Discover the Best Vacuum Cleaner for Stairs: 2018 UK Guide

The Best Vacuum for Stairs

Vacuuming the stairs has never been an easy task, and many vacuums just don’t seem to be able to cope with the stretch from the bottom to the top of the staircase.

It can be a frustrating part of your cleaning routine, as well as one that ends up leaving you stressed as you try to find a way to balance your vacuum cleaner while you work.

We’re here to say, fear no more. I have been where you are as you desperately try to find a solution before your stairs become overrun with grime and fuzz. Usually, people would say that a cordless vacuum cleaner is the best solution, but they aren’t for everyone.

In this guide, we take a look at the best vacuums for stairs, as well as collect the relevant vacuum for stairs reviews so that we can help you to find one that is perfect for you. 

What To Look For

When you go to pick up the perfect vacuum cleaner for the stairs, there are a few things that you need to take into consideration and look out for before you buy. In this section, we take you through them so that you can make a list of the aspects that are most important to you.

  • Budget – The first thing you need to think about is your budget. How much are you willing to spend on your new vacuum cleaner? How much can you afford to spend? These are two vital questions, and once you have figured your budget out, you can start exploring your options and see which vacuum cleaners are going to fit into your price range.
     
  • Weight – The weight is also important, as when you are cleaning the stairs, you will want something that is lightweight and easy to carry around, as this reduces your risk and also prevents strain on your body. Plus, lighter vacuums are easier to clean the stairs with than heavy ones.
     
  • Length of Hose – You need to consider the length of the hose carefully. A hose that is too short will not reach the top of the stairs and will require you to balance the vacuum cleaner, which is potentially damaging to you and the vacuum cleaner. Plus, it means that you can get the job done faster if you have a hose that is the right length.
     
  • Corded/Cordless – Do you want a vacuum cleaner that is corded or cordless? The former often provides more power, but the latter is usually lighter and easier to move around when cleaning difficult areas. It’s all down to personal preference, but cordless is often more convenient for stair cleaning jobs.
     
  • An Included Stair Tool – There are some vacuum cleaners that will come with a stair tool, and this is not something that you want to miss out on. This tool makes the stair cleaning process easier, and often gives a little power boost to really work the dirt out. 

  • Convertibility – Thee are both corded and cordless vacuum cleaners that can convert into a handheld model. This extra level of usability makes things easier for you when you have to clean the stairs. Whether it’s a stick vacuum that turns into a handheld or an upright with a removable area, convertibility is key.
     
  • Floor Type – Not everyone has carpeted stairs, and those with wooden stairs should take some time to see if the vacuum that they are choosing is going to be right for the stairs they own. Similarly, if you have deep pile carpets, you should ensure it will be strong enough to deal with them.
     
  • The Vacuum’s Power – The power of your vacuum cleaner is vital, especially when you are selecting one to use on the stairs. It needs to be able to maintain suction through what can end up being a lengthy process, and regardless of your intentions, a powerful vacuum is always recommended.
     
  • Warranty – A warranty might not make or break the purchase, but it still a good idea to choose an extended one as this will ensure that your new cleaning kit is protected in case it breaks. Always make sure the warranty covers parts and labour so that you aren’t met with surprise bills. 

Now that you know more about what to look for in your next vacuum cleaner, carry on reading below and have a look at the vacuum for stairs reviews below.

Compare Best Models

Product Image

Title

Price Range

Rating (1-5)

Brand

Shark NV681UKT

Under £240

4.5

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Holife Handheld Vacuum

Under £50

4.5

Dyson V10 Absolute

Under £450

4.4

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Vax Air Reach U90-MA-Re

Under £170

4.2

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Dyson V8 Absolute

Under £380

4.5

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Hetty 160-11

Under £120

4.5

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VonHaus 1000W 2-in-1

Under £30

4.5

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Dyson V6 Absolute

Under £280

4.3

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TITLE

PRICE RANGE

RATING (1-5)

BRAND

Best Overall - Shark NV681UKT

Shark is another fantastic brand to choose, and while they became popular for their steam cleaners, their vacuum cleaners are equally amazing.

