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The Best Multi-Surface Vacuum Cleaner

best-multi-surface-vacuum-cleaner
Looking for a multi-surface vacuum cleaner can be challenging so we’ve done the hard work for you.
Cleaning carpets and hard flooring calls for a different brushroll action and all the vacs we present today work just as well on either type of surface.
If you want to clean upholstery, mattresses and drapery, we’ve got you covered there, too.
If you’ve got pets in the house and want to zap away all that lingering hair, each of the vacuums on our list today is a strong performer in that area as well.

We’ll launch straight in with a glimpse at our overall winners across a range of categories before giving you a detailed snapshot of each vacuum…

I. Our Picks for Multi-Surface Vacuum Cleaners

Products & FeaturesImage & Price

Shark Navigator Lift-Away Professional Our #1 Pick

  • HEPA-rated filter perfect for allergy sufferers
  • Anti-Allergen Complete Seal tech for cleaner air
  • Great deal of power yet weighs less than 14 pounds
  • 2-quart dirt container minimizes need to empty
  • Brush roll shuts off when cleaning hard floors
Shark-Navigator-Lift-Away-Professional

Dyson V11 Torque Drive Cordless Vacuum Cleaner

  • Torque drive delivers exceptional suction
  • Cleaning heads automatically adjusts depending on the surface
  • Whole-machine HEPA-filtration
  • Total freedom of movement and acceptable runtime
  • Most powerful cordless vacuum by some distance
Dyson-V11

Tineco A10 Hero Cordless Stick

  • Cordless convenience although only 25 minutes of battery life
  • Replaceable and upgradable battery
  • LED power brush for really deep cleaning
  • 4 stages of filtration to keep your floors and air spotless
  • One-touch emptying of dirt cup is a joy
Tineco-A10-Hero-Cordless-Stick

Dyson V7 Cordless Stick

  • Eye-catching fuchsia colorway
  • Super-powerful D7 motor
  • Hygienic and easy to empty dirt container
  • Breaks down into a handheld vac
  • Impeccable brand heritage
Dyson-V7-Cordless-Stick

Shark Rocket DuoClean

  • Ultra-light stick is incredibly maneuverable
  • Converts to a handheld for added value
  • Pet tool bundled
  • Onboard storage for brush roll
  • Deep cleans carpets and gently cleans bare flooring
Shark-Rocket-DuoClean

Shark Navigator Upright

  • Dyson performance at a fraction the cost
  • Subtle and glowing lavender color scheme
  • HEPA-filtration
  • Anti-Allergen Complete Seal technology woven in
  • Deactivate brush roll to gently buff up wooden floors
Shark-Navigator-Upright

Dyson V8 Absolute

  • Pair of cleaner heads to deal with all surfaces
  • Perfect center of gravity for ergonomics
  • Unimpeachable reputation for tech-driven excellence
  • Whole-machine HEPA filter media
  • Huge bundle of accessories
Dyson-V8-Absolute

Bissell Crosswave Floor and Carpet Cleaner

  • Vacuums and washes floors simultaneously
  • Works well on sealed hardwood floors, carpets, and area rugs
  • Dual-action surface brush for a spotless finish
  • Easily accessible smart controls
  • A powerful and versatile performer
Bissell-Crosswave-Floor-and-Carpet-Cleaner

Hoover WindTunnel Corded Upright

  • Weighs just 14 pounds yet powerhouse suction
  • HEPA filtration and Level 3 allergen blocking
  • WindTunnel tech for a thorough clean every time
  • Equally adept on all types of flooring
  • Nice batch of attachments to make life easier
Hoover-WindTunnel-Corded-Upright

Dyson Ball Multi Floor 2

  • Great value for a Dyson
  • Traps all large debris and the finest dust, too
  • Quick-release wand for above-floor cleaning
  • Nimble to push around the room
  • Superb 31-foot power cord for maximum freedom of movement
Dyson-Ball-Multi-Floor-2

Hoover Power Drive Pet

  • Swivel steering so glide around the room
  • Brush roll deep cleans with no tangling
  • Generous dust cup minimizes emptying
  • Pet tools work well with stubborn hair
  • First-class suction for all type of mess
Hoover-Power-Drive-Pet

II. Top 11 Best Multi-Surface Vacuum Cleaners

1. Our Pick:Shark Navigator Lift-Away Professional

Shark-Navigator-Lift-Away-Professional

First up is the enduringly popular Navigator Lift-Away Professional. Shark specializes in delivering Dyson-like performance without the eye-popping price tag.

From carpets and hard flooring through to upholstery and sucking up stubborn pet hair, the Navigator acquits itself admirably. The only place it struggles is on really deep pile carpet where the power can be slightly aggressive. A flick of the switch activates or deactivates the brush roll. You’ll get the suction you need for carpeting but you won’t scratch your hardwood floors.

