I’ve been testing vacuums for years — these 6 are Dyson’s very best

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Long gone are the days of the clunky, can’t-move-around vacuum monsters that have you schlepping a heavy sucker from room to room. Fortunately, we’ve found the best vacuums in 2024 and beyond to help you on your squeaky-clean journey.

Now, the buffet of vacuums on the market comes in an array of high-tech features, including robot vacuums, handhelds, or cord-free vacuums that can have your rugs and floors spotless in minutes. Best of all, some of the best ones, like those from Dyson, are on sale.

RELATED: The 7 best mops we tested to clean all floors in 2024

There’s no question some of the best vacuums can be up there in price. So, you want to ensure the swift cleaner you snag is well worth the investment — especially when so many models claim to be the best for families and pets.

Luckily, we spent months shuffling past rooms with different vacuums to find recommendations we would recommend IRL. And, to no surprise, Dyson passed with flying colors (and super clean carpets).

Below, find the five best vacuums we tested, the pros and cons of each, and unique features to help guide your new carpet and hardwood floor cleaner decision. Whether you’re looking to add a vacuum to your wedding registry or are in the market for a more convenient, of-age system, there’s certainly one for you.

The Dyson V8 Animal Cordless Stick Vacuum is all the rage, and for a good reason — it’s the best cordless vacuum we tested from Dyson and is a practical, relatively affordable investment that’ll leave your house spotless.

With the V8 Animal, you’re getting optimal suction and hassle-free maneuvering. Though I don’t have a furry pet, this vacuum impressively worked well in picking up finer dust and hairs from carpeting.

The Pros

Its customized cleaning options: The ability to switch between two power modes was a feature I didn’t know I needed. I enjoyed its MAX mode — which provides up to seven minutes of intense power — on my thicker shag carpet and its Powerful mode for regular Sunday deep cleans.

Its mini cleaning tools: With the V8 Animal, you’ll never need a car vacuum or a spot cleaner again. Conveniently, this model is clad with a combination tool that works well on finer textures — like carpeting on stairs — a crevice tool for hard-to-reach places and even a motorized brush bar to tackle dirt and dust on anything from car seats to couches.

Its asthma and allergy-friendly make: As a bonus, the V8 Animal is certified asthma- and allergy-friendly, so it traps allergens inside the machine rather than expelling them into the home. As someone with allergies to dust and mold, this is a nifty aspect.

And, truthfully, we have no cons to speak of at this time.

The Cons

Doesn’t feature advanced technologies: Such as the brand’s newer models with real-time display and dust collection data.

Dyson’s brand-new V12 Detect Slim Vacuum is one of the most of-age vacuums I’ve ever used — and that includes my experience with robot vacuums.

Dubbed Dyson’s “most compact intelligent cordless vacuum,” it’s clad with laser technology that scientifically shows you how well it’s cleaning on its built-in LCD screen. The screen shows what has been sucked up, while its piezo sensor sizes and counts the amount of dust particles to automatically increase the suction power, if needed. In short, it’s pretty ground-breaking.

The Pros

Its precision: In tandem with the crevice tool and easy-to-maneuver stick handle, the V12 Detect is incredible high-tech and apt for all kinds of spaces. This is huge, especially if you’re really particular with your deep-cleaning sessions (as am I).

Its LCD screen: This just proves to me, as a consumer, how much time and energy was put into designing this vacuum. Dyson wants you to comprehend exactly how it’s getting the job done — and getting the job done efficiently.

Its run time: It doesn’t take me long to vacuum my smaller-sized space, so the up-to-60 minutes of run time is a wonderful aspect to the V12 Detect. If I’m cleaning my entire house, it’s amazing, and when I clean just one room, I know it’ll never die on me.

Its capability to detect dust: While all good vacuums locate and remove dust from your floors, the V12 Detect’s Laser Slim Fluffy cleaner head has built-in laser technology you can’t normally see, ensuring you won’t miss anything. At the end of my cleaning, my room has never looked more refreshed.

The Cons

The price: Dyson’s V12 Detect is $550, which is pretty comparable — if not pricier — than robot vacuums that do it all for you. That said, I still love working it myself (it’s so simple to use), but it’s one con to consider before purchasing.

When I first unboxed one of Dyson’s newest vacuums, its Omni-Glide, I was shocked at how small it was. Sure, stick and cordless vacuums are the new wave, but this was only a few inches taller than my 1.5-year-old niece.

That said, the saying “small, but mighty” was certainly in mind when Dyson designed the Omni-Glide. In fact, it’s Dyson’s slimmest and most maneuverable vacuum for hard floors, featuring the brand’s first omnidirectional soft roller cleaner head that literally glides into hard-to-reach places.

The Pros

Its lightweight size: I vacuumed my living room, then walked upstairs to vacuum my bedroom and then went outside to vacuum a small rug — and the whole cleaning process took me less than 10 minutes. Why? The vacuum is so lightweight and the Omni-Glide is a true answer to prayer for anyone who gets frustrated lifting a heavy cleaning tool.

Its ability to glide into corners: While the Omni-Glide is a surefire perfect match for handheld dusting with the included crevice tool, it’s also impressive at sucking up dirt on tile floor, debris in floor molding and even in between your stair rails — all with velvet-like, soft nylon brush bars.

Its storage versatility: You can either store the Omni-Glide with the included wall-mounted charging dock — which is great for apartment closet storage — or concentrate the cleaning device in-line under your bed or couch. Again, small but mighty.

