If you’re tired of hauling a heavy machine around your home, a lightweight vacuum cleaner could be the perfect solution. The best lightweight models are still powerful and feature-packed machines, but weigh considerably less than others – which your back will appreciate!
On this page, we’ve listed our top four lightweight vacuum cleaners in the UK, including a brief overview of each and a link to find the latest price. Each of these models provides excellent value for money and weighs less than 5kg.
Please note: We also have a page specifically for lightweight upright vacuum cleaners. Uprights tend to be relatively heavy, so we thought it best to have a separate category for this type of vacuum. While some uprights will be listed on this page, we’ll also add cylinder models and cordless vacs.
|Miele Compact C2 Cat and Dog||Cylinder||4.5 litres||4.9kg||Miele|
|Dyson V7 Motorhead||Cordless||0.54 litres||2.3kg||Dyson|
|Gtech AirRam Mk2||Cordless||0.8 litres||3.3kg||Gtech|
|Bissell V2 Featherweight||Stick||0.5 litres||1.6kg||Bissell|
Why is Weight Important?
An often overlooked feature of a vacuum cleaner is its weight. While other factors, such as suction power, engine power, dust capacity and cleaning radius, all need to be considered, it’s easy to forget that the weight determines how easy it is to use. Light vacuums are more convenient to carry up and down stairs, around your home and out to your car – especially if you often spend long periods of time cleaning.
Some of the most powerful models have large, heavy motors, making them difficult to push around for extended cleaning sessions. The heaviest models can weigh up to 10kg – which isn’t easy to lug around the home, especially up and down stairs.
For these reasons, you may want to look for a light vacuum cleaner. It’s common to find models weighing less than 5kg without sacrificing power or performance, and some of the best lightweight vacuums rival heavier models for suction power.
Weight is especially important for the elderly or people with disabilities, but anyone can benefit from a lighter vac.
How Much Does a Lightweight Model Weigh?
As we mentioned near the start of the article, we define a lightweight vacuum as any weighing less than 5kg. Some people may disagree with this, but as the majority of vacuums weigh considerably more than 5kg we think it’s a reasonable threshold.
However, be aware that there is a big difference between corded and cordless models in terms of weight. Cordless models are nearly always lighter, but have other drawbacks such as a limited battery life, smaller capacities and reduced suction power. Also, if you suffer from allergies, a cordless model may not be the best choice as they are usually bagless.
This list contains both cylinder and upright vacuums, but as we already have a page for lightweight uprights we’ve tried to include ultra-lightweight models. These tend to be less powerful (the Gtech is the exception) but can be almost feather-light.
So with that out of the way, let’s take a look at our four recommended lightweight vacuum cleaners.
Top 4 Vacuums Weighing Less than 5kg
Miele Compact C2 Cat and Dog (Cylinder)
The Miele Compact C2 Cat and Dog, as the name suggests, is designed to make picking up pet hairs a breeze. This is largely due to the Turbobrush floorhead, which quickly gets rid of hair, thread and fluff from carpets.
It’s not just built for pet hair though. The C2 is excellent at removing dust and dirt from around the home.
Despite the powerful suction, the C2 weighs just 4.8kg. This is far from the lightest model on this list, but isn’t heavy for a powerful vacuum that excels at difficult jobs. It’s also probably the best lightweight vacuum for carpet on this list.
Other features include the Active AirClean filter, which helps remove pet odours, and a 900W motor for powerful performance. It also has a relatively large ten metre cleaning radius for more efficient cleaning.
A key feature of the C2 Cat and Dog is that it makes quick work of dog and cat hair. If you need to remove hair without carrying a hefty vacuum around the house, it’s a great choice. The ability to quickly change suction power also makes it easy to push across carpets – although it doesn’t come with a HEPA filter.
In summary, the Miele Compact C2 Cat and Dog is a powerful model that’s also relatively light. If you’re looking for a lightweight cylinder vacuum cleaner, it could be an option to consider.
- Price Range: £££
- Power: 900W
- Weight: 4.8kg
- Dust Capacity: 4.5 litres
- Filter Type: Standard (Active AirClean)
- Powerful suction that excels at picking up pet hair
- Removes pet odours from the home
- Excellent suction power
Dyson V7 Motorhead (Cordless)
One of the lightest cordless vacs on the market also happens to be amongst the most powerful: the Dyson V7 Motorhead.
The V7 Motorhead is a stick vac with a detachable handheld mode. It has two power settings, a “no-touch” emptying system and comes with several accessories. Most importantly for this article, it weighs just 2.3kg and is easy to manoeuvre around the home.
This is the basic model of the V7 range, so it doesn’t come with a pet turbo tool or “Fluffy” hard floor head. It has a longer 30-minute battery life than the previous V6, however, along with everything you would expect from a Dyson cordless.
