Vacuums

The Best Shark Vacuums in 2020: Product Review & Buying Guide

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The Best Shark Vacuums 2020

Founded in 1998, Shark has established quite a name for itself among consumers. The company manufactures a wide variety of consumer products, from irons and garment steamers, to steam mops. But the thing that has turned Shark from a run-of-the-mill company into a multi-million dollar business is their vacuum cleaners.

The best Shark vacuums are known not just for their excellent cleaning performance, but also for their convenience-centered design. And in today’s article, we’ll walk you through the best vacuum models that the company has to offer.

What Makes Shark Vacuums Special?

Besides the obvious reasons of heavy-duty cleaning power and convenient design, Shark vacuums have become popular for their sensitivity to customers’ demands. The company spends heavily on market research which is reflected in the diversity of their product portfolio.

For stay-at-home parents who demand a vacuum that can provide effective suction for hours at a time, Shark has something to fulfill that need in their store. 

Shark has something in their portfolio for everyone. The company has offerings for college students needing affordable vacuums to pet owners wishing to keep their pets’ shedding in check. Even people with wrist or back injuries, Shark has many lightweight vacuums available.

The company’s visible effort towards making their products as user-friendly as possible has culminated in the Lift-Away feature. It is a staple of Shark upright vacuums and essentially allows you to detach the vacuum’s canister (which contains the motor body and the internal dust cup) from the rest of the vacuum’s assembly. Lift-Away capability makes it much easier for the user to clean places that an upright normally wouldn’t be able to reach, such as the ceiling.

What Makes Shark Vacuums Special?
(The Lift-Away canister makes Shark’s uprights highly versatile and unique on the market.)

The company’s dedication to improving user experience is rightfully appreciated by customers and, as Shark continues to do so up until now, its name remains popular in the industry.

How Long do Shark Vacuums Last?

It depends on the kind of Shark vacuum you get.

Shark corded vacuums are very reliable and will generally last you for more than five years.

While longevity is not a problem for corded vacuums, it is a problem for cordless vacuums.

A small and inexpensive cordless handheld vacuum like the Shark LV901 will last you about a year or two before the battery starts to go. It is worth noting that this is a very common lifespan for affordable handheld vacuums. Because their battery is so small, they are far more prone to degrading over the long-term than the more sizable batteries of cordless uprights and stick vacuums.

With that said, Shark cordless uprights and sticks will last you for three to five years. But when the battery breaks down (given that nothing else in the vacuum has failed,) you can just send your vacuum in for a battery replacement. This will usually juice a couple more years of service out of the vacuum before you need a brand new one.

Things to Look Out for in the Best Shark Vacuums

Design

Shark vacuums come in all shapes and sizes. You will want to find a vacuum with a design that suits your cleaning needs and personal preferences.

Upright Vacuums

If your house has a lot of thick carpeting to trawl through, an upright will work in your favor. They tend to have the largest motors (thus highest suction) and a powerful rotating brush to penetrate the dense piling and pull out all of the dirt and debris lodged inside. Uprights tend to also have similarly outstanding performance on hard floors.

The downsides are that they are heavy (between 10 to 20 pounds, or 4.5 to 9 kilograms), bulky, and fairly inflexible. Unless you have the help of an extension wand or a long suction hose, you won’t be able to clean up ceilings or high shelves with an upright.

Fortunately, this is a problem that Shark’s Lift-Away mode has mostly fixed by allowing you to detach the canister.

Things to Look Out for in the Best Shark Vacuums
(Shark’s uprights such as the AZ1002 provide excellent suction power suitable for heavy-duty jobs.)

Stick Vacuums

Stick vacuums trade in power for maneuverability and flexibility. They weigh much less than even the lightest uprights, often measuring between 7 to 10 pounds (3.1 kilograms to 4.5 kilograms.) Since they are designed with compactness in mind, stick vacuums are very easy to store.

Most stick vacuums give you the ability to convert the vacuum from its default stick form into a handheld vacuum. So essentially, by getting a stick vacuum, you get a 2-in-1 deal.

Many Shark stick vacuums are equipped with the Zero-M self-cleaning brush roll system. This brush roll is ingeniously designed to prevent pet hair or any fibrous debris (like yarn) from jamming it up.

