The Best Vacuum Under $200 [Comprehensive Review]

hoover best cordless stick vacuum

There are many different types of vacuum cleaners on the market these days, and you could easily pay upwards of $1,000 for a lot of the different models. Who really wants to spend all of this money on a product that they don’t really want to use in the first place?

After all, none of us really like to vacuum our floors, so we don’t need to spend a fortune on it, especially when there are plenty of great vacuums that are priced at less than $200. Let’s look which is the best vacuum under 200.

hoover best cordless stick vacuum

Let’s take a look at some of the best options in this price range that are not going to break down within a few months because they are made with low-quality materials. ​Below we rate six of the best vacuums for under $200.

​Top Vacuums Under $200

Best for Under $200: Hoover Linx Cordless Stick Vacuum

Hoover Linx cordless stick vacuum cleaner has an 18V, fade-free lithium ion battery system that will run constantly without fading out on you. Enjoy upright performance from the only stick vacuum that has the Hoover WindTunnel technology, along with cyclonic filtration.

You can clean any room in your home, and you don’t have to move things around to get to an electrical outlet, making this an extremely convenient vacuum cleaner.

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The powered brushroll WindTunnel technology lets you get the dirt that is buried deep into your carpet fibers for the cleanest carpets ever. This is an everyday vacuum cleaner that isn’t going to be a hassle to dig out and set up.

Hoover Linx Overview

  • ​​​​Average run time of 20 mins
  • ​​​​Quick charge time of 4 hrs
  • ​​​​Total weight of 10 lbs
  • ​​​Two speed brush roller
  • ​​​Strong 18 volt battery

All of the controls are intuitive and easy to use. They are conveniently located right at the end of the handle, so they are always at your fingertips. You will always know how much battery life you have left while cleaning because you can check the battery fuel gauge and know how much cleaning time is remaining.

This vacuum has edge-cleaning bristles that let you get closer to the walls and corners than ever before, so you don’t have to get on your hands and knees to clean. Because this vacuum offers a wide cleaning path, you can get more done in a shorter period of time, giving you more time for the more important things in life. There is a bottom release dirt cup that lets you easily clean the vacuum without getting dirty yourself. Simply dump it out and it is ready to use again.

We love this vacuum ​and it consistently sits near the top in our yearly roundup reviews. You can read our in-depth review of the Hoover Linx Cordless Stick Vacuum​.

​Why Buy?

Easy to maneuver and can clean any room in your home easily.

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Shark Rocket Ultra-Light Upright Vacuum​

The Shark Rocket ultra-light upright vacuum weighs in at just under eight pounds, and it can easily be converted into a handheld vacuum so you can clean just about anywhere, even your ceiling.

This means that you won’t have to take any risks by climbing on ladders to clean cobwebs, dust, etc. off your ceiling, and you won’t be exhausted from lifting a heavy vacuum over your head. It is easy to use, and you can even use it to detail your car.

This is a vacuum cleaner that lets you clean pretty much any surface in your home easily, from floor to ceiling. It can be used as a handheld vacuum cleaner to get at those hard to reach areas, and it will easily pick up dirt and even fine dust from hard floor surfaces.

​​Shark Rocket Overview

  • ​​Average cord length of 30 ft
  • ​​2-in-1; ​lots of attachments
  • ​​​Mid tier weight of 7.5 lbs
  • ​​​Two speed brush roller
  • ​4.2 amp motor

It comes with a micro tool home and car detail kit that lets you get into the smallest of spaces easily. It is also great for campers and boats. Included with your purchase is a washable microfiber pad that will pick up small dust particles, dust mites, pet dander, etc.

The fingertip controls let you easily turn this machine from a regular vacuum cleaner to a hard floor cleaner with a simple push of a button. This vacuum cleaner has two storage options.

You can store it as-is, or stick the hand vac to the bottom of the wand and put it on the wall mount. Clean hard floor surfaces quickly and easily with the dust-away hard floor attachment.

Highly convenient, this Shark vacuum is the most versatile vacuum we can find ​in its price range. You can also read our in depth review of the Shark Rocket Ultralight.

​Why Buy?

