Can a good vacuum cost less than $100? Many people ask this when shopping on a budget. And the answer is yes, it can. A great vacuum isn’t always the most expensive. Instead, it can be a simple model that meets your vacuuming needs. By identifying your cleaning requirements, you will know the useful features to look out for. That way, you can avoid the unnecessary complexities of most pricey models.
If you’re searching for the best cheap vacuum, I got you covered. Read on for advice on how to pick the right one from the many on the market. To make things even easier for you, I’m making a top of the best vacuums within the $100 price range. All that you need to do is select the one that matches your preferences from the list.
- 1 Top 6 cheap vacuum cleaners in 2019
- 2 Pros and cons for selected models
- 3 Why Choose a Cheap Vacuum?
- 4 How to Buy a Cheap Vacuum for Under $100
- 5 Choosing the Vacuum Type
- 6 My Advice
- 7 Final Thoughts
Top 6 cheap vacuum cleaners in 2019
Pros and cons for selected models
BISSELL Cleanview Swivel Pet 2252
The latest CleanView model improves well over its predecessor. The design surprises with the use of intense green color. Among the key features, one can relate to:
- redesigned brush roll which allows edge-to-edge cleaning and scatter-free pick-ups
- the 8 amp motor, powerful enough to provide a decent suction
- the Triple Action brushroll system – borrowing from Dyson’s brushroll builds, Bissell employs two types of bristles, which in return increase the cleaning efficiency on carpets and rugs. Unfortunately, you can’t power off the brushroll
- the good filtration system, called multi-level filtration, specially designed to capture allergens. I wouldn’t compare this with a standard HEPA though
- the lightweight (only 14.5 lbs.)
- 13.5 nozzle width
- the 27 ft. of power-cord (unfortunately not rewindable)
- the bin accommodates 0.26 gallons (1 liter)
- the 3 years of warranty
- the bargain price
I reviewed the previous version of this vacuum cleaner a while ago, and I definitely stand behind my thoughts back then. This is a decent vacuum cleaner, well worth its money. Here are some key features:
- it’s lightweight, standing at 10 lbs.
- has a good motor (8 amps), with a satisfying suction power
- it’s bagless, with a large dust capacity of 1 gallon
- 12.6 inches cleaning path
- its height is adjustable over 5 predefined values, so that you can tackle most types of carpets. The bristles are soft enough to make the unit usable on bare floors, after being set on “Bare floors” height position
- comes with a washable filter. Unfortunately, it’s not HEPA
- comes with a 25 ft. retractable cord, which is a nice feature
- Quick-release handle and a good set of accessories
- 3 years of limited warranty
- at the moment, on sale
VonHaus 2-in-1 Corded 600W
Although I don’t think many of you have heard about VonHaus, I’d like to assure you that this product is one of the cheapest sticks that may worth your money. These guys produce much more than cleaning tools: they also make power tools, outdoor equipment, storage shelves, and so on. If the orange color hasn’t convinced you yet, maybe the following specs will:
- 130 Air Watts of suction (5 amps) – more than Dyson stick which costs 10 times that much
- bagless with 0.317 gallons dust capacity, more than enough for a stick
- 2-in-1 means it can be used as a handheld
- 2 layers of filtration (HEPA+sponge). Yes, that’s right, it has a HEPA
- works great for both carpets and hardwood floors. Given its size, you can easily use it for stairs or tighter places
- has 19.5 ft. of power-cord
- comes with additional accessories, such as the crevice tool, the small brush attachment for handheld, the hose adapter, and the shoulder strap. For $10 more, you can also purchase separately the Turbo Cleaning Brush
- 9″ cleaning width
- Unfortunately, a bit loud
- cheaper than a meal at Benihana
Eureka NES210 Blaze 3-in-1
Eureka has been producing low-cost vacuum cleaners for decades. One of their absolute wins is the Blaze 3-in-1. For just $30 or so, you’ll get a complete stick vacuum, and as crazy as it sounds, I don’t think you can buy anything else more useful than this Eureka for this kind of money. I seriously think that if they would freely let the buyers decide how much money to give for an appliance such as this, they would probably make more. Anyways, the unit is pretty good; you can use it as a stick, or you can convert it into a handheld. Surprisingly, the producer even found space to place a crevice tool on board.