Stick Vacuums
(Shark’s stick vacuums aren’t as popular as their uprights, but models like the Shark ZS362 still attract customers for their lightweight and compactness.)

Filtration

Shark has a lot to offer when it comes to filtration. Many Shark vacuums come equipped with Anti-Allergen Complete Seal tech. It prevents microscopic dust, dirt, and bacteria from escaping back out into the environment through tiny cracks and seams on the vacuum’s body. 

Most of the company’s vacuums come with High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters, as well.They can trap 99.97% of particles as small as 0.3 microns, including airborne bacteria and viruses.

Accessories

Shark vacuums are not known for having a wide variety of pre-packaged accessories. But the company does ship their products with essentials like the motorized brush roll, crevice tool, upholstery tool, and extension wand. Pet-centric vacuums like the Shark Rotator TruePet NV752 are also shipped with a pet brush.

Most people will have no problem getting started with the pre-packaged tools. Nonetheless, if you need any other special tool that doesn’t come with your vacuum, Shark sells many optional accessories on their online store.

Warranty

All Shark products come with a standard 1-year warranty policy. However, if you register your vacuum with Shark, you can get a 4-year extension for a grand total of 5 years.

Best Shark Vacuums Reviewed

The following are all of the products that will make an appearance in this review.

  1. Shark Apex AZ1002 – Best to Buy Shark Vacuum
  2. Shark Navigator Deluxe NV42 – Best Value Shark Vacuum
  3. Shark Rotator TruePet NV752 – Best Shark Vacuum for Pet Hair
  4. Shark Navigator Lift-Away Professional NV356E – Best Shark Vacuum for Hardwood Floors
  5. Shark ION P50 – Best Shark Cordless Vacuum
  6. Shark Navigator ZU561 – Best Rated Shark Vacuum
  7. Shark Rocket DeluxePro HV332 – Best Shark Upright Vacuum
NameCord Length/Battery LifeFiltration TypeDust Cup Capacity
Shark Apex AZ100230 ft. power cordHEPA1.7L (1.55 dry oz.)
Shark Navigator Deluxe NV4225 ft. power cordNon-HEPA2.4L (2.18 dry oz.)
Shark Rotator TruePet NV75225 ft. power cordHEPA/Anti-Allergen Complete Seal1.45L (1.32 dry oz.)
Shark Navigator Lift-Away Professional NV356E25 ft. power cordHEPA/Anti-Allergen Complete Seal2.4L (2.2 dry oz.)
Shark ION P5050 mins per battery packHEPA/Anti-Allergen Complete Seal0.59L (0.54 dry oz.)
Shark Navigator ZU56125 ft. power cordHEPA/Anti-Allergen Complete Seal0.9L (0.82 dry oz.)
Shark Rocket DeluxePro HV33225 ft. power cordNon-HEPA0.75L (0.69 dry oz.)

1. Shark Apex AZ1002 – Best to Buy Shark Vacuum

Shark Apex AZ1002

Pros

  • High multi-floor vacuuming performance
  • Innovative brush system
  • Maneuverable
  • Long power cord
  • HEPA filtration

Cons

  • Small dust cup

The Shark Apex AZ1002 is an all-rounder when it comes to cleaning performance. With a powerful suction motor and the robust DuoClean brush roll system, the vacuum has plenty of sucking-and-scrubbing action to sweep clean hard floors and carpeting alike. 

AZ1002’s users also benefit from the ergonomic and maneuverable design that makes the vacuum not just easy, but also pleasant to use.

Shark Apex AZ1002 Performance

Performance

Shark has fitted the AZ1002 with a veritably potent electric motor. On hard floors and with the motorized brush roll turned off, the vacuum can effortlessly pick up all traces of dust and dirt. It can also make short work of debris of various sizes without significant clogging.

But hard floors aren’t the AZ1002’s attraction point, carpeting is where it’s at. On dense carpets and rugs, the DuoClean brush system will kick in. DuoClean has two brush rolls instead of one, doubling the scrubbing power in the process. The AZ1002 can reach deeper, drawing out more caked-on dirt and stubborn debris than any other conventional vacuum.

