5 Reasons Not to Buy an Upright Vacuum

Upright vacuums are the most popular, and most profitable, type of vacuum. There are many reasons for this, but the main reason is that they are affordable. Very affordable. You can find a fantastic upright vacuum for less than $100.

Along with that, they aren’t just affordable, they’re also some of the most powerful vacuums around. Unlike robot vacuums or stick vacuums, which aren’t very good at cleaning carpets, you can clean anything with an upright vacuum. The suction is very strong, the brush head is durable, and the dust cup is usually very large, ensuring that you don’t need to empty it out every seven-minutes.

However, upright vacuums aren’t exactly for everyone. They have their own set of flaws, which can seriously lessen the quality and enjoyment of your vacuuming experience. Making the vacuuming process a bit more difficult than it actually needs to be.

We’re going to be looking at five reasons why you shouldn’t buy an upright vacuum.

With that being said, however, if you want a vacuum that is just extremely powerful, an upright vacuum is, in all honesty, your best bet.

So, What Are 5 Reasons Why I Shouldn’t Buy An Upright Vacuum?

You Can’t Clean Stairs With Them

You can clean just about anything with an upright vacuum…except stairs. Unless, of course, the individual stair steps are nice and wide. If they aren’t – and, unfortunately, most of them aren’t – then it’s going to be a bit of a challenge.

The fact that you can’t clean stairs with them brings us to another problem that most upright vacuums have. They aren’t particularly versatile, and you really can’t clean that many spaces with them. You can clean just about any surface, and chances are, you’ll be able to clean that particular surface very well – whether it’s a really thick rug or a hardwood floor. However, when it comes to spaces that are smaller, more narrow, or tight, you really don’t have the ability to clean them.

Upright Vacuums Are Heavy And Bulky

Upright vacuums are very heavy, and picking them up and moving them around is more of an annoyance, than anything else.

Part of this is because of the motors, which are quite large, but very powerful. The other part of this is the fact that the dust cup is also quite large. When you combine these two things, with the shape of an upright vacuum, you get a device that is pretty bulky.

Storing them is also a bit of a problem, since these vacuums stand tall and upright, as the title would suggest, but they’re also quite wide. Especially the brush head, which can sometimes be up to two-feet wide, depending on the kind of upright vacuum you buy.

You Can’t Clean Underneath Furniture With An Upright Vacuum

Going back to the topic of mobility and versatility, if you intend to clean underneath your furniture – such as your couch, for example – with an upright vacuum, you might need to rethink that.

Some of them do have a nozzle that you can release, which does make it easier to go underneath your furniture. But, these nozzles are usually pretty small, and they aren’t very long either. So, you won’t have the easiest time cleaning underneath your furniture, even when you are using a nozzle separate from the main one.

As for the brush head, upright vacuums are known for having brush heads that are very large. And while this makes them very powerful, it doesn’t make it easy for you to clean underneath furniture, or within any other types of narrow/small/tight spaces.

The Power Cord Has A Tendency To Wrap Around The Vacuum

Due to the nature of how an upright vacuum is designed, and the length of the average upright vacuum’s power cord, it isn’t exactly uncommon for the power cord to either wrap around the vacuum itself, which means you need to untangle it, which can be annoying, or it will become tangled, as you are moving around a larger space, such as your living room.

Power cords are pretty finicky things, and it isn’t easy to design a good power cord, that doesn’t tangle or anything of that sort. Unfortunately, due to the nature of an upright vacuum and the design, most of them have power cords that tangle easily, and depending on how you are moving the vacuum, it’s not hard for you to vacuum over the cord, either.

Upright Vacuums Are REALLY Loud

With great power, comes a whole lot of noise. For many people, this is the biggest annoyance of them all. When using an upright vacuum, you might want to wear earplugs, especially if you’re cleaning inside a more enclosed space, because these vacuums are extremely loud.

Now, with that being said, this is a rather small price to pay for the sheer amount of power that you have access to. However, it’s still an annoyance, and if you are someone who is sensitive to loud sounds, and you don’t want to wear earplugs while vacuuming, then upright vacuums probably aren’t for you.

One thing to note, before we dive into the alternative to an upright vacuum, is the fact that there are “Silent Upright Vacuums” being released. They aren’t as affordable, in comparison to the standard upright vacuum, but they provide a similar level of power. So, if you really want one, but you don’t want the noise, you can look into those.

What Is A Good Alternative?

A good alternative is purchasing a canister vacuum. Now, canister vacuums are smaller, and they’re easier store. Generally speaking, they weigh a bit less, since all of the components are housed in a canister. However, they provide the same amount of power, while giving you a bit more versatility, when it comes to what you clean and how you clean it.

Canister Vacuum Good Alternative

One thing to note, however, is that canister vacuums tend to vary quite a bit more, when it comes to the amount of power they offer. So, make sure to do your research.

Our Recommended Upright vacuums

Best of the Best
Budget Option
Also Great
Shark APEX AZ1002 DuoClean with Self-Cleaning...
BISSELL Cleanview Swivel Pet Upright Bagless...
Shark NV356E S2 Navigator Lift-Away Professional...
Shark APEX AZ1002
Bissell 2252
Shark NV356E
17.1 lbs.
Lift-Away
30 ft. Cord
17.7 lbs.
Washable Filter
25 ft. Cord
13.6 lbs.
Lift-Away
25 ft. Cord 27 ft. Cord
Shark's most powerful vacuum. DuoClean dual brushrolls on floors and carpets pair with the Zero-M self-cleaning brushroll for nonstop hair removal.
The Bissell Clean View swivel pet gives you the outstanding performance you’d expect from an expert floor care company at a great price.
Equipped with dynamic swivel steering, the Shark NV356E Navigator provides excellent control when maneuvering around furniture and other obstacles.
Best of the Best
Shark APEX AZ1002 DuoClean with Self-Cleaning...
Shark APEX AZ1002
17.1 lbs.
Lift-Away
30 ft. Cord
Shark's most powerful vacuum. DuoClean dual brushrolls on floors and carpets pair with the Zero-M self-cleaning brushroll for nonstop hair removal.
Budget Option
BISSELL Cleanview Swivel Pet Upright Bagless...
Bissell 2252
17.7 lbs.
Washable Filter
25 ft. Cord
The Bissell Clean View swivel pet gives you the outstanding performance you’d expect from an expert floor care company at a great price.
Also Great
Shark NV356E S2 Navigator Lift-Away Professional...
Shark NV356E
13.6 lbs.
Lift-Away
25 ft. Cord 27 ft. Cord
Equipped with dynamic swivel steering, the Shark NV356E Navigator provides excellent control when maneuvering around furniture and other obstacles.

Upright Vacuums


Upright vacuums outsell all other types by far. In fact, almost half the vacuums on the US market are upright models. The upright vacuum has a design edge over canisters when it comes to carpet cleaning as they make quick work of large areas.


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Last update on 2021-01-17 / Most affiliate links and/or Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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