Best Rated Canister Vacuum Cleaners – Lightweight Canister Vacuum Buying Guide

(Last Updated: April, 2020)

What Changed?

  • Added Miele Electro+ Canister Vacuum
  • Removed discontinued products
  • Updated pros/cons of Kenmore Elite Pet Powermate

Canister vacuums can be a real game changer, especially when you want to save time and storage space. These vacuums are more efficient than ever too. Because of that, it can be tough to find the best ones out there. Here’s what we found when we tried today’s top canister vacuums.

According to our tests, the best canister vacuum is the Miele Electro+ Canister Vacuum. You can easily switch the height of the cleaner head to switch between carpet and hard floors, it has next-level strong suction, and a HEPA filter which is great if you have allergies. 

Here's all of the canister vacuums we recommend.

7 Best Canister Vacuum Cleaners We Recommend:

More About The Miele Electro+ Canister Vacuum

This canister vacuum is perfect for homes with different types of carpet. You can easily switch the surface height and speed for whatever you need to clean. Since it uses a HEPA filter, it’s ideal for homes where allergies are a problem.

It’s strong and easily rivals the suction power of any upright vacuum. The floor head it uses will have you wondering how much dirt you never noticed in your home. It gets debris out of the highest traffic areas.

Pros:

  • Very strong suction gets deep dirt out
  • Includes HEPA filter and sealed air system
  • Suction control allows custom cleaning

Cons:

  • Bristle brush could be improved

Related Products

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Bissell Canister 2156A

Bissell Canister 2156A

Severin Germany Vacuum

Severin Germany Vacuum

More About The Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Animal

Some canister vacuum cleaners can be a bear to move around. That’s just the first big difference with the Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Animal vacuum. You have more than enough reach to get to even the toughest spots, and it’s pretty lightweight too. Bagless canister vacuums can also get messy when it’s time to empty them out, but not this one.

It has a special ejector feature that actually drives out dirt, so you don’t have to. As a bonus, it’s great at getting up fine particles.

Pros:

  • Very long reach (35 feet)
  • Easy to empty without mess
  • Keeps suction on all surfaces

Cons:

  • Extension handle could be stronger

Related Products

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Bissell Canister 2156A

Bissell Canister 2156A

Severin Germany Vacuum

Severin Germany Vacuum

More About The Miele Compact C1 Pure Suction

Sometimes canister vacuums claim to work on all surfaces, only to leave scratches when you use them to clean a hardwood floor. This vacuum actually can do, and does do, all types of flooring, but it’s still gentle while it cleans. That’s because the bottom has rubberized components to prevent damage, while still getting all the debris up.

You’ll love knowing it doesn’t let any debris out, and keeps the motor protected. It even comes with a few tools, to make your job easier.

Pros:

  • Great on carpet and hard floors
  • Includes crevice tool, upholstery brush, and dusting brush
  • Very user friendly and effective

Cons:

  • Seems to drag a bit when moving

Related Products

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Bissell Canister 2156A

Bissell Canister 2156A

Severin Germany Vacuum

Severin Germany Vacuum

More About The Miele Complete C2

This Miele canister vacuum is easy to use, and it’s convenient too. If you’re someone that constantly gets interrupted while cleaning, then you’ll consider this one of the best canister vacuums out there. When you need to step away, just use the parking feature and get right back to where you were before. You can adjust the height too. This makes it very ergonomic which is important if you’re the main cleaner in your house. With 6 different suction settings, you really can’t beat the options it offers.

Pros:

  • Very comfortable to use, ergonomic
  • Easy to pause and restart cleaning 
  • Includes 6 different suction settings

Cons:

  • No rotating bristle brush

Related Products

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Bissell Canister 2156A

Bissell Canister 2156A

Severin Germany Vacuum

Severin Germany Vacuum

More About The Sanitaire S3681D Mighty Mite Canister

If you hear commercial quality, chances are you’re also thinking ‘expensive.’ A lot of the time, that’s true. Except for this vacuum, which gives you the best of both worlds. You don’t have to break the bank to get professional quality cleaning, and this canister vacuum proves it. You can easily switch from carpet to hard floors, or clean hard to reach places with the accessories it includes (brush head, wand and floor settings). It’s lightweight, which makes the power it delivers an even bigger surprise.