As one of Shark’s leading products, the Apex AZ1002 is unsurprisingly equipped with Lift-Away mode. Once the vacuum’s canister is detached, you can use the extra mobility you’re afforded to clean the ceiling and higher-up places.

For pet owners, the vacuum also comes with the Zero-M self-cleaning brush roll. The tech does a wonderful job of preventing pet hair from tangling the brush roll, so if cleaning up after your pets is part of your daily cleaning itinerary, the AZ1002 can satisfy.

Design

The Shark Apex AZ1002 weighs 16.6 pounds (7.5 kilograms) in total. Power is fed to the motor via a 30-foot long power cord (9.1 meters), which is much longer than the industry’s average. You won’t have to constantly think about electrical outlet placement as you clean.

Its aesthetic design is utilitarian and not particularly eye-pleasing. However, it does its job well enough that this shouldn’t be much of an issue. Furthermore, the vacuum is comfortable to grip and to use. The weight is well-balanced, so even if you were to use it for an extended period it wouldn’t tire out your arm quickly.

The AZ1002 has swivel steering for enhanced maneuverability. It may take some time to get used to the sensation, but the steering can help tremendously with navigating around obstacles and furniture. On the underside of the vacuum are smooth-gliding wheels for more breezy movement across the floor.

If you often clean late at night, the vacuum has LED headlights to make it easier for you to spot dust, dirt, and debris in low-light conditions.

Shark Apex AZ1002 Design

Dust Cup & Filtration

The dust cup can store a maximum of 1.7 liters (1.55 dry quarts) of dirt and debris, which is humble when it comes to upright standards. It will fill up quickly.

On the bright side, emptying is simple and hygienic. Once the dust cup reaches capacity, it only takes a few seconds to crack it open and throw everything into the trash can.

The AZ1002 comes pre-equipped with a HEPA filter, which will safeguard your family from airborne threats like microscopic dust and bacteria.

Accessories

The Shark Apex AZ1002 comes standard with six attachments.

NameDescription
Mini Motorized Pet BrushFor removing pet hair and stubborn dirt from carpeting and upholstery
12-inch Crevice ToolReaches deeper into nooks and crannies around the house.
Pet Multi-ToolCombination of a stiff-bristle brush and an upholstery tool for easier cleaning of pet hair
Anti-Allergen Dust BrushImproves dusting performance with nylon-fiber bristles. Gentle enough for delicate surfaces such as upholstery.
On-Board Motorized Pet ToolA motorized brush to scrub pet hair from a variety of surfaces. Can be mounted directly on the vacuum.
MultiFLEX Under-Appliance WandA jointed wand that can pivot and reach deep underneath furniture.

2. Shark Navigator Deluxe NV42 – Best Value Shark Vacuum

Shark Navigator Deluxe NV42

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Great multi-floor vacuuming performance
  • Maneuverable with swivel steering and gliding wheels
  • Large dust cup
  • LED headlights
  • Wide variety of accessories

Cons

  • Heavier than advertised
  • Can take multiple sweeps to clean a large area
  • Non-HEPA filtration

For everything that it brings to the table, the Shark Navigator Deluxe NV42 has a reasonable price. The vacuum has strong, versatile suction and will clean carpeting just as well as it does hard floors. Other than dust, dirt, and debris, NV42 can also tackle pet hair.

Combined with a design that’s comfortable to use and easy to maneuver around, it’s not a shabby purchase if you are looking for a vacuum that packs more value for the money spent.

Shark Navigator Deluxe NV42 Performance

Performance

Most of the praise given to the NV42 by consumers is focused primarily on the excellent suction. The vacuum draws suction from a 10-amp electric motor, which, when pushed to the limit, can suck up everything and anything along its cleaning path. On carpeting, the high suction works in tandem with the motorized floor brush to purge all of the dust and dirt inside the piling.

The vacuum has two cleaning modes: a hard floor mode and a carpet cleaning mode. You can fluently switch between them using the universal control switch on the vacuum’s handle.

Design

The vacuum weighs 15.1 pounds (6.8 kilograms.) Its poundage is contentious, since Shark had particularly advertised it to be a lightweight vacuum. When measured and actually held, the NV42 is right in the middle— neither as light as advertised nor so heavy it becomes obnoxious.

