Upright Vacuum Cleaner Reviews: Best UK Hoovers 2019

Upright Vacuum Cleaner Reviews: Best UK Hoovers 2019

In a hurry? Best Budget Choice: Dyson Light Ball Multi | Best Overall Choice: Shark DuoClean Powered Lift-Away

best upright vacuum cleaner ukIf your home has carpets, curtains, and upholstery, as any furnished home typically has, you need a good vacuum cleaner to ensure you can keep your home dust-free. There are several options out in the market but a traditional upright hoover is most likely to give you the most power and efficiency.

Being upright is not the only criteria, however. The vacuum cleaner should also have other features that make it a worthy buy. You need to take into account weight, filtration, versatility, etc. before making a decision.

The following are some upright hoovers I came across during my research which seemed to show the most promise. All three have their own unique features and qualifications but only one of them can emerge a winner in your eyes and mine.

Below I have elaborated on the unique features of each product as well as described the factors you must consider before making a decision. Read on to find the best upright vacuum in the UK.

Top Rated Upright Vacuums Of 2019

 NameImageLearn MorePriceWeight (kgs)
Best Overall

Shark DuoClean
Powered Lift-Away

shark duoclean powered lift away upright is my top pickview prices
Read Review



Best Budget

Dyson Light Ball
Multi Floor

dyson light ball multi floor uprightview prices
Read Review



Vax Air Base

vax air base u91 ma be uprightview prices
Read Review



Shark DuoClean Powered Lift-Away – Top Upright For 2019

shark duoclean powered lift away uprightThe Shark DuoClean Powered Lift-Away is an easy, convenient and efficient vacuum cleaner that allows you to go from one room to another with complete ease and without stopping to change settings. It works just as well on carpeted surfaces as it does on the hard floor and does not lose suction when you glide it from one surface to another.

It comes with various handy onboard tools which make the cleaning process all the more efficient. It also has a lightweight, detachable component which converts into a handheld hoover so you can target dust on areas like the stairs or table tops with greater ease. It also offers HEPA filtration so you can breathe cleaner, healthier air with each vacuum. The following are some of the features I thought seemed useful:


  • DuoClean Technology: The vacuum cleaner has two unique and efficient brush rolls that work well on hard floors and carpeted surfaces alike. The soft brush roll is meant for hard floors, targeting stubborn, stuck-on dirt, while the bristle bar removes dirt from deep within carpet fibres. The two brushes can work simultaneously, which means you can go from one surface to another, without needing to change settings or switch heads.
  • Triple Particle Cleaning: The vacuum cleaner can also remove three kinds of dirt. Small and large messes can be picked up easily, as well as stubborn dirt that has been gathering layers.
  • Lift-Away: This traditional upright vacuum can easily be converted into a handheld hoover. With just a click of a button, you have better control of manoeuvering the machine. Enjoy the freedom of the portable vacuum and take it around the house to get your cleaning done. It allows you to tackle narrow spaces, where the upright vacuum in its entirety may not be able to go.
  • Powered Lift-Away: The Powered Lift-Away technology takes matters a notch further by according power directly to the brush roll so it can rotate, even without suction. Other hoovers rely solely on the suction but the handheld vacuum has independent power in its brush head to get all the dirt that you need to get your hands on.
  • Corners and Heights: Whether it’s an awkward corner on the floor or a hard-to-reach height above, the wand can provide an all-round cleaning. With the extended wand, you can perform above-the-floor cleaning with ease so that you can clean high curtains and light fittings hassle-free. The vacuum cleaner also comes with useful accessories like the dusting and crevice tool, to ensure you get a versatile clean.
  • Filter: The hoover employs HEPA filtration which protects you from allergens in the air. Its anti-allergen, complete seal technology promises to capture and seal 99.9% of fine dust particles and will not let it back into the air via the exhaust.
  • Easy to Use: The vacuum cleaner has a convenient, swivel steering technology which allows it to move with ease. There are also LED lights which can illuminate dust, even if it is hiding away in dark crevices.

Dyson Ball Multi Floor – Excellent Budget Hoover

dyson light ball multi floor uprightThe Dyson Light Ball Multi Floor is a powerful, upright vacuum cleaner that is just the budget cleaner you need to give your home a cleanliness makeover. It’s the least expensive of the ones I have picked out for you and has several useful features despite the low price. It’s a bagless, corded vacuum cleaner but with enough give so you can clean vast expanses in the room without needing to stop and change the power outlet — the power cord is long and accommodative enough.

