Best Upright Vacuum Cleaners UK

Keeping your carpets and floors clean is an unenviable task that we all have to deal with, and unfortunately, as many of us are already aware, not all types, brands and models of upright vacuum cleaners are equal.

With the exception of the cordless stick vacuum, upright vacuums remain the most popular of all the various types, mostly due to their power, versatility and bin capacity.

They are available in bagged and bagless models, and uprights are one of the best choices for really getting in there and deep cleaning dirt, dust and microbes that get ground into carpets.

We spent more than 30 hours analysing nearly 60 upright vacuum cleaners available in the UK, from brands such as Dyson, Shark and Gtech, to find uprights that suit the various needs and price ranges of our readers:

Build quality, design and of course performance on various floor types.

Below you will see the best vacuum cleaners that ticked all the boxes, ultimately it was the Shark NZ801which earned our editors award in this review, scoring highly in all the areas we look for when choosing the best upright vacuum cleaner.

And if our editors and budget pick are not for you? Don’t worry, we’ve picked an assortment of upright vacuums to suit all budgets and requirements.

best upright vacuum cleaner

Upright Vacuum Cleaner Buyers Guide Video

What Key Features to Look For

We’ve put this brilliant video together to help you see what you should be looking for in your upright vacuum. These include the following:

Budget – showing you what you can get for your money

Bagged or Bagless – bigger capacity, cheaper in the long run – a difficult choice but it’s yours

Weight – an absolute must if you want to save your knees and back

Filtration – helping those with asthma and allergies breathe easier

Capacity – giving you the opportunity to clean more and empty the canister less

Attachments – a range of nifty little tools that give your home a deeper and more thorough clean

7 Best Upright Vacuum Cleaners ( UK Models)

Shark NV801UKT DuoClean Lift-Away

1. Shark NV801UKT DuoClean Lift-Away

Our Pick for A Great upright for Allergy sufferers and pet owners

Key Features
  • Type: Upright Vacuum
  • Power : 750w
  • Dust Capacity: 2.2l
  • Weight: 7kg
  • Noise Level: 76db

Flexible, powerful, easy to use. Those are the three key features that the Shark Life-Away NV801UKT pet brings to the table. 

It’s one of the best upright vacuum cleaners they have released and that we have hands-on tested, with improved technology to make handling and cleaning a much smoother process.

The strong suction power can reach right down into the fibres of your carpet, pulling up old dirt and leaving it a level of clean you likely haven’t seen since it was new.

Power and Suction

750w might seem like a small motor, but it actually provides an exceptional level of power.

You’ll really feel the force when pushing it over carpets, but it manages to do this without making things difficult for you.

As it contains DuoClean technology, this means that there are actually two brush bars installed in the main floor head; a soft one at the front for hard floors and fine dust, and a bristled one at the back for carpets. 

As a result, the floor head works seamlessly across all floor types and is even able to get into cracks and crevices in your wood floors.

The LED headlights that have become a signature feature of Shark upright vacuum cleaners can also be found here on top of the floor head; highlighting missed dirt under your furniture.

It’s something we really appreciate as more often than not we’ve been shocked by the number of dust bunnies and clumps of pet hair that manifest under the couch and linger there. 

Cleaning Pet Hair

Pet hair is super easy for this upright vacuum, and it is able to pull up even the oldest and most embedded hairs from your carpets.

Similarly, stairs and upholstery are no match for it as pet hair can be removed from these surfaces effortlessly as well.

It even comes with a pet tool that will ensure a tougher cleaning process on those stubborn areas with pet hair, stairs, and bedding. 

Weight and Handling

The Dyson has often been a top pick for handling in this upright vacuum guide, but Shark certainly now comes out on top for us, especially as Dyson announced they were no longer developing new corded upright vacuum cleaners

Their Lift-Away tech has always been good, transforming it into a handheld machine, but this model goes one step further by powering it up.

This means that you can use the main floor head while it is in its handheld mode for a more thorough clean. This is something that is not available on the NV681 featured below, though of course, this feature does hike the price a little.

Combined with the flexible tech that allows it to reach under furniture and make awkward turns, no corner of your home will be free from its cleaning power.