The power cord is 25 feet (8 meters), which is long enough for all intents and purposes. You won’t have a hard time finding an electrical outlet to plug it into. 

NV42 has a relatively narrow suction nozzle (around 9.25 inches, or 23.4 centimeters). This gives it the ability to maneuver itself deep into tight corners around the house. There’s a caveat to this, however: the NV42 generally needs a few passes to remove everything if you have a large, open floor to clean.

A universal control switch acts as both the power button and brush roll control. You will find three notches on the switch. 

First, you have the familiar OFF position. The second— “I ON”— will switch the suction on but keeps the brush roll off. This is ideal for cleaning hard floors to avoid spilling debris everywhere or damaging particularly delicate types of hard floors. The last position is the “II Brush Roll ON” position. The brush roll will be powered on and you can use it to comb through your carpeting and rug.

The vacuum has LED headlights for easier cleaning in the dark as well as smooth-gliding wheels for more fluent movement across the floor.

Dust Cup & Filtration

The dust cup can hold a fairly respectable 2.4 liters (2.18 dry quarts.) Even if you have a large house, the vacuum will last for quite some time before reaching the fill-up line. Still, we recommend you empty it after every cleaning session to prevent clogging down the line.

As always, the emptying process is quite easy. First, detach the canister from the rest of the vacuum. You will find at the bottom of the dust cup a release tab that, once pressed, will open up the bottom flap of the dust cup and everything inside the cup will fall out. Just make sure that when it does, the canister is hovering above the trash can.

The NV42 doesn’t come with a HEPA filter. Instead, it uses a 3-layer filtration system consisting of two pre-motor foam filters, a pre-motor felt filter, and a post-motor filter

All of the filters are washable and reusable. According to the user’s manual, all of the pre-motor filters must be cleaned and air-dried once a month. The post-motor can last for longer without maintenance, needing a wash once every 12 months.

Accessories

The Shark Deluxe NV42 is commonly shipped alongside four tools.

NameDescription
Pet Hair Power BrushHas a motorized brush roll for scrubbing pet hair out of dense carpeting
Small Crevice ToolFor cleaning nooks and crannies
Dusting BrushCleanses dust from delicate surfaces like upholstery
24-inch Crevice ToolHas an elongated, narrow body to reach deep into corners and underneath furniture

The list may change and a lot of people have reported receiving tools different from the ones listed, so keep that in mind.

3. Shark Rotator TruePet NV752 – Best Shark Vacuum for Pet Hair

Shark Rotator TruePet NV752

Pros

  • Excellent pet hair performance
  • Great effect on hard floors
  • Maneuverable with swivel steering
  • Lift-Away mode
  • LED headlights
  • HEPA filtration and hygienic sealing system
  • Wide variety of accessories

Cons

  • Not recommended for small carpets and rugs
  • Small dust cup

The Shark Rotator TruePet NV752 is excellent at dealing with pet hair. 

The key to its performance is the TruePet mini-motorized brush. Designed specifically for hair clean-up, this simple, yet incredibly effective accessory has managed to cement the NV752’s place as one of the most attractive models in the pet hair vacuum segment.

Shark Rotator TruePet NV752 Performance

Performance

Since the NV752 is a corded upright vacuum, Shark didn’t hesitate to arm this vacuum with a strapping 9.5-amp suction motor. You can control the cleaning with three modes (adjustable via a slider switch on the vacuum’s handle) corresponding to three floor types: hard floor, carpet/low pile, and thick carpet/area rug.

The strong performance makes cleaning pet hair and debris on hard floors relatively easy. However, the same thing cannot be said for carpeting even when the vacuum is switched to either of the two carpeting modes. Surprisingly, the problem is the NV752’s powerful suction.

Even at the lowest setting, the NV752’s suction is still strong enough to suck small rugs tightly against the cleaning head or the suction nozzle. Since the vacuum doesn’t have a suction release valve (a disappointment at its price point) or a manual brush height adjustment lever, this isn’t a problem you can easily fix. 

For this reason, we recommend using it only on carpet tiles or fitted carpet to prevent clogging.

