Lightweight Upright Vacuum Cleaners: 4 Best Lightweight Uprights of 2017

Written by James Hall | 0 Comments| Last Updated: March 30, 2017

Lightweight upright vacuum cleaners are great if you don’t want to struggle with a bulky, heavy appliance just to clean your floors.  In this article, we’ve listed our favourite lightweight uprights to help you make an informed decision.

Lightweight upright vacuum cleaners can make cleaning much more enjoyable and less tiring – so it’s no surprise they are always in demand. Unfortunately, finding a high-quality upright that’s also not heavy is more difficult than you might imagine. Many vacs are lightweight as a consequence of having poor quality components, weak motors or other drawbacks – not because the manufacturers have designed them to minimise weight.

That’s why we’ve created this page: to help you narrow down your search to the best lightweight uprights without wasting hours scouring product specifications.

What Makes a Vacuum Lightweight?

Before we get started, we need to answer how heavy an upright cleaner can be and still be considered lightweight. This is a subjective question, but we think any model that’s below 5kg can be considered lightweight. There are vacuums available that are considerably lighter than this – some weigh as little as 2kg – but 5kg is light enough to carry (for most people) yet doesn’t narrow the available options too dramatically.

If you think 5kg sounds quite heavy, consider the fact that there are vacuum cleaners on the market weighing up to 10kg. This is far too heavy to be comfortable, and 5kg is certainly lightweight in comparison!

We should also give you a word of warning. While getting a lightweight vacuum cleaner may be a priority for you, it shouldn’t be the only consideration. Suction power, dust capacity, included tools and price are all factors that shouldn’t be ignored. The lightest vacuum cleaner isn’t always the best option.

Another consideration is that the lightest upright vacuum cleaners on the market tend to be cordless. There are a number of advantages to cordless, including extra mobility, but there are drawbacks too. Cordless models have a finite battery life, are usually less powerful and are nearly always bagless, which makes them unsuitable for people with allergies. So make sure you think carefully about whether a cordless or corded upright vacuum is the right choice for your home.

We’ve researched the top lightweight upright vacuum cleaners on the market and listed them below. Each of these models has received largely positive reviews from buyers, and we think they provide excellent value for money. Like all our vacuum reviews, we try to consider all features when looking at a model – but we’ve specifically focused on lighter machines for this page. Where possible, we’ve also linked to our lightweight upright vacuum reviews for more information.

Which are the Best Lightweight Upright Vacuums?

ImageNameTypeCapacityWeight
Gtech AirRamCordless0.8 litres3.5kg
Vax U90-MA-Re Air ReachCorded1.5 litres4.9kg
Dyson V6 FluffyCordless0.4 litres2.3kg
Karcher VC5 PremiumCordedNot listed3.2kg
Morphy Richards 732000Cordless0.3 litres3.9kg
Zanussi AirSpeed LiteCorded2 litres4.1kg

Gtech AirRam Cordless Vacuum CleanerGtech AirRam Cordless Vacuum Cleaner

The Gtech AirRam, which we reviewed in detail, is an astonishingly popular upright cordless. Weighing only 3.5kg, the AirRam provides excellent cleaning power on both hard floors and carpets. It can also handle pet hair, which is something many cordless models struggle with.

Other features include a 40 minute run time, thanks to the Lithium-ion battery, and a low profile to easily clean under furniture.

Reviews of the Gtech AirRam from buyers have been very positive, with the model receiving thousands of four or five star reviews on shopping sites. A reviewer, for example, writes that the AirRam is as “light as a feather” yet it removed dirt and dust just as well as her heavy, corded previous vacuum. Another reviewer writes that the AirRam is easy to use around the home due to its low profile, easy manoeuvrability and lightweight design.

The Gtech AirRam cordless vacuum cleaner is one of the best models we’ve reviewed so far. While it doesn’t come with any tools or accessories, its strong suction power and long battery life make it an excellent choice if you need a powerful yet lightweight cordless vacuum.

Overview:

  • Price Range: £££
  • Weight: 3.5kg
  • Dust Capacity: 0.8 litres
  • Filter Type: Washable

Key Features:

  • Innovative cordless vacuum cleaner
  • Strong suction power
  • Lightweight design weighing just 3.5kg

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Vax U90-MA-Re Air Reach Upright Vacuum CleanerVax U90-MA-Re Air Reach Upright Vacuum Cleaner

The Vax U90-MA-Re Air Reach is a powerful model with a long hose, energy efficient motor and attractive design. Not only that, but it weighs just 4.9kg, which is relatively lightweight for a corded upright vacuum.

