to charge your battery, you do have to deal with over three hours of charging time.
- No HEPA: The filters could be a little better. If you have some hardcore allergies, then this vacuum’s lack of HEPA filters may be a bit of a turnoff for you. Its filters are still good, but many will want a vacuum that has the best filters money can buy.
#4. Shark IQ R101AE (Best Robot Vacuum)
Robot vacuums used to be for brands such as Roomba, but nowadays, every vacuum brand has at least one robot, and Shark is no exception. Shark is known for their mid-range vacuums, so if you need a mid-range robot, then this is the brand to pick. With that said, what is the best robot, and how does it compare to the competition? The answer is the Shark IQ R101AE. This is a mid-range, going for about $450, but it has some features that you’d expect from higher-end Roombas. Here are the pros and cons of this robot.
- Self-Emptying: Perhaps its best feature is that its charging station also has a bin, which the robot empties itself into. People love robots because of their automation, but always having to clean out its dustbin makes the automation process a little less good. The Shark IQ empties itself, and it holds up to 30 days of dust, so you don’t have to empty out the wastebin too often.
- Self-Cleaning Brushroll: This robot has a brushroll that self-cleans as well. If you have hair on the floor, you don’t have to worry about the hair wrapping up in the roll and making it a hassle to clean. Cleaning is much more of a breeze thanks to its brushes.
- Mapping: One of the loveliest features of any robot is the ability to map out the house. Cheaper robots move in random directions, while higher-end models map out your home for a more accurate, less obstacle-ridden cleaning session. With mapping, you can choose which rooms get priority, and which ones that your robot should avoid.
- Scheduling: You can schedule cleanings with the Shark IQ. Whether you want to schedule while you’re home alone, or while you’re cleaning up the rest of the house, scheduling is as easy as ABC.
- Other App Features: As you can expect, the Shark IQ has an app, and you can use this app to control, schedule, and look at the stats of your robot. It works for most smart devices as well as Alexa. This is a common feature in almost all robots nowadays.
- Good Suction: The most important feature of all is the suction, and the Shark IQ delivers. Some robots have a hard time picking up larger debris, but this one does a pretty good job at that. Plus, it’s great for hard floor and carpets too.
- Decent Battery Life: This robot goes for about an hour and a half on a full charge. For many, this should be enough to clean their entire house, but if you ever need any more juice, this robot goes through the same process as most robovacs. When it’s low on battery, it will return to its home, then resume when it’s charged.
- Slow Charging Time: Although the battery life is decent, its charging time isn’t. It takes about four hours to charge! If you forgot to charge before you started cleaning, you’re going to have to wait for a while. If this job was unfinished, you once again have to wait.
- Loud: This vacuum is loud. In the robovac world, you get some that are quiet. These are the robovacs that you can watch TV while they clean, and you won’t be too distracted. However, this is one where you may want to run when you’re not at home or if you don’t mind the loud noise.
#5. Shark Rocket Ultra-Light HV292 (Best for Pets)
Do you have pets? Our furry friends can make quite a mess, no matter how often we groom them and regardless of hair length. Keeping your home clean from pet hair is important, but you need a good vacuum for it. Does Shark have a vacuum specifically for pets? The answer is yes. The Shark Rocket Ultra-Light with TruePet Mini Motorized Brush, or the HV292, is what you’re looking for. Here’s why this handheld hybrid rocks.
- Lightweight: If your pet makes a hairy mess, lugging out the regular vacuum can be annoying. The HV292 is under four pounds, meaning that you can take it anywhere you go. It’s great if you’re on the go and you’re bringing your pet along for the ride.
- Filter Doesn’t Last Long: You can wash and reuse the filter, but it does deteriorate over time, meaning that you’re going to have to replace it sooner or later.
- A Great Brush: This vacuum comes with a True Pet Motorized Brush, allowing you to clean up after your pet. When a pet sheds, their dander can trigger some allergies, and it’s important that you have a vacuum cleaner that can provide a clean deeper than most.
- Cleaning Up is a Breeze: When you vacuum everything, it goes into a dust cup. Just press a button to pop it out, then empty it. There you go. It’s as easy as that.
- Easy to Clean Furniture: We love it when our pets hop up on our couches with us to cuddle or watch a show, but they always tend to leave a mess behind. This vacuum makes it so much easier to clean up after your pets, or if you made a mess on your couch as well.