It is a little on the heavy side, but once you are in handheld mode it’s a lot lighter (2.8Kg) – and that’s the only part you’ll be lifting. 

Filtration System

It has an excellent filter, using the traditional Shark sponge. It can hold masses of dust capacity and dirt and only needs to be washed once every month or so.

Combined with a HEPA filter located near the motor, your dust certainly has a tough system to go through.

It’s effective, so much so that it makes the air much clearer for those who have allergies and asthma. 

This bagless vac comes at a reasonable price and from a trusted brand. While it may have a smaller dust capacity, and it’s a little too strong on vinyl and lino floors, there is also a lot going for it.

It is the perfect model for pets, as well as those who suffer from asthma and allergies.

Additionally, it transforms into a handheld vacuum cleaner and has a host of handy tools and accessories. It’s one of the best Shark models around, and one you won’t regret buying.

Whether you have pets with masses of pet hair or just a lot of dust, this model will take care of everything in no time at all. Plus, it is perfect for those with asthma and allergies.

One tip I will offer is Shark often times have an offer on the NZ801UK ( The difference between the NZ801UK & NZ801UKT is the UKT comes with a pet tool) This pet tool can actually be purchased from Shark for £20, so you can save a few ££ buying separately. 

Read the full review of Shark NZ801UKT DuoClean Lift-Away

  • Powerful suction power capabilities on hard floor and carpets.
  • Great performance on pet hair 
  • Superb filtration system for allergy sufferers and pet owners
  • The bin capacity is a little small for larger homes and high traffic homes
  • Can be slightly heavy/bulky for some 

Gtech Air Ram MK2 Cordless Vacuum Upright

2. Gtech Air Ram MK2 Cordless Vacuum Upright

Traditional style upright, but cordless for more flexibility

Key Features
  • Type: Cordless Upright
  • Power : 750w
  • Dust Capacity: 0.4l
  • Weight: 3.2kg
  • Noise Level: 70db

This cordless vacuum model from Gtech offers a revolutionary clean and smooth feel.

It is incredibly light, so you don’t need to have gone to the gym religiously for the past month in order to push it along your carpet.

It moves easily with your arm and is suitable for all floor types – making it incredibly versatile.

The powerful rotating brush roll is also ideal for getting embedded hair out of your carpet, so you end up with a deep clean that offers the ultimate satisfaction.

The battery lasts 40 minutes after a four-hour charge, giving it superb life and enough power to get your house clean.

It even has a battery indicator to let you know when the charge is starting to run low. It doesn’t use bags and has a cleaner emptying system, so you don’t end up with a mess all over your hands.

Our View

If you are looking for a lightweight bagless upright vacuum that still has that traditional upright feel to it, but has no cords and incredible power, then this model could be for you.

With a sleek design and easy manoeuvrability, you’ll be whizzing through the house and have it clean in no time.

With fantastic battery life and a great guarantee from GTECH, this could be the upright vacuum for those who need something lightweight and are looking to have the house clean quickly and without hassle, not to mention in an affordable price range.

Read our detailed review of the Gtech Air Ram MK2  

  • Nicely priced for many budgets
  • Lightweight and easy to handle
  • Cord free making it easy to grab and use
  • Good run time and ideal for small, to medium sized homes.
  • – Does not come with attachments (available at additional cost)

Shark NV681UKT Upright Vacuum Cleaner

3. Shark NV681UKT Upright Vacuum Cleaner

Pet Hair Removal Vacuum Cleaner for all those allergy sufferers

Key Features
  • Type: Upright vacuum
  • Power : 750w
  • Dust Capacity: 1.4l
  • Weight: 6.3kg
  • Noise Level: 70db

Shark produces some of the best vacuum cleaners and steam cleaners in the world. When you buy one of these, you can expect fantastic quality and reliability.

It is ideal for those who have pets, as the suction power is great for picking up stray and embedded pet hair.

Using Lift-Away technology, it is transformed into a handheld vacuum cleaner that can be used for above-floor cleaning, stairs, and upholstery. 

I found this to be a really useful feature because of how small my stairs are; making it impossible to balance a full-size upright vacuum cleaner on them safely. This wasn’t an issue when using the handheld mode. 

It is ideal for those who have pets, as the suction power is great for picking up stray and embedded pet hairs.

