Best Handheld Vacuum Cleaners

Dirt and dust are unpleasant guests in our households, which everyone wants to eliminate as quickly as possible. However, the handle to the vacuum cleaner is often associated with a considerable effort. A popular alternative is the hand vacuum cleaner; a smaller and more compact version of the canister vacuum cleaner. These devices are very handy for small soiling, they are mostly battery operated and therefore also comfortable mobile use and from the crumbs at the dining table, the dust in the living room corner to the cleaning of the car ideally suited.

Everything that lies behind the handle of the suction pipe and the suction hose in the large vacuum cleaner is located in the device part between the handle and the floor nozzle in the case of a hand vacuum cleaner. These are dust container, an additional air filter, the engine of the vacuum cleaner and – if available – a cable rewind or the battery.


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Different types of construction

The hand vacuum cleaner is available in a wide variety of designs. A possible distinction can already be made on the basis of the power supply. Models are offered that work with the help of a battery or simply in network operation. The battery-powered models are now the most frequently represented, mainly due to their flexible applications.

A special design of the hand vacuum cleaner are the classic table vacuums. These are almost always rechargeable vacuum cleaners designed to absorb crumbs and other small objects. Also, upholstery or otherwise difficult to reach corners can be cleaned well with such devices. Special models of this table vacuum can also absorb liquids.

Another design is the so-called brush vacuum cleaners, which are specially designed for cleaning floors. Especially on carpets such brush vacuum cleaners can do a good job. There are also models that combine the vacuum cleaner function with the operation of a floor wiper.

Field of application: Hand vacuum cleaners are therefore quite suitable as a replacement for the classic vacuum cleaner, at least in some applications. But you must not forget that the performance of such a hand vacuum cleaner are also limits. It is logical that a device with a battery cannot be as powerful as a device that draws power from the power outlet.

With dustbag or without?

With the variety of offered hand vacuum cleaners, it is not surprising that sooner or later the question arises of the “with bag or without”. This is, as so often not universally valid answer. An existing dust bag provides the air with a high mechanical resistance, as each aspirated dust grain must pass through the walls of the bag.

Hand vacuum cleaners without a bag usually rely on the so-called ” cyclone technology “. The dirt in the turbulent air is separated by centrifugal force. You need less energy with this principle, which allows longer operating times with one battery charge.

The advantages of the respective systems therefore depend on the individual priorities. If, for example, the focus is on economy and low operating costs, the devices without a dust bag are to be preferred. The biggest advantage of the vacuum cleaner bag is that dirt and dust are kept clean and hygienic after being sucked in. An annoying emptying and cleaning of the interior is usually completely eliminated.

Important features

  • Performance: In the hand vacuum cleaners without cables, the battery performance is crucial. For example, if the car is to be sucked, the hand vacuum cleaner should last so long that the battery does not need to be charged in between. About ten to twelve minutes, the device should hold out with full force, because most models need a half to full day to recharge.But there are also handheld vacuum cleaners, which are equipped with a system for fast charging or can remove the energy from the cigarette lighter. However, a long battery life does not help if the device does not have enough suction power. To remove the dirt, the device should have at least 15 watts of suction power.
  • Type of battery: The most important thing when buying a battery-operated handheld vacuum cleaner is the battery itself. Devices with nickel-cadmium ( NiCd ) batteries are dying out. These suffer from high self-discharge and should only be recharged when empty, otherwise the battery will become weaker (memory effect). But only a few cheap models use such nickel-cadmium batteries.Better are nickel metal hydride ( NiMH ) batteries. They discharge less, show no memory effect and guarantee slightly longer runtimes. The loading times are quite long.The highest quality batteries are without a doubt lithium-ion batteries ( Li-Ion ) with many advantages. These include the significantly longer battery life, extremely short charging times, minimal self-discharge and low weight.
  • Scope of delivery: No doubt different nozzles and attachments increase the use of a hand vacuum cleaner. For example, models with an integrated crevice nozzle are available, which can be pulled out if necessary. Also upholstery brushes are recommended for the couch in the living room. If the hand vacuum cleaner is to be stowed to save space, you should buy a device with a wall mount, which usually serves as a charging station.

The new EU energy label

Consumers are becoming increasingly energy-conscious, and since September 1, 2014, the EU energy label has provided information on energy consumption, cleaning performance, and the level of dust emissions and expected noise levels. The energy efficiency is indicated by colored bars and additionally rated with the letters A to G. From 2017, these requirements will be tightened, the worse classes E to G then fall away and the new classes A + to A +++ are added for particularly economical vacuum cleaners. At the moment there are the following values:

  • the average energy per year in kWh,
  • the emissions of dust in classes A to G,
  • the noise level of the devices in decibels (dB) and beyond
  • the cleaning performance on carpets in classes A to G.
  • the cleaning performance on hard floors in classes A to G.