This model is ideal for a whole range of household tasks, including ensuring that your stairs are clean. Why not take a moment to check it out for yourself?

The Good
This vacuum cleaner comes with an 8m cord, which is more than enough for you to stretch around your home without having to switch plugs much (or at all).

The suction is fantastic, providing great power even in homes with multiple pets, and it is easy to handle with a smooth head that will glide across your floor and works on all types with great ease. It is also very simple to empty when full.

When you are ready to clean your stairs, you can lift the centre of the machine out and carry it (along with the hose) around with you.

It is light and portable, which makes vacuuming the stairs a very simple task, and one that won’t cause too much strain. In its full form, it slides under furniture with no effort, and there are headlights on the front so that you get every little ball of dirt and dust.

The Not So Good
The dust bin is quite small for this kind of model, and it is as heavy as a standard upright, which can make it a little cumbersome to use.

Key Features

  • Power: 750 watts
  • Run Time: N/A
  • Charge Time: N/A
  • Weight: 6.1kg
  • Dust Capacity: 2L
  • Battery Voltage: 230v
  • Noise: 80db 

Our View
This vacuum cleaner comes at a good price and from a brand that is incredibly trustworthy as well as reliable. It is a little heavy, and the dust canister smaller than you may have anticipated, but all of this is made up for by the amount of suction, power, and great results that it offers.

With some great accessories and additional features, there is so much packed into the Shark that you may find yourself discovering new stuff for quite some time. Made for all homes and to tackle stairs, you are sure to love it.  

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Best Handheld Model - Holife

Sometimes your best option is to pick up a little handheld vacuum cleaner that you use solely for the stairs. Holife isn’t just a great brand; they also manufacture of the best handheld vacuum cleaners for really scrubbing the stairs. Take a look below and see what you think of this compact model.

The Good
This handheld vacuum cleaner is ideal because it can clean both wet and dry messes, so while it is perfect for the stairs, it is also great for little spillages around the home.

The battery is excellent as it lasts for around 30 minutes, which gives you more than enough time to do the stairs, as well as smaller areas in your house. Plus, the overall operation is very quiet and the handle comfortable.

Lightweight and easy to handle, you will barely notice it when you are cleaning and are sure to be impressed by the amount of suction that it is able to offer you.

It has also been designed for both hard floors and carpets, which gives it something over most other handheld vacuums on the market. It also comes with a range of attachments to help you reach tight corners, and is easy to empty.

The Not So Good
The capacity is quite limited due to its size, and the suction is not as good as more expensive models on the market.

Key Features

  • Power: 85-90 watts
  • Run Time: 30mins
  • Charge Time: 3-5 hours
  • Weight: 1.8kg
  • Dust Capacity: 0.6L/100ml
  • Battery Voltage: 100v
  • Noise: 78db 

Our View
This Holife handheld vacuum cleaner is incredibly cheap and offers you excellent value for money. It is ideal for cleaning the stairs due to its compact size, and while more expensive models have better suction, this one will still do an incredible job. 

It is lightweight and easy to use, and the fact that it comes with a good number of attachments is really useful in terms of keeping the house clean. Of course, you also have to remember it has wet and dry functions, making it even more desirable and worthwhile.

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Best Cordless Vac for Stairs - Dyson V10

Dyson is a vacuum cleaner brand that we can all rely on, and one of the leading manufacturers. This cordless model is incredibly versatile, and may just be able to offer you everything you need to clean your home and your stairs. Take a moment to read the reviews below and see what you think of it.

The Good
The V10 cleaner has a slim and lightweight build, which makes it ideal for cleaning the entire home – including the ceiling and other high up areas.

It converts easily into a handheld vacuum as well, making it compact and very easy to use when cleaning the stairs as well as upholstery and car interiors. The new bin emptying system is also much easier and cleaner.