The pet power brush roll can even remove the pet hair from your upholstery and furniture.

It can be used across all floor types, and also features a flexible floor head for smoother handling, and access to tight spots under your furniture.

It has a specialist hard floors attachment, making it ideal for use on all types of flooring.

Plus, the ergonomic handle was designed for comfort while you use it. LED lights are also installed to illuminate concealed dirt. 

It also features complete seal technology, trapping 99.9% of dust capacity and dirt, making it perfect for asthma and allergy sufferers.

It can reach under all your furniture with ease, thanks to the lift away floor head, so no surface will go untouched.

It has advanced swivel steering for better manoeuvrability, and an easy to empty dust cup.

The dust canister has a good dust capacity at 1.1L, and is also easy (as well as clean) to empty, although the Zanussi Zan200a has double the capacity for less frequent emptying.

Plus, the ergonomic handle was designed for comfort while you use it.

Read our detailed review of the Shark NV681 UKT

The NV681 comes at a reasonable price and from a trusted brand. While it may have a smaller dust capacity, and it’s a little too strong on vinyl and lino floors(great on hard floors), there is also a lot going for it.

It is the perfect model for pets, as well as those who suffer from asthma and allergies.

Additionally, it transforms into a handheld and has a host of handy tools and accessories. It’s one of the best Shark models around, and one you won’t regret trying.

This reasonably priced is one of the best upright vacuum cleaners is a great one to go for if you are looking for something reliable and powerful.

Made by a trusted brand, you can be sure that this will provide you with a great vacuuming experience.

Whether you have pets or just a lot of dust, this model will take care of everything in no time at all.

Plus, it is perfect for those with asthma and allergies. While it can be a little complicated at first, you will get used to it in no time at all.

  • Powerful suction
  • Lift away feature
  • Perfect for stairs
  • High-quality filter
  • Perfect for those with asthma and allergies
  • Easy to empty dust cup
  • Bagless
  • Ideal for homes with pets
  • Great tools and attachments
  • Suitable for all floor types
  • Ergonomic handle
  • It can be a little too strong for vinyl and lino
  • Dust canister could be larger


Q: Is this upright vacuum cleaner worth the extra £100 Amazon now charge for a true pet model?

Is the turbo pet brush the only tool capable of getting furniture pet hair?

A: Many customers have bought this model to replace the Dyson animal vacuum cleaner and the shark has in their opinion superior pet hair pick up.

The small turbo brush roll also does a great job of the stairs and soft furnishings. Worth every penny. 

Dyson Light Ball Multi Floor Upright

4. Dyson Light Ball Multi Floor Upright

Lightweight upright suitable for all floor types

Key Features
  • Type: Upright Bagless Vacuum
  • Power : 700w
  • Dust Capacity: 1.4l
  • Weight: 6.9kg
  • Noise Level: 70db

Dyson is a trusted and leading brand, as well as one that most people look to for the best upright vacuum cleaners, they provide excellent quality products.

The Multi Floor is one of their most popular models, and it comes at a very reasonable price.

This model is surprisingly lightweight considering it is an upright vacuum cleaner, and the ball technology also makes it easy to manoeuvre when you are cleaning your home.

Plus, it has great suction power that is sure to leave your home feeling cleaner than ever. 

It is also bagless, which is great for those who don’t want to spend the extra money on new bags, and the HEPA filter makes it suitable for those who suffer from asthma or allergies.

The filter is also washable, so you don’t need to worry about buying a replacement.

This model also comes with a great range of tools too, like the stair tool and dusting brush, so you can get every corner of your home clean.

It also has a quick-release function for easy tool attachment. 

When I managed to get my hands on the multi floor, I was shocked at how quiet this vacuum cleaner is.

You most definitely wouldn’t need to worry about waking up the baby with this mute vacuum.

Pleasingly, I found the large-debris cleaning mode works excellently, which makes this Dyson one of the few vacuum cleaners that clean up larger spills such as cereal just as well as fine dust. 

Read our detailed review of the Dyson Lightball Multi-floor

While it is not great with pet hair, it will keep all other homes looking great, as well as providing the carpets with a deep clean.

A range of tools and accessories are also included to make your cleaning routine that much easier to deal with.