Shark produces highly convenient and versatile vacuums that can help with cleanup easily.

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Black+Decker​ Cordless 2-in-1 Stick Vacuum

The Black & Decker cordless vacuum offers up some pretty strong suction power, making it easy to clean your floors in a single pass. This vacuum cleaner lets you easily clean your floors, and then can be converted into a handheld vacuum cleaner so you can get to those smaller messes. It is easy to use, and easy to get around all of your furniture, so you don’t have to move things around.

This vacuum cleaner has loads of suction power, so it can pick up even the smallest dirt particles in one pass. The vacuum head swivels, so you can vacuum around furniture with ease. It is small and lightweight, measuring just 11.4 inches X 10.5 inches X 20 inches.

​Black and Decker 2-in-1 Overview

  • ​​​​Average run time of 25 mins
  • ​​​​Quick charge time of 5 hrs
  • ​​​​Total weight of 9 lbs
  • ​​​Two speed brush roller
  • ​​​Powerful 20 volt battery

Enjoy the Black & Decker two year limited warranty, so you don’t have to worry about problems due to manufacturer defects or defective parts. If you have any problems during the warranty period, simply return it for a replacement or repairs.

If you are looking for a lower priced vacuum cleaner that is going to let you get the job done quickly and easily, this is definitely an option to consider. It can easily clean any flooring surface in your home, and it is also easy to maneuver.

​This Black and Decker has the strongest suction of any cordless vacuum cleaner we have on this list, and you'll be hard pressed to find this combination of power and convenience out of any other ​vacuum of its price range. It's a bit loud and noisy, but that is because it is doing it's job!

We've also put together a detailed review of this Black and Decker vacuum.

​Why Buy?

Black+Decker Cordless has stronger suction power than other vacuums for an affordable price.

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Oreck Commercial ​Upright Vacuum

The Oreck Commercial XL2100RHS XL is a commercial upright vacuum that is great for many businesses, and it can also be easily used in your home.

This is a machine that is best suited for low-pile carpets, and it doesn’t take up a whole lot of storage space. It offers an automatic floor adjustment that lets it move easily from carpets to hard surfaces, and you don’t have to make any adjustments yourself. This makes it ideal for locations where there are multiple types of flooring surfaces.

One of the best features about this vacuum cleaner is the Helping Hand handle. It is so easy to use that it has actually received the Ease-of-Use commendation from the Arthritis Foundation. The on/off switch is conveniently located in the handgrip.

Unfortunately, this means that you can no longer use arthritis in your hands as an excuse to not vacuum the floors. You don’t have to adjust the settings to move from carpeting to hard floors either, as this is all automatic.

​​Oreck Commerical Overview

  • ​​Great cord length of 35 ft
  • ​Powerful commercial suction
  • ​​​​Total weight of 8 lbs
  • ​​​High speed brush roller
  • ​4 amp motor

The cord length is long... an extensive 35 ft! Not only can you easily vacuum an entire room​ -  you can probably do at least two rooms and maybe even a hallway before you have to unplug the 35-foot cord to look for a closer outlet.

​We love this vacuum for it's strong suction, stronger than anything else you'll see ​in its range The vacuum is a bit bulky and not very attractive, but that's why you have a closet, right?

​Why Buy?

Great suction power, easy to store, and easy to use both on carpets and hard floors.

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Bissell Powerglide Lift Off Pet Plus Upright Bagless Vacuum

The Bissell 20431 Powerglide Lift-Off Pet Plus is an upright, bagless vacuum cleaner that is actually a two-in-one tool that can also be used for cleaning stairs and upholstery.

This is a great vacuum cleaner for anyone with pets, and it comes with special tools that are designed to remove pet hair from carpets, stairs, upholstery, and any areas where pet hair collects and are difficult to get at. The triple-action brushroll gives you maximum cleaning power, no matter what type of flooring surface you are cleaning.

This is also a good vacuum to use if you suffer from environmental allergies. It has the Smartseal allergen system that traps dust, pet dander, and other allergens so they don’t float through the air in your home. Even if pet hair is stuck deep into the carpet fibers, this machine can get rid of it. For this reason, we give this Bissell our vote for the best cheap vacuum for pets.

