Oct 18, 2023
Best Vacuum For Hardwood Floors 2023
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Cleaning a home with hardwood floors is a labor of love. They’re gorgeous to look at, but they can be a pain to care for. Having a reliable vacuum cleaner is essential, and the best vacuums for hardwood floors should have strong suction with a gentle, padded attachment that won’t scratch or scuff. Whether you have light colored flooring that shows dirt and debris or dark colored flooring that is prone to scrapes, keeping your hardwood floors clean and cared for can be made much easier with the right equipment.
The best vacuums for hardwood floors should have strong suction with a gentle, padded attachment ... [+] that won’t scratch or scuff your floors.
In search of the best vacuums for hardwood floors, we spoke to experts, relied on our own product testing experience and evaluated industry research and insights. There are a ton of vacuum styles to choose from—like robot, canister, upright or stick—so finding the right vacuum for you depends on your cleaning style, the layout of your home and how often you plan to use it. Though most vacuums can operate on both hardwood and carpet, it’s a good idea to seek out a vacuum that has a designated hardwood setting.
“Different types of flooring do need different types of vacuums, as some vacuums may damage delicate surfaces,” said Vera Peterson, president of Molly Maid, a Neighborly company that specializes in providing commercial and residential cleaning services throughout the country. “We recommend looking for features that include adjustable suction, soft-bristled brush attachments and a vacuum that can easily reach tight spaces,” added Peterson. Additionally, it’s important to keep portability in mind when shopping for any vacuum, especially if you have multiple flights of stairs or limited storage space.
Overall, the best vacuums for hardwood floors should have strong suction with a designated hardwood setting, efficient attachments and they should be easy to maneuver. Below, we rounded up the best vacuums for hardwood floors you can buy in 2023.
Style: Bagged canister | Bin size: 4.75 quarts | Battery life: Corded | Weight: 10.5 pounds | Attachments: Combination floorhead, dusting brush, crevice tool and upholstery tool
When looking for the best vacuums for hardwood floors, consider an option that has a suction-only setting, like this Miele Classic Pure Suction vacuum. Average vacuums use a spinning brush roll to dig up and grab debris from the particles of a carpeting. When vacuuming hardwood floors, that functionality is unnecessary and can often cause debris to spread around and (sometimes) scratch or scrape the surface. With a suction-only option, your vacuum relies only on suction power and airflow to lift and remove debris. Without the use of a spinning brush head, you’re less likely to scatter dirt and scratch your floors.
This high-quality option from trusted brand Miele is portable, efficient and strong. It utilizes six suction settings for a more powerful cleaning experience, so you can easily and manually adjust power as needed. The combination floorhead works perfectly on both hardwood and carpeting, and the rubberized wheels help prevent scratching or scraping. The compact design is easy to maneuver and store, and we love that all the included accessories—a dusting brush, crevice tool and upholstery tool—can be stored on the hose of the vacuum itself. This is a strong, portable vacuum that performs exceptionally well on hardwood floors without causing dirt to scatter or scrape the surface. Keep in mind that it is a pricier item, and is one of the more expensive vacuums on our list.
Style: Robot | Bin size: 0.6 liters | Battery life: 100 minutes | Weight: 10.5 pounds | Attachments: N/A
A robot vacuum is a hands-off cleaning solution that can completely streamline the vacuuming process. We love this lightweight, affordable and slim option from Eufy because it’s efficient, strong and easy to use. It comes in at a lower price than a lot of other robot vacuums, but still boasts the same power and intelligence.
With a three-point cleaning system and BoostIQ technology, the robot vacuum automatically uses more power to clean the areas where it detects dirt the most. It’s designed for use on hardwood floors, and the standard suction mode provides about 100 minutes of consistent cleaning on a single charge. The machine will conveniently return to its charging port when it’s low on battery, so you can maintain cleaner floors without needing to hover over a manual vacuum. The slim design means it can maneuver under low-lying furniture with ease.