- Corded: This is more like a handheld vacuum, but it is corded. This means that you have to deal with some of the pitfalls that come with cord. The cord is long, about 15 feet, but since this is more like a handheld, it’s a bit disappointing that you need a cord. If you’re traveling, you have to find an outler.
#6. Shark WV201 (Best True Handheld)
Are you looking for a true handheld vacuum that is small, cordless, and sucks up any mess you make? Then look no further than the Shark WV201. This vacuum is a bit expensive for a handheld, about $100, but it’s powerful. Let’s look at its pros and cons.
- Lightweight: Handheld vacuums are never heavy, but this one is especially light. You can expect this vacuum to have a weight of about 1.4 pounds, making it easy for most people to carry.
- Powerful Suction: Most handhelds are quite anticlimactic in regards to suction, but this one has some suction that is quite good. If you make a mess, this vacuum should be able to clean it up with no problem. This vacuum has a tapered model, making both large and small debris something that you can pick up with ease.
- Great Attachments: This handheld can go into the tightest spaces, from car seats to the cracks of your couch, for simple cleaning. This is thanks to its attachments like the Multi-Surface and Duster Crevice Tools. Just attach them for the appropriate situation and you’re good to go.
- Easy Charging Dock: Just put it in the dock when you’re done and it will charge everything to full power.
- Some Small Debris May Have a Hard Time Being Picked Up: While it’s great for debris both big and small, some really fine debris may take a bit to be picked up, and you may need to move it around the surface a few times to pick everything up.
- Can Get a Bit Loud: This handheld may get a little loud after you use it a few times, especially if you use it for a prolonged amount of time. Some people have reported that the engine makes a loud noise.
#7. Shark Genius S5003D (Best Steam Mop)
Finally, we’re looking at a steam mop. These are excellent when you have hard floors and you want to mop them in the best way possible. Steam mops give you a deep cleaning that normal mops just can’t emulate. Shark does have steam mops, and the model that’s the best is the Shark Genius S5003D
- Control the Steam: Some steam mops only have a certain amount of steam, making you use either too much or too little. This mop has a three-setting steam control, letting you be in control of the amount of steam you have. You’ll get the perfect clean, every time.
- Targeted Steam: Its Steam Blaster Technology lets you target the problem spots. Some steam mops make it much more difficult for you to hit the dirty spots, meaning that you have to work harder to clean them up. With this steam mop, you don’t have to worry about that.
- Touch Free: It’s much easier to use this steam mop thanks to its touch-free technology. What does this mean? Essentially, you don’t have to take off the dirty pad with your hands. Just pop it off and put it in the wash, and you don’t have to soil your hands in the process.
- Some Double-Sided Pads: The pads of this steam mop are designed to grab dirt and never let them go. They are double-sided, meaning you can flip them around and use the other side if you’re not done cleaning yet. When you’re done, just pop them in the washer and they’re good as new.
Gobbles Up Water: If you’re looking for a mop that conserves water, this isn’t it. The tank capacity is decent, but you may have to fill it up a few times in order to complete your cleaning. This isn’t too big of a complaint, but it can be a hassle. Other than that, this is a fantastic mop and one that puts others to shame. If you have hard floors that need a deep cleaning, Shark has you covered with their steam mop.Click here to see today's price for the Shark Genius S5003D on Amazon
In summary, here are the best Shark vacuums you can buy.
- Best Budget: Shark Navigator UpRight NV352. While the price is a bit much for a budget, this vacuum has swivel steering, a HEPA filter, and is just a great upright for all uses.
- Best Overall: The APEX AZ1002. This stick vacuum has self-cleaning brushrolls and gets underneath furniture with ease. Also, it’s not too expensive, either.
- Best Cordless: The IONFlex IF251. While the battery could be a bit better, it does have two batteries, some strong cleaning, and is good for most uses.
- Best Robot: The Shark IQ R101AE. This is a robot that has some features you’d see from higher end Roombas. It can empty itself, map out the house, and give you a detailed clean that will leave your home spotless.
- Best for Pets: The Ultra Light HV292. This one has some attachments that clean up after your pets with ease and it’s very lightweight. However, it is corded.
- Best Handheld: The Shark WV201. This vacuum has a great charging station, targets big and small debris, and gets through those pesky cracks. Overall, we say that this is a killer handheld vacuum cleaner that you’re going to love.