It comes with several useful onboard tools that make cleaning all the more efficient and thorough. You can empty out the dust container easily and do not need to keep buying and replacing the bags constantly. It’s also flexible enough to get to awkward crevices and high curtains alike. The following are some of the features that you may find useful:


  • Ball™ Technology: The main components of the hoover are placed securely in a ball-shaped vessel, which reduces the machine’s centre of gravity and ensures stability as you clean. The Dyson ball also provides the vacuum cleaner with a flexible axis to turn on.
  • Self-Adjusting Cleaner Head: The self-adjusting cleaner head maintains and seals in suction. The cleaner head’s height is automatically adjusted to seal in suction, regardless of the kind of surface you’re cleaning.
  • Easy to Store: It stands upright and can be stored anywhere in your home, without any trouble. It’s compact in size and has a handle that can be retracted, in case you need to make extra space.
  • Easy to Empty: The dust container is bagless and can be emptied easily, with just one click of a button. You don’t even have to come in contact with the dirt. Just one click and it can be released into a dustbin. Since it is bagless, you don’t have to worry about buying extra bags.
  • Lifetime Filter: The filter is washable and can be reused for a lifetime. You don’t have to bother with replacing the filter. Simply remove, wash and reuse.
  • Tools: The vacuum head comes with a dusting brush, which is great for cleaning delicate surfaces. It also has a quick release stair tool and a quick release combination tool, for reaching tricky crevices and underneath low lying furniture.

Vax Air Base U91-MA-Be – A Very Good Option

vax air base u91 ma be uprightThe Vax Air Base U91 is a lightweight, full-size vacuum cleaner that employs multi-cyclonic technology to get the job done. It’s extremely powerful and boasts of doing a job as thorough as a conventional upright vacuum cleaner but weighs three times less. Its lightweight quality makes it easy to carry from one room to another and doesn’t require you to exert your back.

It has a compact design that takes up minimum storage space. It also provides HEPA filtration, perfect for allergy sufferers. There are several useful onboard tools, which make the cleaning process more thorough. The Vax is without a doubt one of the best upright vacuums I came across, however, is the most pricey out of the ones I have mentioned. The following are some features you may find useful:


  • Multi-cyclonic: The multi-cyclonic technology allows the machine to not only create greater airflow and propel power but also allows multiple levels of filtration to ensure that every surface it touches is truly cleaned. There’s also a 3-in-1 tool that includes a crevice, upholstery and dusting tool, which ensures every cleanliness aspect of your home is addressed.
  • No Loss of Suction: Whether you’re going from carpeted floors to hard floors or vice versa, the lightweight, upright vacuum cleaner will not lose suction. You can be sure the vacuum cleaner will have the same power as you glide it between different surfaces and you will not need to stop and change settings or heads. It is rated A for all – hard floor pick-up performance, carpet pick-up performance and energy performance.
  • Lightweight: At 5 kgs, the vacuum cleaner is considerably lighter when compared to other full-size, upright cleaners. It can be carried around easily, even if you have multiple levels in your home. Despite its light weight. though, it is powerful and has a dustbin capacity of 1.5 litres.
  • HEPA Filtration: The vacuum cleaner employs HEPA filtration, which means even fine dust particles, which may otherwise be missed by other vacuum cleaners, will be pulled in by this Vax model. The filter is strong and sensitive enough that it not only pulls in the finer dust particles but also ensures it doesn’t get away through the exhaust.

What to Consider before Buying

What I’ve elaborated on above are the features and specialities of the three upright vacuum cleaners that stood out the most for me during the course of my research. Having gone over all the features, you are now in a better position to make a decision. But, arriving at an informed decision also requires some deliberations on your end. What are the things you need to consider? You can go over the details of each product and see if they meet the points in your checklist.

Some generic questions you can ask yourself while making a purchase are:

  • What are your requirements? Every individual has their own specific needs that a vacuum cleaner must fulfil. What may work for someone else may not work for you, even if the cleaner is a versatile one. You need to set the criteria for what your specific needs are — do you have delicate upholstery or carpets that need special care? Do you have pets that shed a lot of hair? Are there alcoves in high places that need frequent dusting?
  • How far can it go? If the vacuum cleaner is corded, you need to see how long the power cord is and how far it can go before you have to unplug it and find a closer power outlet. If it is cordless, you will need to assess how good the battery life is and how long the run time is.
  • Is the cleaner bagged or bagless? There are pros and cons to both. With a bagged vacuum cleaner, all the dust is sealed and you will not need to be exposed to it, even when you’re cleaning the dust container out. With a bagless upright vacuum cleaner, you can release the dust into a dustbin directly and don’t have to keep investing in new bags.
  • Are you prone to allergies? A vacuum cleaner needs to have an effective filter so it ensures even fine dust particles are pulled in. It’s even better if the vacuum cleaner has anti-bacterial or HEPA filtration. It will ensure the air around you is clean and healthy, even if you don’t have allergies to worry about.
  • How heavy is it? A lightweight vacuum cleaner is ideal but it should also be just as powerful and effective. If you find a vacuum cleaner that is light but also efficient, you don’t need to think twice. But this does not always happen. You also need to consider storage. The heavier and more cumbersome the vacuum cleaner is, the harder it may be to store it.
  • Can your neighbours hear you vacuuming too? If the vacuum cleaner is only noise and no power, it is not a great option. Of course, when vacuum cleaners create suction, they will make noise. But if you can find a quieter alternative which is just as effective when it comes to cleaning, that is the best option.

Those were some generic questions but you may also be looking for some specific tips. The following are some of the specific factors you may want to consider before buying a vacuum cleaner:

What Is It Good For?