​Bissell Powerglide Overview

  • ​​Average cord length of 30 ft
  • ​Great for picking up pet hair
  • ​​​​Total weight of 18 lbs
  • ​​​Three speed brush roller
  • ​10 amp motor

On top of that, it also has a pet odor eliminator filter with Febreze to freshen the air in your home while you are vacuuming. The lift-off canister allows for easy cleaning, so you never have to come into contact with the dirt.

This vacuum is also great for hard floor surfaces, including hardwood flooring. All you have to do is turn off the brushroll and you get excellent suction on hard surfaces. The swivel steering makes it easy to vacuum in corners, under furniture and ledges, and around edges.

This Bissell does a great job on a variety of surfaces. It's heavier weight isn't our favorite, but it more than makes up for it if you have pet hair you're trying to pick up. If you want to learn more, read our review of this Bissell Powerglide vacuum.

​Why Buy?

Great in cleaning various surfaces, pet-friendly, and eliminates pet odors in your home!

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Electrolux Ergorapido​ 2-1 Stick/Handheld Cordless Vacuum

The Electrolux EL2095A Ergorapido is powered by a lithium ion battery, and has the longest run time of any cordless vacuum we've seen under $200. That is the main reason this Electrolux makes our list. 

This is another great two-in-one tool that converts from a stick to a handheld vacuum cleaner, so you can easily clean most surfaces in your home, as well as in your car.

The battery gives you up to 35 minutes of powerful cleaning, and it is easy to take it apart to turn it into a handheld unit. This vacuum uses Brushroll Clean Technology that helps to remove tangles from the brushroll simply by pressing a button, making it ideal for getting rid of pet hair.

This is another great vacuum for those who have mobility issues. You don’t have to bend over to make adjustments, because the fingertip controls are right on the handle, which has been ergonomically designed.

Electrolux Ergorapido Overview

  • ​​​​Average run time of 35 mins
  • ​​​​Quick charge time of 4 hrs
  • ​​​​Total weight of 6 lbs
  • ​​​2-in-1, single brush roller
  • ​​​Strong 18 volt battery

Another great feature is the no-touch, no-mess cleaning. All you have to do is empty the dust cup, dump it out, and put it back in place. The 180-degree swivel head lets you maneuver around furniture easily, and there is a crevice tool and a dusting brush that are stored in the charging station.

This is also a great vacuum cleaner for hardwood floors. You can adjust it so the brushroll won’t brush against and scratch the delicate wood, and it actually gives wood floors a polished appearance when you are finished cleaning. Go from carpets to flooring without having to fiddle around with a lot of adjustments.

This is a strong competitor when choosing the best vacuum​ under this price tag. ​You get a lot of versatility from one vacuum. We don't love that it pushes the upper ranges, but we do love the extended run time that this cordless stick vacuum gives us.

We also have a lengthy in depth review on this Electrolux vacuum model.

​Why Buy?

Versatile, cleans most surfaces in your home, and ideal for cleaning pet hair.

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​Final Votes

When you take a look at these three great little machines, it just goes to show that you don’t have to spend a lot of money to get a quality vacuum cleaner. All of these machines are priced at less than $200, and they are all going to give you the suction power and versatility you need to clean your whole home quickly and easily.

If we had to choose the best vacuum under 200, it would definitely go to the Hoover Linx Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner based on the powerful suction power combined with ease of use that it comes with.

Category

Vacuum

Price

Best Vacuum Under $200

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Why Buy a Mid-Priced Vacuum

Just because a product is​n't the most expensive one on the market, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it's made cheap or doesn't work well. On the flip side of that coin, just because it is expensive, it doesn’t mean that it is any better than one that is less expensive.

This holds true for most products, including vacuum cleaners. You will run across the cheap models that are just really bad and offer little to no suction. But, there are some less expensive models that work just as well (or almost as well) as their costlier counterparts.

The problem with buying a cheap vacuum cleaner is that many people do not read reviews, and they simply look at the great deal they are getting. It's not a bargain if it doesn’t work well or breaks quickly!

