If you’re tired of hauling a heavy machine around your home, a lightweight vacuum cleaner could be the perfect solution. Here are our top picks.
Top Pick: Miele Compact C2 Cat & Dog
The best lightweight models are powerful and feature-packed machines, but weigh considerably less than others – which your back will appreciate!
On this page, we’ve listed our top five 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. Let’s get started!
Note: We have a page specifically for lightweight upright vacuum cleaners, as these tend to be heavier.
- How Much Does a Lightweight Vacuum Weigh?
- 5 Best Lightweight Vacuums (Weighing Less than 5kg)
- Which are the Best Lightweight Vacuum Cleaners for the Elderly?
- Why is Weight Important?
- Should I Choose Bagged or Bagless Lightweight Vacuum?
- Page Update History
How Much Does a Lightweight Vacuum 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 most vacuums weigh considerably more than 5kg we think it’s a reasonable threshold.
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.
So with that out of the way, let’s take a look at our recommended lightweight vacuum cleaners.
5 Best Lightweight Vacuums (Weighing Less than 5kg)
Miele Compact C2 Cat & Dog
Dyson V11 Absolute
|Dust Capacity (L)||4.5||0.76||0.3||0.5||0.25|
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Type: Cylinder | Bag Type: Bagged | Price Range: £££ | Dust Capacity: 4.5 litres | Weight: 4.8kg | Pet Tool: No | HEPA Filter: No
- Powerful suction that excels at picking up pet hair
- Removes pet odours from the home
- Great all-rounder
- No HEPA filter
- No miniature turbo tool
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. It also has on-board tool storage for extra convenience.
Despite the powerful suction, the C2 weighs just 4.8kg. It’s not the lightest model on this list, but it 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. There are several accessories, such as a crevice tool and dusting brush. 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 one of the best choices. 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.
2. Dyson V11 Absolute (Cordless)
Type: Cordless | Bag Type: Bagless | Price Range: £££££ | Dust Capacity: 0.76 litres | Weight: 3.1kg | Pet Tool: Yes | HEPA Filter: Yes
- Strong suction for a cordless vacuum and great cleaning performance
- Very lightweight and easy to use
- Detachable handheld mode for stairs and above-floor cleaning
- Small dust capacity
Most cordless vacuums are relatively lightweight, with the average being around 3kg. Our top pick in this category is the Dyson V11 Absolute, which is a lightweight vacuum with excellent all-round cleaning performance.
The V11 Absolute is a stick vac with a detachable handheld mode. It comes with advanced features not found on previous Dyson cordless vacuums, such as adaptive suction and an LCD screen. Most importantly for this article, it weighs just 3.1kg and is easy to manoeuvre around the home.
As this is the Absolute version of the V11 range, it includes a motorised turbo tool that’s great for removing hair on upholstery and car interiors. We found that the primary cleaning head provides excellent performance, allowing it to pick up dust particles from both carpeted floors and hard floors with ease. There’s also the Soft Roller floorhead, which we found is great for cleaning delicate hard floors.
Other features of the Dyson V11 Absolute include Dyson’s docking station, a point-and-shoot emptying system to minimise escaped dust, and up to 60-minutes battery life. Be aware that this battery life is on the lowest suction setting though.
There are two drawbacks to this model though: price and dust capacity. The Dyson V11 Absolute is a pricey model that costs a lot more than cylinder or upright vacuums. The 0.76 litre dust capacity also means you’ll need to empty it regularly.
Even so, the Dyson V11 Absolute is an excellent vacuum cleaner that’s lightweight and easy to use. If you’re looking for a cordless that can rival an upright for cleaning performance, it’s a great choice. It’s also a solid option for pet owners or homes with lots of hard floors.
Note: The V10 Cyclone also qualifies for our lightweight category. This model doesn’t come with an LCD screen or adaptive suction, but still provides excellent performance.