Style: Stick vacuum and mop combo | Bin size: 12-15 ounces |Battery life: 30 minutes | Weight: 10.5 pounds | Attachments: N/A
This multifunctional wet dry vacuum is perfect for busy households—it combines the convenience of two different gadgets in one functional machine. Simply charge the vacuum in its docking station then use the machine to vacuum and mop the dirtiest areas of your house for up to 30 minutes on a single charge. We love that it operates with two water tanks so you can be sure that you’re only cleaning with clean water—none of the used, dirty water filters back into the cleaning system—the clean water tank filters in fresh water while the dirty water tank stores dirt, debris and used water.
This cordless stick vacuum can also be paired with Bissell’s line of cleaning supplies, including a PET multi-surface cleaning solution that helps sanitize floors while you clean. This machine is specifically-designed with pets in mind, because it can quickly vacuum hair then mop up muddy footprints. Keep in mind that the mopping function of this machine should only be used on hardwood floors that are properly sealed.
Style: Stick | Bin size: 0.2 gallons |Battery life: 60 minutes | Weight: 6.8 pounds | Attachments: Laser slim fluffy cleaner head, hair screw tool, digital motorbar, crevice tool, combination tool, mini soft dusting brush, stubborn dirt brush, wand clip, docking station
You can’t beat the portability of this lightweight, cordless stick vacuum. After charging in its docking station, the easy-to-maneuver vacuum can run for up to 60 minutes on a single charge, all while picking up even the smallest amounts of dirt and debris. The intelligently-designed gadget can automatically adapt to different floor types, so it will instantly change its suction style based on how much resistance the spin feels when pushing over hardwood or carpet.
This incredibly efficient vacuum comes with multiple attachments, and the Laser Slim Fluffy Cleaner Head utilizes a laser light that helps illuminate even microscopic debris. This is particularly helpful if you have light-colored flooring that makes it hard to see dust and debris. The laser light is projected at a specific angle that makes spotting tiny bits of dust much easier. The fluffy brush head is soft on hardwood floors, so it won’t scratch or scrape no matter how often you use it. It boasts a strong suction that can suck hair and debris out of cracks in flooring, which makes it especially useful for older homes that still have original hardwood planks. The dusting brush and crevice tool make it even easier to get into tight corners or around stairs, and we love that the stick of the vacuum can be removed, instantly turning it into a handheld unit for more precision.
Style: Canister | Bin size: 67.7 ounces | Battery life: corded | Weight: 13 pounds | Attachments: Crevice tool, dusting brush
This super-lightweight vacuum is efficient, strong and more importantly, it has an affordable price point. The multi-surface brush head is soft on hardwood floors, and the cyclonic technology ensures strong suction and powerful airflow. That way, dirt is sucked up from your floors and immediately dispersed into the bagless canister. The brush head has a clear window so you can see what’s happening inside and prevent any clogging or tangling. We love that the dirt canister is easy to open and empty, so you can be sure you’re disposing of debris directly into the garbage can.
Heavy-duty wheels make this canister vacuum extra portable and easy to maneuver, so it’s a sturdy and durable option for vacuuming throughout your house. The combination of strong performance and an affordable price tag makes it a great value for the price.
Style: Upright | Bin size: 1.1 quarts | Battery life: Corded| Weight: 12.5 pounds | Attachments: Upholstery tool, crevice tool
This affordable vacuum is designed in a way that easily increases its versatility and portability. The body of the vacuum can swivel side to side while in use, so the head of the vacuum stays flush to the floor while the body turns to the side. That way, it can easily get under beds, bookcases or other low-lying furniture where other vacuums might bump and bang. It has strong suction on both carpet and hardwood, and you can easily control the brush head when transitioning from carpet to hardwood with the flip of a button. We love that the detachable pod makes it easy to vacuum stairs or small closets—simply push the button, then lift the smaller pod away from the body of the vacuum. You can then carry the more portable pod to more easily vacuum stairs or tight corners using the accessory arm.
This vacuum comes with two attachments—an upholstery tool and crevice tool—both of which are functional with strong suction. The crevice tool easily sucks debris out of cracks in flooring or edges of crown molding. This is an efficient, portable vacuum that comes with an affordable price tag.