​76% of Millennials surveyed would ​prefer to spend less than $200 on their next vacuum cleaner, with 64% of Baby Boomers ​wanting to spend $200 or less. 
Source: HomeViable.com 2018 Study

This is why we ​put together our reviews of the best rated vacuum cleaners under $200. These are all excellent options that aren’t going to cost a fortune, but will provide plenty of suction power to get all of your cleaning jobs done quickly and easily.

You can actually find many quality vacuum cleaners that are priced at less than $200, and they are made by quality brands that you know and trust.

Here are some of the reasons why you should invest in a good mid-priced vacuum instead of it’s cheaper counterparts.

Above Average Suction

Mid-priced vacuums will usually offer a better suction power than the cheaper varieties. The higher price point allows manufacturers to build their vacuums with stronger working components. These better overall builds will give your vacuum a higher suction power.

This is a great thing for high traffic households that have many visitors, kids or pets. More suction will not only pick up larger pieces of dirt and debris (see cheerios and scattered pet food) but it will also pull stubborn trapped in hair and dirt from your carpet.

You would be shocked at the amount of remains you will find burrowed between the fibers of your carpet after you have run a cheaper vacuum over it.

The higher suction power also has the ability to avoid clogs, since it won’t give into large debris pile ups that come through the vacuum’s hose and get caught due to lowered suction ability. More suction power means that it is already equipped to keep pulling that wad of debris through the hose and down into the chamber for emptying.

Quieter

Similar to the same reason as stated above, when you pay a little more for a vacuum, you are paying for a more advanced overall system. This includes a quieter vacuum that won’t disturb or disrupt your household when it is time to clean.

Since the invention of the motorized vacuum in the early 1900s, manufacturers have learned how to build a better and quieter vacuum. The inner fan that provides suction and cooling has been updated to a blade-less fan. They also realized that making a thicker walled vacuum also cuts down on the internal noise coming out.

Having a quieter vacuum means that you no longer have to pick and choose your times for cleaning. Since you won’t need to worry about pausing the TV until the vacuum has passed by, or closing the door and praying that the loud noise won’t wake small children.

A quieter vacuum can also be less stressful for cats and dogs that would normally go scrambling as soon as the power button is switched on. Vacuums that are quieter can also make a less stressful cleaning environment for you, since you will not be hearing that loud whirring while you are going over the floor in multiple rooms of the house.

Good Filtration

Filtration is the act of catching all the tiny particles that collect on your surfaces and get sucked up into the vacuum. These particles are sometimes so small that they can pass through the vacuum and come out of the fan’s exhaust system. This then pushes the tiny particles, which can also be classified as microscopic allergens, back into your home.

When you have a good mid-priced vacuum, they have better filtration which not only catches the tiny particles, but also will have a secondary filter to help ensure that no microscopic allergens are pushed back out into your home.

A common filter that you will come across in vacuums is a HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) Filter. This type of filter is required to be tested in order to be a true HEPA filter, that is capable of trapping 99.97% of tiny particles that it comes into contact with.

Many vacuums will claim to have a HEPA filter, but you can be sold a common filter that does not meet the true HEPA standards. You will want to make sure that the vacuum’s advertising states that it can trap 99.97% of microns that are .30 in size or higher. Also a true HEPA filter will have a serial number located on it as a stamp of approval.

Having a HEPA filter is very important if you have high sensitivities to allergens and dust. It is also very beneficial in pet friendly homes, to ensure that you are gathering up and removing all of the pet allergens and dander than they track around the home.

Come with Attachments

Attachments are a wonderful thing when it relates to your vacuum. They enhance the single function of pushing a suction head across a carpeted floor and allow you to use the very effective suction cleaning power to multiple areas and surfaces of your home.

Most vacuums will offer a crevice tool as a standard attachment. The crevice tool is a must have when it comes to cleaning hard to reach corners, under furniture and even up along the walls of your home to clean cobwebs.

More advanced vacuums will not only offer various attachments from dust brushes to handheld motorized suction heads, they will also allow the vacuum to evolve. Some of these vacuums allow you to lift the main canister body off of the stick and will give you a lighter and easier to lift and carry cleaning machine.