- Best Steam Mop: The Shark Genius S5003D. This mop has intelligent control to get you the right amount of steam every time, and thanks to its no-touch technology, you won’t need to make contact with the dirty rag afterwards.
As you can see, Shark has a variety of cleaners, and they’re all priced fairly. You don’t have to worry about dropping thousands on these devices, and you can always find deals to make buying everything much sweeter for your wallet. If you need a new vacuum, then these Sharks are definitely worth swimming with.
How We Picked the Vacuums
When we choose the vacuums, we do so by looking through a handful of important criteria. Here are a few ways that we choose the best ones for this list.
- Professional Reviews: What do the experts have to say about the vacuums? A professional review can give you a deep dive into why this vacuum is worth purchasing or worth skipping. The pros have experience with many types of vacuum cleaners, and they know what makes a good one and what makes a bad one better than your casual user. Learning about its pros, cons, and other features allow you to make a more informed decision, and we read the reviews and learn all we can about the vacuums we talk about.
- Customer Reviews: Besides the pros, we have hundreds of customer reviews, and an average score. We try to pick vacuum cleaners that have received a 4 star or higher average. No matter how perfect a vacuum is, someone is going to dislike it, but if a vacuum cleaner has overwhelmingly negative reception, then it’s something that you may want to reconsider. We also look at each review. Some reviews are a little unhelpful, while others are detailed. Looking at all types of review can help you get a better picture in regards to the quality of the product.
- Price: We try to showcase vacuums for all budgets. Whether it’s a cheaper, lower budget vacuum cleaner or a vacuum cleaner that is more expensive, we try to pick from a variety of prices. With Shark vacuums, the price range is a little more mid-range, but we still try to look at every price the Shark lineup has to offer and see and pick a few from each side. Are they worth the price? We also take this into consideration as well.
- The Newest Models: We pick vacuums that are the latest models and are available to buy new. There were a few vacuums that we did consider, but the problem was that you could not find them for new. Only used, through third party sellers, or refurbished. You may get lucky and purchase a used vacuum that lasts you a long time, but the problem is that many vacuum cleaners that are used will die early, and there’s no way to return them. If we receive news that a vacuum cleaner is currently no longer available to buy, or vice versa, we will keep you updated.
- Categories: Finally, we make sure to organize all vacuums by category. What is the cheapest one? The best cordless? By dividing them all into categories, we hope to better satisfy your needs. You can skip to the best one on your preferred category if you just want one type, but if you’re undecided, you can also read them all if you so wish.
Tips on How to Buy a Shark Vacuum
If you’re out shopping for a Shark, here are a few other tips that can help you.
- What’s the warranty on the vacuum? Some Sharks have great warranties, lasting for over five years. Having a large warranty can give you more peace of mind. However, you do need to read the warranty and make it covers everything. Some are oddly specific.
- Always be on the lookout for deals. Deals aren’t just for the holidays; many online retailers and even brick and mortar have deals all year round, allowing you to get the best vacuums for less money in the long run. Look at all websites before you make a purchase.
- Get a couple of vacuum cleaners for the household, if you can afford it. A robot vacuum may work for casual maintenance, while an upright works great for weekly cleanings. Handhelds are good for small spills as well. Having a variety can make sure your home is as clean as possible.
- With that said, never pay what you cannot afford. Sometimes, it’s okay to buy the cheaper vacuum cleaner and then move onto one that is more expensive down the road. Don’t take out your mortgage just to buy the best vacuum. With Sharks, they aren’t too expensive, but some people are on a shoestring budget and just paying that extra $100 can make or break them. Always be mindful, especially during the holidays when some people like to spend more than they can afford.
- Besides warranty, always make sure your vacuum has a good return or replacement policy. Sometimes, the vacuum may not be as good as you thought, or you may have bought a defective unit. Either way, it’s always important to be able to return the vacuum if you aren’t satisfied, or replace it in the unlikely event that you get a defective one.
- Always read the reviews, and sift through the ones voted most helpful. You should look at the others as well. Always be objective and see whether or not the reviewer makes some good points, or seems to give the product blind praise or criticism.
Shark vacuums are some of the best mid-ranges around, and they are worth the purchase. While not the most high-end, they are excellent for most homes and situations, and we say they are worth trying if you haven’t done so already.