Even with the improved battery technology and run time, there are still a lot of skeptics that say cordless vacuums are junk and not up to par with their corded siblings.
While they may have valid points, I don’t agree with their assessment that these types of vacuums are useless junk – you just have to manage your expectations and know the technology behind all this.
The best cordless vacuums have runtimes of around 15 to 45 minutes (some even up to an hour) which is enough time for that spot clean up chore its intended for. Charge times will range from 10 minutes to about 6 hours for lithium equipped models, and upwards of 16 hours for models with nickel cadmium batteries.
Much like cordless drills, you pay for portability – the ability to work without cords and if you ask me plugging and unplugging cords drive me crazy as well as untangling them. And if you have back pain, you’ll appreciate the lighter weight of these types of products because there’s no way I’ll lug around a 20 pound vacuum just to clean spilled cereal.
So what do I look for?
I suggest you look into getting one with a lithium battery than has a warranty of at least 2 years, you might be tempted to be a cheapskate and pick one below 50 bucks but for your sanity’s sake don’t. Chances are these products are equipped with old nickel cadmium batteries that don’t hold their charge very well and have notoriously short lifespans.
In the end you’ll end up spending more buying more vacuums because the original one broke after the warranty period.
For home owners with carpeted floors, you’ll still need your upright or canister for that periodic deep cleaning session and use the cordless for maintenance chores. If you own a home with hardwood floors, you may not need a full sized cleaner because modern cordless vacuums are powerful enough and last long enough to sweep up dirt on floors.
If quick pickups, consider a lightweight handheld that’s under 4 pounds that has a crevice, brush and pet hair attachments to clean a variety of messes.