Top 10 Best Vacuum Cleaners for Stairs in 2020 | Reviewed By Experts

It can be difficult to clean stairs. Stairs and banisters have crevices which provide a haven for the collection of dirt, dust and allergens. What makes stairs dirty and grimy is their frequent use when entering and exiting a home.

Having an adaptable cleaning device is necessary to properly clean stairs. The best vacuum cleaner for stairs is specially designed for cleaning carpeted stairs. It is lightweight, ergonomic, and adaptable to awkwardly placed staircases.

A fully-fledged handheld vacuum cleaner for stairs delivers impeccable cleaning results. It loosens caked-on dirt and removes stubborn pet hair deep within the carpet fibers. It can also tackle dust, dirt and debris from narrow staircases as well as tight corners and crevices.

In this review, we examine top rated vacuum models with qualities suitable for cleaning stairs. We enlist handheld vacuums that are lightweight, compact and easy to maneuver. These are unique products with exceptional features for cleaning staircases. In the article Best Cordless Vacuum Cleaners for Stairs we explore a number of additional strictly cordless options.

Read the full review of each product below.

Best Vacuum Cleaner for Stairs – Unbiased Reviews

1.    Shark Navigator Lift-Away NV352


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Shark Navigator Upright Lift-Away Vacuum is a lightweight, 2-in-1 vacuum cleaner with a detachable canister that ensures extremely portable cleaning power. It entails a Lift-Away technology, which lets you lift away the canister and easily clean hard-to-reach areas with the press of a button. The vacuum is equipped with Swivel Steering for better maneuverability and control around furniture.

Shark Navigator has an Anti-Allergen Complete Seal Technology, which includes a HEPA filter for trapping allergens and dusts. It can trap up to 99% of allergens and dust inside the vacuum. There’s also a Brush-roll Shutoff button, which allows you to conveniently switch between deep carpet and bare floor cleaning.

Not only is this cleaning device portable and versatile at only 12.5 pounds, but also powerful and lightweight. It comes standard with Wide Pet Upholstery tool but devoid of pet power brush. It boasts a ton of bonus tools including Accessory Bag, Home & Car Derail Kit, and Away Pro Nozzle with one Microfiber Pad among others.


  • Easy to maneuver
  • Extremely lightweight, hence easy to pull, push or lift
  • Exceptionally powerful suction
  • Washable filters
  • Plenty of accessories included


  • Relatively easy to tip off

Shark Navigator Upright Lift-Away Vacuum is a lightweight and powerful unit that literally vacuums unbelievable amounts of dust and debris. This vacuum cleaner offers an easy-to-use setup that makes vacuuming staircases a breeze. And with great suction power and plenty of extra accessories included, you will never regret buying this amazing unit.

2.    Dyson V6 Trigger Cordless

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Dyson V6 is a light, ergonomically designed unit with up to 100AW suction power. It is powered by Dyson Digital V6 motor, which is 3 times faster than regular motors. This best handheld vacuum for stairs comes with plentiful features including 2-tier radial cyclones, hygienic bin emptying, fade-free battery and much more.

The product has a three-and-a-half hour charge time and up to 20 minutes run-time. It weighs about 3.4 pounds. Its light and ergonomic design means that the unit fits into the shape of your palm.

It’s easy to handle because the center of gravity is situated near the grip. The vacuum is standard with 15 cyclones available in two tiers, which work parallel to each other to enhance the flow of air for maximum capturing of fine dust.

The unit boasts a powerful, fade-free suction unlike other handhelds which happen to lose suction while cleaning. Dyson V6 Trigger loses no single suction power and provides robust handheld suction. It gives you no less than 20 minutes of powerful suction, with a run-time enhancing trigger grip that releases instantly to ensure that battery power is exclusively utilized for vacuuming.

And if you’re handling difficult cleaning tasks, the unit is standard with a push-button Max Power Mode that offers six extra minutes of higher suction. The re-designed fade-free battery can be customized to execute 1.5 times more power than DC34. A one-touch Hygienic Bin Emptying is available so that you can discharge dirt with the push of a button.


