Use the list below of the top 5 vacuums of 2011 to begin your search. No one likes to spend time vacuuming only to go back and find bits of dirt left behind due to poor suction, limited maneuverability, or overflowing bags. A high quality vacuum might cost more, but the durability and long life coupled with high performance is well worth the investment.
Meant to last 20 years, this is a powerful machine featuring two motors, a HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) filter, a 5.4-quart self-sealing bag and automatic suction control. To block out any foul-smelling items it has a charcoal section in its Clean Air filter. It has 6 different settings for your surfaces, with the rotary brush turning off automatically on hardwood floors to prevent scratching. If you suck up something too large the brush automatically turns off and an indicator light illuminates (these also turn on when the bag and HEPA filter need to be changed). Multiple accessories are included for reaching high and tight spaces. A swivel neck makes the 22-pound weight seem light. Ergonomically built with an anti-topple frame, it comes with a 7-year warranty and is perfect for anyone who wants a long-lasting high-performance vacuum.
Renowned for the unique ball design (instead of wheels) that allows the vacuum to swivel 360 degrees, this unit is the best selling Dyson on the market. It is only 16 pounds and has the same 1200-watt motor as the Miele for powerful suction. The dirt receptacle is bag less; Root Cyclone technology pulls the dirt into a 1/3 of a gallon canister and siphons out the air. Simply pull out the canister, hold it over a trash bin and press a button. The bottom opens and you do not have to touch any of the mess. The HEPA filter is washable, eliminating the need to buy expensive replacements. It comes with the standard accessories (wand, upholstery tool, dusting brush and crevice tool).
The best in flexibility, this vacuum features a swivel neck, flat-on-the-floor positioning and a portable section that detaches. It uses a bag that can be snapped shut when removed to prevent dust from escaping, and the three-stage filtration system is excellent. The filter is S-class, which is the European version of the HEPA filter and just as good. An automatic shut-off occurs when the bag is full and it is adjustable to multiple surfaces. The usual accessories are included except for the wand and dusting brush.
Especially enticing for the pet owner, this unit comes with a special tool called the “Power Paw” for picking up pet hair and dander. It also features a sealed HEPA filter, adjustable brush heights, a 15-inch wide front and a great low price. The warranty is only two years, but that might be just what you need.
Like its sibling the Bolero, this is powerful and durable. It does not have the HEPA filter indicator lights or the auto suction settings of the Bolero, but it still has the HEPA filter and charcoal scent remover. It also has the automatic brush height adjuster, self-sealing bag, standard accessories and 1200-watt motor. The seven-year warranty guarantees a long life. If you can settle for less of the fancy accessories then this is the perfect vacuum for you.