The total running time is 60 minutes, although it will be a little shorter when you use the turbo setting, and it only takes 3.5 hours to charge. You can mount it on the wall for charging and storage, or pack it away neatly into a cupboard.

The suction is fantastic, even for homes with pets, and it comes for a head that is ideal for hard floors – plus a whole load of accessories to help you clean.

The Not So Good
​The price tag is quite high when compared to other cordless vacuum cleaners

Key Features

  • Power: 115 watts
  • Run Time: 60
  • Charge Time: 3.5
  • Weight: 2.6kg
  • Dust Capacity: 0.76L
  • Battery Voltage: 230v
  • Noise: 72db 

Our View
This Dyson cordless vacuum cleaner offers powerful suction that can deal with pretty much anything you throw at it. While the price is quite high for a vacuum cleaner, there are a lot of positives that come with this model. 

It has an amazing running time and short charge period, as well as multiple functions thanks to the handheld conversion. This also means that it is fantastic on the stairs, leaving them cleaner that they have been in years. It’s certainly one to consider splashing out on.  

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Best Upright for Stairs - Vax U90

If you’re looking for a vacuum cleaner that is perfect for stairs, but excellent for other purposes too, you will definitely want to explore the Vax Air Reach U90-MA-Re.

This vacuum is exceptionally effective and was actually featured in our best upright vacuum cleaner guide. This vacuum is surprisingly affordable and incredibly efficient. 

The multi-cyclonic technology will give you the power needed to get your stairs perfectly clean. Despite the astounding power of the vacuum, it is incredibly lightweight. 

This makes it easy to lug the vacuum from room to room or up your stairs. For added convenience and ease of use, the vacuum is equipped with an extra long hose and extended cord. 

This guarantees that you can get the job done, without unplugging or relocating the cord. The vacuum is also covered by a 6-year warranty! This not only enhances the vacuum’s overall value, but it also provides the consumer with outstanding peace of mind.

Pros

  • Affordable, durable and lightweight
  • Comes with a 6-year warranty
  • Eco-friendly and energy efficient
  • Super long cord and hose
  • Very powerful

Cons

  • Might be a little too powerful

Our View
When it comes down to it, the Vax Air Reach U90-MA-Re is an excellent option for most homeowners. Whether or not you’re trying to clean the stairs, this vacuum has enough power to get the job done. Be sure to check it out in more depth today!

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Best Budget Stair Vac - Von Haus

Becoming older is definitely not something that anyone is looking forward to, since you will be forced to make many alterations to your schedule. 

Switching from a heavy vacuum to a lightweight model will benefit any elderly adult greatly. The VonHaus weighs a total of 4 pounds, so you can easily transport it all over your home.

The upright design will allow you to reach underneath furniture with ease. The handle swivels up and down, which will make the task even that much easier. 

The bagless design offers much more affordability, since you will never be forced to purchase replacement debris bags. The 1.3 liter tank removes with ease, so you can empty the debris in the trash can and replace it within a matter of minutes.

​The Sponge Filtration System is capable of suctioning up and capturing the smallest debris and dust particle. This technology will prevent the dust from recirculating back into the environment.

Pros

  • Equipped with a 6 meter electrical capable
  • Extremely lightweight and portable
  • Superior filtration system
  • Attachment nozzle included in purchase price
  • Operates on 6 dB noise level

Cons

  • Debris container is slightly too small, which means you have to stop between vacuum tasks to empty

Our View
If you are ready to trade that old heavy vacuum in for a lightweight design, you definitely should invest in the vonHaus 1000W.

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Best Bagged Cylinder - Hetty

From leading brand Numatic, if you are looking for a compact vacuum cleaner to get the stairs looking great, this could be the one for you.

Part of the Hetty range, I found this to be an impressive vacuum cleaner. Have a read below and see if this is going to be the vacuum for your stairs.

The Good
Aside from the standard Numatic attachments, this model comes with an all-purpose nozzle that has been specifically designed for cleaning the stairs. 

