Vacuuming is undoubtedly the most daunting and tiring of all household chores.
Having to lift the vacuum cleaner up & down stairs, moving furniture around, finding convenient outlets would make you just leave vacuuming on your to-do list.
Having carpeted stairs is the worst when it comes time to clean them! Fortunately, as long as you find the reliable and good vacuum cleaner, you can get the job done with fewer backaches and less sweat.
Read on for our top recommendations of vacuum cleaners for stairs (with detailed reviews), as wells as advice on what to consider before your purchase.
Make Your Stairs Spotless With:
What to Consider: 5-Point How-to-Choose Guide
Top 3 Lightweight Vacuum Cleaners for Stairs
#1. Lublueblu Editor’s Pick: 202
#2. People Magazine’s Take: 006
#3. Best-for-the-Budget Pick: 008
With thousands of options on the market, selecting the best vacuum cleaners for pets, stairs, hardwood floors is quite overwhelming.
Get full details for the differences between canisters and uprights, bagged and bagless, corded and cordless types, plus other factors, including light weight, maneuverability, ease of use, suction power and more.
1. Size and Type
Cordless vacuum cleaners are powered by rechargeable batteries – no need to be plugged into an outlet for the power supply. Hence, you don’t need to drag the wire all the way when you vacuum your stairs.
Corded hoovers need physical cables for being inserted to an outlet for power supply. You have to drag the wire during the whole cleaning process. Good news is that you won’t encounter the power drain.
Hint: Read this post for the comparison between corded vs cordless vacuum cleaners.
Upright vacuum cleaners enable you to clean your stairs without bending. Some upright dust sweepers would be heavy. Hence, do find a well-designed and light one for cleaning your staircases.
Stick vacuum cleaners are slim, lightweight and portable type of the upright hoovers, which makes it a good choice for vacuuming stairs.
Most stick vacs are battery operated – no need for a cord that can limit the distance and pose as a tripping hazard. Some sticks can be also turned to a handheld vacuum cleaner, ideal for smaller cleaning tasks.
Canister vacuums are also efficient for cleaning stairs. However, since they need the hose to connect the vacuum and the litter collector, make sure the hose is long enough to reach all the way to the top of the stairs, avoiding lifting the cumbersome up and down.
With bagged vacuums, you’ll need to buy replacement bags and change them once full. Those bags are often disposable.
Bagless vacuum cleaners save your expense on buying replacement bags. Bagless versions collect the liter with the included dustbin. All you need to do is emptying the dustbin. This type of hoovers generally uses HEPA filter to trap the dust and dirt without leaking.
What is the best vacuum cleaner for stairs?
Considering the ease of use, maneuverability, portability and versatility, the vacuum cleaner that is cordless, stick, and bagless would be the best vacuum cleaner for stairs, removing pet hair/dander, dust mites and long human hair.
2. Lightweight Design
It is not fun at all if you need to move a bulky unit up and down to vacuum your stair steps. Hence, the weight of a vacuum cleaner does matter.
What is considered a lightweight vacuum cleaner?
At a weight between 5 to 15 pounds, a vacuum can be considered as lightweight. The weight is different among various vacuum types.
Handheld vacs usually weigh less than 4 pounds. Stick versions typically weigh just 4 to 7 pounds and upright vacuums weigh the most (13 to 20 pounds).
When considering the ease of movement and lift, a stick or handheld vacuum would be the best lightweight vacuum cleaner for cleaning stairs edge, ears, steps, handrails, etc.
3. Suction Power
Vacuum cleaners are designed to suck not “suck”.
Hence, a high suction power vacuum cleaner is necessary for sucking dust, cat/dog hair & dander and other particles & litter on your hardwood or carpeted stairs.
For a vacuum cleaner for stairway, the suction power that is between 9 kPa to 25 kPa is sufficient to remove particles on your stairs.
Different attachments help you to get all areas of your stairs clean. A narrow crevice tool is helpful to clean hard-to-reach corners and between railings. A motorized roller brush attachment does a great job on carpeted stairs.
Hence, do find a good vacuum cleaner for your stairs with different attachments, so that you are able to clean every area of your stairs, the steps, railings, edge, ears, etc.
5. Battery Life
The battery life is the biggest concern for a cordless battery vacuum cleaner.
It is frustrating if the vac stops working on the halfway of cleaning your stairs. Hence, an electric broom that lasts at least 20 minutes is necessary, in order to get your cleaning done without having to stop for recharging.
If you want to prolong the runtime of the stair vac, get a spare battery to double the battery life.
The best vacuum cleaners for stairs should be cordless, lightweight and portable, and enable you to clean just every position easily. Check the below top recommendations to keep your stairs spotless.
#1. Lublueblu Editor’s Pick: 202 – Best Stick & Handheld Vacuum Cleaner for Stairs
Lubluelu 202 weighs only 1.3 kg/2.8 pounds (the motor), which is extremely easy to move up and down. Even a senior or elderly can lift it easily without losing breath.
Noreen K Quill, a customer shared her experience after using this 202:
“I LOVE this vacuum cleaner. It’s lightweight, easy to clean the brush bar and even easier to empty. It picks up cat hair easily and I can get it upstairs and downstairs without losing my breath. If you didn’t get one, you don’t know what you’re missing!!”
This rechargeable vacuum cleaner has 3 suction modes - 10 kPa/17 kPa/25 kPa – making it just a piece of cake to remove dust and pet hair/dander hidden in your carpeted stair steps.
This 2-in-1 vacuum cleaner is able to work up to 50 minutes with one single charge, so you won’t have to stop for recharging before finishing cleaning stairs.
With 3 attachments – the big roller brush, the crevice tool and the soft brush, you are able to clean all surfaces and all areas of your stairways, making your stairs completely dust-free and allergen-free.
You may convert the vacuum between stick and hand vacuum cleaner when you install different attachments to the motor.
Watch the video below to see how this carpet cleaner with stair attachment performs in action.
#2. People Magazine’s Take: 006 – Best Cordless Vacuum Cleaner for Carpeted & Hardwood Stairs
If you have a cat or dog sheds a lot, Lubluelu 006 is one of the best cordless vacs for you.
It features an anti-tangle roller brush, helping you clean all stubborn particles, pet hair/dander, and long human hair easily.
Weighing at only 5.5 pounds, you are able to get it upstairs and downstairs to clean your stairway effortlessly.
The maximum suction power of this portable vacuum cleaner reaches 25 kPa, so sucking up dust or hair inside the carpeted stair steps or hardwood floors is just a breeze.
3 included attachments help you clean all surface of your stairs. This do-it-all vac is not just a good helper in cleaning stairs, but is also efficient in cleaning pet hair, floors, carpets, windows, beds or mattresses.
People Magazine also recommends this best lightweight and portable for stairs, and considers it:
This Lubluelu 006 Stick Vacuum 'Performs Better' Than Top-Rated Competitors
#3. Best-for-the-Budget Pick: 008 – Best Small & Lightweight Cordless Vacuum Cleaner for Staircases
If you want a high-quality vacuum cleaner for cleaning your stairs but with limited budget, Lubluelu 008 is currently the best option.
Combing the lightweight design (2.8 pounds), versatility (3 attachments), high suction power (max. 15 kPa) and up to 40 minutes of runtime, it is the best stick and handheld vacuum cleaner for staircases.
Take a look at the video for more features of this stair vacuum cleaner.
If you want the best vacuum cleaners under $200 or $300 for long hair, cat litter, carpets, stairs, hardwood floors, go for the above 1-for-all versatile picks.