Style: Bagged canister vacuum| Bin size: 0.25 gallons| Battery life: Corded| Weight: 22.6 pounds| Attachments: Dusting brush, pet PowerMate attachment, long crevice tool, bare floor brush
When it comes to finding the right vacuum to tackle pet hair, strong suction, portability and efficient accessories are essential. We love this vacuum because it satisfies all those criteria with exceptional performance. In a recent test of the best vacuums for pet hair, the Kenmore Pet-Friendly Pop-N-Go Bagged Canister Vacuum took one of the top spots because it quickly and effectively cleaned pet hair from all surfaces, most notably from hardwood floors. The canister vacuum is lightweight and easy to maneuver throughout the house, and it has a long hose with an extra-wide brush head. That means it can cover more surface area in a single pass, so you don’t have to spend as much time vacuuming back and forth over your carpet.
All of the super-functional accessories are stored within the vacuum itself, so you can easily pop them out of their storage container and attach them to the end of the hose. Though this is a corded vacuum, we love that the cord automatically retracts with the push of a button. It’s easy to vacuum underneath low-lying furniture, and the vacuum itself has four different heights for optimal comfort. This vacuum has a designated mode for hardwood floors, and it performed exceptionally well in our tests.
Style: Canister | Bin size: 2 liters | Battery life: Corded | Weight: 8.5 pounds | Attachments: Crevice Tool, Dusting Brush
This bagless canister vacuum has powerful suction with gentle brushroll that won’t damage sensitive floors. With a sturdy, extendable arm the machine operates like a stand-up vacuum, but the long hose and compact rolling canister provide extra convenience. The brush roll switch allows you to toggle between two functionalities—brushroll on and off—so you can maneuver from carpet to hardwood floors with ease and precision. With the brush roll turned off, you can vacuum dirt or sand without scratching. Thanks to the multi-cyclonic suction technology, dirt and debris get sucked up and away, rather than scattered, when vacuuming on flat or hard surfaces.
Heavy duty and extra-large wheels make this canister vacuum easy to maneuver, and the break lets you lock it in place while vacuuming stairs or corners. We love that it comes with two convenient accessories—a crevice tool and dusting brush—so you can effectively access tight corners or decorative molding. The bagless bin is easy to empty directly into the garbage with the press of a button. This is a strong, powerful and efficient vacuum that comes at an affordable price.
Ready to invest in a vacuum to maintain your hardwood floors? Here are the factors to keep in mind when picking out the best option for your home.
When vacuuming hardwood floors, it’s important to make sure the brush head you use won’t scratch your floors. “The best way to clean debris from hardwood floors is with a soft-bristled brush attachment,” said Peterson. Though most vacuum brush heads are designed to clean both carpet and hardwood, make sure to consider how durable or sensitive your floors are. If your hardwood floors are prone to easy scratches, select a vacuum that has a soft or cushioned attachment designed for vulnerable floors. For example, the Dyson v15 Detect comes with a fluffy attachment that’s soft and cushioned all the way around, so it won’t scratch your surfaces.
In addition to cushioned brush heads, it’s important to consider what other types of attachments your vacuum comes with. “Microfiber pads, soft-bristled brushes, and crevice tools are best for vacuuming hardwood floors,” said Peterson. Plank hardwood flooring often has cracks or crevices, and some of them can be really deep. If you’re concerned about debris getting stuck into tight cracks in your flooring, consider selecting a vacuum that comes with a crevice tool. That way, you can get into tight spaces with more precision and designated suction power. A dusting tool is also a fantastic accessory to use on hardwood flooring, particularly if you have detailed molding that runs along the edges of your flooring. A duster tool will gently pick up any debris and suck it into the vacuum.
Suction power is one of the most important factors to look for in a high quality vacuum, especially when looking at a vacuum for hardwood floors. Suction directly relates to a machine’s efficiency, and it will determine whether or not your floors look and feel clean after each vacuum. While vacuums that are meant to work on carpets can rely on the brushroll to grab debris out of carpet fibers, hardwood vacuums rely on suction to lift the debris off flat ground. When looking at a vacuum’s suction power, you’ll also want to look at air flow. While suction helps lift debris off the ground, the air flowing through the vacuum is what actually moves it into the dustbin. Both factors are important in finding an efficient and functional vacuum for hardwood floors.
