Just got back to my office, and as promised, I’ll assemble here something beautiful: a list of 10 good vacuum cleaners under 100 dollars. When it comes to cleaning, I always say to my clients: “you should go for the vacuum that best suits your needs and is within your budget”. The decision to buy a vacuum cleaner should be based on features that will meet you cleaning requirements. You should try to avoid those with features that you don’t need. Often, the price of the vacuum doesn’t necessarily reflect its quality. As you’ll see in the following lines, you can find cheap quality vacuums that suit your lifestyle and save you money.
Different models are available in the market, and they come in different configurations. From upright, canister, stick to handheld models. While some models come with disposable bags, other models come with reusable bins. The models to go for and the configuration will depend on your preference. However, if you (or any family member) have allergies or asthma, you might consider High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) for health reasons. They are fitted with filters to remove and suck harmful allergies like dust, smoke and mold from the air. In this case, you should consider spending more that 100 bucks, as safety comes first.
Getting a new, cheap vacuum that has all the features for all your cleaning requirements can be a daunting task. But if you’re here, I bet you wouldn’t like to buy an used vacuum. Used and cheap vacuums are available in many places (Ebay, Craigslist), but just how reliable do you think these may be?
Then again, you might be wondering: why would people buy cheap vacuum cleaners? Many people operating on a shoe string budget are always looking for a good deal that can save them some money. In fact, nobody hates a good deal, even those with enough money to spend. As some of you know, there are some low cost vacuum cleaners which not only work great, but may also last for many years.
I’ve seen a while ago a post talking about the real cost of using a Swiffer. As they were putting the problem, over long periods of time it would be cheaper to buy a $500 Dyson V6 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 really need anything else. One would think this also applies in the case of cheap vacuum cleaners. However, here things are not that black and white. There are low cost units that would last you years, even decades.
How to find a cheap vacuum cleaner
Looking for a good inexpensive vacuum begins with outlining your cleaning needs. Second, look for quality: this is key determinant in this market – when you find a quality model from a reputable seller, it will save you money. And third: take my advice. Some appliances in the market do more than one thing. You can find a vacuum that can convert from a stick to a handheld, or an upright that can convert into a canister. Others steam and vacuum in the same time (or separately). If you find a good deal for a two-in-one/hybrid unit, go for it as it will not only save you money but give you more options. Although there are so many, I’ve tried to limit my top list to just 10 models that provide the most “suck for your buck”, spread across all types, from uprights to handhelds. I revise my choice every now and then, so rest assured that you’ll find here up to date information. Many of these cost well under $100; just a few reach or briefly pass this price tag. I’m also providing for each unit, the best price one can find online, so make sure to check it out.
Best cheap upright
As the name suggest, upright vacuums sit in an upright position and you can work with them without bending. They are flexible to use and can be maneuvered with a foot lever that allows you to push and change the angle of the machine. Features will vary with the model you go for. However, many models are either bagged or bagless and your decision may boil down to whether you want a model that collects dust in a bag or in a bin.
Other features to consider may include:
- Whether you need extra accessories like a wand for cleaning stairs and corners.
- Whether weight is a factor to consider.
- Whether you need to vacuum bare floors, carpets or both.
Here’s my favorite:
1. Hoover WindTunnel T-Series Rewind Plus UH70120
I reviewed 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:
- has a good motor (12 amps), with satisfying suction power, thanks to its WindTunnel Technology (1 air channel)
- it’s bagless, with a dust capacity of 0.65 gallons
- its height is adjustable over 5 predefined values, so you can tackle most types of carpets. Unfortunately, you can’t power off the brushroll, but the bristles are soft enough to make the unit usable on bare floors, after being set on “HARD floors” height position.
- comes with HEPA filtration
- weights 16.5 lbs
- comes with a 27 ft. retractable cord, which is a nice feature
- another specialty is the view window located on top of the brushroll. This helps you to easily spot any clogs that form during vacuuming.