Once the debris is sucked up, the first-class HEPA filtration traps 99.97% of all contaminants inside the vacuum. Bolstered by Shark’s patented Anti-Allergen Complete Seal Technology, this vac is perfect if you suffer from any sensitivities or asthma.

When you’re moving around cleaning, there’s nothing worse than a power cord cut too short. You won’t need to constantly change outlets as the Shark packs a cable fully 30 feet long.

Lightweight for an upright and with swivel steering for added mobility, the Shark Upright Navigator Lift Away works is a first-class multi-surface vacuum from a brand you can rely on.

Things We Like

  • 2-in-1 upright and portable canister for total versatility
  • HEPA-filtration sucks all allergens safely inside
  • Super-powerful yet weighs less than 14 pounds

Things We Dislike

  • Design is slightly top-heavy and prone to toppling over

See Also:


2. Upgrade Pick:Dyson V11 Torque Drive Cordless Vacuum Cleaner

Dyson-V11

What can you do if you want the convenience of a cordless vac without sacrificing too much power and performance? Well, the Dyson V11 develops more than twice the suction of most cordless vacuums while allowing you complete freedom of movement. What else makes this stellar vacuum stand out, then?

A great vacuum is useless if filtration isn’t up to scratch. As you’d expect from Dyson, you’ll get a completely sealed unit and whole-machine HEPA-grade filters removing 99.97% of particles from your air. As with all HEPA filters, even minute particles as small as 0.3 microns are safely trapped away so you can breathe better air indoors.

Battery runtime is impressive. This will vary slightly according to the power level you’re using and any attachments but you can expect around 60 minutes of cleaning on a single charge. The LCD shows you remaining runtime at a glance so you won’t get any nasty surprises.

The V11 comes with a Dynamic Load Sensor (DLS) onboard. This optimizes cleaning to surface so you can glide effortlessly from hard flooring to carpets without needing to manually adjust the brush roll.

As if this compact and lightweight wasn’t already convenient enough, you can break it down into a handheld. Blitz under the furniture, up the stairs and even out in your car using the superlight handheld.

The Dyson V11 is an agile all-rounder punching above its slender weight. It also represents a great chance to buy into that Dyson brand heritage without needing to spend a fortune.

Things We Like

  • Double the suction kicked out by most cordless vacuums so enjoy unlimited maneuverability without compromising firepower
  • Whole-machine HEPA-filtration so breathe easier especially if you have allergies or sensitivities
  • Generous runtime of up to an hour depending on power mode and attachments

Things We Dislike

  • Lack of LEDs makes it awkward cleaning in gloomy areas

3. Best Budget:Tineco A10 Hero Cordless Stick

Tineco-A10-Hero-Cordless-Stick

Tineco might not be the first brand that springs to mind when you think of vacuums but the Hero is a cordless stick that punches above its weight.

Slimline and weighing less than 3 pounds, you’ll be able to carry out all your above floor cleaning from curtains and upholstery through to stairways with ease. The potent digital motor is rated at 350 watts and kicks out more than enough power to suck up stubborn messes and pet hair.

A single brush works equally well on both carpeting and hard floors. Flick easily between the modes to get the best multi-surface performance and embrace the LEDs to illuminate your cleaning path – a wide 10 inches – in any gloomy areas.

While not HEPA-rated, the 4-stage filtration is completely sealed and you’ll get no blowback into the atmosphere.

In standard mode, you’ll get up to 25 minutes of run-time. Activate deep cleaning mode and you can expect 7 minutes of turbo suction.

For cordless convenience across a range of surfaces in a super-lightweight unit, this Tineco deserves a place on any shortlist.

Things We Like

  • Cordless convenience with decent run-time and the ability to swap out battery
  • Super-light stick ideal for cleaning up and down the stairs
  • Robust filtration system sucks away even tiny particles and contaminants

Things We Dislike

  • Battery life could be more generous so think twice if you’ve got a particularly large home

4. Dyson V7 Cordless Stick

Dyson-V7-Cordless-Stick

Dyson are arguably the industry leader with their exceptional tech-driven vacuums. The only real downside is the pricing but this V7 is outstanding value considering what you get in return.

With a half-hour of battery life, you should be able to get most of your cleaning done in a single session. Hit Max mode when you need a truly deep clean and the bristles will drive down deeper.

From carpet and parquet flooring to sofas, drapery and pet hair, the V7 works impeccably across all surfaces delivering all the suction you need for each without creating any damage.

The V7 breaks down into a nifty little handheld for further versatility and the docking station is space-saving allowing you to mount it on the wall if you have restricted storage space.