  • 3-times more suction power than other handhelds
  • 3-times faster digital motor than conventional motors
  • Ergonomic design for easy handling
  • Re-engineered and customized fade-free battery for more power
  • Very hygienic bin emptying


  • Smaller filth container

Dyson V6 is a remarkable vacuum that is super powerful, lightweight and pretty easy to use. It’s noticeably more powerful than all previous versions of Dyson V6. Whereas this device is expensive, it guarantees value for your hard-earned money.

3.    Shark Rocket Ultra-Light True-Pet Upright Corded Vacuum

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Shark Rocket Ultra-Light True-Pet Upright Corded Vacuum is a truly ultra-lightweight vacuum for stairs, weighing less than 9 pounds. This product easily converts into a handheld vac for more versatile cleaning of floor to ceiling. It has Hard Floor Hero that provides superior bare floor cleaning by picking up stuck-on debris and surface litter.

As far as dimensions go, this unit measures 47.2 inches long, 13.4 inches high and 102 inches wide. The unit has an extra-large (XL) Capacity Dust Cup, which allows for comprehensive cleaning with no interruptions whatsoever. The nozzle and hand vac of the unit feature Powerful LED lights to help you spot any hidden debris and vacuum it away.

Shark Rocket Ultra-Light True-Pet Upright Corded Vacuum is available with Pet Multi-Tool as standard. It’s designed for ease of capturing pet hair embedded on all surfaces of your home. There’s also Advanced Swivel Steering with excellent control for ease of maneuverability around furniture.


  • Easy to set up, use, clean and maintain
  • Weighs less than 9lbs. for easy maneuverability
  • Works best on both bamboo and hardwood stairs
  • Great suction power
  • Takes up less closet space


  • Vents out hot air – you may not enjoy this heat during hot summer months
  • Too long and cannot stand alone

Shark Rocket Ultra-Light True-Pet Upright Corded Vacuum is so light and makes everything pretty easy to clean. It’s hands down easy to use and boasts of superior maneuverability. It’s a worthy investment for anyone in the search for a lightweight vac at a reasonably affordable price.

4.    Bissell Cleanview Deluxe Corded Handheld Vacuum, 47R51

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The Bissell Cleanview Deluxe Corded Handheld Vacuum, 47R51 is a sturdy and reliable cleaning unit. This vacuum cleaner, which is handheld, is very compact and versatile. Its lightweight design allows you to carry it around the house conveniently. It has a transparent 0.78L-capacity dirt cup that holds dust and debris as you clean various rooms. Your formerly dirty surfaces are left sparkling clean, thanks to the vacuum’s powerful suction. This Bissell unit is also capable of cleaning the interior of your car. For the purpose of versatility and cleaning efficiency, there is a hose that can be attached for cleaning elevated surfaces and other hard-to-reach areas. The hose comes with an adapter tool that helps to firmly attach it to the vacuum.

A flexible rubber nozzle sits on the front of the machine for eliminating dirt and hair from stairs, car interior, and other surfaces. The unit’s 18 foot power cord, which features a cord wrap system, is lengthy enough for extensive cleaning – you can easily reach surrounding surfaces while the cord is plugged in to power. Asides from all these features, the Bissell Cleanview Deluxe Corded Handheld Vacuum, 47R51 comes with reliable cleaning attachments for tackling dirt in tight spaces.

There are sufficient cleaning tools to make this unit the best stairs vacuum. It has mouth tool, crevice tool, and hose with hose adapter tool.


  • Compact, lightweight, and versatile handheld unit.
  • It features specialized cleaning tools like crevice tool, wide mouth tool, hose, and hose adapter tool.
  • Lengthy 18 foot power cord with cord wrap system
  • Flexible rubber nozzle that easily eliminates hair and dirt from car, stairs, and upholstery.
  • It has a powerful suction for removing dirt and an easy empty dirt cup.