Another key feature is its lightweight, of only 4.4 lbs. The 2-amp motor (240W) delivers a decent constant suction. Unfortunately, it won’t compare to that of a standard upright. Other features include:
- washable filters
- bin capacity of only 0.14 gallons
- swivel steering
- 18 ft. power cord
- 9.5″ cleaning width
- 3 years warranty
- cheaper than a pizza
Bissell Zing 4122
This canister radiates a strong personality, thanks to its purple color. What I love about it: its powerful suction, small weight and maneuverability. Here are some of its other perks:
- can clean bare floors, low and deep pile carpets without any problems, thanks to its multi-surface floor nozzle
- powerful suction thanks to a 10 amps motor
- you can see when the bag is full, thanks to an indicator
- the power cord is a bit short (17 ft.), but on the good side, it automatically rewinds
- the telescopic wand is long enough to allow you to reach ceilings and fans
- 10.3″ cleaning width
- 0.5 gallons bag
- comes with a 1-year limited warranty
- Here’s a low price for this product
Eureka Mighty Mite Pet Lover 3684f
The all-classic Eureka Mighty Mite still has a spot on our list. This model has great design lines, that is why it is used even today, after decades of being on the market, for the newer Pet lover version. You can use this baby to vacuum stairs, cheerios, dog hair, upholstery, and so on. Here are its specs:
- can clean bare floors and small-pile area rugs thanks to a 2-setting height adjustment mechanism
- 10 amps on the motor
- can blow things, as utility vacs do
- ergonomic handle with buttons where you need them
- 20′ power cord. Unfortunately, no cord rewind
- 10 inches cleaning path
- weights only 9 pounds
- works great on bare floors
- perfect for cleaning carpeted stairs
- wonderful for car detailing
- includes a good set of attachments
- HEPA filter
- 1-year warranty
- Get a very good deal here
Here are 2 other cheap vacuum cleaners, as a bonus for bearing with me so far:
Bissell Featherweight Bagless Stick
Bissell has a wide range of cheap vacuum cleaners, and some of them are good. That’s the reason we’re now talking about this Featherweight. Although it’s light enough to be included in the stick vacuum section (weighs only 3 lbs.), this unit is a good cleaner. For starters, it’s a 2-in-1: it can convert to a handheld in seconds. The result: you can use it in tight places with more ease, not to mention that you can clean above-the-floor. The nozzle swivels intuitively, as soon as you interact with the handle.
One of the most important things to keep in mind if you’re planning to get one of these: it’s mostly meant for hard floors and low-pile rugs. That means it works best on tiles, marble, hardwood floors, and thin carpet. On carpets, it has little efficiency, as it doesn’t have a brushroll.
Its name isn’t for nothing – it is so light you can lift it with just one finger. It’s bagless, with an easy-to-empty dirt cup. Comes with a 1-year warranty, but costs less than 2 days of parking in Down Town LA.
Dirt Devil Razor Vac UD70350B
The market for cheap cleaning systems is growing, as more and more consumers are discovering alternative cleaning solutions. The Dirt Devil Razor may be a bit outdated, but its price/quality ratio among the best there is. With just a bit under $100 you can get a powerful upright ready to serve you under almost any circumstance. Let’s see what else is to be said about the Razor:
- has a high degree of usability, thanks to its swivel steering and its low profile base
- doesn’t lose suction over time, thanks to a proprietary technology called Endura filtration, which also ensures that no funny odors will be released by the Razor
- weighs only 12 lbs.
- the 0.39 gallons dirt cup is easy to remove and empty.
- 25′ power cord
- 12 amps motor
- 12″ cleaning path
- comes with a 2-year warranty.