If you are looking for a great bagless vacuum – read our in-depth guide.

  • 40% quieter than older model
  • Excellent suction power
  • Has Dyson ball technology
  • Works on all floor types
  • Washable HEPA filter
  • Suitable for those with asthma and allergies
  • Filters are good at keeping allergens locked in tight
  • It could be easier to use


Q: Does the Dyson Light Ball Multi Floor automatically change on the different types of flooring or would the brush continue to spin even when on the hard floors?

A: No, unfortunately, it doesn’t automatically change itself but the option is there to change the height of the brush head so that if you have hard floors or wooden and you don’t want it to become damaged you can life the brush higher out of the way. 

Q: What is the difference between the Dyson Multi Floor and animal?

A: The main differences between the Dyson ball Animal 2 and Dyson MultiFloor 2 are: The Animal 2 has 10% higher suction power (in air watts). The Dyson Ball Animal 2 is purple in colour, while the MultiFloor is yellow. The electrical cord (Dyson ball Animal 2 has a 5-foot longer cord).

SEBO Automatic X7 Hoover

5. SEBO Automatic X7 Hoover

Eco Friendly, Money Saving Automatic Hoover

Key Features
  • Type: Upright Bagged Vacuum
  • Power : 890w
  • Dust Capacity: 1.4l
  • Weight: 7.4kg
  • Noise Level: 80db

This upright vacuum from leading brand SEBO has a sleek and modern design that will fit in with the aesthetics of just about any home.

It has an 890watt motor that will provide you with suction power is enough to get every inch of your home looking brand new. 

Perfect for pets, as well as all floor types, there isn’t a surface that the X7 is unable to tackle effectively.

It also features a computer control system for enhanced performance and a better cleaning result. 

It also comes with a wide range of tools and accessories to keep your home looking great, including a crevice tool stair cleaning hose and an upholstery dusting brush.

A bagged upright vacuum cleaner, it has a 5.3L capacity as well as a clean removal system to prevent allergens from breaking free on their way to the bin.

It’s also very simple to remove and replace each bag, and they last a surprisingly long time. However, if you prefer something that is Bagless, our Dyson model might be better suited to your needs. 

There is even has an easy blockage clearance system for when you have sucked up a clump that is just a little too big; shutting down the motor if it is too severe for your safety and the machines.

It also has an S-class filtration system to keep your air breathable, making it perfect for those with asthma or allergies.

This is something I benefit from, as the allergy sufferers in my home find the air to be massively clearer once the vacuum has whizzed around; even with pets in the home.

 It’s also eco-friendly and features low power consumption to save money on your bills, as well as help the planet. 

Our View

While the Sebo X7 is a little pricier than most, it is certainly worth the money.

Featuring a great filtration system as well as powerful suction, you can rest assured that this model will leave you in good hands.

It might have a little trouble with the stairs due to its weight, but it excels in many other areas.

It is suited to homes with pets and leaves the air clear for those who suffer from asthma and allergies.

Not to mention the smart safety technology that will keep you safe, but also improve the longevity of the machine.

Dyson Animal DC40 Upright

6. Dyson Animal DC40 Upright

Old seasoned model, but great for pet hair and hard floors

Key Features
  • Type: Upright Vacuum
  • Power : 700w
  • Dust Capacity: 1.6l
  • Weight: 6.6kg
  • Noise Level: 85db

As a homeowner, you know the importance of keeping your home clean. Dust and pet dander can be tough on the allergies and sinus.

In order to keep your home clean you need a good quality vacuum, but how do you know a good quality vacuum when you see it?

There are so many different options on the market that you have to choose from.

Well, take a look at the Dyson Upright-Dyson Animal DC 40. You are going to pay a bit more for this vacuum, but it offers features like none other you will find on the market.

The cleaner floor head installed on this upright vacuum has an active base that will automatically adjust itself to any type of flooring.

You can expect optimal cleaning performance with carpet, hard floors, vinyl, or any floor surface. The Radial Root Cyclone technology maximises airflow so that users get the most suction power possible.

This upright vacuum is capable of turning on the spot due to the patented ball technology. You will be able to easily manoeuvre that vacuum around obstacles throughout your home.

This vacuum comes equipped with a lifetime washable filter. There will not be any need to go out and purchase additional bags because you can just wash the filter and reuse it.