Other features include multi-cyclonic technology to “pull” dirt from the circulating air, which increases suction power, and a variety of tools. These include an upholstery tool and dusting brush. Like most Vax models, it also comes with a six year guarantee (check the details of this before you buy though).

Reviews of the U90-MA-Re have been largely positive from buyers on online shopping sites. A reviewer writes that it provides excellent value for money. He also adds that it’s considerably lighter than models he’s used in the past. Another writes that the vacuum provides powerful suction considering the low price and lightweight design.

If you’re looking for a simple, no-nonsense upright vacuum that’s relatively light to carry, then the Vax U90-MA-Re Air Reach could be an option to consider. While it can’t match models costing hundreds of pounds in terms of features, it has decent suction power for such an inexpensive model. For more information, read our Vax U90-Ma-Re Air Reach review.

Overview:

  • Price Range: £
  • Weight: 4.9kg
  • Dust Capacity: 1.5 litres
  • Filter Type: Washable

Key Features:

  • Lightweight corded vacuum that’s easy to carry between rooms
  • Multi-cyclonic system for increasing suction power
  • Engineered for energy efficiency
  • Long cord and hose for increased cleaning radius

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Dyson V6 FluffyDyson V6 Fluffy

One of our favourite cordless vacuums is the Dyson V6 Fluffy. Despite being a powerful cordless vac, the V6 Fluffy is one of the lightest on the market with a weight of just 2.3kg. It also has a trigger system so it’s only “on” when you’re actually cleaning, which significantly extends its actual run-time.

Aside from its lightweight design, the biggest draw of the Fluffy is that it comes with a specialist hard-floor head. This is designed to pickup both small particles and larger debris without damaging the floor. There are also additional heads for furniture and carpets, so it’s one of the most versatile cordless models.

There are two main drawbacks to the Fluffy though. The first is the 20 minute run-time, which probably isn’t enough to clean an entire home even with the trigger system. This has been remedied with the newer Dyson V8 (although this comes with a considerably higher price). It’s also an expensive vacuum, but we think it has the features and performance to justify the price.

If you’re looking for a light vacuum and don’t mind cleaning a little-and-often rather than one big clean, the Dyson V6 Fluffy is a great choice. It’s not cheap, but is one of the best all-round options for cordless home cleaning. We also think it’s the best lightweight upright vacuum for hardwood floors, simply because of the Fluffy floor head.

Overview:

  • Price Range: £££
  • Weight: 2.3kg
  • Dust Capacity: 0.4 litres
  • Filter Type: Whole vacuum

Key Features:

  • Excellent “Fluffy” floor head for cleaning hard floors
  • Very lightweight
  • Powerful for a cordless

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Karcher VC5 PremiumKarcher VC5 Premium

One of the most unique models on this list is the Karcher VC5 Premium stick vacuum. Unlike standard uprights, which usually have a fixed body, the VC5 has a telescopic tube that can extend or reduce the height of the vacuum. This means you can use it as either a handheld or upright depending on the job. It’s also one of the one of the most lightweight upright bagless vacuum cleaners we’ve reviewed, with a weight of just 3.2kg.

It would be easy to assume that the small and lightweight nature of the VC5 means it’s not powerful. Fortunately, this isn’t the case. While it’s not got the strongest suction, it’s still great for cleaning most surfaces. The weight and adjustable height also make it a versatile model.

There are a few drawbacks though. It’s not as good on hard floor as carpets, so if your home has mainly wood or laminate flooring this is something to keep in mind. We’ve also read reports that the filter needs cleaning more often than other models.

Even so, considering the versatility and price, the Karcher VC5 Premium is one of the best lightweight vacuum cleaners if you don’t want to go for a cordless.

Overview:

  • Price Range: ££
  • Weight: 3.2kg
  • Dust Capacity: 
  • Filter Type: Standard

Key Features:

  • Extendable suction tube so it can be used at various heights
  • Strong suction and great for carpets
  • One of the lightest corded upright vacuums

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Morphy Richards 732000 Cordless Vacuum CleanerMorphy Richards 732000 2-in-1 Cordless Vacuum Cleaner

As the name suggests, the Morphy Richards 732000 provides two functions – handheld and upright modes – in a single compact package. Weighing just 3.9kg, it’s is light enough to be comfortable to use around the home, and it provides more versatility than the Gtech AirRam (although without the same suction power, battery life and manoeuvrability).