  • It quickly gets hot

The Bissell Cleanview Deluxe Corded Hand Vacuum, 47R51 comes with a HEPA Media Filter that helps to remove the tiniest dirt particles. The power switch is easily accessible and is positioned at the tip of the vacuum’s curved handle. The unit is sold at a budget-friendly price.

5.    Shark Rocket Corded Hand Vac

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Shark Rocket Hand Vac is a powerful handheld vacuum with fantastic suction power. It is ideal for cleaning a variety of surfaces including stairs and car interiors. This equipment features dozens of accessories such as a 12-inch crevice tool, extended-reach stretch hose, dusting brush and True Pet Motorized Brush.

Regarding dimensions, Shark Rocket hand vac is 9.7 x 4.9 x 13.6 inches. It’s portable and ultra-lightweight at just 4 pounds, so you get sheer convenience as you handle your cleanup chores. The product flaunts a 15-foot-long power cord with Never Lose Suction Technology. You can clean up the entire room without worrying about batteries.

The True Pet Motorized Brush is standard, giving you handheld deep cleaning. It can extract dirt, allergens, pet hair and dust from upholstery. It provides deep clean surfaces and thus suitable for car interiors, stairs, and furniture.

There is an easy-to-empty dust cup which empties collected stuff with the press of a button. Simply hold the dust canister over the trash and press the button on the bottom door to empty. With washable filters in place, you are sure of zero maintenance costs. You can wash and reuse the filters without any interruption.


  • Hands-down powerful suction
  • Extended cord length for convenience while cleaning
  • Easy to swap attachments
  • Ultra-lightweight and portable
  • Easy to empty debris


  • No storage caddy for ease of storage
  • The cord isn’t retractable

Shark Rocket Hand Vac is a potent vacuum cleaner that executes incredible cleaning results. It comprises plenty of accessories, which ensure that you get your clean-up done with zero interruptions. What’s more, the suction power is unparalleled and can clean under, around, above and beyond.

6.    BLACK+DECKER MAX BDH2000PL Lithium Pivot 20-VOLT Vacuum

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The 20-V MAX Lithium Pivot Vacuum is an all-purpose cleaning device with serious power. It is standard with the convenient 20V MAX lithium ion battery, which provides strong suction for cleaning anywhere and anytime. Also, the vacuum has a compact, lightweight design for easy carrying and storage within easy reach.

This Lithium Pivot unit comprises a ton of onboard tools including On-board Brush, Washable filter, standard Charging Base and On-board Crevice Tool among others. It has distinctive pivoting features for easy cleaning of hard-to-reach areas, such as above tall shelves, under cupboards, and in between couch cushions. The unit also integrates the filter flicker for improved suction power.

There is a high-performance motor which delivers powerful suction for all messes—big or small. The cyclonic action is ideal for spinning away dust and debris from the filter, therefore keeping suction power strong. This Pivot vacuum has a convenient charging base to give you a compact storage solution.

The unit benefits from a handy Brush and Crevice Tool and offers a three-stage filtration system. The pleated filter design gives you superior filtration for clean air exhaust. The product highlights a wide-mouth design, so it can scoop up large debris. You can extend the crevice tool to access tight spaces, or flip up the brush to clean up upholstery.

Cleaning the equipment is a breeze thanks to the washable filter and dirt bowl. The translucent, bag-less dirt bowl offers a side-door function for ease of emptying dirt. It has 42% more capacity compared to other Pivot vacuums on the market.


  • A 3-stage filtration system for thorough cleaning of stairs
  • Compact and lightweight for easy transportation and storage
  • A high-performance motor for superior suction capability
  • Wide mouth design for scooping up large debris
  • Cyclonic action for increased suction power


  • Door hinge on the clean-out access is poorly designed
  • The motor in the cylinder can dislodge

Except for a few structural flaws, the 20-V MAX Lithium Pivot Vacuum is a good purchase. The battery charge duration is great and the charge lasts a long time. The unit also boasts high power and suction and is significantly more convenient than dragging out the vacuum.