The TruePet mini-motorized tool can help you clean up pet hair, dust, and debris on more delicate surfaces like upholstery and pillows.

Design

The vacuum weighs 16.7 pounds (7.5 kilograms) in total. The weight isn’t at all unusual for an upright but the NV752 is definitely heavier than average. Powering the vacuum is a 25-foot (8-meter) power cord

The handle is comfortable and has all of the control buttons and switches available right at the fingertips of the user. NV752’s canister can be detached from the rest of its body if you need a bit more mobility and flexibility with the Lift-Away mode.

Shark Rotator TruePet NV752 Design

Maneuvering is excellent with the swivel steering design that gives the NV752 a wide turning radius. The vacuum can be reclined almost flat against the ground to allow you to reach deep underneath furniture. While cleaning in the dark or underneath furniture, you can switch the two LED headlights on to make the job easier.

Dust Cup & Filtration

The dust cup is small for a premium upright. It can hold only about 1.45 liters (1.32 dry quarts) of dust, debris, and pet hair before filling up. Fortunately, emptying is simple, quick, and hygienic despite the lack of a dedicated dirt ejecting mechanism.

In terms of filtration, the NV752 has Shark’s signatory Anti-Allergen Complete Seal technology to prevent microscopic dirt particles from escaping containment inside the dust cup. You also get a HEPA filter to take out all of the airborne hazards in the airstream.

Accessories

According to the user’s manual, you should get five accessories inside the NV752’s shipping box.

NameDescription
TruePet Mini-Motorized Brush ToolA small rotating brush to take out pet hair and debris on delicate surfaces
11-inch Crevice ToolGrants extra reach to clean in nooks and crannies around the house
Dusting BrushA bristle brush to cleanse dust from delicate surfaces like upholstery
Upholstery ToolDesigned for sucking up pet hair and other types of debris from upholstery
Duster Crevice ToolA hybrid between a crevice tool and a dusting brush to give you both reach and dusting capability

4. Shark Navigator Lift-Away Professional NV356E – Best Shark Vacuum for Hardwood Floors

Shark Navigator Lift-Away Professional NV356E

Pros

  • Excellent performance on hard floors
  • Can deal with low-pile carpeting
  • Maneuverable with swivel steering
  • Lift-Away mode
  • LED headlights
  • Large dust cup
  • HEPA filtration and hygienic sealing system

Cons

  • Not recommended for high-pile carpeting
  • Messy emptying process

Although the Shark Navigator NV356E is marketed as a multi-floor vacuum, in reality, its performance on hard floors far outweighs its usefulness on carpeting. 

It has the strong suction needed to clean out the dusty spaces between hardwood floorboards. And also gives the option to switch off the motorized brush roll to prevent it from scratching up the surface of your flooring. Together with a functional and ergonomic design, the NV356E is one of the better choices in Shark’s portfolio for hardwood floor cleaning.

Shark Navigator Lift-Away Professional NV356E Performance

Performance

NV356E, with the aid of a 10-amp electric motor, has the suction power and the dust pick-up rate to thoroughly clean your hardwood floor from all traces of dirt and debris. The vacuum can deal with scraps lodged between the floorboards with little fuss.

The vacuum’s performance on carpeting is a bit more complicated. 

While the brush certainly has the scrubbing strength to remove caked-on dirt from the carpet piling, the vacuum doesn’t have a manual brush height adjustment lever. The NV356E can sometimes cling tightly against high-pile carpet piling and become very difficult to maneuver. This problem can persist even in the lowest suction mode.

Therefore, you should only consider getting this vacuum if your house has predominantly hard floors with few rugs and carpeted areas to clean.

Design

NV356E is fairly lightweight for an upright, measuring 13.7 pounds (6.2 kilograms). However, many customers reported the vacuum to be rather top heavy, tiring out your arm muscles quicker as a result.

The power cord is 25 feet (8 meters) long.

The power button of the NV356E sits on the vacuum’s canister. You have to bend down to reach it, so it can be fairly irritating.

As a Lift-Away vacuum, NV356E allows you to detach the canister for more flexible and mobile cleaning. Maneuvering is smooth and easy with swivel steering, which offers better turn radius and responsiveness. LED headlights are available for vacuuming in the dark or underneath furniture.

