This post contains affiliate links. That means if you buy something I get a small commission at no extra cost to you.
If you have hardwood or laminate floors, odds are that you’ve probably invested a great deal of time, careful research, and money installing them or obtaining them. Either way, your investment is worth taking similar consideration into account when you think about how you’re going to maintain it.
For everyday cleaning, a cordless stick vacuum will be your best option. There’s no cord to play out (and trip over), they are light enough that they are easy to whip out even just to clean a single spill of crumbs or dust in a corner, and they are affordable relative to the bigger upright vacuums that are made for doing large, carpeted house.
There are a few things to take into account when pondering cordless vacuums specifically for hardwood floors, though.
Most importantly, you’ll want your vacuum to be able to be able to pull in every bit of dirt, and that will require as much power (measured in volts) as you can find. This is because when you turn on the “bare floor” setting on a vacuum, it turns off the brushroll that normally helps loosen debris and hair from carpets.
Without the brushroll, only suction is used to pick up debris, and power is what determines how well the vacuum will be able to do that.
While you will want a robust vacuum to make sure it can pick up everything from dust to heavier debris like rice, it needs to be gentle in a certain sense, too. The same mess that you’re trying to clean can also get stuck under a vacuum’s wheels and cause scratches, and if the vacuum head is poorly designed, hard plastic or metal parts may rub against the floor and do the same.
The best way to avoid that annoyance is to choose your vacuum carefully. Narrow your choices to models that either don’t have a brushroll or that allow it to be turned off for suction-only vacuuming. Invest a little more to avoid a vacuum with poorly designed and poorly made components – the expense will be repaid by not having to spend time and money repairing your floors.
Picking Up Every Bit of Dirt
That said, a smart investor should also use their tools intelligently.
Hardwood floors might have seemed harder to vacuum in the past if you were using a vacuum without much power. It can feel very frustrating to run a vacuum over a few specks of dust over and over, only to have to eventually bend all the way over to clean them. You might have found yourself wishing that you had just stuck with carpet!
A bare floor like hardwood has an advantage over carpet, however: it is easier to get it much, much cleaner than you could ever get all those fibers.
Using a vacuum with plenty of suction and a well-designed head is the key. Weak vacuums will leave dust behind, especially along walls and next to furniture. The right vacuum will draw in dirt even in front of the head.
Your Best Option
The best cordless stick vacuum for cleaning hardwood floors is the Rowenta Delta Force 18V. While some might shy away from it as seeming pricey for an electric broom, like I’ve already said, it’s important to invest in your vacuum when you’ve already invested in your floors.
What makes you get your money’s worth with this particular vacuum is the engineering that went into its unique head. It combines a diamond-shape with two small canals that direct into a larger canal, unlike most vacuums which rely only on a brushroll and a longer, narrow strip to suction through.
These features, along with the head’s ability to swivel 180 degrees, create incomparable maneuverability and suction power that’s even all the way around its shape. That means you won’t be attempting to contort a regular, wide-headed vacuum around furniture and accidentally banging into or digging divots out of your lovely hardwood floors.
There’s also less chance of scratching the wood with sharp debris caught under the wheels, both because of tucked-away placement of the wheels and the especially efficient suction. Both its large rear wheels and the smaller, under-the-head wheels are also specially designed to be soft for the same reason.
Even if the Delta Force didn’t have a large, 33oz dust container, a three-stage filter and a fantastic runtime of thirty minutes, it would be my vacuum of choice for hardwood floors since it’s powerful yet gentle. Luckily, however, it combines those features into a total package that is well worth its price.
Why do I not recommend the highly-rated Dyson DC35 and DC44? Despite their excellent suction and features, neither model allows you to turn off the brushroll, and that is one of the keys to preventing scratches on hardwood flooring.