It will still offer the same suction power so that you can take that cleaning efficiency off of the floor and around the home onto your many surfaces with ease.

These vacuums can also offer longer or extending wands that allow you to reach higher above the floor to clean walls, corners of the ceiling, high window crevices and even to suction dust your indoor ceiling fans.

Durable and Long Lasting

If you are investing in a good mid-priced vacuum, then you are investing in one that will not break down or fall apart within a few months of use.

These vacuums have been made with more sound components such as durable thick walled plastic such as ABS plastics or polycarbonates that have often been tested for durability through daily wear and tear.

They are also designed to give you years of good suction without wearing down or out. If you see a reduce in your suction over time then you may need to open and clean out your vacuum to make sure it is not caused by any clogs or  any hair buildup on the roller brush.

​Good Warranty

​Most of these vacuums will also come with a warranty to give you a better peace of mind when buying. That way if the parts break down before they should, you know that you are covered.

If you plan to really use and rely on the warranty then make sure that you take a moment to read over it before you drop your worries at the door. Some warranties will only cover the inner parts for a short period of time, where as other vacuums can offer a risk free trial for a certain period of time or even a hassle free guarantee to replace or fix anything that breaks down.

Cheaper to Repair

​If you don't have a warranty on your vacuum, or if it breaks outside of the warranty period, then you'll be faced with a decision: get the vac fixed or buy a new one?

The nice thing about vacuums in the $200 price range is that it is usually relatively cheap to repair them. Unlike really expensive Dyson and Miele models, whose upfront cost is high and the repair cost is also high, middle priced vacuums can be repaired for much cheaper.

This is mainly due to the fact that so many more vacuums in this price range are produced and bought, which means there are a plethora of parts available. You might end up electing to get a new vacuum, but its nice to have options that aren't cost-prohibitive for repairing your cleaner.

hoover linx best stick vacuum

Features You Should Expect

As we've already said, you really don't need to settle on features with a $200 vacuum. You can expect to buy a very high quality vacuum cleaner, and we're going to spend a few minutes reviewing the features you should expect to see in the best vacuum under $200.

Brush Roller

Brush rollers are not included on all vacuum cleaners, and they are essential to a vacuum that works well on carpet. In combination with high powered suction, a brush roller agitates the dirt and debris that gets lodged in your carpet, allowing the vacuum to suck it up.

Cheaper vacuums that are under $100 rarely come with brush rollers, but you should expect to find one in a $200 model. They are essential to getting a good and thorough cleaning of your carpets.

Preferably, you want to find a vacuum that has an on/off brush roller. This allows you to turn it off when you are vacuuming bare floor, but turn it on when you are on carpets.

If you have pets, a brush roller is even more essential. Pet hair tends to "stick" to the surfaces it falls on, and a brush roller is essential to dislodge it.

In addition to having a good brush roller, with mid priced vacuums you might be able to adjust the height of your brush. This lets you clean multiple heights of carpet by lowering itself onto shorter carpet or raising up higher for a shag or high pile rug.

2 in 1 Model

A 2 in 1 vacuum cleaner means that your vacuum will not only work as an upright or stick model, but also as a handheld vacuum.

For starters, this really increases the convenience for you. Rather than having to get another vacuum out of the closet to clean those tough areas, you can just use the vacuum you have.

It also saves you money, as you no longer need a second vacuum cleaner.

If you have stairs or furniture that you're constantly cleaning, or want to use the vacuum to clean your car, this will really be an added bonus that you get with a high quality vacuum at or around $200.

When a model offers more versatility to your cleaning routine then you are able to find easier ways to clean around and outside of your home.

Attachments

Typically, a cheaper vacuum is going to come with just the cleaner itself. But a mid priced vacuum, such as one you would find in the $200 range, should come with a range of attachments to add on.

Attachments allow you to transform your vacuum cleaner into a specialized cleaner. Typical attachments include floor or crevice wands and upholstery brushes. Even better, there are several models in this range that come with a specialized pet hair brush.