Dust Cup & Filtration

The vacuum can hold up to about 2.4 liters (2.2 dry quarts) worth of dust and dirt (to the fill line). Since it doesn’t have a dedicated dirt ejecting feature, you will have to manually empty the dust cup. The whole process can be quite messy and unhygienic so beware if you have respiratory troubles.

On the plus side, the vacuum is equipped with the Anti-Allergen Complete Seal system as well as HEPA filtration.

Accessories

Four accessories are shipped alongside the NV356E.

NameDescription
Turbo BrushA motorized brush to scrub clean carpeting
11-inch Crevice ToolFor cleaning in nooks and crannies around the house
Dusting BrushHas a bristle brush to cleanse dust from different surfaces around the house
Wide Upholstery ToolUpholstery tool with a wide suction nozzle for quicker and more efficient vacuuming on delicate surfaces

5. Shark ION P50 – Best Shark Cordless Vacuum

Shark ION P50

Pros

  • Lift-Away design
  • Adequate cleaning power
  • DuoClean cleaning head
  • Maneuverable with swivel steering
  • Excellent battery with long life and is hot-swappable
  • LED headlights
  • HEPA filtration and hygienic sealing system

Cons

  • Small dust cup
  • Limited selection of tools

 Since it is meant to be an up-market product, the vacuum comes with all of Shark’s most distinguishing technologies. From the signature Lift-Away design and the DuoClean cleaning head to the Anti-Allergen Complete Seal and HEPA filter, it is as much a vacuum as a technology demonstrator.

Wrapping it all up with a long-lasting Lithium-ion battery and a wide variety of accessories, the ION P50 is among the company’s best cordless models yet.

Shark ION P50 Performance

Performance

Like previously mentioned, cordless vacuums like the ION P50 must trade off performance for energy efficiency, so its overall cleaning performance isn’t as stellar as Shark’s corded offerings. 

This vacuum performs best on hard floors and low to medium-pile carpeting, upon which it will be able to scoop up the majority of dust, dirt, and debris. 

On high-pile carpeting and thick rugs, however, the vacuum’s magic will wane immediately. Despite having two brush rolls working in tandem (the DuoClean cleaning head), there’s not enough power behind them to effectively comb through dense piling. The suction is also not strong enough to break through the piling to suck out debris stuck at the bottom.

Design

The ION P50 weighs 12 pounds (5.4 kilograms) fully assembled in its upright format. Fortunately, you can detach the canister containing the motor and the dust cup using the Lift-Away mode and use it as a separate canister vacuum. With it, you can effectively shed the weight from 12 pounds to an ideal 5.4 pounds (2.4 kilograms.)

Three control buttons are positioned right at your fingertips on the handle for easier access. You have the power button, the surface switch button (hard floor or carpeting), and the suction BOOST button (for when you need extra cleaning power, though it will be at the expense of battery life.)

You will find on top of the canister the battery indicator lights. The crescent-shaped light will gradually die out as the battery loses charge.

When used in upright mode, the majority of the vacuum’s weight is concentrated at the bottom. The low center of gravity reduces fatigue and allows the vacuum to stand upright by itself without support.

A front rubber bumper lines the outer rim of the cleaning head to keep the vacuum from damaging furniture, the wall, and even itself during cleaning. LED headlights are available for vacuuming in low-light conditions.

Shark ION P50 Design

Battery Life

The ION P50 is powered by a replaceable Lithium-ion battery pack that Shark calls the “ION Power Core battery”.

In standard cleaning mode (ION Power), the vacuum can last between 25 to 30 minutes. With ION Boost mode enabled, expect to get only about 15 minutes worth of cleaning time.

But it’s worth noting that since the battery can be easily replaced, you can buy an additional Power Core to hot-swap the battery if needed and juice more cleaning time out of the vacuum. When one battery runs out of charge, replace it with another fully-charged battery to continue vacuuming and let the depleted Core recharge on the charging station.

Dust Cup & Filtration

The dust cup is terribly small. Up to the fill line, it can only store about 0.59 liters (0.54 dry quart) of dirt and debris. If you have a large house, you will find yourself emptying it very often.