7.    BISSELL Zing Canister Vacuum, 2154A


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This product from Bissell is an excellent choice for cleaning your home. The vacuum is equipped with a powerful suction that can be adjusted to suit various floors. It is one of the best vacuums for the stairs and it easily eliminates dirt out of stairs. With its lightweight design and easy maneuverability, you can conveniently clean underneath and around furniture; lifting the unit won’t give you back pain either. The unit is capable of switch-assisted multi-surface cleaning; meaning that there won’t be any problem transitioning from your carpets to the hard-surface floors.

The vacuum’s variable suction gives you control over the cleaning of your floors and above-ground surfaces. In addition to all this, there’s also an automatic cord rewind feature. This feature makes it easier to get the power cord out of the way after you’ve finished cleaning. Neatness is very important when cleaning messes with your vacuum cleaner – the Bissell Zing Lightweight, Bagged Canister Vacuum, purple 2154A is made with a detachable dust bag. This makes it easier to dispose vacuumed dirt without making a mess.

The combination of pre-motor and post-motor filters, with the removable dust bag, makes it possible to remove the tiniest dirt particles from various surfaces. You can save money on filters since these ones can be washed and used severally.


  • It is a light-weight unit – at just 7.5lbs
  • It comes with a detachable 2.5L dust bag.
  • It has a lightweight and compact design with easy maneuverability.
  • Equipped with variable powerful suction.
  • Comes with an automatic power cord rewind.


  • The power cord isn’t long enough.

All the features on this vacuum make it an effective unit for cleaning hard floors, rugs, hard-to-reach areas, and elevated surfaces. Its lightweight design makes it convenient to carry from one room to another. The easy maneuverability also allows you to transit from rug to hard surface floors without an itch.

8.    Shark Rocket Duo-Clean Ultra-Light Corded Bag-less Hand Vacuum

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Shark Rocket Handheld Vacuum is an ultra-light unit measuring 10.2 x 9.8 x 46.4 inches. It comes standard with the Duo-Clean Technology that provides two brushrolls for better cleaning. It features a bristle brush along with an extra soft brushroll working in unison to eliminate three types of debris from your stairs and carpets—stuck-on particles, large dirt, and small fragments.

It is ultra-lightweight, weighing less than 10 pounds. For that reason, the overall unit easily converts into 4.6lbs hand vacuum for versatile floor-to-ceiling cleanup. Shark Rocket vacuum also comprises powerful LED lights on the nozzle and hand vac, which help you spot the finest debris hidden on your stairs.

The brushroll garage gives you easy access to the brushroll for quick and easy maintenance, while a pet multi-tool proves handy in seizing embedded pet hair on your floors. The brushroll allows you to engage floors directly and remove stuck-on debris for an almost-polished finish.

Furthermore, the vac entails dozens of extra accessories, including Duster Crevice Tool and Wall Mount Storage Hook among others. This vacuum unit pulls in piles of small dirt no matter what surface you’re cleaning. It also lets you attack large debris when they confront you.


  • Easy setup
  • Great lightweight vacuum
  • Very exceptional suction or power
  • Reasonably priced
  • Easy cleaning and maintenance


  • The roller brush is jam-packed with fur
  • The dust cup is too small

Shark Rocket Handheld Vac is a lightweight vac that exceeds the ultimate expectations. It comprises a powerful motor that proves useful in picking up everything including dog hair from your stairs. It’s easy to maneuver and works wonders on hard surfaces and carpets.

What’s more, it breaks down to hand vac effortlessly when necessary. It’s a good purchase that guarantees value for money.

9.    Bissell 1782 Pet Hair Eraser Cordless Hand and Car Vacuum

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Bissell 1782 Pet Hair Eraser Cordless Hand Vacuum is designed for pet owners to clean wherever their pet goes. It’s a cordless unit that makes pet hair cleaning a breeze. It’s cordless and lightweight, so that you can clean up dirt and pet hair that collects wherever your pets play such as stairs, carpet, car, and furniture. The device incorporates a detachable motorized brush to help you capture embedded dirt and pet hair for a deeper clean.