Pros:

  • Extremely lightweight for a canister vacuum
  • Commercial cleaning power, at a good price
  • Includes accessories and different floor settings

Cons:

  • Suction can be a little strong for area rugs

Related Products

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Bissell Canister 2156A

Bissell Canister 2156A

Severin Germany Vacuum

Severin Germany Vacuum

More About The Eureka Mighty Mite

Eureka has a well earned reputation for producing some of the best vacuums out there, no matter what style they are. The Mighty Mite definitely follows suit, and it does provide some mighty suction. You won’t be stressed to get pet hair and dirt out of high traffic areas before guests arrive. It’s stressful if you don’t have the right tools but luckily, this vacuum is great when you need fast, efficient cleaning, and when you need to deep clean larger rooms. Plenty of tools, suction, and reach make this a great option for any home.

Pros:

  • Provides excellent reach to any space
  • Picks up pet hair well
  • Very fast and efficient

Cons:

  • Hose isn’t very sturdy

Related Products

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Bissell Canister 2156A

Bissell Canister 2156A

Severin Germany Vacuum

Severin Germany Vacuum

More About The Kenmore Elite Pet Powermate

If you have multiple pets, kids, or can’t seem to get dirt and debris up with your old vacuum, this Kenmore is a real game changer. It even includes a motorized attachment to clean pet hair that’s really stuck on surfaces. It’s compact and easy to store, but don’t think that means it doesn’t do the heavy lifting. It’s got great power behind it, and that’s thanks in large part to the 2 motor system it uses.

Pros:

  • Incredibly strong, 2 motor system
  • Fantastic for cleaning pet messes
  • Easy to adjust

Cons:

  • A little heavier than others

Related Products

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Atrix - AHC-1 Turbo Red Canister Vacuum

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Kenmore Lightweight PowerMate

Bissell Canister 2156A

Bissell Canister 2156A

Severin Germany Vacuum

Severin Germany Vacuum

How to Choose a Canister Vacuum

Ease of Use

Canister vacuums can be a convenient option, but only if they’re easy to use whenever you need them. Look at how easy it is to operate, change cleaning modes, and move around. If you can’t easily use it, chances are you won’t use it much, if at all. Also look at how the vacuum empties out. Is it easy to empty the dust cup or is it a messy task?

Versatile Cleaning

One of the benefits of using a canister vacuum is versatility. Ideally, it should be able to clean hard floors, as well as different carpet heights. If it’s something you can use in your car, or to clean upholstery and edges, that’s even better.

Power

Look for a vacuum that has a good level of suction power. If your home has a lot of heavy traffic areas, the more suction a vacuum has, the better. The same can be said for homes with pets. You need more suction to get pet messes up. A vacuum with different levels of suction is ideal for cleaning different areas and surfaces.

Size and Maneuvering

The best canister vacuums are easy to move around. It should allow you enough reach, without adding too much weight to the vacuum. While they don’t take up as much space, they can still get heavy. More weight means it’ll be harder to move up and down stairs.

Advantages of Choosing a Canister Vacuum

Convenient Size

Canister vacuums are great when you don’t have a lot of storage space. They use only a fraction of the space that upright vacuums do, and are often much lighter. This makes them easier to store, and to use. If you have stairs, a lightweight vacuum is a must, and canister vacuums won’t be nearly as heavy as an upright vacuum. They’re also convenient because you have plenty of tool options, and those take up very little space.

Less Noise

Any vacuum will make some noise. However, canister vacuums tend to be much quieter than upright vacuums. That’s a bonus for homes with pets, kids, and light sleepers.

Power and Filtration

Canister vacuums don’t need the extra structure of other vacuums. Because of that, they tend to have larger, stronger motors. Likewise, they also often have larger, more efficient filters, since the canister portion is used to house these main components. All in all, you can get a faster clean, and a more efficient clean too.

Conclusion

Canister vacuums are a great way to keep your home clean with less effort, and less storage space needed. If you haven’t used one before, it can take some time to get used to. Once you’re familiar with the style though, you’ll find it’s a convenience you can’t believe you passed up before. If you’re ready to get started with a canister vacuum of your own, just check out our guide for everything you need to know.

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