The emptying process is quick and clean. Just detach the dust cup from the vacuum and press the release button to drop the bottom flap. Despite not having a dirt ejecting mechanism, debris and dirt don’t tend to be stuck inside of the dust cup and will fall out without fuss.

Filtration is handled by a HEPA filter and bolstered by the Anti-Allergen Complete Seal tech. ION P50 is the first cordless on Shark’s portfolio to feature these techs.

Accessories

You only get three tools with the ION P50.

NameDescription
Dusting BrushHas a bristle brush to cleanse dust from delicate surfaces like upholstery
Upholstery ToolDesigned for sucking up pet hair and other types of debris from upholstery
Duster Crevice ToolA hybrid between a crevice tool and a dusting brush to give you both reach and dusting capability.

6. Shark Navigator ZU561 – Best Rated Shark Vacuum

Shark Navigator ZU561

Pros

  • Can deal well with pet hair
  • Effective on hard floors and low to medium-pile carpeting
  • Adjustable suction
  • Controllable Zero-M anti-hair wrap brush roll
  • Maneuverable with swivel steering and smooth-gliding wheels
  • HEPA filtration and hygienic sealing system

Cons

  • Ineffective against high-pile carpeting

The Shark Navigator ZU561 distinguishes itself from other vacuums in-class with high reliability and excellent cleaning performance against pet hair on hard floors. That, and the inclusion of various techs like the Zero-M self-cleaning brush roll and Anti-Allergen Complete Seal has made it a huge hit among consumers.

Shark Navigator ZU561 Performance

Performance

The vacuum performs excellently on hard floors and is remarkably good at scooping up particles like fine dust and small debris. With the help of the Zero-M brush roll, pet owners will be pleased with the ZU561’s efficiency at dealing with pet hair without becoming clogged or tangled.

ZU561 works best on low-pile carpeting, being able to pick out most dirt, debris, and pet hair woven into the piling. Its performance begins to visibly deteriorate on medium-pile carpeting, leaving smatterings of dirt and debris here and there on the surface. The vacuum is totally ineffective against high-pile carpeting.

You can flexibly control the vacuum’s performance with the two cleaning modes it has: a hard floor mode and a carpet mode. You can also control the suction via a control slider and the brush roll can be controlled with the brush roll shutoff button.

Design

The ZU561 weighs 13 pounds (5.8 kilograms) and has a 25 feet power cord.

It is designed with a Lift-Away canister, so whenever you need more mobility and flexibility, just press the release button to detach it. Movement is facilitated by a swivel steering and smooth-gliding wheels, which, when combined, makes for a very pleasant and low-effort cleaning experience.

The power switch and all of the other control buttons are situated on the handle and right at the user’s fingertips.

Shark Navigator ZU561 Design

Dust Cup & Filtration

The dust cup is one of the cons, having a capacity of only 0.9 liters (0.82 dry quarts.) The vacuum is easy and hygienic to empty, but still doesn’t have a dedicated dirt ejecting mechanism.

Filtration is HEPA-rated and the vacuum’s interior is made airtight with the Anti-Allergen Complete Seal system.

Accessories

The Shark Navigator ZU561 comes with three tools in the box.

NameDescription
Hair Removal Multi-toolA combination between a bristle brush to dislodge pet hair and an upholstery tool 
Wide Upholstery ToolUpholstery tool with a wide suction nozzle for quicker and more efficient vacuuming on delicate surfaces
Duster Crevice ToolA hybrid between a crevice tool and a dusting brush to give you both reach and dusting capability

7. Shark Rocket DeluxePro HV332 – Best Shark Upright Vacuum

Shark Rocket DeluxePro HV332

Pros

  • Lightweight and compact
  • Great multi-floor performance
  • Effective against pet hair with TruePet tool
  • Can be converted into a handheld
  • Maneuverable with swivel steering
  • LED headlights

Cons

  • Top heavy
  • Small dust cup
  • Non-HEPA filtration
  • Limited tool selection

The best thing that the Shark Rocket DeluxePro HV332 brings to the table is a nice compromise between performance and ease of use. 