The cyclonic design kicks in to separate the debris and increase airflow resulting in a first-rate cleaning job every single time.

Things We Like

  • 30 minutes of battery life in regular mode and 6 minutes when turbo cleaning so a notch above most cordless models
  • Instant release trigger prolongs battery life further
  • Quick and easy bin emptying without being exposed to dirt

Things We Dislike

  • Not the cheapest cordless but excellent price/performance ratio nevertheless

5. Shark Rocket DuoClean

Shark-Rocket-DuoClean

Next up is another Shark with the powerful Rocket DuoClean. As with all vacuums from this mighty brand, you don’t need to pay the earth for hard-hitting cleaning power.

When you’re cleaning carpets, the stiff bristles on the brush agitate the dirt and it’s then pulled in by the powerful suction. Switch to bare flooring and there’s a soft brushroll to avoid scratching up the wood while imparting a polished finish.

Light and nimble anyway, the Rocket also converts into a handheld for vacuuming stairways, above floor areas and down below the furniture.

This stick is surprisingly capable at removing ingrained pet hair and comes with a pet multi-tool to see off any stubborn messes.

If you’ve got mixed surface flooring in your home and you want a single vacuum to cope with them, we can’t recommend the Rocket Duo-Clean strongly enough.

Things We Like

  • 2-in-1 stick and handheld for complete flexibility
  • Pet tool and crevice tool allow to get an immaculate finish
  • From large debris to pet hair and tiny contaminants, the Duo-Clean sucks up everything in its path with consummate ease

Things We Dislike

  • A few complaints about lifespan but we haven’t yet tested this vacuum over the long-term so do you own due diligence

6. Shark Navigator Upright

Shark-Navigator-Upright

While we generally stick to a single product from any given brand, there’s simply no way to ignore Shark’s dominance in the field of multi-surface vacuums so up next is another Navigator model.

Finished in a muted lavender, the Navigator base model flits nimbly from carpeting to hard floors with a brushroll shut-off to avoid spoiling your precious wooden flooring with an excess of power where it’s not needed. Activate this for deep and potent suction on carpets.

Lightweight for an upright, you can get further freedom by converting the Navigator into a handheld unit for any impromptu messes or cleaning the stairways and under the furniture. This also works well for drapery and beds.

Shark’s innovate Anti-Allergen Complete Seal Technology in tandem with HEPA-filtration makes this a perfect weapon for anyone with sensitivities and allergies.

While you won’t get the same extent of pet tools as on other models, this variant still works well with hair and there is an upholstery tool so you won’t be left empty-handed.

For a combination of value, suction and top-notch filtration in a multi-tasking unit, the Navigator delivers in fine style.

Things We Like

  • Detachable canister vacuum to complement the powerful upright
  • Weighs less than 13 pounds despite kicking like a mule
  • Pet upholstery tool included so kiss goodbye to hair-ridden couches

Things We Dislike

  • The pet power brush is not included with this model

See Also: Top 15 Best Hepa Filter Vacuum Cleaners


7. Dyson V8 Absolute

Dyson-V8-Absolute

Another Dyson is next up in the shape of the powerhouse V8 Absolute.

Off the bat, the bundled accessories give you everything you need to clean across all surfaces and furniture as well as seeing off any ingrained pet hair.

2 cleaning heads allow you to get the very best performance whether you’re zipping across carpet or hard flooring.

With whole machine HEPA-filtration, the gold standard for allergy sufferers, you’ll get all pathogens and contaminant safely wicked away rather than belched back into the atmosphere.

Battery life extends to a highly impressive 40 minutes with 7 minutes of turbo-fuelled suction on Max mode delivering that precious extra burst of power for ingrained filth.

With handheld convenience thrown in, this might not be the cheapest multi-surface vac but it’s certainly among the very best.

Things We Like

  • Pair of cleaning heads great for multi-surface cleaning
  • Ergonomic design with optimized center of gravity so it won’t topple over
  • Huge range of accessories thrown in to blitz furniture, upholstery and pet hair

Things We Dislike

  • Ruthlessly expensive but a solid choice if you’ve got a more fluid budget

8. Bissell Crosswave Floor and Carpet Cleaner

Bissell-Crosswave-Floor-and-Carpet-Cleaner

Bissell is renowned for producing top-tier vacuums at an affordable price-point and the stellar Crosswave continues that tradition.

This is a combined vacuum and carpet cleaner with a pair of water tanks onboard. Whether you’re cleaning rugs and carpets or any variety of hard floor from tile to hardwood, lino to sealed flooring, you’ll get a finish optimize to that surface. Easily accessible controls let you flick between cleaning modes without breaking your stride.

