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Hardwood, Pets, and Vacuuming: 6 Most Recommended Machines

In the first part of this two-part series, we offered general floor maintenance advice to consider when choosing a vacuum for your hardwood, especially if you have pets around.  These days, more and more manufacturers are coming out with vacuum cleaners that claim to work miracles on the dirt, hair, and general messes that animals can leave around the house.

Unfortunately, many of these are designed more for carpet and upholstery and can be ineffective on bare floors and even cause damage to your hardwood. While some homeowners and landlords opt not to allow pets in their homes, this isn’t always an option — our furry friends are more than often part of the family. So, you need to know your best vacuum and cleaning options.

Several machines are great for cleaning both hardwood and carpets/ upholstery.  To help you pick the best, we did some research and came up with the list below.  Of course, no poll of this kind can be truly complete, and we know that a lot of variables besides the ones mentioned factor in when it comes to choosing the right vacuum cleaner.  But in case you’re not up for hours of internet research and on-site testing, here are what we found to be the most recommended vacuum cleaners specifically designed or easily adjusted for use on hardwood floors that also offer the power and flexibility needed for cleaning up after pets.

 

Make
Model
Style
Price
Weight
Cord length
Accessories / Features
What makes it great
Bissell PowerEdge Pet Hard Floor Corded Vacuum, 81L2A (or 81L2T) Stick- Bagless $50 7.5 lbs 20 ft
  • squeegee strip in place of standard bristles
  • Swivel head
Recommended across the board; designed for bare and wood floor surfaces but can also vacuum area rugs and low pile carpeting; V-shaped design offers wide and precise cleaning angle; superior suction takes care of even larger debris like pet food and litter
Eureka 3670G Mighty Mite Canister Vacuum Canister $60-70 8.6 lbs 20 ft
  • Blower Port
  • Bare Floor Brush
  • Crevice Tool
  • Dusting Brush
  • Bag lasts 3 – 6 mos.
Recommended across the board; can also be used as a blower; very versatile, can be used all around the house (drapes, floors, garage, furniture)
Miele S2121 Olympus Canister Vacuum Cleaner Canister $329 11 lbs 21 ft (29.5 ft operating radius)
  • Retractable cord
  • crevice nozzle
  • dusting brush
  • upholstery tool
  • self-closing dustbag collar
Recommended across the board; powerful motor; very versatile; built to last; 7-Year Warranty
Hoover Linx Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner, BH50010 Stick- Bagless $130-180 7.3 lbs Cordless;
15 – 20 min average battery runtime, takes about 3 hrs to fully charge
  • interchangeable battery with charger
  • convenient brushroll on/off switch
  • Fuel Gauge registers remaining battery life
  • edge cleaning bristles
  • wide cleaner mouth
  • extreme recline handle and low-profile base to reach far under furniture easily
  • bottom release dirt cup

 

Frequently recommended; removable battery and separate charger mean you don’t have to find a place for a dock; picks up everything from pet hair to Cheerios, no problem; surprisingly powerful; can also be used on short and mid-pile carpeting
Hoover Air Cordless Series 3.0 Bagless Upright Vacuum, BH50140 Upright- Bagless $300 Less than
10 lbs
Cordless;
50 minutes average battery runtime 
  • swivel head
  • special hard floor brush roll
  • removable cleaning wand
  • pivoting dusting tool
  • 2-in-1 cleaning tool
  • high capacity bottom-release dirt cup
Frequently recommended; also does a great job on carpet and rugs; 5-Year Limited Warranty on Vacuum and Batteries
Shark Navigator Lift-Away Professional Upright (NV356E) Upright-Bagless $150-180 14.0 lbs
(full unit); canister is 8.0 lbs
on its own
30 ft
  • Never-Lose-Suction technology
  • Swivel Steering
  • Lift-away portable canister
  • Brushroll on/off capability
  • Anti-Allergen Complete Seal Technology™
  • Dust-Away™ hard floor attachment
  • premium pet power brush
  • extra-long crevice tool
  • lifetime HEPA filter
Frequently recommended; great for all types of floors; one of the best vacuums for allergy sufferers; the portable lift-away canister turns the upright into a lightweight canister, great for stairs, drapes, etc.; 5-Year Warranty

BONUS Coming Soon (we hope):  Though it is not on the market in the U.S. yet, we understand from Dyson Japan that the new Dyson Fluffy (DC74) may be the hardwood vacuum cleaner of our dreams.  It has a soft roller made of tiny microfiber bristles in place of traditional upright brush rollers, enabling it to wipe the dust off the floor without scratching.  Combine that with Dyson’s signature mastery of cordless, lightweight machines with powerful suction, and, well, it’s hard to imagine anything better.  You can check out the preview of the Fluffy at Gizmodo.