This unit features crevice and upholstery tools, which can either be used separately or in conjunction to achieve a more polished cleanup. The crevice tool proves useful in cleaning tight spaces and hard-to-reach areas. The upholstery tool, on the other hand, cleans furniture and soft surfaces by trapping more pet hair. Also available is an easy-to-empty dirt bin, which helps you get rid of pet hair without a hiccup.

Moreover, this vacuum is standard with a Dual-action filtration system that helps you prolong the life of the filter as well as provide easier cleaning of surfaces. Three handy attachments can be stacked together for extended range when cleaning hard-to-reach spaces. The unit is conveniently cordless, so it’s easy to pick up and use in the entire space of your house or car.


  • Easy to assemble and use
  • Provides a deeper clean
  • Dual-action filtration offers hassle-free cleaning
  • Lightweight and easy to maneuver
  • All the attachments are pretty easy to use


  • It’s battery life is limited

The Bissell 1782 Pet Hair Eraser Cordless Hand is one of the best cordless handheld vacuum for stairs. Many owners report great results with is strong suction when dealing with pet hair on carpeted stairs. It’s easy to maneuver and guarantees a polished cleanup.

10.    HOOVER Max-Extract 60 Pressure Pro Deep Carpet Cleaner, FH50220

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Max-Extract 60 Pressure Pro is Hoover’s new deep cleaner designed for cleaning a variety of surfaces, such as carpeted stairs and couches. It does an excellent task of cleaning tiled floors and sealed wood floors. This versatile equipment is easy to use and evacuates grime, dirt, and water with pressurized cleaning. It comprises heated drying for quick dry time.

Max-Extract comes standard with a double chamber nozzle designed to power wash a variety of surfaces with even suction. It also features the automatic detergent system, which provides the appropriate water-detergent ratio to achieve incredible cleaning results. The patented Hoover Spin-Scrub brushes help to loosen dirt and clean carpet and upholstery fibers.

A wall of pressurized Edge-to-Edge cleaning proves handy in loosening and lifting stains with constant spray. There is a Smart Tanks System for clean and dirty water, so you can fill, empty and rinse each tank separately. Max-Extract DUALIV Nozzle Technology pulls up a substantial amount of dirty water so that your floors can dry fast. You are assured of deep-cleaned floors in good turnaround time.


  • Versatile and easy to use
  • Heated drying for a fast dry time
  • Counter-rotating brushes remove dirt at every angle
  • DUALIV Nozzle Technology pulls up a lot of water


  • Rubber sealant can break and leak
  • Rickety wheels

HOOVER’s Max-Extract 60 Pressure Pro thoroughly cleans stairs, carpets, and rugs with absolute ease. This machine is easy to use and is standard with pressurized cleaning that eliminates dirt, grime, and water. This product comes with a two-year warranty and is recommended for anyone looking for a best vacuum for stairs with heated cleaning.

Vacuum Cleaner for Stairs – Buying Guidelines

Carpet cleaners are a tad unwieldy, so it’s important to focus on specific features that allow you to maneuver around your carpeted stairs easily. The following are useful carpet-cleaner features that will give you absolute comfort and convenience while cleaning your stairs. Check them below

Moving Brushes

A moving brush provides a more aggressive scrub than a fixed one. Choosing a vacuum cleaner with rotating brushes guarantees good cleaning. Avoid carpet cleaners with no brushes and those with brushes that only move when the machine is pushed.


Vacuum cleaners with plenty of accessories are the most recommended for cleaning stairs. Not only do they let you clean stairs and bare floors but also upholstery and tight spaces between furniture.

Powerful Suction

A stairs vacuum is meaningless without a strong suction. Choose a product with powerful suction, more so if you intend to clean stairs covered with carpets.

Lightweight Aspect

A good stairs vacuum cleaner needs to be lightweight. You may want to opt for handheld vacuums because they are lighter, easy to transport and easy to maneuver around every corner of your home. Many handheld vacuums are powerful enough to pull up set-in stains, debris and pet hair. Newer handheld units also include plenty of attachments to make cleaning easier.