- Be sure to take a look at this offer before buying from anywhere else
Why Choose a Cheap Vacuum?
People who buy costly vacuums do so for various reasons. They may have been lured by the advanced features, brand popularity, or even the high price itself. But are these factors enough to make you part with hundreds of dollars for a vacuum? In most cases, the answer is no. Here are the reasons why:
Some Features May Not be Useful
Not all features are worth paying for. Some are just there to impress the buyers and make them believe a vacuum to be high-end. In most situations, the absence of these features doesn’t make a big difference. Take a full bin indicator, for example. The sensor is supposed to alert you when the dirt compartment is full. While that would be a cool feature to have on a vacuum, a bin made of transparent plastic material would suffice. You will still know when the container is about to fill up – without having to pay for it.
Other features that may not be necessary (and which you often end up paying for dearly) include digital displays, WiFi connectivity for manual vacuums, and several other functionalities. True, advanced features make a vacuum stylish and modern. Some may even make it more effective. However, that’s not always the case. Manufacturers won’t tell you is this, that some of the features found on pricey models are almost decorative.
To avoid paying for features that you could do without, I would advise that you follow this rule; only buy a vacuum based on your cleaning requirements. If you have bare floors, you do not need an overly aggressive vacuum. A stiff-bristled brush roll, immense suction, and auto height adjust may not be necessary. Instead, you’d better choose a model that cleans gently, has decent suction power, and average bin capacity. Most probably, it will be a low-cost vacuum under $100.
Expensive Doesn’t Always Mean Quality
True, most quality vacuums are high-priced. However, some charge you for the additional features, most of which you may not need. A digital display or smartphone connectivity may make a vacuum’s price to shoot up substantially, but how useful are they? On the other side, an expensive vacuum is supposed to be made of sturdy materials that last a long time. Contrary to that, some pricey models break down too early.
The notion that high price means quality is, therefore, not true every time. It’s often about particular brands that sell for unusually high rates, additional attachments that raise the price tags unnecessarily, or a company that increases product prices every year.
To avoid falling victim to the illusion of price and quality, I would advise that you check the reputation of the brand that you intend to buy. The specific model too. You may also want to compare the features that the expensive vacuums come with against those of a cheaper model. You will be surprised that the difference is often so small, sometimes even non-existent. Or, it could be that the costly model comes with features or accessories that are not much useful.
You May Not Need Some Attachments
Check the prices of most vacuum models, and you will notice that every additional accessory raises the price. In most vacuum series, the different models will have similar suction, bin capacity, and other select features. Price variations often depend on the number and type of attachments. The same happens across brands. Vacuums with identical cleaning powers will have different prices just because one brand comes with more attachments than the other. To avoid paying for these additional but unnecessary attachments, have a clear idea of what you need and what you don’t.
Many people have purchased costly vacuums at one time or another, only to have some accessories gather dust in a closet. Two different brush rolls are meant for homes with multiple floors. If you only have hard flooring, the extra brush may not be useful. The same applies to pet hair attachments. If you do not have pet or human hair to clean, the accessories or features for the job may not find any use.
Watch Out for Expensive and Hard to Find Parts
When your costly vacuum eventually breaks down, its warranty will likely have expired. That means having to service the vacuum from your pocket. When that happens, the drawbacks of these costly cleaners will start to show. Their parts are usually rare to find – and expensive, if available. Cheap vacuums, on the other hand, use parts that are easy to obtain. Inexpensive spares, too, which makes maintaining such devices less costly. Because every vacuum will break down in the long run, it’s advisable to consider the costs to keep it going. And that means choosing a low-cost model.
Prices Keep Increasing
The prices of some vacuum brands increase almost every year. With every new price tag, there’s often an improved feature to justify the action. While some upgrades may be useful, others may not. The idea behind it is that the user will fall for every update, whether necessary or not. But that doesn’t mean all new models do not come with useful improvements. Some do offer value for money and deserve to be paid for. A good example is the addition of headlights in a new model or a tangle-free brush for pet owners. A cosmetic improvement, such as making the design more stylish or changing a vacuum’s color, are examples of upgrades not worth a price hike.