Vacuums that are under $50 or $100 generally don't come with any of these attachments, but you should find an adequate supply of them in the $200 price range.

Added Convenience

Base model vacuum cleaners can be bulky and heavy, with little priority put on ease-of-motion and convenience.

When you're looking for the best vacuum under $200, brands add convenience factors that make your life a lot easier.

Ease of Use

When you buy a mid-priced vacuum, it isn't too much to expect that it is relatively easy to use. There are quite a few factors that go into this equation, ranging from weight to steering to how it glides across a variety of surfaces.

Lightweight vacuums are easier to use, as are vacs with swivel steering. Vacuum cleaners with larger wheels can push across carpet easier, making your life easier when cleaning.

Grip and Height

Believe it or not, some vacuums are just better designed from an ergonomic perspective than others. The handle's grip is one of these features. You want the handle to positioned in an area natural to where you hand would be.

Otherwise, your hand can actually cramp up and develop soreness. If you vacuum frequently, this could develop into carpal tunnel syndrome. Ergonomic grip placement can avoid this.

In addition, the vacuum's height can play a role in its convenience. While its impossible to design a vacuum that is the perfect height for everyone, some brands have figured out how to make a handle that works well with a variety of heights.

Woman in an apron cleans furry carpet with vacuum

Source: vacleaning.co.uk

Lightweight

For starters, lightweight options are more common. There are several stick vacuums on our list that come in with high suction power yet weighing less than 10 lbs. When you have a lightweight vacuum it is easier to move around the house and will make cleaning stairs much less of a hassle.

Lightweight vacuums also just make it easier overall when you are doing your daily cleaning. This is because you are not lugging out a heavy vacuum cleaner just to use it for a few minutes. If you prefer having a heavy duty vacuum, then you can also keep a lightweight stick vacuum in an easily accessible closet for those quick daily pickups.

Swivel Head

Quick turn, swivel heads are also much more common in vacuums for this price range. This makes navigating those tight turns and tricky corners in your house a lot easier.

Swivel headed vacuums have an additional part between the suction head and the body of the vacuum, this flexible part allows the vacuum to glide easier across the floor. With a suction head that swivels, you wont be constantly going back and forth to try to clean the angles of your home. Instead a light pressure from your hand on the vacuums handle will guide it to twist and angle naturally for a quicker clean up.

Corded vs Cordless

If you opt for a corded vacuum cleaner model, you'll find cords that are 30 feet and longer, meaning you don't have to stop as often and find a new plug.

And, on the contrary, good cordless vacuum options in the $200 price range will have battery's that run longer and charge quicker.

When it comes to choosing a corded versus cordless option, it will really depend on your overall preference and also your home size.

  • While a cordless vacuum can add convenience to your routine, it may also add in more time waiting to clean if you have a large home with many high traffic areas that require daily cleaning.
  • A cordless vacuum would do better with a split cleaning routine that allows you time to charge in-between cleaning the multiple levels of a home.
  • A corded option, while can be a little bit of a hassle when it comes to plugging and unplugging as you move around the house, will also not let you down when you are on a long cleaning spree.
  • As long as you have a place to plug it in, the corded variety will always be on and at their peak of power.

When it comes to mid-priced options, there can also be an added convenience of an auto cord rewind button that will save you the time and effort of gathering and neatly wrapping the cord up when you are finished cleaning.

Focus on Pet Hair

If you have a pet in the home then you know how crucial pet hair pick up is. Even if your pet does not shed that much, if you have a vacuum that does not have good suction power or does not have pet hair attachments then it can be hindering your pet hair cleanup tasks.

Some vacuums are labeled that they are made specifically for pets, this can be a good thing, but you are not limited to just this type of vacuum. When you are shopping for the best vacuum for pet hair cleanup, then you want to look for a vacuum that has a powerful suction.

Additional attachments will also help with picking up pet hair. A crevice tool will get into tight corners and under furniture where hair can gather. A dust brush or included motorized brush attachment is great for vacuuming upholstery and getting stubborn hair off of your furniture.

Suction Power

Depending on your needs, the right suction power on a vacuum will vary from person to person. As stated above, if you have a pet or two in the home, especially if they are moderate to high shedders, then you will need a good suction vacuum.

