Shark Vacuum Reviews, Comparison, and Buying Guide 2016

One of the most common names that seems to come to mind when most people think of vacuum cleaners is Shark. When you’re searching for a Shark vacuum, you can rest assured that you are investing into a brand that represents quality with a time-honored reputation. Perhaps that’s why they’ve earned some of the highest ratings by J.D. Power.

Let’s review some key factors that will play a major role when it comes to finding a new Shark vacuum cleaner for your home and compare some of the best shark vacuum models currently available:

Top 5 Shark Vacuum (Classic & New Models) Comparison Chart 2016:

 Top 5 Shark Vacuums
Overall Rating
(1 - 10)
PricePowerPerformanceWeightFeatures
Customer Feedback
Shark Navigator NV356E
Shark Navigator NV356E Lift-Away Professional

9.4

9.5

9

10

9

9

10
Shark Navigator Lift-Away NV352
Shark Navigator NV352 Lift-Away Vacuum

9.3

10

9

10

9.5

8

9
Shark Rotator NV501
Shark NV501 Rotator Professional Lift-Away

8.9

8.5

10

10

8

8.5

8.5
Shark Rocket HV302
Shark HV302 Rocket Ultralight (Corded)

8.8

9

7

8

10

10

9
Shark Navigator NV42
Shark Navigator NV42 Deluxe Vacuum

8.8

10

10

10

8

7

8

*Click on any vacuum cleaner above to see customer feedback reviews and price on Amazon.com

Different Shark Vacuum Models

Best Shark Vacuum Model

There are 3 main types of vacuums offered by Shark. Each of these have its own aspects that make it a little different from the others. You’ll find the main differences outlined below.

  • Navigator – The Shark Navigator is the traditional model. They’re mostly lightweight and easy to maneuver around furniture, nothing fancy.
  • Rotator – As the name implies, these Rotator vacuum models have swivel steering and they’re ergonomically designed. They’re also made a little more heavy-duty to take on deep cleaning.
  • Rocket – These are noticeably different with the motor unit located near the handle. They’re very lightweight, easy to maneuver, and capable of cleaning more efficiently.

What Features to Pay Attention to

Deciding on the right vacuum will be based primarily on what you’re looking for. There are a number of features to choose from, but they may not always pertain to your specific needs. Obviously you want something with a powerful enough suction to get the job done. Here are some common features to consider:

  • Bag – Each of these features have their benefits but all that really matters is what you actually need. A bagless option eliminates the need to buy multiple bags, which can save you money in the long-run. Also, if you like to see the amount of dirt that is actually getting picked up each time you use it, then you can also consider this option.
  • Weight – If your vacuuming duties require you to move it around multiple areas of the house, you will want something that’s lightweight. Carrying a heavy cleaner up and down a set of stairs can be cumbersome. The Shark Rocket HV302 vacuum cleaner is an ultralight upright that weighs just a little over 7 pounds.
  • Attachments – Depending on what areas you plan to clean, you may need additional shark vacuum attachments. Likewise, a unit that comes with multiple attachments like a dusting brush and a crevice tool adds versatility.

What Are Your Specific Needs?

This will have an impact on the type of vacuum you choose to buy. If you have a lot of carpeting throughout your house or in high-traffic areas, opt for an upright model. For those needing a more easily portable option that can be carried around, a stick vacuum may be right up your alley.

Do you have pets? If you do, you will definitely get more bang with an upright or canister model.

Best Shark Vacuum For Hardwood Floor

Maintaining hardwood floors requires care and attention. Keeping a hardwood floor beautiful can be challenging due to the risk of scuffing and scratches. The major causes of scratches to our wooden floors are furniture, pets, particles and people. Our vacuum cleaner doesn’t need to be on the list.

Shark is aware that hardwood floors need a vacuum with specialized features. They offer several vacuum models specifically made for the cleaning of wooden floors. As consumers, we should determine the model that works best before making a purchase.

Must-have Features:

  • We must always choose a vacuum that leaves our wooden floors unmarked. This means that the ideal vacuum should have rubber wheels and padding to prevent accidental scratching.
  • Rotating beater brushes are no friend to hardwood floors. The perfect hardwood vacuum should have no beater brushes. At the very least, a vacuum suitable for wooden floors should have beater brushes that can be disabled or detached.
  • To suck up dirt from a wooden floor, a vacuum needs to have extremely powerful suction.
  • The ideal hardwood vacuum should be a combination of a mop, a broom and suction. Hardwood floor vacuums may have a soft, upright brush to sweep the floor and dislodge dirt. The vacuum’s suction should then remove the loose particles. The vacuum’s washable and reusable micro-fiber pad acts like a mop by wiping fine dust from the floor.