- 2 years of warranty
- at the moment, on sale
Other options in the same category are as follows:
2. Bissell CleanView Plus Rewind with Triple Action Brush 1332
The latest CleanView model improves well over its predecessor. The design surprises with the use of an intense red color. Among the key features, one can relate to:
- the 10 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. However, as in the case of the previous unit from Hoover, you can’t power off the brushroll.
- the good filtration system, called multi-level filtration, especially designed to capture allergens. I would compare this with a standard HEPA.
- the decent weight of 17.4 lbs.
- the 25 ft. of rewindable power cord (just like in the case of the UH70120)
- the 3 years of warranty
- the bargain price
This vacuum shares most specs with other models from the same family, specifically the 1320, 1327, 13321 and the 1333.
3. Hoover WindTunnel 2 High Capacity UH70801PC
Hoover knows to do one thing to do best: to build cheap yet reliable vacuum cleaners. You could quantify this model as an improved version of the T-Series Rewind, since it is far newer and since it uses 2 suctions channels instead of one. But let’s take a closer look:
- The Dual-Cyclone system filters air over 2 levels of cyclones.
- You can adjust nozzle’s height after 5 preset positions. As in the case of T-Series, you can’t turn off the brushroll (this feature is available with Windtunnel 3), but you can still vacuum hard floors by using the appropriate height setting.
- Weights 16.2 lbs.
- Has a large and easy to empty dust bin.
- Comes with HEPA Media filtration, better than ordinary HEPA. Also comes with a reusable washable filter.
- Has a good set of accessories which includes the extension wand, the crevice and the turbo tool, and last but not least, the dusting brush.
- Has a 2-year warranty.
- Currently on sale.
Best cheap canister
Canister vacuums are yet the other popular models available in the market. They are versatile and can be used on low carpeting and stairs easily. You can carry them between rooms and reach surfaces using their long hoses and wands. Besides the increased mobility, they are usually lighter and more powerful in terms of suction. One of the main downsides is the extra storage area for the hose and wand.
My favorite cheap canister:
4. Bissell Zing Bagless 1665
This canister radiates a strong personality, thanks to its green color. What I love about it: you no longer have to pay for replacing the small bags, and it comes with a lot of power. Here are some of its other perks:
- can clean bare floors, low pile and deep pile carpets without any problems, thanks to its multi-surface floor nozzle.
- you can see when the bag is full, thanks to the transparent bin.
- the power cord is a bit short (15 ft.), but on the good side, it automatically rewinds.
- the telescopic wand is long enough to allow you to reach ceilings and fans.
- comes with a 1-year limited warranty
- Here’s a cheap price.
Best cheap cordless
5. Shark Navigator Freestyle Premium SV1106
The market for cordless cleaning systems is definitely growing, as more and more consumers are learning about the advantages brought by these units. The Freestyle Navigator from Shark may be a bit outdated, but its price/quality ratio is still undefeated when it comes to cordless vacuum cleaners. With just a bit over $100 you can get the 14.4V model, the SV1106. The SV1106N is a bit cheaper, but it comes with 10.8V batteries which don’t last that long. Let’s see what else is to be said about the Freestyle:
- has high degree of usability, thanks to its swivel steering and its low profile base.
- comes with 2 cleaning mode presets, one for bare floors and one for carpets.
- the batteries last 20-25 minutes, and charge in 3-4h. Of course, when new, you can probably vacuum continuously around 40 minutes and get the batteries full in less than 3h.
- the 0.29 gallons dirt cup is easy to remove and empty.
- weights 7.5 lbs.
- a nice feature is the charging base which you can use when storing the appliance.
- comes with a 1-year warranty.
- Be sure to take a look a this offer before buying from anywhere else.
Best cheap stick
These models are generally uprights with no extra added accessories. You can consider them as uprights in their simplest form. Although they don’t run on batteries, they are almost as lightweight as cordless models. As you can imagine, they are cheap but less powerful than standard uprights. My advice: go for this type if all you require for your cleaning needs is a powerful alternative to a broom.