Most cordless vacuums will provide adequate to good levels of suction power. However, most of the cordless vacuums will err on the side of lower suction power, versus the corded variety that do not have to limit the internal power in order to keep a battery life.

However, when you are shopping for a mid-priced vacuum, the cordless options can surprise you with not only a longer battery life, but also with an added suction boost. So even if you need more power, you don’t have to completely rule out a cordless option if that is what you really want.

Floor Type Considerations

When you're buying a vacuum on either end of the pricing spectrum (super cheap or ultra expensive), you don't have as much to consider. Even the best cheap vacuums don't give you many options at all, and expensive vacuums typically can handle any type of flooring.

However, when you're looking in the $200 range, you'll find a lot of variance in terms of what types of flooring the various cleaners can handle. Lets review the different flooring types and considerations you'll want to make for each.

Laminate and Bare Floors

​Laminate and bare floors ​are pretty easy for a vacuum to get clean. There aren't any carpet fibers for the dirt and debris to get stuck in, and so a decently-powered vac can suck most everything up easily.

​You don't need a vacuum with a brush roller, so if you have a home or apartment made entirely of laminate flooring, this might allow you to save some money.

Hardwood

​Similar to laminate and bare flooring, hardwood does not require a vacuum with loads of suction to keep it clean. However, hardwood floors are much more susceptible to scratching and damage, so you have to take extra precautions.

These types of floors don't require a brush roller, and you won't want to have your brush roller engaged when vacuuming hardwood floors. An aggressive brush roller can actually damage this type of flooring if it wasn't designed for it.

You want to disengage the brush roller when vacuuming hardwood (if possible). ​Another consideration is the wheels of your vacuum. Make sure they are made of soft rubber, as metal or other materials can scratch and damage your hard wood. 

Low Pile Carpet

Low pile carpet, such as thin area rugs or even berber carpeting, are relatively easy for vacuums to clean. You do need more power than with bare floors, but this is where mid-priced vacuums in the $200 price range shine.

​Good suction and a brush roller will go a long way with low pile carpet. You do want a brush roll for any carpet - otherwise, dirt and dander gets trapped in the carpet fibers and stays there indefinitely. 

​By the same token, pay attention to the filtration system on your vacuum. It will be picking up a lot of stuff from your carpet, and good filtration ensures it doesn't get projected right back into the air (subsequently falling back onto your carpet).

Thick, Dense Carpet

If you have thick, high pile carpet such as shag or plush, then you really need to make sure you get a good vacuum. Frankly speaking, a sub-$200 vac might not do the trick.

​Thick carpets have very high pile fibers, making it easy for dirt to make its way deep into the carpet. You need a combination of high suction power and a powerful brush roller. This tandem can tackle this tough carpet fiber.

Great filtration and a HEPA fiilter are a must too. Finally, the vacuum needs to be designed to move about on thicker carpets, so that you don't need to lift weights just to push your vacuum!

A Mixture of Floor Types

If you're like most households, you probably have a combination of several of these floor types. That isn't a problem for this range of cleaners, but here are a few added considerations:

  • ​Consider a vacuum that has a brush roller that can be switched on or off. That way, when you are on hardwood or laminate floors, you can turn it off. And, when you go on carpet, you can switch it on.
  • ​Look for a wide range of attachments. This will allow you to quickly clean all of the different surface corners and notches you have. Attachments can typically handle different floor types really well.

Bagged vs Bagless

This is a debate no matter what price range you're considering for a vacuum, but especially so in the mid-tiered market of the $200 price range. Bagged options tend to do a better job overall, but bagless options are cheaper over time and more convenient.

  • Bagless cleaners are cheaper because you don't have to buy replacement bags over the years. 
  • They are also more convenient because you don't have to deal with annoying bags that are covered in dirt and dust.
  • Bagged cleaners tend to do a better job picking up dirt and debris, especially on medium pile and thicker carpets.
  • Bagged vacs are cleaner to empty, because you don't put some of the dirt back into the air when you empty it.
  • Both types require cleaning and filter changes.

