6 best Shark Vacuum Cleaners

Vacuuming is considered a daunting task that we reluctantly tolerate because we want to eliminate germs and allergens, keep our homes clean and save money on carpet replacement. Fortunately, technology has made vacuuming more efficient with models like Shark, which has become one of the leading vacuum cleaner brands in the United States. The best Shark vacuum cleaner offers superior performance, reliability, convenience and customer satisfaction.

We reviewed several Shark vacuum models, considering their key features and their role in the vacuuming process. First, we considered the type of vacuum to identify the one that best suits your cleaning needs, then the wattage as it indicates the motor’s power and suction strength. Next, we looked at the length of the cord to make cleaning large areas easier. We also evaluated the dust bin capacity as its size will determine how often you need to empty it. Finally, we evaluated the weight and dimensions for easy mobility and compact storage.

This comprehensive review presents a comparison chart ranking the best Shark vacuum models based on their overall performance, followed by a detailed review of their features, benefits and drawbacks. The buying guide breaks down the essential features that determine the best vacuum cleaner. It also explains the popularity of the Shark brand, answers frequently asked questions, and offers tips for maintaining your new vacuum. Finally, we end the review with a summary of our top three picks.

The 6 Best Shark Vacuums

Shark Rotator NV501

The Rotator NV501 is a 2-in-1 model that can be used as both a handheld and an upright vacuum cleaner. It can be transformed into a portable model by pressing a button to detach the removable canister and lift it up and down stairs, curtains and other hard-to-reach places. This makes cleaning a breeze and you don’t have to empty the dust pan every now and then because it has a large, dry 3.1-liter capacity that takes time to fill.

It also features a true HEPA filter that removes 99.9% of dust and allergens, as well as full seal anti-allergen technology that ensures trapped germs don’t escape from the tank into the atmosphere. This makes it one of the best Shark vacuums for allergy sufferers.

Shark Vacuum Cleaners

It’s also probably the best Shark vacuum for hardwood floors and carpets, with a motor that runs at 1200 watts and generates powerful suction that can thoroughly clean all types of surfaces, including hardwood floors and deep-pile carpeting. Despite its powerful motor, the vacuum is very quiet when it’s running.

Unlike other models, this one has handy LED lights that will allow you to vacuum with peace of mind, even if you intend to use it in dark places like under your couch or chairs.

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Included accessories are a powerful pet brush that removes hair and dander, a dusting brush that works with the extension cord, a built-in 12-inch crevice tool for cleaning corners, a multi-angle dusting brush, and a canister holder that doubles as a tool holder.

The head is only 11.5 inches wide, which means you may have to make more passes when cleaning. This model also lacks the ability to rewind the cord automatically.

Shark Rotator NV501
  • 1200W
  • 30 feet
  • 1 dry quart
  • 15.5 lbs.
  • 45.7″ tall x 13.4″ wide x 12.2″ deep.
  • Features swivel steering with LED headlights

Shark Navigator NV356E

This model shares many of the same powerful features as the Shark Rotator NV501, making it the best Shark vacuum to clean virtually anything. It’s a versatile unit that works with all types of surfaces, from hardwood to carpet, and all types of dirt, including pet hair and dander, which it cleans effectively with the pet turbo brush.

Other cleaning accessories include a dusting brush, an 8-inch crevice tool and a hard floor attachment with two microfiber pads to clean fine particles hidden in small nooks and crannies. The brush roll can be stopped for gentle cleaning. An accessory bag is also included with the unit.

The vacuum has a lift system to convert it into a handheld model, a swivel head to clean hard-to-reach areas and an extra-large 4.4-liter dust pan that allows for multiple cleaning sessions.

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The hose is relatively short, but the long 30-foot power cord allows for deep cleaning without having to plug and unplug the unit every so often. To control the suction power when cleaning delicate areas and bare floors, turn the handle collar.

Not only does the Shark Navigator NV356E clean your home thoroughly, but it also protects you from airborne germs with the HEPA filter that has a 99.9% cleaning efficiency rating and the full seal anti-allergen technology that prevents trapped dust and allergens from escaping into the air. This is especially helpful for allergy-prone individuals. Cyclonic technology prevents filter clogging that could affect suction.