You would be surprised at how much money this is going to save you over time. Overall, the Dyson DC40 is designed to offer a superior deep down cleaning every single time.

Dyson DC40 Multi Floor Upright

7. Dyson DC40 Multi Floor Upright

Most efficent for Cleaning Carpets on a Budget

Key Features
  • Type: Upright Vacuum
  • Power : 1,100w
  • Dust Capacity: 1.6l
  • Weight: 6.7kg
  • Noise Level: 85db

Superseded by the Dyson Lightball featured above but still available from Amazon on our link below and a reasonable price.

One of the main benefits of the DC40 is that it is more efficient in cleaning carpeted floors because of its powerful brushes that can easily remove pet hair.

Since it has a larger floor head than cylinder vacuum cleaners, you will spend less time cleaning an area because it can cover more space.

Another advantage of these DC40 upright vacuum cleaners is they are less expensive.

With their higher capacity for dust storage, you also do not need to replace it that frequently, which makes using it less costly.

If you are on a tight budget, then this model could the better choice for you.

Upright vacuums are convenient to use. You simply have to slide it out of its storage cabinet, plug it in, turn it on, and start gliding it on the floors. Once you are done, just slide it in its storage space again and you are done. 

One known disadvantage of this type though is its incapability to reach tiny spaces, like those under your sofa or over your cabinets.

However, this is a thing of the past since new technology has made some upgrades on upright vacuum cleaners, allowing you now to connect various attachments to it, such as hoses that have a reach of more than ten feet.

Now that you know the benefits and advantages of upright vacuum cleaners, it is time to choose from the many brands and models available in the market today.

Some of the factors that you must consider are the size, what type of flooring surface it is able to clean, available attachments, power, warranty, and of course, the price.

One good brand and model that you might want to consider is the Dyson DC40.

Dyson has been creating vacuum cleaners since the early 1990s and is known for its advanced technology, making them a leader in its industry.

The DC40 is one of their latest models and it is gaining popularity among returning and new clients for all the good reasons. If you have pets you might be better considering a Dyson Animal.

Upright Vacuum Buyers Guide

When You Shouldn’t Buy an Upright Vacuum

If your home has hard floors and no (or very little) carpet, then an upright model might not be for you. They can work well on hard floors, but they are best suited to carpeted areas, and that is where they will be most beneficial.

They can also be quite heavy and tricky to handle, so if you are in need some something lightweight you may want to try out a cordless stick vacuum

The same would apply if you have a small home, as long as you don’t get heavy traffic through the home a cordless model may be a better option, especially as battery and power are available in cordless models now.

How Much Do You Need to Spend on an Upright Vacuum?

Upright vacuum cleaners are quite versatile in terms of the price range, and you can find machines on both ends of the price scale.

Whilst you can get upright vacuums from under £100, to get something you could consider a good investment that will seep clean, not feel cheap and last the life of the warranty we would suggest at least £150 as a starting point.

Main Types of Upright Vacuum

Standard Upright Vacuum

This form of upright vacuum cleaner is as simple as you can get – but in all the best ways. It has all the features you would expect from an upright vacuum, and it comes ready for you to plug in and use right away.

They tend to have very simple operation, although they can make it a little tricky to get the stairs, as well as be quite heavy compared to other forms of vacuum cleaner. For stairs, we suggest you take a look at the next type.

Lift-Away Vacuum Cleaner

These have the appearance of a standard upright vacuum, but they also have an exciting additional feature.

The main part of the vacuum cleaner will lift away from the handle/shaft and floor head, leaving you with a portable and lighter vacuum cleaner that you can carry with you up the stairs and to other tricky locations in your home that you would not be able to take the full upright model to.

It’s great if you have a lot of steps, and also for reaching high areas as well as getting the furniture clean.

Shark excel as this type of vacuum cleaner and we have featured two models in this guide.

What Key Features to Look For

Price Range

One of the first things you will want to look at is the price range. Once you have determined how much you have to spend, you can start to filter the models available to you accordingly.

Here’s how the price thresholds are laid out for upright vacuums:

Cheap: under £100

  • The upright vacuums in this price bracket tend to be best suited to light work and odd jobs as opposed to a full clean.

