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Black+Decker Lithium PV1820LGB Pivot Handheld Review

Written by James Hall |

Black+Decker Pivot PV1820LGB Review

Our Verdict: We were impressed with this handheld vacuum’s suction power during our tests. It’s great for cleaning hard floors, stairs, and upholstery – and it’s even decent at cleaning carpets (which many handhelds struggle with). It doesn’t feel as lightweight or balanced as smaller handhelds, however, and is too big to clean awkward locations.

Black+Decker Lithium PV1820LGB Pivot



Ease of Use


Cleaning Performance






Overall Rating



  • Powerful handheld vacuum that we found generates strong suction than many alternatives
  • Great performance on hard floors
  • Pivoting nozzle can be useful for cleaning at certain angles
  • Plenty of dust capacity for a handheld
  • Crevice tool and dusting brush are attached so you never lose them


  • No turbo tool for carpet agitation, making it less effective at cleaning ground-in dirt, hair, or fluff from carpets
  • Feels quite heavy and unbalanced to hold
  • Bulkier than many handhelds which makes it difficult to clean awkward locations
  • Side door can come open accidentally
  • Loud for a handheld

The Black+Decker Lithium PV1820LGB Pivot is a handheld vacuum with several interesting features, including a pivoting design and built-in tools.

We found this vacuum generates excellent suction power for a handheld. For example, it can easily pickup loose debris on hard floors, stairs, and upholstery, making it a brilliant tool for spot cleaning. The pivoting design also helps clean at various angles that might be difficult with a fixed nozzle.

It’s not all good news though. While the Black+Decker performs considerably better than cheaper handheld vacuums, we found it feels heavy and unwieldy to hold. It also only has one suction mode and is relatively loud for a handheld vacuum. Let’s take a closer look at its features and performance to find out whether it’s worth buying.

Overview of Black+Decker Lithium 18V Compact Pivot Features

  • Handheld vacuum with an 18V lithium battery and a 10 minute run-time
  • Nozzle is on a pivot and can move through 200 degrees
  • Washable filter and a basic bin emptying system
  • Built-in crevice tool and dusting brush
  • 4 hour recharging time

In-Depth Look at the Black+Decker Lithium 18V Compact Pivot

Appearance, Features And Design

Features Rating: 4/5

Main body of vacuum

The Black+Decker Lithium PV1820LGB Pivot has an attractive design, although it can’t match the sleek appearance of models like the Shark WV200UK. It also feels cheaper than other models we’ve reviewed, due to the curved plastic design. This isn’t a major issue though – and it certainly doesn’t affect the performance.

Pivoting example

One of the stand-out features is the pivoting nozzle. By holding down a button above the “On” switch, the nozzle is released and can be rotated through 200 degrees.

We found this feature useful for cleaning under furniture or above bookshelves, even though most of the time we just left the nozzle at a neutral angle. It’s also handy for making the vacuum smaller when on its docking station. A bonus is that the button is easy to press when vacuuming, which allows you to use the weight of the vacuum to change the pivot angle without pausing your cleaning session.

A downside of the nozzle placement

A downside of the design is that it doesn’t feel as balanced as other handheld vacuums we’ve reviewed. Both the nozzle and dust canister are located in front of the handle, which makes the vacuum feel heavier than it actually is. We can’t help feeling that a small design tweak to put the handle ontop of the cylinder might have improved its balance.

We also found the Black+Decker Pivot to be more difficult to use in awkward locations than other handhelds, due to the relatively bulky design. This isn’t an issue for cleaning up spills on hard floors or sofas, but can be frustrating in cars or other tight spaces.

Black + Decker tools

In terms of tools, the Black+Decker has an extendable nose, which is useful for getting between objects or into the folds of sofas, and a fold-down dusting brush. While these don’t provide the same versatility as a stretch hose, such as on the Black+Decker PD1420LP, it’s great to have them built into the vacuum. We found the crevice tool stiff to pull out and put back in though.

Battery and Battery Life

The Black+Decker Lithium Pivot has a maximum run-time of 10 minutes. This is around average for handheld vacuums and is fine for spot cleaning. For example, the Shark WV200UK and Shark CH950UKT both also have a 10-minute run-time, and the Black+Decker PD1420LP has a 12.5 minute maximum battery life.

It also has a charge time of approximately 4 hours, which is also around average for a handheld. However, the vacuum stops charging as soon as it’s fully charged, so you can leave it on the docking station when it’s not in use.

As the Black+Decker uses a lithium battery, the suction power is consistent throughout the battery life – at least until the last 30-seconds or so. We did notice that the suction starts to drop around this time.

What If You Need More Battery Life?

There are several alternative options if you need more battery run-time from a handheld. The Gtech Multi Mk2 has a 20-minute run-time, although this reduces if you use the motorised tool. The Dyson V7 Trigger has a 30-minute maximum run-time when using non-motorised tools, giving you a lot more cleaning time.

Suction Power and Cleaning Performance

Cleaning Performance Rating: 3.75/5

Cleaning a table

We were impressed by the all-round cleaning performance of the Black+Decker during our testing.