Shark produces several vacuum models for hardwood floors. Some of these models surpass expectations to clean our floors carefully and thoroughly. The Shark Rotator Lift-Away NV650 and the Navigator Lift_Away NV356 are two of the best in this category.

Shark Lift-Away NV650

  • This bagless, rotator-powered model not only cleans hardwood floors, it also works well on carpets. It comes with two interchangeable floor tools; one for carpets and another for hardwood floors.
  • The brush-roll of the NV650 can be deactivated. The vacuum cleaner ships with a soft dusting brush which when attached, sweeps wooden floors without scratching them.
  •  The hardwood floor attachment, aptly named the bare floor genie, allows the vacuum to safely and thoroughly clean wood floors. At its base, it has a micro-fiber cloth at its base that wipes away fine dust while protecting the floor from scuffing. The bare floor genie has a 12 inch cleaning path, which reduces the number of passes needed to clean a room.
  • The NV650 has suction with enough power to remove all debris from hardwood as well as carpet thanks to its powerful 9.5A motor.
  • The vacuum’s dirt container has a capacity of 105 ounces, enough to let you clean without having to empty the vacuum repeatedly. The dirt container empties from the bottom at the press of a button. This protects allergy sufferers from exposure to dust.
  • Easy to use with a 30-foot retractable power cord and a six foot hose, the vacuum allows you to move freely as you clean without needing to unplug the vacuum repeatedly. The vacuum’s soft rubber wheels protect the floors from scuffing as you push the vacuum.

Shark Navigator Lift-Away NV356

  • The bagless NV356 comes with an attachment specially made for hardwood floors. The hardwood attachment uses the vacuum’s powerful suction technology to thoroughly remove debris. The attachment wipes fine dust with its micro-fiber pad at its base.
  • Allergy sufferers would be pleased with this vacuum. The sealed system and HEPA filter of the Navigator Lift-Away NV356 prevents dirt from escaping the vacuum. Removing dirt from the vacuum is easy. The dust bin empties through its base at the press of a button.
  • Weighing a mere 7.5 pounds with swivel steering and a 30-foot power cord, this vacuum cleaner is easy to maneuver. Vacuuming with the NV356 is simply enjoyable.

Effective, Versatile and Affordable

Shark vacuums have many useful features which allow them to clean thoroughly. The attachment tools that come with Shark hardwood vacuums provide buyers with a versatile product that is also capable of cleaning carpet and upholstery. Buying a shark vacuum for your hardwood floors is a worthwhile investment at a fair price.

Best Shark Vacuum For Pet Hair

As cuddly, lovable, and adorable as your pets may be, there’s a good chance that they’re not afraid to shed their hair around your home, covering the majority of your belongings with layers of discarded fur. If you’re looking to do something about this mess once and for all, you’ll need a vacuum that excels at cleaning, sucking, and scrubbing. We recommend the Shark Rotator Powered Lift-Away, and here’s why:

Excellent Versatility

Above all, the Shark Rotator demonstrates an impressive level of features and attachments that allow for messes of all shapes and sizes to be taken care of. Here’s what the Rotator offers

  • Detachable vacuum pod – This allows you to suck up hair from areas that would be otherwise inaccessible.
  • Genie attachment – The Rotator is capable of cleaning both hardwood and carpeted floors, thanks to the “genie attachment”. Essentially, this attachment is a textured cloth which attaches to the vacuum and sweeps away dust, pet hair, flees, and other debris that accumulates.
  • Motorized brush attachment – This feature is really useful for pet owners who have mainly carpeted floors. The firm bristles and swift movement of the brush are very effective in removing stains, hair, or grime from your couch or carpets.
  • Upholstery tool – Another useful attachment, which essentially functions the same as a duster for furniture that falls more on the delicate side.
  • Dusting genie/crevice tool – Used for unusually small and hard to reach places (behind/under the couch, stairs, or awkward corners), the slim design of the tool is an impressive addition to the Rotator’s list of features.
  • Convenience features – The addition of LED lights, fingertip controls that allow you to switch from “hardwood” to “carpet” settings, and a swivel steering feature all compliment the wonderful range of features that the Rotator offers.

Outstanding Suction

Suction power is one of the standout features of the Rotator. It is one of the most important features to look for when searching for a vacuum. A common red flag among cheaper vacuums is the prevalence of “gimmicky” features, combined with an inadequate ability to actually clean up debris. Considering the fact that you’ll be cleaning some pretty nasty pet-related “accidents”, you will need a tool with suction that can meet your needs. The Shark Rotator is that tool.

High Ratings

The Rotator’s ratings speak for themselves. According to a review posted on CNET (a top reviewer of technology products), “Especially on carpets, [the Rotator] performs on par with high end uprights for a mid-range price”, and that, “it cleans almost as well as vacuums twice that much.”