It does a great job, and I was really impressed with the deep clean that my stairs received when I ran this over them. 

Additionally, you can even buy longer hoses so that you have a wider cleaning radius when doing areas like the stairs.

This pink cylinder vacuum cleaner is smaller than most of the Numatic range, which is part of what makes it so much easier to handle. Compact and lighter than most similar models, it is easy to store away when it is no longer needed and also has an amazing dirt capacity.

As a bagged vacuum cleaner, it not only holds more, but it also has a safety seal for those with asthma and allergies.

The Not So Good
The hose that this model comes with does not reach the top of the stairs, which can make things a little tricky.

Key Features

  • Power: 620 watts
  • Run Time: N/A
  • Charge Time: N/A
  • Weight: 8kg
  • Dust Capacity: 9L
  • Battery Voltage: 230v
  • Noise: 72db

Our View
This excellent little vacuum cleaner comes at a fantastic price that nearly anyone can slide into their budget. It does an amazing job of cleaning the stairs, but if you don’t want to balance it, you will have to invest in a longer hose from Numatic.

On the plus side, these are quite inexpensive and easy to get hold of. Overall, this vacuum cleaner makes the perfect choice for any home with stairs due to its ability to tackle all floor types as well as the super compact build.

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FAQ's

Q: Is there an air release on Hetty? If it only has one suction level it could too power if used on rugs etc and would lift them.

A: Yes there is a air release on this hetty compact

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Dyson V8 Absolute

If you want something that is reliable and able to tackle the stairs without any risk to you, then the Dyson V8 Absolute could be what you have been searching for.

One of the best around, all you need to do is take a look at the reviews below to see if this is going to be a perfect match.

The Good
There is one main reason that the Dyson V8 Absolute is the ideal model for stairs, and that is the fact that it is able to convert into a handheld vacuum cleaner. Not to mention, the conversion process is an incredibly simple one. 

As someone who has stairs that get fluffy very quickly, this has been a lifesaver, and it is much safer to use than a standard vacuum or a cylinder model.

It is the perfect size for stair cleaning, and the swivel head on the mini motorised brush means that you can really get in there and remove all the embedded dirt and debris from your carpets with no issue.

There is even a selection of other tools for you to use to ensure that your stairs (and the rest of your home) are nice and clean. You also have the added benefit of a canister that is much easier to empty than the V6 Absolute.

The Not So Good
​The only real issue is that the canister is a little smaller than most vacuum cleaners.

Key Features

  • Power: 100 watts
  • Run Time: 40 mins
  • Charge Time: 3.5 hours
  • Weight: 2.5kg
  • Dust Capacity: 0.6L
  • Battery Voltage: 21.6v
  • Noise: 72db

Our View
This is certainly a great vacuum cleaner, and while it works a treat on your stairs, it is also the ideal model for the rest of your home. There is an issue with the small size of the canister, but it is larger than the V6 range, and it is much simpler to empty.

Plus, you cannot have a compact and lightweight vacuum cleaner like this with a large canister unless you alter the rest of the model accordingly. It’s one of my top models for stair cleaning, and I know it could be yours too.

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FAQ's

Q: What's the difference between the v8 animal and absolute ?

A: The absolute comes with 3x powered heads including the fluffy hard floor head, large brush head and small brush head where the animal omits the fluffy head. Both units have the same motor and battery .

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Dyson V6 Absolute

The Dyson V6 Absolute is an excellent model to go for if you are searching for a reliable cordless vacuum cleaner for your stairs.

Make sure you take some time to read through the reviews to determine if this is going to be the perfect model for you.

The Good
The thing that makes the Dyson V6 Absolute perfect for stairs is the fact that it converts into a handheld vacuum cleaner by simply removing the aluminium hose.

This has to be my favourite feature because it makes stair cleaning so easy. With the motorised brush head attached, you have the perfect size vacuum for thoroughly cleaning each step on your staircase. 