The location of the powerful 1200 watt motor can make the 14 pound vacuum feel even heavier than it actually is.

Shark Navigator NV356E
  • 1200W
  • 30 feet
  • 4 dry quarts
  • 14.0 lbs.
  • 45.2″ tall x 14.9″ wide x 11.4″ deep.
  • Complete Seal anti-allergen technology + a HEPA filter

Shark Rocket HV302

This is another Shark upright model that can be used as a handheld vacuum. It offers great value for money because it comes with a wide range of cleaning accessories that make it just as effective as more expensive brands at cleaning multiple surfaces. These accessories include a dusting brush, a 12-inch crevice nozzle for cleaning corners and edges, a wall mount for more storage options, a “dust away” hard floor attachment with a reusable microfiber cleaning pad, a pet stuffing tool, a car tool kit and an accessory bag, making it one of the best vacuums for allergies. It also comes with a user manual and quick start guide.

Shark Vacuum Cleaners

A long 10-meter power cord, swivel head, hand-held capability, and a very light weight of only 7.6 pounds make it easy to direct this corded vacuum to narrow and remote areas without having to unplug.

This is the best Shark vacuum for wood floors, thanks to the brush roll with dual low and high speed settings that can be customized for any surface, whether it’s carpet, tile, bare floor or hard floor.

The unit is equipped with a washable foam filter and a 0.42 dry quart capacity dust cup. Press the button on the front to access the dust cup for emptying.

Although the handle is rubberized for a comfortable grip, the motor is located next to it, which can feel heavy.

Shark Rocket HV302
  • 500W
  • 30 feet
  • 42 dry quarts
  • 7.6 lbs.
  • 46″ high x 9.8″ wide x 10.5″ deep.
  • Converts to a handheld vacuum
  • wall mount; comes with a floor brush, dusting brush, pet stuffing tool and crevice tool.

Shark Rocket HV292

If you’re looking for the best portable, affordable and high-performance Shark pet vacuum, this one should be your ultimate choice. It features a powerful 400-watt motor and a TruePet motorized brush that can effectively remove all pet hair, dander, and deeply embedded debris in your home.

In addition to the motorized brush, it also includes a 12-inch crevice nozzle for nooks and crannies, a flexible extension hose for extended reach, and a soft bristle dusting brush for delicate areas. The included filters can be washed and reused.

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It can work as an upright or handheld vacuum, while its small 3.7-pound size and 15-foot power cord make it easy to fit into small spaces and deep clean hard-to-reach areas like upholstery, ceiling fans and car interiors. If you need a vacuum for stairs, this model has you covered as well. Large areas may take longer to clean because the motorized brush is only six inches wide.

The dust pan has a small capacity of 0.42 dry quarts, which requires frequent emptying although this hardly affects suction. Fortunately, the process is easy with a simple push of the release button.

As with most Shark vacuums, the motor weighs down the handle and makes the unit feel more massive than it is.

Shark Rocket HV292
  • 400W
  • 15 feet
  • 0.42 dry quart
  • 3.7 lbs
  • 9.7″ x 4.9″ x 13.6
  • The unit comes with a flexible hose, a dusting brush and a 12″ crevice tool.

Shark ION RV750 robot vacuum

Cleaning is a tedious task that we would gladly delegate to someone else, and this robot vacuum cleaner makes that wish come true. It comes equipped with smart sensors, Wi-Fi connectivity, smartphone compatibility and a host of other technological features.

At the top of the device are three buttons for general cleaning, spot cleaning and charging, while the bottom features two rotating side brushes for crevice cleaning and a brush roll that can self-clean.

This model is smartphone compatible, so you can control it with the Android or Apple Shark ION ROBOT app, or through Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa voice commands. The Alexa device is purchased separately.

Shark Vacuum Cleaners

Being a robot, this vacuum relies on its built-in smart infrared sensors to navigate and avoid objects that might be in its way while cleaning. Its small size, with a clearance of 2.6 inches, allows it to get under furniture, cabinets and other small spaces. If you lose sight of him, you can locate him by calling him with the app’s Find My Bot feature.

One of the most convenient options of this vacuum cleaner is its ability to be programmed for scheduled cleaning. To do this, simply enter the date and time of your choice in the Schedule tab.