Vacuum cleaners have several uses when it comes to cleanliness. But how useful are the uses to you specifically? A decent vacuum cleaner should serve at least the following common purposes:

  • Corners and Crevices: Any decent vacuum cleaner should at least be able to reach dingy corners and crevices, which often gather dust but are hard to clean by hand. The brush head of the vacuum cleaner should either be versatile enough on its own to reach these corners or the cleaner should have suitable onboard tools to target dust and dirt accumulated in awkward crevices.
  • Carpets and Floor: A good vacuum cleaner should be versatile enough to work on any surface, whether it is the hard floor or a carpeted surface. It should be able to glide from carpet to hard floor, without losing power or suction. You should not need to stop cleaning to change the setting or change heads on the vacuum cleaner. It is also useful to have a motorised brush head to clean carpets effectively.
  • Under Low-Lying Furniture: The vacuum cleaner’s wand should be flexible enough to even reach underneath low lying furniture. It is often hard to clean under the sofa or the bed with a long handle. Either the vacuum cleaner’s wand should bend to that degree or it could also be useful if it converts to a handheld vacuum to give you more room to manoeuvre.
  • Above the Floor: It is not just flat floor surfaces that will require cleaning in your home. There are surfaces above the floor too, like high curtains, light fittings, which need frequent cleaning. The vacuum cleaner, ideally, should have a quick release extension to get to higher surfaces.
  • Filter: The vacuum cleaner should have a decent filter, even if it’s not a HEPA filter. It should not allow dust particles to come back into the air you’re breathing after they have already been vacuumed. Often, dust particles escape back into the air through the exhaust. Even if it’s not a certified anti-allergen filter, it should meet at least a basic standard of filtration.

How Much Does It Cost?

But before proceeding any further to assess the specific features of the vacuum cleaners discussed above, it is important for you to set a budget. How much are you willing to spend on a vacuum cleaner? Is there something that is attractive but outside your price range? Ask yourself what the extra features are that make it more expensive than the ones in your budget. Then ask yourself how useful it is for you personally. These are questions you must ponder over to decide your budget.

Read More: These top-rated vacuums are all under £100

Also, keep in mind how frequently you’re going to be using the vacuum cleaner. If it is only going to be brought out of storage once a month, is it worth spending a lot of money? By taking into consideration all these factors, you can set a budget that suits you. Fixing a budget will also help to narrow down your search.

What Does It Do Differently?

All three vacuum cleaners listed above have some or the other unique feature. But some features may be more useful to you than others. Take a look at the specific, unique features of the products and then you can decide which suits you the best:

LED Light

The Shark DuoClean Powered Lift-Away has a convenient LED light in the vacuum head, which ensures even the elusive dust particles that are hiding in dark corners are illuminated. Whether it’s pet hair, stubborn dirt or fine dust, nothing can get away when the powerful LED light comes on.

Ball™ Technology

The Dyson Light Ball Multi Floor hoover employs a unique Ball™ Technology that centres the device and allows it to be powerful yet stable. All the core components of the machine are placed in this ball-shaped vessel, which gives the vacuum cleaner a flexible axis to turn on and manoeuvre easily.


The Shark DuoClean has an incredible detachable canister that can be converted into a handheld vacuum. What takes it a notch further is the power lift-away feature which allows the brush head on the portable device to rotate on its own. Most other upright vacuums rely solely on suction for power but the brush head on this one has its independent source of power. This is a great tool for removing pet hair.

Lifetime Filter

The Dyson Light Ball Multi Floor also has a lifetime filter, which means you can reuse the same filter for as long as you need to. It can be detached easily, washed and then reused. There are no more extra costs to replace the filter every year. For as long as you use the hoover, the same filter will work for you.


At 5 kgs, the Vax Air Base is the lightest vacuum cleaner from the ones listed. Despite its lightweight, however, it is just as powerful as the other two. It uses a multi-cyclonic technology which ensures there is a powerful airflow which sucks in fine dust particles with ease. The weight of the boxed Dyson product is 9.6 kgs and the Shark product is 6.1 kgs.


Both the Shark DuoClean and the Vax Air Base product provide HEPA filtration. The HEPA filters are perfectly suited for household members who are prone to allergies. At least 90% of fine dust particles and allergens are pulled in by these filters and held so they cannot go back out into the air you’re breathing.

Final Thoughts

shark duoclean powered lift away upright is my top pickHaving assessed all the factors, it is safe to say I am going to make an informed choice now. From what I have read so far and from my research, I am inclined to suggest that the Shark DuoClean Powered Lift-Away is a great product and comes out on top. It is a versatile product with multiple onboard tools that tackle different kinds of surfaces well. It offers the protection of a HEPA filter, so you know the air you’re breathing once the vacuum cleaner is done doing its job is clean and sanitised.

But perhaps the biggest selling point of this hoover is its Lift-Away option. The detachable, lightweight device which becomes a handheld vacuum is a great feature and allows you the freedom to clean how you like. The machine works great not only as an upright vacuum cleaner but also offers you the option of using a handheld device in case the bulk of an upright vacuum cleaner does not suffice. So for all of these factors, my vote for the best upright vacuum goes to the Shark DuoClean Powered Lift-Away.

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