Mid-Range: under £200

  • This bracket is a great place to start searching for pet vacuums and other models that have superb suction and filtration systems.

High-End: over £250

  • You will find models from top brands here such as Shark, Dyson and Sebo, with many of them equipped with the latest tech and gadgets such as anti-hair wrap technology. They will have great filtration and sealed units for allergy sufferers. They will be good across multiple floor types and generally have a longer warranty.

Bagged or Bagless

You will also want to consider whether you want a bagged or bagless machine. The latter is the most popular choice as you can see when the canister is full and they also tend to be incredibly easy to empty, they do tend to need a bit more maintenance with cleaning or replacing filters more often.

Bagged machines, on the other hand, tend to provide a quick and very clean emptying process despite being more expensive in the long run, they also tend to hold more dirt. It is also the best choice for allergy sufferers.


The powerful suction is vital for any vacuum cleaner, and it is no different when it comes to upright models. All great upright vacuums offer a powerful performance that will leave your floors looking spectacular and like they were brand new.

Powerful suction also means that you will spend less time cleaning as you will have to move it over each surface less. If you have pets, you are definitely going to want a model with really powerful suction. 

Dust Capacity

The dust capacity of the canister is also an important consideration to make. The larger the bin, the more is going to fit inside, which means that you don’t have to empty it very often.

Smaller bins mean more frequent emptying, which can become time-consuming. In the case of both bagged and bagless models, some can lose suction as they start to become full, which can be inconvenient if your canister has a small capacity. 


Upright vacuum cleaners are not the most lightweight models on the market much of the time, although there are some that are easier to handle and use than others.

If you are concerned that an upright model might be difficult for you to push across the floors, make sure you take a close look at the weight of the vacuum cleaner before you make the decision to buy it.


Do you have pets or allergies? If the answer is yes, you need to take the filtration system into account.

The HEPA filter is the best one for pet dander, allergies, and asthma, which is great for capturing the allergens and relieving you of symptoms.

Other filtration systems can be very effective, but HEPA is certainly the best due to its high standards.

Other Considerations


All vacuum cleaners are noisy, but there are some that are louder than others.

You and your pets may appreciate a model that is a little quieter so that your ears (and theirs) aren’t overpowered by the noise. There are many brands that offer quitter running that you can choose from.


The length of the cord is also important as a short cord means that you will have to keep changing sockets and stopping your cleaning routine.

It can become quite tiresome, and so purchasing a model with a long cord will help reduce the need for socket jumping while you vacuum.

Tools / Attachments

Attachments are also important. If you have stairs, you are going to want a model that has a stair tool with it so that you can better clean them and also reach every step.

You also have the extendable wand for reaching high areas like the ceiling and the top of bookshelves, this is very handy to have, and most machines have one.

The crevice tool is also great as it has been designed to reach tight corners and difficult areas like skirting to make cleaning easier.

This also tends to come with a dusting brush for surfaces and delicate areas, as well as an upholstery tool for car interiors and furniture. If you have pets, a turbo tool can be handy for loosening all of the embedded hair and dirt. 

Floor Types

Your floor type is also worth considering. As we mentioned, the upright vacuum tends to work best on carpets as opposed to wood floors.

So, if you have all wood floors, you might not find that this works as well as other forms of the vacuum cleaner. There are many uprights that do an excellent job on wood floors, but their area of expertise is definitely carpet.


All vacuum cleaners are at risk of a technical fault, no matter how much you spend on them.

To help keep you covered if something goes wrong, look for a vacuum cleaner that comes with an extended warranty that covers parts and labour so that you are fully protected.


While upright vacuums can be some of the most powerful vacuums in the market today, there’s no denying that these are quite pricey when compared to a cylinder vacuum…However, we have included the best vacuum cleaner models above that vary in price ranges to cater to most household needs and budgets.

You must realise too that not because something is expensive, it is good enough and if something is affordable, it is of inferior quality. 

The best upright vacuum cleaners we covered are indeed great choices and hopefully, we helped you come up with a great decision.

If you have any questions or if you wish to add any detail that we might have missed, please leave a comment below and we’ll reply as soon as we can.

Last Updated on February 3, 2022 by Gemma Tyler Protection Status