A nine-foot magnetic strip and two connectors are provided to mark off areas that this cordless vacuum should not access. Other accessories include a charging station, cleaning tool and lithium-ion battery.

Unfortunately, this model does not come with a remote control. It also has trouble with some debris. However, it’s a great vacuum for bare floors and pets because allergy sufferers can control it to clean pet dander remotely.

Shark ION RV750 robot vacuum
  • 14.8V
  • 0.45 dry quart
  • 60 minutes
  • 3 hours
  • 5.51 lbs.
  • 12.6″ x 12.6″ x 2.6
  • Wi-Fi operation
  • smart sensor navigation
  • dual rotating side brushes.

Why do people choose the Shark brand?

Shark pioneered the swivel steering and elevator design that revolutionized the world of vacuum cleaners and gave birth to canister versions.

The Shark brand is popular because it offers a wide range of innovative models, of all types and sizes, for all cleaning tasks, and at reasonable prices. Their vacuums have great suction power and are equipped with a variety of attachments for versatile cleaning of dirt, dust and debris from all surfaces and seemingly hard to reach crevices.

Features to consider when choosing a vacuum cleaner

Regardless of the brand of vacuum cleaner you want to own, the following basic features should be considered when making your decision.

Type of vacuum

What adds to the confusion when buying the best Shark vacuum cleaner are the seemingly endless types of models available with cleaning tools suitable for different types of surfaces.

Vacuum cleaners fall into five main categories: upright, handheld, canister, stick and robotic.

Upright vacuums are the most common. They have a motor and vacuum head combined in the same unit, while canister models have them placed separately. Some upright vacuums, such as the Shark Rotator NV501 and the Shark Rocket HV302, have a lift feature that turns them into portable models that you can carry around. Stick vacuums are lightweight and portable for cleaning small areas. Robotic vacuums, like the Shark ION Robot Vacuum RV750, have technology features that can be programmed for automated light cleaning. So which one is right for you?

The area you intend to clean and the amount of cleaning needed will help you choose the right type. Once you’ve determined the type of vacuum you need, it will be easier to choose the model. If you’re tired of plugging and unplugging your vacuum repeatedly, you should opt for a cordless, battery-powered vacuum. If you prefer a vacuum that you can move around to clean closets, car interiors, and tight corners and edges, a handheld vacuum will be your best choice. For deep cleaning of large surfaces, such as carpets, an upright vacuum with a long power cord and wide head is ideal.


The wattage can give us an indication of the power of the vacuum’s motor. While this isn’t always the case since a vacuum cleaner relies on different cleaning tools, powerful motors generally have more suction power, which allows for a more thorough cleaning, as evidenced by the Shark Rotator NV501. Ultimately, the true power of the motor is in the suction force, not in horsepower, amps or watts, but in the resulting airflow, which is reported in cubic feet per minute. Models like the Shark Navigator NV356E allow you to adjust the suction power to suit different types of surfaces. Others have two motors for the vacuum and brush.

Power cord length

A long power cord allows for greater maneuverability and allows you to cover large areas without having to constantly unplug and plug in the unit to change outlets. Typically, upright vacuums have longer cords that are manually wound. For example, the Shark Rotator NV501 and Shark Navigator NV356E both have 30-foot long power cords.

Dust Cup Capacity

When dust cups overfill, they affect suction and overall vacuum performance. Larger dust cups can hold more dust and debris, reducing the number of times they need to be emptied. This is convenient, especially when cleaning large areas with lots of dirt.

Vertical models normally have the largest capacity due to their overall design. For example, the Shark Navigator NV356E has an extra-large 4.4 dry quart capacity dust pan, compared to the 0.3 dry quart dust pan on the Shark IONFlex 2X DuoClean IF251 cordless.

Shark Vacuum Cleaners

In addition to capacity, you should also look for dust trays that can be easily detached and emptied. The Shark IONFlex 2X DuoClean IF251 is equipped with a dust bin on the top of the vacuum, which can be emptied by pressing the release button.

Weight and dimensions

The weight and dimensions of a vacuum cleaner determine its portability, maneuverability and compact storage. The size and weight of the vacuum should be determined by the size of the area to be cleaned and the type of surface you intend to use it on.

