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I love Shark, and I’m going to say it now before I even start this review. Have I always been impressed by their vacuum cleaners? No, but they have shown themselves to be a brand that listens to their customers and always works on improving each model that they release.
I first fell in love with them when I discovered their early steam cleaners (my floors love me), and when I found out they did vacuums too, I had to try them out. I can’t say I have always been impressed by handheld vacuums.
They’re good for little jobs and the car, but never something I would spend more than £50 on at a push. So, seeing Shark come out with something nearly three times the price of my budget left me feeling pretty intrigued as well as sceptical.
The Shark WV200UK and WV251UK are vacuums I would not have considered using before, but I’m glad I did. I really enjoyed these models, and while expensive, they really do hold their own.
To get you all excited about this handheld sensation, I’ve written a detailed review of my experience with them below. It’s time to put the kettle on and enjoy another one of my exhilarating vacuum adventures.
Cordless handheld vacuum
Stylish and sleek, it was designed to be displayed. This cordless vacuum cleaner has exceptional power for a handheld model and is ready to tackle any mess. Made for pets, it has no problem cleaning the beds or picking up clumps of hair.
Cordless handheld vacuum
Another Shark great, this handheld vacuum cleaner has been made to last longer with a fantastic twin battery so that you can just keep going. Ideal for pets, stairs, and use in the car; is there anything this handy vacuum can’t do? All of this, and for a pretty respectable price.
- PROS AND CONS
- 0.25L dustbin
- 1.3kg weight
- HEPA filter
- 115w/10.8v motor
- 2-year guarantee
Presenting the Shark WV200UK and Shark WV251UK
The Shark WV200UK and WV251UK are perfect if you want something that is lightweight, gentle on the wrists, and made for cleaning up smaller messes.
It’s not just a handheld vacuum in the traditional sense; it has so much more to offer as well as a whole new level of power and suction.
Of course, it is still a handheld and so won’t have the battery life to clean your entire home – or the bin capacity.
If you want something that can do the whole house, there are loads of other fantastic Shark vacuum reviews for you to check out.
There are also handhelds out there with a lower price tag, but they don’t necessarily do the job to the same level as these Sharks.
What’s the Difference Between the Two Shark Models?
There is actually only one difference between the two models; the Shark WV251UK has a twin battery, which means a longer running time. Where the Shark WV200UK runs for an impressive 9 minutes, the WV251UK goes for 18 thanks to the additional battery.
Other than that, all of the features remain the same, and you can read more about them in the next section. While we may refer to the Shark WV200UK more frequently, the relevance to both vacuums does not change.
Design and Features
One of the first things I noticed about this vacuum cleaner is how portable the entire design is. The vacuum cleaner itself is slim and incredibly modern, and the charging station it comes with is also very discreet.
The way it works, with a cylindrical docking station, makes it perfect for use on a ‘grab and go’ basis; allowing cleaning to be done quickly and efficiently.
The other thing I really liked about the charging station is that it doesn’t just hold the vacuum cleaner, it also keeps all of the accessories together in a neat and compact line at the back.
The vacuum cleaner also has a wand-like design, which makes placing it in the charging area a lot smoother. The cable for the dock is also 1.2m, giving adequate length for placement just about anywhere in the home.
The nozzle of the vacuum is quite wide when compared to other handhelds, but this also makes way for better airflow, and the angled shape means more accurate cleaning (like chasing those stray dog hairs).
While primarily made for spot cleaning, it also gets the interior of your car looking amazing and can be used to clean dog beds and furniture. In terms of the controls, I am a little divided.
I do really like that the power button and bin release button are right next to each other because it means I don’t have to stretch my hand too much, and can also perform my tasks faster.
However, if I am not concentrating, the bin button has been pressed instead of the power ones a few more times than I would like.
The machine is very balanced though, as the battery is positioned near the handle, and this makes it very comfortable to use (something I look at further a little later). This balance is achieved equally in both the single battery and twin battery models.
How Noisy is it?
It comes in at 80db, which is compliant with EU regulations, but there is something about this handheld model that I noticed; it feels a lot louder than a full-size vacuum.
Most standard vacuum cleaners are also 80db in terms of sound, but they have muffling and a bigger build to make it seem quieter.
This baby Shark has none of that because of its small and handheld design. So, it feels a lot louder than 80db, but the runtime means that you won’t have to endure it for too long.
Charging and Runtime
The Shark WV200UK and WV251 don’t take too long to charge, and 2.5 hours is a lot less than most standard vacuum cleaners.
If you are using the single battery version, you can expect around 9 minutes of running time, which is actually more than enough for the tasks it needs to perform. For the twin battery version, you get closer to 18 minutes of life.
The power light will slowly fade in and out in blue while it is charging, letting you know that the battery is connected, and when it has finished, it will become a solid blue.
While you vacuum, the solid blue will remain until it starts running out of charge; which is when it starts flashing. This indicator is a small feature, but also a very useful one that I appreciated when absent-mindedly vacuuming.
Weight and Handling
It’s such a light vacuum cleaner, which I love, and it only weighs in at 1.3kg. You barely feel it while cleaning, and if you want to reach up to the ceiling to get rid of cobwebs and dust, you won’t feel the strain on your wrists at all.