Of course, it can’t get close to the suction of an upright or cylinder vacuum, but the Black+Decker is still useful for small dry spills and everyday cleaning tasks.

The 18V battery generates excellent suction power that rivals any other handheld we’ve reviewed so far. It can easily pick up crumbs that have fallen into shallow cracks, for example, which some handhelds struggle to remove. The nozzle also does a good job at picking up most types of debris, despite the lack of a motorised brush bar.

Our testing showed it’s particularly effective at cleaning hard floors. It picks up both dust particles and larger debris with ease on all types of hard floors, plus the dusting brush is useful for delicate surfaces (such as polished tables or car dashboards).

Cleaning stairs

It’s also an excellent choice for cleaning stairs. The pivoting design is useful for getting along the edge and side of steps, while the smaller nozzle is great for cleaning corners. If you need a vacuum for quickly cleaning hard floors or staircases between deeper cleans, then we highly recommend the Black+Decker Lithium Pivot.

On carpets

It’s not perfect though. While the Black+Decker is a decent performer on carpets and rugs, it’s not brilliant either. The lack of an agitating brush bar means it struggles with stubborn dirt or fluff, but for most quick tasks it’s more than adequate for cleaning carpet. We wish it had a pet tool attachment for removing more hair though!

Ease of Use

Ease of Use Rating: 3.5/5

The primary purpose of any handheld vacuum is to provide a convenient tool to quickly clean small areas, cars or stairs. The Black+Decker isn’t the most convenient handheld we’ve reviewed, but it’s still a useful vacuum that we highly recommend.

Our biggest issue with this vacuum is how clunky it feels to hold. It’s not a handheld that you can squeeze into tight locations or whip around delicate surfaces, as the front-heavy and relatively wide design make it feel bulky in the hand.

Another issue is that it’s louder than some of the other handheld vacuums we’ve reviewed. It’s not excessively loud, but it’s probably not the right vacuum if you often need to clean when the kids are asleep or late at night.

There are many things we like about the Black+Decker Lithium Pivot though. As we mentioned earlier, it’s great to have the two tools built into the vacuum rather than separate. This means they are always available and won’t get lost.

We’ve already discussed the pivoting design, but it really does help to make the vacuum more versatile. You also only need one hand to use this vacuum, which isn’t the case with handheld vacuums that have built-in hoses. The downside is that the lack of a hose (or even a long crevice tool) makes it hard to get into awkward spots, such as under car seats or down the side of fridges.

Emptying the vacuum

Emptying the vacuum is straightforward, as you just flip open the side door while holding the vacuum over a bin. While this system is quick and simple, it’s not the most hygienic. We also found that clumps of hair often get stuck between the filter and the edge of the canister, so you’ll need to pull these out by hand.

Removing the filter

Speaking of the filter, we found it easy to access and clean when required. It’s not a HEPA filter – which is another reason why we wouldn’t recommend this vacuum to allergy sufferers – but it does an acceptable job of preventing particles from escaping.

Price and Value for Money

Value for Money Rating: 4/5

The Black+Decker Lithium 18V Compact Pivot handheld vacuum cleaner has an RRP of £100, which we think is a reasonable price for such a powerful, feature-packed machine. The pivoting system is unique and the overall performance is a match for nearly any other handheld.

The good news is that you can often find the vacuum available for considerably less than this. If you can buy the Black+Decker Lithium 18V Compact Pivot for around £70-80, we think you’re getting excellent value for money.

Black+Decker PV1820LGB Pivot Specification Table

Ninja Column 1Ninja Column 2
Price Range£
Weight (kg)1.38
Capacity (Litres)0.44
Motorised ToolNo

Comparison With Other Handheld Vacuums

Ninja Column 1Black+Decker PV1820LGB PivotVacuum 1Vacuum 2
Black+Decker PV1820LGB PivotBlack+Decker PD1420LPGtech Multi Mk2
Price Range££££
Maximum Run-Time1012.520
Weight (kg)1.381.421.6
Capacity (Litres)0.440.560.4
Motorised ToolNoNoYes
Around The Home Cleaning Score4/53.5/54/5
Car Interiors Cleaning Score3.5/53/53/5
Pet Hair Cleaning Score2/52/53/5
Stairs Cleaning Score4/53/54.5/5


We think the Black+Decker Lithium 18V Compact Pivot handheld vacuum is a high-quality model that provides excellent value for money. It performed well during our testing on a range of different jobs, including picking up both small and large debris. We’re also fans of the pivoting design and built-in tools.

So, who should buy it?

If you don’t mind a handheld vacuum that feels bulky to use, then the Black+Decker is one of the most powerful options. It generates excellent suction and can handle most cleaning tasks with ease. It’s particularly effective on hard floors and worktops, although it’s still a solid vacuum for small spills on carpets and rugs.

We don’t think it’s the best option for people with allergies or who want an ultra-lightweight handheld though. We also don’t recommend the Black+Decker for people with pets, as the lack of a powered brush bar makes it less effective for picking up hair.

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