Aside from the 2-in-1 feature, the vacuum also has a 20 minute run time, swivel head for easier cleaning and a relatively low price tag.

Reviewers have been impressed with the performance of the 732000, especially considering its low price. A reviewer writes that it provides strong suction considering its compact design, while another adds that the only downside of this excellent vacuum is the small capacity.

If you’re looking for a versatile cordless vacuum cleaner that’s also lightweight, the Morphy Richards 732000 could be the perfect option. The handheld mode is great for accessing those tricky areas, while the upright mode handles the “heavy cleaning.” The 0.3 litre capacity is one of the smallest on this list, but this is common for cordless models.

Overview:

  • Price Range: £
  • Weight: 3.9kg
  • Dust Capacity: 0.3 litres
  • Filter Type: Washable

Key Features:

  • 2-in-1 vacuum with both upright and handheld modes
  • Strong suction and a 20 minute run-time
  • Manoeuvrable design for easy cleaning

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Zanussi ZAN2000A ReviewZanussi AirSpeed Lite Bagless Vacuum Cleaner

One of the most popular budget vacuums is the Zanussi AirSpeed Lite. It’s a basic model with two accessories, 1.5 litre capacity and relatively short hose. But it stands out in two areas – it’s very strong suction power (almost too strong for some reviewers) and lightweight design (the AirSpeed Lite weighs 4.1kg).

The strong suction power is due to the multi-cyclonic technology combined with a powerful motor. This technology more effectively separates dust and dirt from the air, reducing filter clogging and maintaining suction. The vacuum also comes with a two litre dirt capacity, crevice tool and adjustable floor setting.

Most reviews of the AirSpeed Lite have been positive, with reviews praising its lightweight design and excellent suction. Several reviewers point out that the vacuum’s ability to get up plenty of dirt and dust means it fills up relatively quickly, which is both an annoyance and a sign that the vacuum is doing its job.

The primary complaint from reviewers, however, is that the hose and accessories don’t match the quality of the vacuum body. While the hose is functional, it isn’t close to as powerful as the main vacuum and can also easily fall out of its holder (which can be annoying during extended cleaning session).

Overall, the AirSpeed Lite is an excellent lightweight upright vacuum cleaner – especially considering the low price and strong suction. If you need a vacuum with more power and greater capacity than a cordless, then this could be a model to consider.

Overview:

  • Price Range: £
  • Weight: 4.1kg
  • Dust Capacity: 2 litres
  • Filter Type: Washable

Key Features:

  • Excellent suction power
  • Relatively inexpensive compared with other vacuums of a similar power
  • Multi-cyclonic technology

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Which are the Best Lightweight Vacuum Cleaners for the Elderly?

There are several considerations when choosing a vacuum for an elderly person. Aside from the weight, it’s also important to buy a model that’s easy to empty and compact in size. Stiff tool attachments can also cause problems. With that in mind, our top picks are:

  1. Gtech AirRam – this cordless model is very straightforward to use and doesn’t have any extra tools or attachments.
  2. Zanussi AirSpeed Lite – this is our top pick for a corded vacuum for an elderly person. It’s powerful and relatively inexpensive, while also being simple to use.
  3. Dyson V6 Fluffy – this is the most expensive option, but is also the lightest and most convenient.

Conclusion

Finding the best lightweight upright vacuum cleaner isn’t always easy. Many are lightweight because of their poor quality design, cheap components and weak motors. Fortunately, amongst the rubbish there are some excellent models available – such as those listed on this page.

As we mentioned at the beginning of the article, it’s important to look at all features rather than just its weight. While a lightweight design might be important to you, the suction power, manoeuvrability and included tools also have a major effect on how enjoyable and comfortable a vacuum is to use.

It’s also important to think carefully about whether you want a corded or cordless lightweight upright vacuum. There are probably more cordless models that are also lightweight, as a heavy cordless defeats the purpose of the easy to use design, but cordless models tend to be less powerful.

If you’re looking for a cordless lightweight upright vacuum, the Dyson V6 Fluffy is an excellent choice. It’s the lightest model on this list, yet packs serious power and a long battery life.

For a lightweight corded upright vacuum, the Vax U90-MA-Re is an option to consider. It’s powerful and relatively inexpensive, yet weighs less than 5kg.

Has this article helped you choose a lightweight vacuum? Is there a model you think we should include in this list? Or do you have any questions? Let us know in the comments section!

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