Some, like the Shark Rotator NV501, also have wheels for smooth mobility. However, if you want to clean multi-level surfaces and tight spaces with a cordless, canister or handheld model, the vacuum should be lightweight so you can carry it without straining your wrists and arms.

Some models (like the Shark IONFlex 2X DuoClean IF251) feature detachable heads and handles that can be folded in half for cleaning under furniture and other tight spaces, and for convenient storage.


It’s a good idea to choose a vacuum cleaner with a warranty that can cover you for a long time in case of malfunctions and other defects. Determine the average length of the industry standard warranty and compare it to the warranty offered by different brands. Upright vacuums have an average three-year warranty, while robotic vacuums have a standard one-year limited warranty. Most Shark vacuums have a five-year warranty.

Additional Features

The vacuums come with several additional accessories that make the cleaning process efficient, convenient and even enjoyable. Below are just a few of these additional features.

Lift Capacity: A model that can be used as an upright or converted to a handheld vacuum provides more cleaning options and improves access to tight spaces.

Adjustable suction power: The Shark Rocket HV302’s brush roll has two settings, low and high, which can be customized for any surface, whether it’s carpet, tile or hard floor.

LED indicator light: The LED indicator light provides battery life, maintenance and performance information, while the LED navigation lights improve visibility in dark areas.


Rubberized Wheels: Enhance portability and allow for smooth mobility and compact storage.

Washable Filters: A filter that can be washed and reused will save you a lot of money on replacement. If possible, choose a washable HEPA filter that removes 99.9% of airborne allergens.

Extension Hose: Allows you to extend the length of the hose to clean hard-to-reach areas.

Wall Mount: Gives you more options for convenient storage. The Shark Rocket HV302 is an example of a vacuum with this feature.

User-friendly interface: The best Shark vacuum has simple, accessible controls that are easy to use and navigate when selecting or changing settings.

Wide path: Look for a model with a wide cleaning path that cleans a larger area in fewer passes.

Accessory bag with multiple cleaning tools: An accessory bag is used to store multiple accessories and cleaning tools, including dust brushes, crevice and upholstery nozzles to clean tight corners and edges as well as cushions and sofas, the “dust away” hard floor accessory with reusable microfiber cleaning pad to clean the finest particles, a pet power brush to clean hair and dander, and a car cleaning tool kit. These accessories make the vacuum versatile for cleaning different types of surfaces and accessing hard-to-reach areas.

How do you maintain your Shark vacuum?

Reduced suction power is usually the first signal of a vacuum cleaner that needs cleaning, but you should never wait for it to get to that point.

Keep an eye on the clear dust cup so you can empty it before it fills up and reduces suction power. Ideally, you should empty it when it is 50% to 75% full.

It is recommended to wash the dust cup with soap, warm water and a brush at least once a month. The foam and HEPA filters can be washed. Avoid washing the felt filter as this may void the warranty. Make sure the dust cup and filters are dry before putting them back in the vacuum.

Although some rotating brushes are self-cleaning, you should check them after a few vacuuming sessions to avoid clogging with hair and tangled fabrics that may have become trapped.

The hoses should also be inspected for objects that could become lodged in them.

Keep your vacuum cleaner away from spilled water and leaking hoses.

Our verdict

Honestly, this was a tough choice. We liked all the models, hence the high marks for each. The Shark Rotator NV501 and the Shark Navigator NV356E scored close to the top of our list of best Shark vacuums. Not surprisingly, they share similar features and functionality. They are both multifunctional and can be used as upright or handheld vacuums. They both have powerful 1200 watt motors and a long 10 meter power cord for heavy duty cleaning. Their dust cups have a very large capacity that can hold a lot of dirt before needing to be emptied. The HEPA filter and full seal anti-allergen technology captures harmful airborne particles and keeps them trapped, so they don’t escape. The Shark Rotator NV501 also comes equipped with a handy LED headlamp to keep things clean at all times, even in the tightest, darkest areas of your home.

Our third choice is the Shark Rocket HV302, which we voted as the most maneuverable thanks to its light weight, long cord, swivel head, hand-holding ability and multiple attachments that allow you to vacuum every corner of your home with ease.