The brushroll combines microfiber pads and a nylon brush mop so your vacuum sucks up the debris while at the same time you get the floor buffed up and shining.

Maintenance is remarkably simple considering the functionality and the vacuum is surprisingly lightweight at just over 11 pounds.

The Crosswave redefines multi-surface vacuuming with the inbuilt bonus of that mop and cleaning function. For professional results without needing to outlay a fortune, this was our personal favorite of all the vacs we tested out.

Things We Like

  • Huge variety of kits and bundles for all your cleaning needs
  • Washes and vacuums for a truly deep and professional clean
  • Pair of tanks separate the clean and dirty water

Things We Dislike

  • Not as strong as a regular vacuum for dry cleaning

9. Hoover WindTunnel Corded Upright

Hoover-WindTunnel-Corded-Upright

While cordless vacs are undeniably convenient, a corded model delivers superior firepower. Coming in at a very attractive price-point, this classic Hoover is a lethal bagless upright.

The power cord is cut long enough to clean even larger rooms without constantly needing to switch outlets. You’ll also get a reach of close to 15 feet so you can reach up high and down low without straining yourself.

Marketed to pet owners, you can kiss goodbye to a household riddled with the mess your beloved animals leave behind.

Just hit a button and you can switch from carpet to hard flooring fuss-free. A few users have moaned about the brushroll but we found no issues ourselves when testing.

Easily maneuverable, this Hoover is agile enough to clean in restricted spaces and under furniture or to lift up and down stairs without breaking your back.

For a multi-surface weapon capable of dispatching per hair into the bargain, the WindTunnel is a smart solution.

Things We Like

  • WindTunnel Technology harnesses 3 chambers for an efficient clean-up regardless of surface or type of debris
  • Multi-cyclonic action and neat filtration keep all contaminants and fine particles tucked away where they belong
  • Generous reach and wide cleaning path so get more done in less time without contorting yourself

Things We Dislike

  • A few complaints about the brushroll

10. Dyson Ball Multi Floor 2

Dyson-Ball-Multi-Floor-2

A final Dyson as we edge to the close of our multi-surface vacuum cleaner reviews, this time the lesser-known Multi-Floor 2.

A rare corded model from Dyson, the Ball has a lengthy cable so you won’t be constantly hunting down another power outlet as you clean. You’ll get all the power you’d expect from a corded vac, too.

Unlike much of the competition, you can switch from surface to surface without needing to flip a switch or hit a button. The cleaner head intuits the change and fine-tunes itself accordingly.

Radial Root Cyclone Technology means there’s no fine dust left behind to agitate you and the larger debris is taken care of with equal efficiency.

For a multi-surface powerhouse from an industry legend, the Ball will not disappoint.

Things We Like

  • Self-adjusting head works brilliantly whatever the surface without requiring any user input
  • 31-foot power cord is class-leading and lets you clean larger spaces without any fanfare
  • Push-button bin emptying means no cleaning up after cleaning up!

Things We Dislike

  • Not cheap but currently available at an aggressive discount so move quickly for a real bargain

11. Hoover Power Drive Pet

Hoover-Power-Drive-Pet

Another Hoover to round out our list, the Power Drive is another model tailored for pet hair removal and working across pretty much any surface.

The brush roll is engineered to give you the deep clean you need without hair getting trapped and wrapped around it, a common flaw with pet vacs. You’ll also get a spread of pet tools thrown in for a spotless finish even if you’ve get messy cats and dogs prone to shedding lots of hair.

Hoover bring a lot of technology to the table to deliver all the suction you need whether on carpets, rugs or bare flooring with all the mess captured and trapped inside.

Although it’s a fairly sizeable unit, you’ll be able to push it around with ease due to the responsive swivel steering.

For pet owners and anyone with multiple flooring surfaces in the house, the Power Drive is a wise bet.

Things We Like

  • Swivel steering for easy maneuverability
  • Brushroll can be engaged or disengaged according to the surface
  • Bulky dirt container puts an end to constant emptying mid-clean

Things We Dislike

  • A reasonably bulky unit so not ideal if you have a smaller apartment

III. Conclusion

Most homes now come with both carpets and hard flooring and the last thing you want is more than one vacuum to cope.

Hopefully, after scouring through the 10 multi-purpose vacs above, you’ve now got a clearer idea of which would work best in your house.

There’s no right or wrong answer with vacuums so decide whether you want corded or cordless, bagged or bagless, how much priority you place on HEPA filtration and buy in line with your needs.

We’ve skipped the buying guide today since these are regular vacuums in all senses so, aside from the brushroll, there’s nothing specific you need to be looking out for.

We focused on several cordless models and we’ll be writing up the report of our testing of a bunch more rechargeable vacuums this week so come back soon!

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