My favorite stick:
6. Hoover Corded Cyclonic SH20030
- The motor works on 2 amps, one of the lowest power consumption I’ve seen in corded stick models. Yet, the delivered suction is great, thanks to the proprietary WindTunnel Technology.
- Works well on all surfaces, thanks to the powered brushroll which can be turned off if needed.
- It’s easy to use. The wheels are designed to slide easily over floors, without leaving any marks. The head swivels just enough to make the experience pleasant. And thanks to the low profile, you can reach under any piece of furniture. Moreover, you won’t have to worry about the edges, as the lateral bristles will do the work for you.
- It weights only 8 lbs.
- 20 ft. of power cord ensure you won’t have to unplug and re-plug often.
- Has a 2-year warranty.
Here are 3 other models I really like:
7. Bissell PowerEdge Pet Hard Floor 81L2A
Bissell has a wide range of cheap vacuum cleaners, and some of them are really good. That’s the reason we’re now talking about this PowerEdge. Although it’s light enough to be included in the stick vacuum section (weights only 7.1 lbs), this unit is a good cleaner. For starters, I don’t think there are any other units with a “V” shaped nozzle such as this one. The result: you can use it in tight places with more ease. 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 meant for hard floors only. That means is works best on tiles, marble, hardwood floors, and so on. In fact, I’ve even included it in my top 5 vacuum cleaners for hardwood floors. On carpets it has little efficiency, as it doesn’t even have a brushroll.
Its name isn’t for nothing – it works very well with pet hair, or any kind of hair for that matter, including long human hair. It’s a bagless with an easy empty dirt cup. Comes with a 1-year warranty, but costs less than 2 days of parking in Down Town LA.
8. 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 – more than Dyson V6 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).
- works great for both carpets and hardwood floors. Given its size, you can easily use it for stairs or tighter places.
- has 18 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.
- a bit loud.
- cheaper than a meal at Benihana.
9. Dirt Devil Simpli-Stik SD20000RED
Dirt Devil has been producing low cost vacuum cleaner for decades. One of their absolute wins is the Simply-Stik SD20000. For just about $19.85, 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 Dirt Devil 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 actually 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 light weight, of only 3.8 lbs. The 1.25 amp motor delivers a decent constant suction. It won’t compare to that of a standard upright, but who needs that? The filters are washable and the producer offers 1 year of warranty. Although the head doesn’t swivel, the 2 base wheels make navigation a breeze. The construction feels sturdy and the 16 ft. of power cord can be safely stored using the cord warp clips located behind the unit.
Best cheap handheld
Handheld are mini-vacuums that you can use for smaller cleaning jobs like when you spot a mess or clean a spill. They are available in corded and cordless models that increase mobility and versatility. If you want a cordless model, go for those with rechargeable batteries. If you need a corded model, look for the one with long cords. Most likely, you’ll use these outdoors, to clean the car, garage or for any other outdoor cleaning requirement. You also have a choice between wet and dry models.
My favorite handheld:
10. Eureka RapidClean Step 41A
Eureka reputed a great success with the RapidClean 41A. You can consider this the improved version of the EasyClean 71B. Both models share similar design lines, however, the 41A is definitely superior. You can use this little baby to vacuum stairs, cheerios, dog hair, upholstery and so on. I’ve seen waiters using this to clean the tables. Here are its specs:
- comes with a powerful 6 amps motor, which provides plenty of suction.
- it’s a bagless and the filters are washable, so you’ll get 0 maintenance costs.
- works great on bare floors, thanks to its special brush. Additionally, you can turn the brushroll off.
- reaches a cleaning radius of 28 ft. (where the power cord measures 25 ft. and the hose measures 3 ft.).
- weights 6 lbs. and comes with a 1 year warranty.
- Get a very good deal here.
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 just can’t decide which model is good for you? Don’t be afraid to comment bellow.