How to Buy a Cheap Vacuum for Under $100
Now that we have seen why a costly vacuum is not always the best for your cleaning needs let’s look at how to buy a cheap one. That’s because you still need to know what features to look for in the inexpensive models. It would be an unpleasant experience to save on the price but end up with a device that does not match your needs. Here is my advice on how to choose the right cheap vacuum.
Identify Your Cleaning Needs
Different vacuum types, brands, and models offer different cleaning abilities. The type or model you choose should, therefore, match your requirements. Usually, vacuums that plug to an outlet have more powerful motors than most cordless vacs. A majority of them are also less expensive, plus you can use them for extended hours without worrying about power. If you have a large home and carpeted floors, you may want to choose a corded vac.
What abilities should you consider in a vacuum? Only those that are essential! In other words, features that fit the cleaning tasks in your home. To give you an idea of what to look for, here a the features that are worth considering when buying a cheap vacuum.
Suction – you need an affordable vacuum. But you also want it to clean impressively. That means a vacuum that offers adequate suction for your needs. Some vacuums may not clean low-pile carpets effectively. If you have such floors in your home, consider the suction capabilities of the vacuum that you choose.
Pet features – Some vacuums are meant to clean after pets. Such models usually come with the necessary features for pet hair removal. While still minding the price range, consider those abilities. A tangle-free brush allows you to clean both human and pet hair. If you have pets, a pet hair tool would also be a necessary attachment. Because pet dander fills up a vacuum’s dustbin too quickly, I would advise that you choose a model that has a large dust cup.
Dustbin – For a high-traffic home, a vacuum with a decent capacity for the dust bin would be a necessity. For studios and small apartments, the size of the dustbin may not matter much. You do not need to pay for that. Instead, look for other useful features such as suction and the accessories to clean tight spots.
Brush roll – if you have multiple floors, you will want a vacuum whose nozzle can be used on different surfaces. That may mean a combination brush or an on/off switch. Some come with separate brushes for carpets and hard floors. Should you choose those, ensure the manufacture doesn’t charge an arm and a leg for the extra attachment.
HEPA – some manufacturers trade cost for filtration efficiency. If anyone in your family suffers from allergies, ensure that you choose HEPA filters over standard ones. Cutting costs is essential when buying your vacuum, but health is more important. There are cheap vacuum brands that offer HEPA filtration – scout for those when looking for an affordable vacuum but one that can retain allergens.
Accessories – some vacuums will come with an array of accessories, others only a few. Because the number of tools and attachments usually affects a vacuum’s price, choose a model that only offers what you need. Two different brush rolls are great, but unnecessary if you only have hard floors in your home. If you do not have pets, there would be no need to choose a model that comes with pet hair tools and costs you more money.
Bag or Bagless? – Bags are safer and more convenient when it comes to disposing of dirt. Compared to dust cups, bags also offer more ample storage spaces. But bagged vacuums are not without downsides. Putting up with costs to replace the bags is one of them. Bagless vacuums are easy to maintain. You only clean the bin in water and use it again after emptying.
2-in1 design – a vacuum that can be used as an upright and handheld offers more advantages. You can use it to clean the floors, curtains, couches, and virtually every surface in your home. If looking for a cheap vacuum for all cleaning tasks in your home, consider this design.
Corded or cordless – cordless vacuums are more versatile and can be used to clean different places. If you intend to clean a stairway or your car using the same device, consider purchasing a cordless vacuum. These vacuums are highly portable, being mostly lightweight, and not tied to an outlet. That means you can use them in every part of your home. New ones offer cleaning power that equals that of most corded vacuums. The only downside when looking for a cheap vacuum is that most cordless vacs are not budget-friendly.