Extended Power Cords

Choose a vacuum cleaner with easy portability and longer power cords for getting the dirt out of hard-to-reach areas or small spaces. It should include an assortment of brushes alongside crevice tools for deep cleaning of stairs. A vacuum that comes with a pivoting head helps you get the dirt out of those narrow spaces in your home.

Lithium-ion Batteries

You may want to choose a rechargeable handheld vacuum with lithium-ion battery because it’s excellent at cleaning stairs. Choose a device that provides fade-free power so that you can reap the most out of your extended charge-time. Such a device will not experience periods of weak power due to the battery being depleted.

Flexible Hose

Vacuums for stairs need to have a flexible hose as well as a slotted nozzle. These two features prove useful when it comes to cleaning corners and hard-to-reach areas.

Exchangeable Tools

If possible, consider getting a vacuum with a stick and interchangeable tools. Some vertical units can convert into compact and portable vacuum cleaners. That means you get two products for the price of one. This is advantageous because such a device will let you clean almost the whole house.

Good Air Filtration System

An excellent vac cleaner for stairs should have a good air filtration system. If you’re allergic or have asthma, make sure to buy a vacuum cleaner model with a HEPA class filter.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about top rated Vacuum for Stairs

Below are common questions our readers often ask about vacuum for stairs. Go through these Frequently Asked Questions, and feel free to contact us should you come across anything else you would like to know. Also, feel free to leave a comment should you feel like doing so. We appreciate your feedback.

Which accessories should be included in a new vacuum cleaner?

A good vacuum cleaner for stairs should include plenty of accessories for easier cleaning. At the very least, a must-have feature is a crevice tool, which lets you clean tight spaces effortlessly. Other additional attachments may include a power lift tool for removing ingrained dirt as well as an upholstery tool for sofas.

How often should I change a HEPA Filter?

Most HEPA filters last about three years before needing replacement. Replacement should be done after this period has elapsed to maintain maximum filtration. Check your filters at least once in a year to gauge whether or not there is potential soiling or filter damage. A musty odor when the machine is in operation indicates that the HEPA filter has an issue.

Which vacuum cleaner is suitable for stairs?

Stairs typically call for a cordless handheld vacuum. However, most of the modern vacuums entail an extension hose stretching over a few meters for ease of cleaning stairs.

How often should vacuum filters be washed?

Washable filters need a thorough cleaning at least once every month with intense usage. However, the washing should be done once every four months with occasional usage.

What’s the proper way of cleaning a Washable Vacuum Cleaner Filter?

You will need to use lukewarm running water to wash your filter. After cleaning, rinse the filter exhaustively until the water runs clear. Allow the filter to dry naturally for about 24-48 hours depending on the temperature of the surrounding. The filter should be completely dried before fixing it back into the vacuum cleaner to avoid damage or malfunction.

Final Verdict

In our current era, the market presents many vacuum cleaners rendering it almost impossible to make a clear-cut decision. We’re always confused and overwhelmed by the tremendous choices available. And we may end up buying products that aren’t good at cleaning staircases at maximum suction.

Cleaning carpeted stairs takes more time and effort than cleaning uncarpeted steps. Certain features in a vacuum cleaner make cleaning a cakewalk. So, understanding those features is the key to success.

Do a little research before buying any best vacuum for stairs model, and make sure to choose those that provide easy maneuverability around all corners of the staircases. The products we’ve listed above are ideal for cleaning stairs, pet hair, upholstery, and hard-to-reach areas of the house. They can also become an indispensable assistant when it comes to cleaning your auto interior.

Here is a piece of advice before we bring down the curtains: an ideal vacuum for stairs is light, easy to assemble, has excellent air filtration and can clean edges and corners of the stairs. It should also come as standard with a rotating brush and an easy-to-clean mud bowl. Be attentive when shopping for the best vacuum cleaner for carpeted stairs.