Type: Stick | Bag Type: Bagless | Price Range: £££ | Dust Capacity: 0.3 litres | Weight: 4.4kg | Pet Tool: Yes | HEPA Filter: No
- Lightweight corded vacuum
- Anti-odour and anti-hair wrap technology
- Strong all-round performance
- Tiny dust capacity for a corded vacuum
- Messy emptying process
If you’re looking for a corded stick vacuum, then the Shark HZ3000UKT is one of our favourite options. It’s a convenient model with a bagless design, strong suction, and a range of features for pet owners. It also weighs just 4.4kg, making it one of the lighter corded vacuums on the market.
The Shark HZ3000UKT shares many design features with cordless stick vacuums. It has a detachable handheld mode, motorised floorhead, and a relatively small capacity. Unlike cordless models, however, it has a 10-metre power cord for unlimited cleaning time.
In terms of performance, we found that the HZ3000UKT is great for both carpets and hard floors. It’s not the best vacuum we’ve ever reviewed, but it certainly provides excellent value for money and is great choice if you’re looking for a lightweight model.
The Shark HZ3000UKT also comes with a range of Shark’s innovative features. We’re big fans of the flexible wand, as this makes cleaning under furniture much easier. The anti-hair wrap technology and anti-odour filter will also appeal to pet owners.
There are a few downsides to this vacuum though. The Shark has a tiny 0.3 litre dust capacity, which is less than half the Dyson V11 Absolute. Be prepared to empty it regularly! We also found that the bin emptying system was quite messy, although this is common for bagless stick vacuums.
To summarise, the Shark HZ3000UKT is a brilliant lightweight corded vacuum for quick cleaning jobs and small homes. We think it provides great value for money and strong cleaning performance. The tiny capacity probably makes it unsuitable for larger homes though.
Type: Stick | Bag Type: Bagless | Price Range: £ | Dust Capacity: 0.5 litres | Weight: 1.6kg | Pet Tool: No | HEPA Filter: No
- The lightest non-handheld vacuum on this list at just 1.6kg
- Great for hard floors
- Can be used as a stick or handheld
- Relatively poor suction
- Not great at cleaning carpets
Next up is 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 stick vacuum, 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.
5. Shark WV200UK (Handheld)
Type: Handheld | Bag Type: Bagless | Price Range: £ | Dust Capacity: 0.25 litres | Weight: 0.6kg | Pet Tool: No | HEPA Filter: Yes
- Very lightweight - even for a handheld vacuum
- Comes with a HEPA filter
- Stylish design and decent suction power
- Tiny dust capacity
- No motorised tool
If you’re looking for a lightweight vacuum for small jobs, then the Shark WV200UK could be an excellent alternative to the full-size vacuum cleaners on this list. It’s a handheld vacuum that weighs just 0.6kg, and we think it’s one of the most convenient vacuums for quick clean-ups.
Of course, a vacuum this size isn’t designed for tackling big cleaning jobs. It has a tiny 0.25 litre dust capacity, meaning you’ll need to empty it regularly. The 8-10 minute battery run-time is also restrictive.
But for small spills, dried mud, or other quick tasks, our tests showed the WV200UK has more than enough suction power to be a useful gadget to have in the house.
Other features of the WV200UK include a HEPA filter, which is great for retaining allergens, and a simple design. There’s no motorised pet tool, however, and the docking station can’t be wall-mounted.
Despite these drawbacks, we think the Shark WV200UK is a great choice if you’re looking for a lightweight handheld vacuum cleaner. It’s the lightest of this type of vacuum that we’ve reviewed so far, yet still generates some serious suction power.
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 Dyson V11 Absolute (at 3.1kg) 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.
Why is Weight Important?
An often overlooked feature of a vacuum cleaner is its weight. While suction 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.
Should I Choose Bagged or Bagless Lightweight Vacuum?
The lightest vacuums tend to be cordless vacuums, which are nearly always bagless models. Bagged vacuums are better for allergy sufferers or people who need a large dust capacity, however, so it’s a matter of personal choice.
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.
Our top pick for a lightweight vacuum is the Miele Compact C2 Cat & Dog. This is a bagged cylinder vacuum with great performance. If you want a bagless model, then the Dyson V11 Absolute a cordless alternative.
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!