Its ease of maintenance: With the help of Dyson’s follow-along video, it hasn’t been easier to learn how to properly care for the new tool. Plus, emptying the bin is hands-free and shoots out straight from the vacuum’s storage when ready.

The Cons

It’s not practical for large cleaning sessions: Due to the Omni-Glide’s tinier-than-tiny statute, it hurt my back to vacuum my entire living room floor. Though the stick comes up to chest level, I found myself reaching over at times to glide it around the room — which isn’t good for your back.

However, the convenience of the vacuum being so small is still great for small spaces. Particularly, it’s great if you have an apartment with just a kitchen, living area and bathroom to worry about.

It’s not great on textured carpets: If you have intense shag (as I do in my hallway foyer) or Berber textured carpet, this isn’t the vacuum for you. While it does glide, I felt like it didn’t pick up embedded dust on coarser, soft floors.

But it is dynamite on hard floors, especially the deep multi-colored brown tile in my kitchen, which is always difficult to spot where dirt lays.

Though the Dyson V7 Advanced Origin Cordless Vacuum isn’t a recent Dyson release, it’s still a wonderful cleaner that comes in an aesthetically pleasing purple and silver color.

In short, this model has incredible suction power and, though comparable to the brand’s V8 Animal and Omni-Glide, the ability to suck dirt, dust and grime is unparalleled.

The Pros

Its suction power: No surprise here, but the inclusion of two-tier radial cyclones — 15 total — allows the vacuum to increase the airflow and capture fine dust. And it’s not too noisy, either; it’s more of a whoosh than a loud motor.

Its ability to snuggle into hard-to-reach places: Though it’s not the Omni-Glide, it was one of the best for swiveling into corners and other hard-to-reach places, specifically for your stairs, behind your bed and under sinks.

The Cons

Doesn’t boast as strong of suction power as the others: The fact that the V7 Advanced Origin Vacuum is cordless deserves a pat on the back, but it doesn’t put an emphasis on its suction power like the other models. However, it’s still a wonderful purchase that’s at a great, near $50 discount.

The best for thick carpets: Dyson Ball Animal 2 Total Clean Upright Vacuum Cleaner

For one, it’s impressive that this model isn’t cordless but still comes with accessories to transform your power vac into a precise cleaning machine. And there’s even a mattress tool, which is ideal. Because let’s face it — when’s the last time you gave your everyday mattress a spin clean?

The Pros

Its deep cleaning capabilities: As mentioned, the textured rugs in my home aren’t fine. I have a crazy shag, deep-rooted Berber and macrame boho area rugs that I personally don’t know how to give a true deep cleaning to. However, the Ball Animal 2 is an effective solution.

Its uprightness: An odd pro, but its ball structure gives weight to gravity, making it stand perfectly upright without leaning against a wall or charging dock. It’s convenient, handy and won’t crash into your furniture.

The Cons

It’s heavy: Weighing in at almost 18 pounds, it’s no lightweight machine. That said, it’s not my favorite but, because of its incredible ability to deep clean, made the cut.

It’s not as versatile as others tested: Though the Ball Animal 2 comes with some unique and practical tools, it can’t transform into a handheld cleaner.

The best for deep cleaning: Dyson Gen5Outsize

I’ve been testing the Dyson Gen5Outsize for months now, and it has become a staple in my cleaning routine. While it is slightly larger than some other models, this doesn’t detract from its overall performance. In fact, its extensive range of attachments makes it a comprehensive cleaning system that’s well worth the investment.

This model features Dyson’s most advanced cordless vacuum technology, boasting powerful suction, integrated HEPA filtration to combat allergens, and the brand’s longest runtime yet. It effortlessly tackles both hardwood floors in my living room and shag carpeting upstairs.

One of its standout features is the dust detection technology, which is displayed on a modern screen. This high-tech feature adds an element of excitement to cleaning. With a motor that spins up to 135,000rpm, it delivers remarkable suction power for a thorough clean. I’m always amazed at the amount of dust and debris it collects in the easy-to-empty reservoir. It’s incredibly satisfying.

I particularly appreciate the Fluffy Optic Cleaner Head for its precision, along with the Digital Motorbar XL Cleaner Head for larger spaces. The vacuum also comes with a built-in dusting and crevice tool, a hair screw tool for pet hair, a combination tool for quick cleaning tasks, and a docking station, charger, and additional battery for continuous use. While it may require a bit of a splurge, it’s the only vacuum you’ll need for years to come.

The Pros

Its all-in-one cordless vacuum: I found it complete with plenty of tools to make cleaning easier, which added to its value and experience.

Features Dyson’s most advanced cordless vacuum technology: It is equipped with advanced suction power, advanced HEPA filtration, and the longest runtime yet.

Its lightweight size: Very easy to maneuver, especially in hard-to-reach areas and angles, perfect for reaching under beds and behind furniture you don’t want to move.

The Cons

Cost prohibitive: The price may pose a barrier for some consumers, but it’s worth the splurge because of all the amazing benefits it provides, like the brand’s longest runtime yet, dust detection factor, and additional battery.

Slightly larger in size: This model is larger compared to other Dyson models, although it may not be considered a significant drawback. For instance, its waste bin is 150% larger than the Gen5detect bin, allowing it to suck up more dirt between cleanings.

How we tested

Pictured: Dyson Gen5outsize vacuum, which we reviewed in 2024.

Let’s be real — any Dyson cordless vacuum is a gift in and of itself (truly), but there are specific characteristics I kept in mind: