Our 2019 Choices For The Best Car Vacuum Cleaners

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Technically speaking, vacuum cleaners are simply just that – they suck out dirt and use electricity. But in truth, choosing the best vacuum cleaner is a confusing ordeal. As it turns out, there are many types of vacuum cleaners. Knowing what to look for will help you find the right cleaning tool for your trusted vehicle.

**Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.

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There Are Many Types Of Vacuum Cleaners

Types Of Vacuum Cleaners

Honestly speaking, you don’t need a specialized vacuum cleaner to restore the cleanliness in your vehicle. But there’s such a thing as choosing the right tool for the job. Here are three of the most common types of vacuum cleaners:

  1. Handheld vacuum cleaners – this is the most common type of vacuum cleaners for cars. Handheld vacuums are smaller and can be held entirely by a single hand, making it perfect for those hard-to-reach areas and crevices in the interior. Generally, this type of vacuum cleaner is not ideal for cleaning floors. But depending on the design and attachments, there are handheld vacuum cleaners that can be used for cleaning the home. 
  2. Upright vacuum cleaners – if the handheld is the most common, upright vacuums are the most popular and sought after for cleaning the home. It can be used on both carpeted surfaces and hard floors and come with powerful motors. But due to design constraints, upright vacuum cleaners are obviously not ideal for cleaning car interiors. 
  3. Canister vacuum cleaners – this type of vacuum cleaner is the best of both worlds. It has the sucking power of an upright vacuum while having the ability to reach tight corners and tricky areas in vehicle cabins.

There are two types of handheld vacuum cleaners: wired and cordless. If you really need to choose, I’ll go for the wired variety. In fact, I only use canister vacuum cleaners for obvious purposes. Sure, the canister is not as portable or as light as handhelds, but they never run out of strong sucking power. 

Back to handhelds, the cordless variety is a great choice if you’re always on the go, or if you don’t have a permanent parking garage. Cordless vacuums are equipped with rechargeable batteries. They’re not as strong as wired or canister vacuums, but you can use it on the go like on those long road trips.

Evidently, choosing the best car vacuum cleaner depends on your needs and lifestyle. Our list of the best vacuum cleaners consists of many types of handheld and canister vacuums. All you must do is choose which matches your needs and budget!


The Best Car Vacuum Cleaners

Let’s start with an affordable solution for cleaning the interior in your car. The HOTOR Corded Car Vacuum Cleaner starts at less than $30, but there’s a catch: this vacuum is only good for the car. This is a 12-volt vacuum cleaner that comes with a powerful LED light to illuminate the darkest crevices as you clean. 

The HOTOR car vacuum cleaner also comes with an upgraded, washable, and reusable stainless-steel HEPA filter. HOTOR also claims you get a free HEPA filter replacement for life with each purchase. The vacuum cleaner also comes with a detachable dust cup head which makes it quick and easy to empty the bin. HOTOR is also kind enough to include three different nozzles for the vacuum cleaner. You get a brush attachment, a crevice attachment, and an extension hose to boot. 

Best of all, the HOTOR Corded Vacuum Cleaner is equipped with an extra-long 16.4-foot cord. This is great if you have a larger vehicle like a full-size sedan or family SUV. Our only issue with this vacuum cleaner is the build-quality. It feels sturdy in the hand but some of the plastic parts are flimsy. 

Overall, if all you need is a basic vacuum cleaner for the car, the HOTOR Corded Vacuum Cleaner is a steal for around $30.


Pros

  • Strong suction
  • Portable and lightweight design
  • Corded design means you are never short on power
  • Included stainless steel HEPA filter
  • Affordable price

Cons

  • Some plastic components feel flimsy
  • The HEPA filter is hard to clean

For a little more money, you can upgrade to a nice and powerful cordless handheld vacuum cleaner. The Black+Decker Dustbuster Cordless is one of the bestsellers in this category, and it’s easy to understand why. For starters, it has a premium design and larger see-through 31.8 oz dust bowl. It also feels remarkably sturdy. The entire vacuum cleaner is reeking of premium quality. With prices starting below $35, Black+Decker has a winner in the Dustbuster Cordless.

This tool has a wider mouth design and picks up larger debris with relative ease. The cyclonic action of the motor prevents the filter from clogging and keeps the suction strong and steady. With a standard 1.5AH lithium-ion rechargeable battery, this vacuum cleaner is rated for 10 hours of use before necessitating a recharge. 