Additionally, it is easy to handle thanks to the swivel head, and you can attach the other tools so that every nook and cranny can be reached effectively.

The suction is very powerful, which means that embedded dirt is lifted from the carpet and sucked up for perfect results. Plus, the charging time is quite short, so it’s almost always on hand when you need it.

The Not So Good
​The canister is a little small and can be fiddly to empty out if you let it get full.

Key Features

  • Power: 100 watts
  • Run Time: 20 mins
  • Charge Time: 3 hours
  • Weight: 4kg
  • Dust Capacity: 0.4L
  • Battery Voltage: 21.6v
  • Noise: 87db

Our View
This is one of the best vacuum cleaners that Dyson have, and while the price may be a little high, it is worth every penny.

While emptying the canister is not always the easiest process, it does make cleaning the stairs easier than ever, so you won’t have any more hassle or strain when you are trying to get them clean.

All you need to do is take the hose off, and you are ready to go. It is the perfect stair cleaner, just like most cordless Dyson models in the V series.

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Other Great Models

Best Handheld Stair Vac: AEG AG71a RapidClean

Are you tired of lugging that heavy vacuum cleaner up the stairs? Well, you are not alone, which is why many homeowners are switching to handheld vacuums to clean their stairs. 

Instead of straining your back, you should invest in the AEG AG71a RapidClean. This excellent model was featured in our best handheld vacuum and was also reviewed in full detail here

The AG71a is equipped with a very powerful “stubborn brush”, which is capable of scrubbing the carpet. 

​This technology is capable of breaking down dirt, so it is easily removed from the lower depths of the carpet. If you are searching for a vacuum that is capable of thoroughly cleaning all of your throw rugs and carpet, you definitely should consider the RapidClean.

The RapidClean has a bagless design, so you will never have to purchase expensive replacement bags. You can also utilize this vacuum to clean your vehicles, upholstery, and draperies. The debris collection container is capable of holding 0.6 liters. 

With 700 watts of power, your entire home will be cleaned in a matter of minutes.The crevice nozzle is built-in to the vacuum, so you will always have easy access to it, while you are vacuuming. 

The removable 2-ply micro-fiber filter is very easy to clean and all you need to do is place it under running tap water.

Pros

  • Extremely lightweight and portable
  • 2-Year warranty included in price
  • Equipped with a 6-meter electrical cable
  • Bagless design, which will save money over time
  • Powerful suction

Cons

  • Not a cordless design

Our View
If you are searching for a portable vacuum that is capable of thoroughly cleaning your home and vehicle carpet, be sure to check out the AEG AG71 a RapidClean.

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To Conclude

Hopefully, this guide has helped you to determine the best vacuum cleaner for stairs, and the reviews have been a good comparison when deciding. We are here to give you a hand, and that is why we have been so careful when deciding which brands and models to showcase for you.

If you have the extra cash to hand, or are willing to save up, the Dyson V10 Absolute is the best model for you to choose. It offers an incredible amount of power when you consider its size, and there have been so many improvements when compared to the previous models in the V series that it really makes it worth the price.

Plus, it works great if you are in a home with pets. The Holife handheld vacuum cleaner is perfect if you already have a main model in your home and just want something to make the stairs more tolerable. It is small and compact, but also incredibly cheap so that you don’t need to worry about breaking the bank.

On top of that, it also cleans up wet messes on top of the dry ones, giving it more versatility than most. While it is a budget model, it really does pack in a lot of power. If cordless models are not your thing, you have the Shark NV681UKT.

This model is perfect for really giving your home a deep clean every use, and has a pretty good cable for reaching around your house with ease. The lift-away feature also means that you can get the stairs without hassle. It’s the perfect all-rounder and can deal with pet hair quite effectively.

What did you think of our guide to the best vacuum cleaner for stairs? Did you enjoy the models we listed and agree, or are there others that you would have liked to see here? We love hearing from you, so leave us a message in the comments below.

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