Versatility is an important factor in selecting a vacuum for hardwood floors because it directly correlates to convenience and value. The more versatile your machine is, the more you’ll be able to do with it, therefore the more bang you get for your buck. If you’re looking for a multifunctional machine with lots of versatility, select something that comes with multiple attachments. More attachments—like an upholstery brush or duster brush—mean you’ll be able to clean more of your home with the same machine, therefore saving space and money. If you’re looking for a multifunctional machine that can perform two major functions in one, select a vacuum that doubles as a mop. That way, you can vacuum up dirt and debris then mop away any stuck-on messes with the convenience of one gadget.
When selecting the right vacuum for you, make sure to assess how often you plan to use it and where you plan to store it. If you plan to use it frequently, you’ll want something that’s lightweight and portable enough to use every day. The heavier a vacuum is the more cumbersome it is to maneuver, which means you might be less inclined to use it regularly. If you have stairs in your home and plan to store your vacuum on one level, weight becomes even more of an important factor. Overall, lightweight machines are easier to push around your home and put less of a strain on your wrist, arm and shoulder.
If storage is an issue in your home, opt for a lightweight machine that can easily be mounted or stored in a closet. Lightweight machines are typically smaller in general, which means they’re easy to store in a closet or a basement, and you won’t struggle to drag it out every time you want to use it.
The best vacuum for hardwood floors is one that has strong suction, efficient air flow and a soft or padded brush head. Though some vacuums may have strong suction, it’s especially important to select a vacuum that has a setting for hardwood floors or a special brush roll that will prevent scratching or scuffing. When vacuuming up dirt or sand, the brushroll could drag debris and cause scraping on the surface of your floor. That’s why it’s a good idea to select a vacuum that has a soft or padded brush roll or hardwood floor attachment. It’s also important to look for a machine that has the option to turn the brush roll off while vacuuming hardwood floors. Brush rolls are designed to grab debris out of carpeting, and when used on hard flooring they can cause debris to scatter. By relying on suction alone rather than a spinning brush roll, you’ll be able to clean hardwood flooring more efficiently.
As is the case with any vacuum, you’ll also want to select an option that’s portable, comfortable to maneuver, and easy to operate. A lightweight option will be easier to carry from room to room and up and down stairs.
When you use a strong, functional vacuum, vacuuming is a more efficient option than sweeping, especially if you’re prone to indoor allergies. Sweeping does not entirely contain and eliminate debris, and it can often send dust or dander back into the air. Alternatively, an efficient vacuum with a sealed HEPA filter can suck up debris, hair and dirt and remove it from the air entirely. Vacuums also have attachments that can streamline your cleaning process, where sweeping does not. For example, a crevice tool can help get into tight spaces or cracks in your flooring and suck up dirt, while sweeping would just push the dirt and debris around, rather than removing it.
If your floors are prone to scratching, it’s a good idea to find a vacuum that has a soft or cushioned brush head. A cushioned surface is more forgiving, so if your vacuum accidentally rolls over sand, pebbles, or other sharp objects that would otherwise scratch the surface, the cushioned brush head can absorb some of the pressure and allow the debris to get swept away and sucked up efficiently. If your vacuum has different settings, be mindful to use the hardwood floor setting to ensure that the carpet brush—which can sometimes be coarse—doesn’t scratch your flooring either.Best Vacuum For Hardwood Floors Overall:Best Robot Vacuum For Hardwood Floors:Best Vacuum And Mop For Hardwood Floors:Best Cordless Vacuum For Hardwood Floors:Best Value Vacuum For Hardwood Floors: Best Upright Vacuum For Hardwood Floors:Best Vacuum For Hardwood Floors And Pet Hair:Style:Bin size:Battery life:Weight:AttachmentsPros:Cons:Style: Bin size: Battery life: Weight: Attachments:Pros:Cons:Style:Bin size:Battery life:Weight: Attachments:Pros:Cons:Style:Bin size:Battery life:Weight:Attachments:Pros:Cons:Style:Bin size: Battery life:Weight:Attachments: Pros:Cons:Style: Bin size:Battery life:Weight: Attachments:Pros:Cons:Style:Bin size:Battery life: Weight: Attachments: Pros:Cons:Style:Bin size: Battery life: Weight: Attachments:Pros:Cons: