Canstar Blue’s 2021 vacuum cleaner review has seen a whopping 16 brands including iRobot (Roomba), Bosch, Miele, LG, Bissell and more, compared on their effectiveness of clean, ease of use, ease of emptying, ease of storage, quietness, value for money and overall satisfaction.
See our Ratings Methodology.
When it comes to vacuum cleaners, it’s often the case that you get what you pay for. So, buying a cheap and cheerful vacuum might seem like a great idea at the time, but it could leave you with disappointing results. Then again, you don’t want to be paying more than you need for an appliance that – ultimately – simply sucks up dirt from the floors. The trick is finding the vacuum that ticks both the effectiveness and value for money boxes. So, which brands do Aussies rate highest in both regards? Our customer ratings have the answer.
Once again, we’ve surveyed more than 2,900 households and sought out their opinions on the vacuum cleaners they’ve purchased and used in the last three years. An emerging theme from our reviews and ratings over the years is that typically the more ‘premium’ brands are coming up trumps, but this year is a little different, with iRobot Roomba and Bosch sharing the top spot.
That’s a fantastic achievement in a competitive market where we’re even seeing the likes of Kmart and ALDI offering solid alternatives to the big name brands. But Aussies who own an iRobot Roomba or Bosch vacuum are clearly the happiest of the lot. Both brands scored five stars for overall satisfaction.
Here are the best vacuum cleaners in Australia, as rated by consumers in Canstar Blue’s latest review:
iRobot and Bosch vacuums were rated best in Canstar Blue’s latest ratings, achieving five-star reviews for overall customer satisfaction. iRobot (Roomba) also rated best for ease of use and storage, while Bosch got full marks for quietness and value for money.
Several other brands also managed to score five stars in the bang for buck category including Miele, Piranha and Black & Decker. Notably, former winner Miele was the only brand to score five-star reviews for effectiveness of clean and Samsung got the only top marks for ease of emptying.
These ratings are based on all types of vacuum cleaners – from small handheld vacuums for your car, to robot vacuums and large barrel vacuums that specialise in pet hair. We rate stick vacuum cleaners separately.
Our review provides a helpful guide as to which vacuum cleaner could be the best bet for your needs and budget. Read on for a little more detail about each brand and what you can get for your money. We’ll also name-drop some other brands that don’t feature in this year’s review but are still worth a mention.
iRobot is the brand behind the ever-famous Roomba robot vacuum and mop range, boasted for its new levels of cleaning intelligence and efficiency to your home. The new Roomba s9+ is the smartest model of the Roomba family featuring automatic emptying and smart mapping technology which learns, maps and adapts to each room to give you control of which parts of the house you want to be vacuumed first. Prices for the Roomba s9+ reach up to $2,899, while prices for iRobot Roomba 600 series models start from $499.
Some models in the iRobot vacuum range include:
iRobot cleaned up with five stars for ease of use, ease of storage and overall satisfaction. It got four stars for effectiveness, ease of emptying, quietness and value for money.
Another brand boasting a reputation for German quality, Bosch provides a range of vacuum cleaners, including cordless stick and cylinder vacuums (bagged & bagless units). Some common features you’ll find in the Bosch handstick line-up include the All Floor High Power Brush, claimed to deliver a thorough clean, plus 2-in-1 functionality to give you a handheld and handstick vacuum cleaner in one appliance.
The Bosch Athlet ProAnimal and most other Athlet stick vacuums are boasted for having one of the longest runtimes, of up to 60 minutes. Other aspects include Bosch’s SmartSensor technology, which is stated to monitor airflow rates throughout the vacuum to ensure the suction performance doesn’t drop and an LED indicator to notify you if the filters get clogged. Most Bosch vacuums can be had for less than $900, with some of its models being priced as low as $250.
Bosch’s range includes:
Bosch received five stars for quietness, value for money and overall satisfaction. It got four stars for effectiveness, ease of emptying, ease of use and ease of storage.
Miele makes cylinder vacuum cleaners (bagged & bagless models), upright vacuums and even an array of robot vacuum cleaners. Its range comes in a variety of sizes and colours to suit most domestic duties and homes. Miele is not generally known for offering gimmicky features, instead focusing on ‘tried and true’ ingenuity and German engineering, with predictably efficient results.
The Miele CX1 Blizzard Cat & Dog Bagless Vacuum Cleaner is specifically targeted at pet owners. It features Vortex technology for powerful cleaning and a maintenance-free HEPA AirClean Lifetime filter, said to retain up to 99.95% of allergens and fine dust, according to Miele. Miele’s upright vacuum range starts from around $600 and its cylinder models start at about $350, but some cost closer to $1,000, including Miele’s robot vacuums.
Several Miele vacuum cleaners include:
Miele scored five stars for effectiveness of clean and value for money, plus four stars for quietness, ease of emptying and ease of use. It got three stars for ease of storage.
LG specialises in stick and robot vacuums, with the range featuring different smart features, capacities and colours. LG’s range focuses on a combination of technical excellence and user-friendliness to help make cleaning easy. All units are cordless and battery-powered, giving you the freedom of movement.
The LG A9 stick vacuum comes with a dual power pack, which provides up to 40 minutes of runtime per battery. It’s boasted for its ergonomic design with a telescopic pipe able to be adjusted to four different lengths as well as its Opti-balanced handle. Its handstick range is moderately priced, from $799 to $1,299.
LG’s vacuum range features:
LG was rated four stars for effectiveness of clean, ease of use, quietness, value for money and overall satisfaction. It got three stars for ease of emptying and ease of storage.
Whatever your cleaning needs are, Bissell has a vacuum cleaner for you. Its range extends to about 18 models at the time of writing, including canister models, stick vacs, handheld units, robot vacuums and steam and hardfloor mops. One of Bissell’s most expensive model, the Bissell Icon EDGE features a Multi-Cyclonic Spooling System for a supposed better suction and Hygienic Emptying System with plunger technology to effortlessly release dirt from the tank for a mess-free empty. It also comes with a motorised floor nozzle with LED lights to spot dirt even in the darkest corners.
Bissell’s range includes:
Bissell received four stars for effectiveness of clean, ease of use and storage, quietness, value for money and overall satisfaction. It got three stars for ease of emptying.
Samsung is best known for its smartphones, but the brand also offers a neat and tidy range of stick vacuums and robot cleaners. Its high-end stick vac range is currently made up of several ‘Jet’ models, retailing between $729 and $1,129, offering up to 200W of power suction, a quoted 60-minute runtime and various accessories, including a mopping and hardfloor tool to make vacuuming feel less of a chore. Samsung’s POWERbot is equally impressive, featuring Wi-Fi connectivity, an Edge Clean function for corners, self-cleaning brush and other nifty features worth the splurge.
Samsung’s vacuum cleaner range includes:
Samsung achieved five stars for ease of emptying, and four stars in the remaining categories, including overall satisfaction.
Piranha is a budget brand of home appliances, offering no-fuss vacuum cleaners for those looking to get a unit that just gets the job done. The brand is sold at various retailers including Big W and Kmart and online via Kogan. Piranha offers a select range of vacuums, comprising of two bagless models priced under $100. Both come with all the standard features you’d expect from an entry-level vac like a Multi-Cyclonic Filtration System, a washable filter, stainless steel telescopic tube and 2.5L+ dust bin capacity.
Piranha’s vacuum range includes these two models:
Piranha was rated five stars for value for money and four stars for effectiveness and overall satisfaction. It got three stars for ease of use, ease of emptying and ease of storage, plus two stars for quietness.
A vacuum cleaner specialist, Dyson makes a wide range of barrel, upright, handstick and handheld models. Often, categories are further differentiated by what an individual vacuum is said to specialise in. For example, there are Dyson vacuums for allergies and pet hair. Its barrel vacuums also boast a ‘no-tip’ feature, by using a clever rolling ball instead of wheels.
Dyson is generally seen as a premium brand, with most models costing in excess of $500, while some cost $1,000 or more! Its latest addition – the Dyson V15 Detect – is boasted for its powerful suction power and up to 60 minutes of fade-free runtime, although comes with a retail price tag of $1,399 for the Total Clean model.
Dyson’s vacuum range includes:
Dyson scored four stars for effectiveness, ease of use, ease of emptying, ease of storage and overall satisfaction. It received three stars for quietness and value for money.
Electrolux makes a wide variety of rechargeable, canister, cordless and robotic vacuum cleaners. Most canister models feature powerful motors, as well as specialised areas of expertise, such as pet hair, tough dust, and so on. Also in the range is the ‘Silent Performer’ series, which is claimed to be the quietest series in the Electrolux range. In terms of its rechargeable range, the brand’s 2-in-1 stick models are designed with detachable handheld vacuums, ideal for taking care of small messes.
Its Pure Q9 stick vacuum is the latest addition, boasted to combine the performance of a traditional vacuum cleaner with versatility. It provides up to 53 minutes of vacuuming and comes with a 3-in-1 smart tool to help clean all around the home. Models start at about $150 for the handheld varieties and around $250 for the canister vacuums, while the Electrolux PUREi9 Robot vac sits with a retail price tag of about $1,700.
Electrolux’s models include:
Electrolux was rated four stars for effectiveness, ease of use, ease of emptying, value for money and overall satisfaction. It got three stars for quietness and ease of storage.
Black & Decker brings forth several cordless handstick vacuums alongside handheld and barrel vacuums at the cheaper end of the spectrum. There are also a number of vacuums specifically designed for pet owners, such as the Black & Decker 27Wh Lithium-ion Cordless Pet Dustbuster Hand Vacuum, which features a specifically designed motorised pet head with rubber tines.
The Black & Decker 45Wh 2-in-1 Cordless Multipower Allergy Vacuum is designed for allergy sufferers. It features a Dual HEPA filtration system claimed to trap up to 99.92% of dust particles, plus a runtime of up to 60 minutes with a charging time of six hours. It’s also equipped with a battery charge indicator and an LED light to illuminate the floor to help you see where you’ve vacuumed. Black & Decker vacuums can be had for around $100 to $400.
Black & Decker’s range includes:
Black & Decker got five stars for value for money, plus four stars for effectiveness, quietness, ease of emptying and storage. It landed on three stars for ease of use and overall satisfaction.
Philips did offer bagged and bagless vacuums as well as wet hard floor cleaners and steam mops, however, most models featured on the brand’s website seem to be discontinued.
Philips’ range includes:
Philips was rated four stars for ease of use, effectiveness, ease of emptying, ease of storage and quietness. It got three stars for value for money and overall satisfaction.
The brand that is now also a verb, Hoover makes a huge variety of bagged and bagless vacuums, plus handheld, handstick and robot vacuums. It even makes a range of cordless upright vacuums powered by lithium-ion batteries. For the really serious vacuum cleaner enthusiasts, there is also a backpack vacuum on offer to make it look like you’re operating a jetpack!
The Hoover Hoover Zenith Stick Vacuum Cleaner is boasted for its digital brushless motor and motorised powered head, stated to provide an effective clean and offering up to 24 minutes of runtime. It also features LED lights, a three-stage filtration with an exhaust HEPA filter and four specialised accessories for hard-to-reach areas. Hoover prices start from about $50 for the most basic handheld varieties and reach up to $500.
Hoover’s range features:
In this year’s review, Hoover rated four stars for ease of use, quietness, ease of emptying, and value for money. It got three stars in the remaining categories, including overall satisfaction.
Beko deals exclusively in bagless vacuum cleaners with only two models available, claimed to cater to all floor types. Beko’s cordless 2-in-1 rechargeable stick vacuum is kitted with two speed settings, up to 40 minutes’ worth of runtime and a PerformCyclone function to suck up fine and large dust particles off your floors and to help give your carpets a deeper clean, as well as those hard-to-reach spots. Meanwhile, Beko’s bagless corded vacuum features a HEPA 13 filter to remove up to 99.98% of fine particles from the air, a 10m operating radius and a 1550W high-power motor.
Beko’s vacuum cleaner range includes:
Beko received four stars for quietness and three stars everywhere else, including for overall satisfaction.
Vax is a specialist in vacuum cleaners and floor care. It makes a fairly concise range of upright, cordless, barrel and handheld vacuums. Many upright models are also cordless, affording you the ability to go wherever the mess and pet hair lead you. Many of Vax’s barrel vacuum cleaners feature big wheels, making them hard to tip over, and some also feature extra accessories to help eliminate pet hair. Vax’s range, on the whole, can be described as simple, yet powerful.
With a retail price tag of about $300, the Vax Power 6 Barrel Vacuum Cleaner is designed with ‘Multi-cyclonic’ technology, stated to separate and trap debris in the dust chamber for reliable suction. For a cordless stick vacuum, the Vax Blade 2 Max (VX81), features a number of accessories and has a runtime of up to 45 minutes. The 2000W barrel models are available for less than $100, while most other model types are available for less than $300.
Vax’s line-up includes:
Vax was rated four stars for ease of use, ease of emptying and value for money. It got three stars for overall satisfaction and everywhere else.
The cheap and cheerful department store specialising in homewares and cheap electronics has a range of vacuums for Aussie consumers to choose from. Kmart has a fairly large range of budget-oriented vacuums, with upright, handheld, bagless barrel and bagged cylinder models currently on offer. It has also branched out to offer several cordless stick vacuum models, with most boasting a maximum runtime of 25 minutes.
Prices start at just $13 for the wet & dry handheld vac, with most models costing less than $100. Its most expensive vacuum – the cordless stick vacuum with a 6V rechargeable lithium battery – has a price tag of $149 (although this model isn’t always available in-store). It features a 200W brushless motor and is designed with LED lights to help you see under couches and beds. You won’t necessarily sacrifice power with these cheap prices, as many models boast 2000W motors. However, you can’t expect the world, as Kmart vacuums are fairly basic in functionality and light on techy features in comparison to other brands.
Kmart models include:
Kmart vacuums were rated three stars in all categories, including key factors such as effectiveness, ease of use, value for money and overall satisfaction.