In the end, it really comes down to your preferences. Unlike with cheaper vacuums, this price range has a variety of options in both bagged and bagless.

Nice To Have Bonus Features

We've outlined all of the essential features you need to look for in a $200 vacuum. If you can find most of these features, you'll have a very serviceable and reliable cleaner for your home. 

However, there are some other features that go a long ways and are very nice to have. We wouldn't call them essential, at least not for everyone, but they sure are nice to have.

HEPA Filtration Systems

All vacuums come with some sort of filtration system, although how sophisticated it is will depend on the specific brand and cleaner. And, some filtration systems do a great job even without incorporating HEPA filtration.

However, if you can grab a vacuum that has a HEPA filter as a part of it, this is a big bonus. HEPA filters pull out the allergetic dander and dirt, which is a huge plus for having a cleaner home, especially if you have allergies. 

Fast Charging Batteries

We went through all of the benefits and drawbacks of buying a cordless vac. The upsides are clear - cord free cleaning. The downsides, though, are having to navigate the battery situation.

An often overlooked feature of some vacs is that their batteries charge really fast. This helps solve one of the biggest problems with cordless cleaners: having to wait for your battery to charge in between cleanings.

Some cordless models take 8-10 hours to recharge. This means that you have to wait a long time in between cleaning, and can be very inconvenient.

Other brands recharge the battery in 3-4 hours, over 2X as fast! This makes the cordless vac a lot more useful and means you have to plan a little less. 

3 in 1

2 in 1 capabilities are more than likely plenty to clean the majority of situations in your home. This gives you the standard vacuum cleaning role along with a handheld cleaner.

However, some brands have gone one step further and offered 3 in 1 functionality. Typically, this adds a third cleaning type, usually in the form of something that resembles a canister style cleaner.

If you have a lot of varied cleaning surfaces in your home, and you want to use this cleaner in your car or on upholstery, this would be a nice addition.

On/Off Brush Roller

Brush rollers come in all shapes and sizes, along with different degrees of effectiveness. If you have sensitive flooring, though, having a brush roller that you can turn on and off with a flip of a switch if really valuable.

For carpets and laminate flooring, this isn't nearly as nice as if you have sensitive hardwood that can scratch from an aggressive roller. Its also really helpful for thicker carpets, because the roller can get tangled.

In these situations, you would just be able to switch the brush roller off with the flick of your thumb.

LED Lights

Until you have lights on your vac, they seem like the most worthless and pointless feature. However, once you have them, its actually hard to go back. It is really nice to be able to have a constant light source on what you're vacuuming (or just vacuumed up).

This way, you know if you were able to pick everything up with the first pass. You'd be surprised how many dark corners you vacuum on a frequent basis, and LED lights can actually save you a lot of unnecessary work.

Larger Dust Bin Capacity

Having a larger dust bin capacity is purely for convenience, but it is nice. This means that you won't have to empty your vacuum's dust bin as frequently.

If you have a harder time emptying your dust bin for health or mobility reasons, this is something to pay attention to. Manufacturer's usually post the size of every model's dust bin for you to compare.

Motorized Attachments

Most of the attachments that you'll find are not motorized. They will hook up to your vacuum's hose or some other part. To be clear, attachments don't need to be motorized to be effective. But motorized attachments take this effectiveness one step further.

Final Remarks

When it comes to investing in a mid-priced vacuum, you are not just buying a more powerful machine to help you clean. You are also allowing yourself to buy a vacuum that can meet the daily needs of your cleaning routine and active household.

Take the time to do your research on what the best mid-priced vacuum is for you based on the above features and facts. Just because a vacuum comes rated as the best, does not mean that it would be the best fit for you over a slightly different variation or brand.

Also, always take a moment to browse the reviews on a vacuum before you commit. Some of these reviews are basic praises while others are cautionary tales to help you realize the abilities and limitations of a certain vacuum.

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About the Author Allen Michael

Allen Michael is the Founder and Editor of Home Viable, a website that he started to provide readers with tips on home efficiency and automation. He draws on his engineering background combined with his family-of-four experiences for his articles.

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