The Bottom Line

The Rotator is an outstanding vacuum, in terms of both price and performance. With an array of features to suit any pet owner’s need, combined with exceptional suction power for the price, the Shark Rotator will please even the most critical of pet owners.

Shark Vs. Dyson

When you compare a Shark vacuum to Dyson, they can often look similar to a non-informed buyer, but there are many underlying differences worth noting. Here’s a few comparisons to help you decide which one is more suitable to your needs:

Shark Rotator Powered Lift Away Vs. Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Animal

The Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Animal is suitable for both carpets cleaning and picking up animal hair. It weighs 19 pound, has a HEPA filtration, a 35 foot manual wind cord and an off /on brush switch. It has a cleaning head of 13.4 inches width suitable for large cleaning areas. It does not have replaceable or washable filters. The Cinetic is a good machine for those with flooring made of hard surface or having a carpet. It is additionally useful up to those with pets. This model is only suitable for upright use.

The Shark Rotator Powered Lift Away on the other hand has a power cord of 30-foot, 46 inches high, 12 inches wide and 13 inches deep. The vacuum weighs 15.6 Lbs. and 8 lbs. on the lift away pod. The dust bin has a carrying capacity of 3.3 quarts which is more with 0.57 gal as compared to the Dyson’s. The Shark has washable filters which do not clog easily as compared to those of other cheaper models. This is because it has an advanced cyclonic technology that separates dirt that is fine from the air. The suction power is always strong. This machine is made versatile by the power lift away technology. It is possible to operate it as either a canister, an upright or as a handheld. You can get plenty much under any of your furniture if you remove the bin which lowers the cleaner’s head. This machine allows you to easily maneuver around any objects even with the upright position.

Shark Rotator (SV1107) Vs. Dyson V6 Absolute

When you make a comparison between these two, you will note quite a difference. The Dyson V6 Absolute is run by pressing on a trigger which runs and lasts for around twenty for minutes. This model uses cobalt batteries which take less than 4 hours to recharge.

The Shark SV1107 runs between 15-20 minutes, this depends on the cleaning mode and the batteries are recharged between three to six hours. Often the cordless vacuums are superior as compared to the corded ones and hence a good first impression of any cleaner. Vacuums that are operated by batteries use voltage that is variable and will require to be recharged. In most cases, cordless vacuums last for duration of continuous use of about 15-20 minutes. Both of these machines have a long battery lasting capacity and are a good choice.

  • Cost – The price of these two vacuum cleaners is different. The Dyson vacuum cleaners are a bit costly as compared to those from shark.
  • Warranty – Before making any purchases, you sure have to find out about the warranty. If you go Dyson way, you are guaranteed of 5 years limited warranty and if you choose Shark then you have 7 years.

How Much Do You Want to Spend?

Unless you’re one of those types that money isn’t even part of the equation, you probably have a number in mind of what you’re willing spend. Factor in the qualities you’re looking for and find what is in your budget.

Shopping for a new vacuum may take a little research and planning, but you’ll be glad you did. Shark makes great vacuum cleaners in all price ranges, and they have several different models to suit any type of home. Vacuuming is still a chore, but a few pointers can be very helpful in finding one that makes the job a little bit easier.

Top Rated Shark Vacuum Reviews:

Shark Rotator Professional Lift Away NV501Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away NV501 Review

Pros: The NV501 is a 3-in-1 vacuum that can switch between a powerful upright, a convenient canister, and a portable handheld. It can effectively clean all types of floor surfaces including tile, rug, carpet, and hardwood. Cons: The unit has a tendency to topple […]

Read Review >>


Shark Navigator NV352Shark Navigator Lift-Away NV352 Review

After having used several Dyson upright vacuums, I have eventually decided to switch over to a unit that is much easier to maneuver, and can clean hardwood floors just as well as it cleans rugs and carpets […]

Read Review >>


Shark Rocket UltraLight HV302Shark Rocket Ultralight HV302 Review

As far as upright stick vacuums go, the HV302 is a high-end product. A unique design coupled with convenient features help it stand one step ahead of the competition. If you have medium-high pile carpet covering your whole home, then you might […]

Read Review >>


Shark Navigator Freestyle SV1106Shark Navigator Freestyle SV1106 Review

Shark Bagless Navigator Freestyle Cordless Stick, as the name implies, is a bagless stick vacuum used to clean both bare floor and carpet. The suction capacity on this Shark cordless vacuum is strong, making it ideal for pet hair and all the fine dust and dirt that could otherwise […]

Read Review >>


Shark Navigator NV356EShark Navigator Lift-Away Professional NV356E Review

Before Hoover marketed their machines, our ancestors had to beat carpets to death just to clean it. I lived in Asia for a few years, where a vacuum was a luxury for some households, and so I understand what our pre-vacuum homeowners went through. Believe it […]

Read Review >>


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