Should you choose a battery-powered vacuum, consider a model that gives more than ten to fifteen minutes of cleaning time. If you have a large home, you can still buy a cordless model but choose one that comes with a detachable battery. Corded vacuums allow non-stop cleaning, plus most of them have powerful motors.
Apart from the cleaning power and continuous cleaning, corded vacuums are always ready for use. These vacuums are becoming less and less popular, though, as people choose to have a cleaning device that they can use anywhere. Besides, modern ones have come a long way to offer adequate suction and longer cleaning times.
Some Brands are Cheaper than Others
Here is where you need to exercise caution. Some vacuum brands are synonymous with quality, while others do not have a good reputation. When shopping for a vacuum under $100, you want a cheap brand but without compromising on quality. There are several of such vacuums in the market, some famous and others not so popular. A little research will unearth these brands and make choosing your cheap vacuum a lot easier. Luckily for you, I did that on your behalf. You only need to pick the one that suits your budget from the list I have provided.
Models are Different
Manufacturers often produce vacuum lines consisting of several models. The different models usually have different features, cleaning power, and accessories. This allows buyers to choose a vac that suits their specific needs. After selecting the particular brand and vacuum series, the next step should be picking the right model. Do so by comparing the various features each comes with and how useful they are. If your cleaning needs are not so demanding, I would recommend the standard model. In most cases, such a vacuum will suit the requirements of the average home.
Choosing the Vacuum Type
When shopping for your vacuum, there will be different types to choose from; canister, stick, upright, handheld, and even robots. The type you choose depends on your preference, cleaning needs also matter. One vacuum can clean carpets better the other while another vacuums stairs more conveniently. To give you an idea of what to expect from the different types of vacuums, here are descriptions for each:
These vacuums have the main motor separate from the cleaning head and connected by a long hose. The design makes the cleaning nozzle lightweight and highly maneuverable. That’s why canister vacuums are better at cleaning stairways, around corners, and other hard-to-reach places. Because you’re not hauling the motor around, you can use this vacuum for long hours. Canisters are also relatively quiet, mostly inexpensive, and with decent suction power. You can use them to clean a variety of floors, including carpets.
A downside of these vacs is the difficulty of storing them. With a canister, long wand, and cleaning nozzle, these devices take up large spaces. Another problem arises when you have to move the canister from one part of your home to another. They are bulky and not very portable. Overall, canister vacs are suitable if you want a vacuum that doesn’t produce a lot of noise, offers a good enough suction, and can clean tight spots such as corners. These vacuums are also suitable for the cleaning of stairs.
An upright vacuum has the motor, dustbin, and the cleaning head as one piece. They are the most powerful of all vacuum types and can clean carpets of different heights. These qualities made the vacuum a popular option for many years. Despite the high suction power, uprights may not suit the needs of some homes. They are mostly heavy and difficult to maneuver. Some members of your family may find these vacuums challenging to use.
Another drawback of upright vacuums is that they cannot reach places that canister would. Most of the time, you need to use attachments to clean such areas. Heavy most of the time, uprights cannot be said to be portable. That means restricted cleaning and a higher possibility that you will need another vacuum to use alongside the upright. These vacuums are also known to produce a lot of noise.
I love stick vacuums for being lightweight, compact, and easy to guide around. Almost every family member can use them. Stick vacs also do not produce a lot of noise, which is what many buyers wish for in a cleaning device. Most modern sticks are cordless, a trend that’s quickly becoming popular with many manufacturers. Shortly, it might become hard to find a stick vac that plugs into an outlet.
Some stick vacuums are a 2-in-1 design. They quickly convert into a handheld to give you a versatile cleaning device. That means you can use your stick vac to clean floors, mattresses, the stairway, your car’s interior, and various other places. A downside of these vacuums is the low suction. However, most modern models come with powerful motors that allow them to clean a range of low-pile carpets.