Kogan provides plenty of options in the vacuum department, from cordless stick designs to wet and dry units. There are also robot vacuums on offer, including the R10 that provides up to 60 minutes of working time. It features five cleaning modes, including a mopping function and is stated to have a disinfecting UV lamp and HEPA filters.
Kogan’s range features:
Kogan rounded up the results with three stars in all categories, including for key factors such as effectiveness, ease of use, value for money and overall satisfaction.
Aside from the major brands rated in this year’s review, there are several other brands worthy of your consideration, including:
Our 2021 survey of consumers who have recently bought a vacuum cleaner also revealed the following insights:
Top ratings were in fairly short supply in this year’s review, suggesting that consumers are quite hard to please when it comes to vacuum cleaners. One in ten survey respondents (12%) told us they are often disappointed with their vacuum cleaner’s performance, and roughly the same number (13%) regret not spending more on a better model. So, you’ll want to make sure you pick the right type of vacuum for your needs and preferences.
There are pros and cons to different types of vacuum cleaners. Whether it’s not enough battery power from a stick vacuum or constantly tripping over corded barrel models, owning more than one type might be the way to go. If space is at a premium, a stick vacuum is generally easy to store as well as a handheld vacuum that’s ideal for small messes. Canister/barrel models are still the most common and are typically quite versatile with a variety of cleaning heads. Here are some specific factors to consider before buying a new vacuum.
A big factor in how easily a vacuum cleaner is to use and store, size can vary greatly between different models, but it often comes down to a situation of ‘less is more’. From convenient handheld cleaners to uprights and full-sized wheeled models, a compact vacuum cleaner is easier to move around, can clean in tighter spaces and can be stored away with little fuss.
Vacuuming is meant to be fast and efficient, so an appliance that’s easy to operate is essential. This can include features such as intuitive controls, multiple nozzle heads for cleaning different areas, a portable design, and several other factors. Some models also come as a 2-in1 pack, giving you the ability to vacuum with a full-sized vacuum and detach a handheld vacuum for smaller messes.
You’d think a cyclonic vacuum cleaner would be inherently noisy, especially with the sucking power available on newer models. In spite of this, many vacuum brands have committed to reducing the noise produced by their appliances, with some impressive results. When doing your research, make sure to check out the vacuum’s noise emission, so that you don’t end up waking up your neighbours on a Saturday morning.
Nearly half of our respondents told us that their most important consideration when buying a vacuum was the price, and value for money is certainly a big factor when buying a vacuum, especially considering most had their previous vacuum for over six years.
When asked about the biggest deciding factor in the purchase of a new vacuum cleaner, consumers said:
When deciding which type of vacuum is the best for your home and family, give some thought to your vacuuming requirements (i.e. how much space do you need to cover) and any specific circumstances or requirements, such as family members with allergies, or pets that have a tendency to shed lots of hair. You’ll likely need to spend several hundred dollars on a top-of-the-line model, which should last you several years, or you can pay less than $50 for a vacuum that – in all probability – will have a fairly modest life expectancy. You generally get what you pay for with vacuum cleaners, so choose wisely.
Premium brands like Miele, Dyson and Shark are typically regarded as having vacuums with strong suction power, but don’t discount other brands like Bosch and iRobot either since consumers rated both of them best for overall satisfaction.
As a general rule, a vacuum that really sucks will have a minimum power output of 1800W. This should be powerful enough to clean all surface types, including carpets and hard floors. Suction power can also be measured in ‘air watts’. This refers to the airflow and power a vacuum cleaner produces and uses. The higher the ‘air watts’, the more power suction you have.
This report was written by Canstar Blue’s home & lifestyle journalist, Tahnee-Jae Lopez-Vito. She’s an expert on household appliances, grooming products and all things grocery and shopping. In addition to translating our expert research into consumer-friendly ratings reports, Tahnee spends her time helping consumers make better-informed purchase decisions on all manner of consumer goods and services, while highlighting the best deals and anything you need to be aware of.
*Prices are taken from retailer websites, correct as of September 2021.
Picture credit: Lazy_Bear / Shutterstock.com
Canstar Blue surveyed 3,000 Australian adults across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction, via ISO 26362 accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who have purchased and used a vacuum cleaner in the last three years – in this case, 2,944 people.
Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then by mean overall satisfaction. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.
Here are the past winners of Canstar Blue’s vacuum cleaner ratings:
Appliances - July 6th
Dyson and Shark go head to head in the battle to win a spot in your home. Compare their products, features and price at Canstar Blue.– Read more
Appliances - January 13th
Robotic vacuums are becoming increasingly popular in Australia. But what exactly are they, and do you actually need one? Find out with Canstar Blue’s review.– Read more
See our Ratings Methodology.
*Product availability and price range are current as of the stated date, may be subject to change.
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