There are two drawbacks to this model though: price and dust capacity. While this is far from the most expensive cordless, it’s a pricey model that costs around the same as the Miele C2. The 0.54 litre dust capacity also means you’ll need to empty it regularly.
Even so, the V7 Motorhead is an excellent vacuum that’s lightweight and easy to use. If you’re looking for a light cordless that can rival an upright for cleaning performance, it’s a great choice.
Note: Both the Dyson V8 and V10 Cyclone also qualify for our lightweight category, as both weigh less than 3kg. They are more expensive than the V7 Motorhead though.
- Price Range: £££
- Power: Battery-Powered
- Weight: 2.3kg
- Dust Capacity: 0.54 litres
- Filter Type: Washable Lifetime
- Powerful suction for a cordless vacuum
- Very lightweight and easy to use
- Detachable handheld mode for stairs and above-floor cleaning
Gtech AirRam Mk2 (Cordless)
The Gtech AirRam Mk2 is one of our favourite cordless vacuum cleaners – and not just because of its 3.3kg weight. It’s a unique vacuum that is great for cleaning both carpets and hard floors, and can run for up to 40 minutes on a single charge.
Other features of the excellent Gtech AirRam Mk2 include a low-profile, easy to manoeuvre design, lithium-ion battery and a powerful engine that matches most corded upright vacuums (there aren’t many cordless models that can claim that). It’s purely for floor cleaning – there are no tools or even a hose – but it excels at getting rid of dirt on carpets and hard floors.
It also improves on the original AirRam in several ways. Aside from the more attractive design, it has an improved AirLOC system for better pickup. The dust compression system has also been improved, so you can fit dirt more in the unique dust bales than was previously possible.
If you’re looking for a powerful, lightweight cordless vacuum that’s built specifically for cleaning floors, then the Gtech AirRam Mk2 is one of the best options. While it doesn’t have the versatility of other models, due to the lack of a hose and tools, its long battery life and strong suction make it one of the most popular cordless models.
- Price Range: £££
- Power: 100W (cordless)
- Weight: 3.3kg
- Dust Capacity: 0.8 litres
- Filter Type: Washable
- One of the most powerful cordless models
- Excellent performance on hard floors and carpet
- Weighs just 3.3kg
Bissell V2 Featherweight (Stick)
Let’s finish this list with one of the lightest vacuum cleaners on the market – the BISSELL V2 Featherweight. Unlike the other three models, the Bissell has been designed specifically to be lightweight, and weighs an astonishing 1.6kg. This is extremely light for a corded vacuum. It’s also cheap, making it an excellent choice as a second vacuum for quick and easy cleaning.
One of the great things about the Bissell is the converting design. The model has both handheld and floor stick modes, and comes with a crevice nozzle for those tricky areas. It’s also a bagless vacuum with a 4.5 metre cord and a 99.7% efficiency filter.
It’s important to have realistic expectations of the V2 though. It’s a cheap and lightweight model, so it doesn’t have much suction power. It does a good job on hard floors, but for carpets it struggles to pick up dirt or debris. It also has a hard time with pet hair on carpets.
Even though the V2 Featherweight is never going to match the power and functionality of more expensive vacuums, it’s a handy tool for home cleaning. The lightweight design makes it convenient to use – plus you don’t need to worry about the battery running out like with cordless alternatives.
- Price Range: £
- Weight: 1.6kg
- Dust Capacity: 0.5L
- Filter Type: Washable
- The lightest vacuum on this list at just 1.6kg
- Great for hard floors
- Can be used as a stick or handheld
Which are the Best Lightweight Vacuum Cleaners for the Elderly?
As we mentioned earlier, the lightest vacuum cleaners are especially useful for elderly people who may struggle with heavier models. While all the models on this list are relatively light, the Miele C2 (4.8kg) may not be suitable. We recommend the GTech AirRam Mk2 (at 3.3kg) if that is an acceptable weight, as it’s a cordless model with excellent suction. Or, if heaviness is a big problem, the Bissell V2 Featherweight. The latter model’s 1.6kg weight should make it suitable for people who would otherwise struggle to carry a vacuum up and down stairs, although it’s not as powerful and may struggle on carpets.
In addition to the models on this list, there are plenty of powerful lightweight cordless vacuum cleaners – particularly stick models – on the market. The smaller motors on these models reduces weight, and the lack of a cord can also reduce tripping hazards. The Dyson V6, for example, is an excellent model with strong suction, yet only weighs 2kg (we reviewed this model here).
While many vacuums are bulky machines, there are some excellent lightweight vacuum cleaners on the market. The models listed on this page are all from established brands, and provide strong performance without the extra weight.
Of course, it’s important to choose a cleaner for its all-round performance – not just because it’s lightweight. Factors such as price, suction power, dust capacity and noise level should all be considered when choosing a lightweight vacuum cleaner.
Do you have any questions about buying a lightweight model? Or is there a model you think should be added to this list? Let us know in the comments!