The vacuum is designed with light weight and compactness in mind (weighs only about 9 pounds or 4 kilograms total), but Shark has also made sure that it doesn’t come at the expense of cleaning power. For its size, the vacuum cleans surprisingly well.

If you seek low poundage in an ideal vacuum cleaner, the HV332 will be a fine choice.

Shark Rocket DeluxePro HV332 Performance

Performance

Performance-wise, HV332 has great performance on both hard floors and carpeting (from low-pile all the way to the lusher, high-pile types.) The vacuum has the suction necessary to suck up dust, dirt, and debris when the cleaning head rolls over them. It also has the brush strength to penetrate the dense piling and pull out all of the ground-in dirt and debris.

The vacuum has two cleaning modes, each for a different type of surface: bare floor/area rug mode and high pile carpeting mode.

The HV332 is notably great at picking up pet hair, being shipped with the TruePet multi-tool.

Design

The HV332 is considered an “ultra-light” vacuum, weighing 9 pounds (4 kilograms.) Although the lighter weight is meant to reduce fatigue, unfortunately, most of the weight is concentrated at the top of the vacuum. The vacuum can be relatively tiresome to use for an extended period as a result.

Power is fed to the motor with a 25 feet power cord.

Shark’s intention of making this vacuum a compact machine is clear from the very aesthetic. Unlike its bulky and beefy Rotator and Navigator lines, the Shark Rocket HV332 has a sleek profile that resembles a stick vacuum.

Its resemblance with other popular stick vacuums is even stronger when you consider the handheld convertibility of the HV332. With the long suction wand removed, the HV332 is transformed into a handheld. The compact handheld unit will make it easy for you to do certain tasks, like vacuuming the car or the shelves. Storage is made simpler, too.

The HV332 also has swivel steering for easier maneuvering and LED headlights for vacuuming in low light.

Shark Rocket DeluxePro HV332 Design

Dust Cup & Filtration

The dust cup only holds 0.75 liters (0.69 dry quarts). Though it is way too small for an upright, since the HV332 is meant to be compact and lightweight, the dust cup’s size reduction is understandable. The dust cup is also easy and hygienic to empty.

Instead of a HEPA filter, the HV332 uses a two-layer filtration system consisting of a foam filter and a felt filter. Both are washable and reusable, but they don’t offer nearly as much filtration efficiency as a HEPA one.

Accessories

Tool selection is limited with only two tools, but you get the TruePet multi-tool which is excellent for pet hair cleaning.

NameDescription
TruePet Multi-toolA motorized brush made for scooping up pet hair on a variety of surfaces
Duster Crevice ToolA hybrid between a crevice tool and a dusting brush to give you both reach and dusting capability

How to Empty a Shark Vacuum

Most Shark vacuums are bagless vacuums and have a plastic cup to hold all of the dust, dirt, and debris picked up along the way. For the vacuum to perform at its best, you must regularly empty out the dust cup, lest the vacuum get clogged and lose suction.

Shark has made the emptying process for their vacuums fairly straightforward and simple.

  1. Switch off the power: If you have a corded Shark vacuum, unplug it from the outlet first. For cordless vacuums, make sure that the vacuum is off and the power light isn’t on.
  2. Remove the dust cup: The dust cup will usually have a large handle on top of it. You will also find a large button on the handle. Press down on the button and the dust cup will be detached from the rest of the vacuum.
  3. Hover the dust cup over the top of the trash can: Make sure that you do it with the right side up. Shark dust cups open up at the bottom, not the top.
  4. Press the emptying flap release button: It’s usually located on the side of the dust cup. Once pressed, the flap at the bottom of the cup will open up and release the dirty contents into the trash can.
  5. Check for leftovers: Inspect the vacuum to see if there is any debris or traces of dirt still lodged inside. If there is, try to give the cup a good shake to see if the dirt or debris will come loose. If that doesn’t work, use a napkin, toilet paper, or a rag to manually dislodge it (make sure to wash your hands afterwards.)
  6. Return the cup to the vacuum.

Conclusion

The best Shark vacuums bring a multitude of benefits to their users and can definitely keep you satisfied so long as you pick the right model for the job. We hope that through this article, you have found that one perfect vacuum to see you through the coming years.

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