This is part of what makes it so ideal for those who have suffered wrist injuries in the past, or have arthritis. The overall handling is very smooth, with easy controls and a surprising amount of flexibility in terms of movement.
Dust Canister and Filter
The dust canister is very small, but as it is a handheld vacuum, it is hardly a surprising feature. The total capacity for the bin is 0.25L, which does mean it needs to be emptied regularly (especially with pet hair, as I discovered) but it is also not the smallest canister out there.
It is very easy to empty though, as all you need to do is hold it over the bin and press the release button. I haven’t found much gets stuck in it either, which is nice.
It comes with a washable HEPA filter, which is fantastic if you are in a home with people who have asthma and allergies. I am, and I can tell you that this vacuum triggered nothing.
It is very simple to remove from the vacuum, and the accompanying wire mesh also helps prevent dust from being pushed back into the air. As with any vacuum, you should aim to wash the filter every month or so to prevent loss of suction.
How Well Does It Clean?
It might surprise you to discover that the Shark WV200UK and WV251 actually has very powerful suction that isn’t far behind what a full-size Shark is able to offer. I was really impressed by the suction it provided, and couldn’t wait to put it to the test.
On hard floors, it did very well indeed. It was able to pick up chunky and fine debris alike, and even reached right into the grooves of my tiled kitchen floor.
It did need a few passes, but I put this down to the fact that it is a handheld model and so doesn’t have the same width or reach as a standard.
Carpets were, again, very good. It performed well picking up fine debris and some of the chunkier stuff, but it did take more effort to get it all up.
It also takes a little longer, so you will need to keep this in mind when spot cleaning carpets and tidying up little messes. It was also very good on the stairs, but also took a bit more time to do.
However, alongside the accessories that these models come with, you can really get into those tight and difficult corners. It certainly helped me to reach the embedded pet hair that gets stuck in the nooks and crannies on my staircase.
How Well Does It Cope with Pet Hair?
There is no rotating brush on the pet tool, which means that it isn’t going to be as effective as a standard pet vacuum cleaner. However, it does have a short brush on the top and bottom (like an upholstery tool) that helps it to stick.
This lifts the pet hair from beds, furniture, and the carpet effortlessly, although you will need to clean the head of stuck pet hair frequently. On hard floors, it collects those stray hairs and balls of fluff effortlessly and does a flawless job.
It is still excellent on carpets, but will need more teasing and agitation to ease the hairs out. It will also take a few passes to get the job done, and the same goes for upholstery. However, the results are still excellent despite the extra time and effort needed.
The Shark WV200UK and WV521UK come with a multi-surface pet tool. Its appearance is a lot like an upholstery tool, and it does work very well on car interiors and furniture.
Of course, we have gone into more detail about how it works and its effectiveness in the above section. There is also a combination tool which contains both a crevice tool and a dusting brush for more detailed cleaning.
The crevice tool helps you to reach high corners and tricky location with ease so that your home gets perfectly clean.
The dusting brush is perfect for delicate surfaces, as well as banisters and tables. While the dusting brush does flip back while not in use, it is quite small and only has bristles on three sides.
How Does It Compare?
Here are some other, similar, models of vacuum cleaner for you to consider, just in case you want to look at other options before you commit to a Shark WV200UK or WV251UK.
HoLife Handheld Vacuum
The great thing about this handheld vacuum cleaner is that it works with both wet and dry messes; so, no surface will be left unclean.
It’s affordable and practical, with a comfortable grip and excellent suction to get rid of crumbs and debris.
We have a full review of Holife Handheld Vacuum that you can read as well to help you make up your mind.
GTECH Handheld Multi
Powerful and reliable, this handheld vacuum is priced similarly to the Shark WV200UK.
It comes from an excellent and reliable brand, and also has a good set of accessories to help you get the car, furniture, and even the stairs nice and clean.
With a great running time and short charge period, it’s always ready for action, and we have a full review of GTech Handheld for you to enjoy.
We hope that this Shark WV200UK and WV251UK guide has helped you to learn more about what each vacuum cleaner has to offer, and which is going to work best for your home.
Of course, there is very little difference between them – the WV521 has a twin battery to increase life, but other than that they have the same features and specs. The price is a little high, and the bin is small, but my honest opinion is that it’s worth the money.
Yes, cleaning pet hair did require a few trips to empty it, but the results were spectacular. My dog’s bed has never been cleaner, and I was able to reach every nook and cranny in my stairs without issue.
The suction is amazing, and really not far off a full-size Shark, plus the grab and go design means that it is easy to access as well as store. It gets a solid 4/5 from me, as well as my highest recommendation.
What did you think of our Shark WV200UK and WV251UKreviews? Do you agree with our thoughts on the modelf listed, or are there others that you think are better suited to the task? We love hearing from you, so make sure you leave us a message in the comments below.
Gemma Tyler is a freelance journalist with 15 years of experience writing for consumer publications. She has tested and reviewed a wide range of household items from vacuum cleaners to washing machines and dehumidifiers to steam irons. Her attention to detail and exhaustive testing certainly makes her an expert in her field.