These can be cordless or require an outlet to operate. Cordless handhelds are the most popular for their portability. Because you hold them in hand, handhelds cannot clean floors. You would need to bend for a long time, plus their cleaning paths are usually too narrow. These devices are, therefore, best suited for light tasks such as spills. Handhelds also do not produce a lot of suction and cannot be used on carpets. When used together with a full-size vacuum, handhelds help to make cleaning your home more comfortable.
Robot vacuums are among the most expensive on the market. In spite of that, some manufacturers have produced affordable models that cost less or slightly more than $100. Cheap robots come with disadvantages, though. They lack some essential features, such as app control, smart navigation, and several others. If you do not consider those capabilities important, you can get yourself a robot to clean your home – for not more than a hundred dollars. Should you go for this type of vacuum, choose a model that offers decent suction.
When shopping for a vacuum, you will bump into many different types. It can overwhelm you, considering that each model comes with its own set of features. My advice? Let your budget and cleaning needs determine the model you go for. Some vacuum cleaners will come with features you won’t need, while others are unnecessarily pricey. Avoid vacuum cleaners that are overly complicated; you may not find all those features of use for your situation. I always advise anyone looking for a vacuum to determine their cleaning requirements first. That way, identifying unnecessary vacuuming capabilities or attachments becomes easier. I also recommend that you shop within your budget. A high price tag doesn’t necessarily mean better quality. You will eventually come across a vacuum under $100 that will still meet your cleaning requirements.
While still on the issue of budget, some people have the opinion that buying a used vacuum should save them money. If you’re one of them, think about the uncertainty such items come with. You’re buying a gadget whose maintenance history is unknown to you, and there’s a high possibility of the used vacuum breaking down after a few days of use. You should stick to new vacuum cleaners by finding a model that fits your budget. You may also have the view that an inexpensive vacuum is likely to cost you more in the long run. You will most likely replace its parts more often.
On the contrary, mid-priced vacuum cleaners are known to be adequately durable. Cared for appropriately, they can serve you for years. Besides, replacing the parts of a pricey vacuum when it finally breaks down can be costly. I saw a while ago a post talking about the real cost of using a Swiffer. As they were putting the problem, over long periods, it would be cheaper to buy a $600 Dyson V11 than to use a $20 Swiffer Sweeper. Why is that? Because the mop needs a $10 set of new clothes every few weeks, which adds up in time, while the Dyson doesn’t need anything else.
There are cases when you do need to spend more than a hundred bucks to acquire a durable vacuum. Why? All that hype about pricey models being of the highest quality is most of the time just that, a hype. In any case, some of the extra features such models come equipped with may not turn out to be useful. However, there are situations that would require you to spend more than $100 on a vacuum. If you or one of your family members is susceptible to seasonal allergies, you would need a vacuum with a HEPA filter. HEPA vacuums are more expensive, but for a reason. These filters are capable of filtering out allergens such as dust, pollen, pet dander, mold spores, and more. It makes the air coming out of the vacuum safe for breathing. Your health comes first, and paying for the extra filtration level is necessary.
The vacuum you buy doesn’t need to cost you a fortune, especially if your cleaning needs are not many or demanding. The best cheap vacuum should cost you not more than a hundred bucks. Choose a model with basic features and functionalities. Your main aim is to ensure a clean home. Some fancy features on some pricey vacuums may not contribute decisively to the cleaning process.
Contrary to what some buyers may believe, you can get an excellent vacuum for less than $100. If you only do light vacuuming, there would be no reason to spend hundreds of dollars on a high-end model. Such vacuums come with features and attachments that may not be useful in your home. Besides, many cheap vacuums have been proven to outperform expensive models. When buying your vacuum but on a budget, consider the ways you will use it. If you have no pets, attachments, and features meant for pet hair would be unnecessary. An extra stiff-bristled brush roll would serve no purpose if you only have bare floors. To find the right vacuum, always use your cleaning requirements to guide you.
That being said, I would love your feedback on this list. Do you have another favorite model? Have you used or are you using a vacuum from this list and have something to say? Need additional advice or can’t decide which model is right for you? Don’t be afraid to comment below.
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