Also included is a push-in brush and crevice tool. In truth, the Black+Decker Dustless Cordless Hand Vacuum is designed for the home. But with stronger suction power and portable design, we see no reason why we can’t include this in our list of the best car vacuum cleaners.


Pros

  • Affordable price
  • Stronger suction power
  • Convenient cordless design
  • Long battery life
  • Large dust bowl

Cons

  • Not ideal for pet hair

Like the HOTOR, the TWC-01 Car Vacuum by ThisWorx is powered via 12-volt socket. It comes with a powerful 106-watt motor and a strong metal turbine to provide strong sucking power. This is well and good, but a strong electric motor also means increased power consumption. The folks at ThisWorx strongly recommends a running engine when operating this tool. In short, consider starting the vehicle and leave it idling when using a 12-volt operated car vacuum cleaner. 

Have you noticed how this vacuum cleaner looks? The design is based on a turbocharger or turbine. As a certified car lover, I’m a sucker for everything car-related, so the fresh design of this car vacuum cleaner is certainly to my liking. It also has a large and see-through dirt canister, so you’ll know instantly if the container is full. But the great thing about this portable vacuum is the wet and dry capability. It not only sucks dust, crumbs, and debris. It also cleans liquid spills to prevent staining. 

ThisWorx is also kind enough to include a HEPA filter in the TWC-01. The handy carrying bag also includes an additional HEPA filter. The power cord is 16-feet long and allows you to work on larger vehicles like minivans and three-row SUVs. The TWC-01 is equipped with a bevy of attachments including an elastic hose and nozzle set. And to think this kit starts at less $30, it’s hard to find a better deal than that.


Pros

  • Inspiring design
  • Strong suction power
  • Large dirt canister
  • Wet and dry cleaning
  • Lengthy power cord

Cons

  • It’s a bit loud

You can think of the Black+Decker Max Lithium Flex as a portable mini vacuum cleaner. Unlike a conventional handheld car vacuum, this tool is small enough to be carried around but needs two hands to operate. And yet, this is one of our favorite car vacuum cleaners. For starters, it’s not too expensive at less than $100, but it offers the sucking power of a traditional canister vacuum in half the size.  

Oh yes, the Black+Decker Max Lithium Flex is cordless as well! Talk about flexibility. You have strong and dependable sucking power with the freedom to move around without feeling constrained by annoying wires. And since it comes with a powerful and smooth-humming motor, it’s also ideal for home use. For smaller homes or apartments, this vacuum cleaner is all you need to clean your car and your home without changing tools. 

The Black+Decker Max Lithium Flex weighs approximately 3.2 lbs. It comes with a 20v lithium-ion battery pack providing 15 minutes of continuous operation. It may not sound a lot, but you can vacuum the interior of two full-size SUVs with some power to spare to clean a small compact car. The fade-free power allows the vacuum to suck out pet hair with relative ease using the included pet hair brush attachment. Black+Decker also threw in a washable filter and a long crevice tool including a 4-foot standard hose. This makes it easier to clean tight and constrained spaces without moving heavy furniture or contorting your wrist.

Admittedly, $100 is steep for a relatively compact vacuum cleaner. But if you really need to go cordless and you want reliable and consistent sucking power, the Black+Decker Max Lithium Flex is worth every penny.


Pros

  • Dependable sucking power
  • Wireless convenience
  • Strong battery pack
  • Good for pet hairs

Cons

  • Not as portable as handheld vacuums
  • The price is not for everyone

The king of all handheld vacuum cleaners is the Dyson V7 Trigger. It’s the undisputed champion in sucking power, convenience, quality, features, and design. But all of this comes at a price: $199. Yup, the Dyson V7 Trigger is the most expensive car vacuum cleaner in this list. But if you take a second to inspect the features, there’s no denying you ultimately get what you pay for. 

The star of the show is the Dyson digital motor V7, which effectively makes it the most powerful handheld vacuum cleaner in the world. The motor produces 15 powerful cyclones of sucking air to capture fine dust and microscopic particles as small as 0.5 microns. Electrons are fed by the fade-free lithium-ion battery pack that provides 30-minutes of steady suction. All of this is backed by a 2-year warranty covering all related parts and labor charges. 

Best of all, the Dyson V7 Trigger is equipped with a hygienic dirt ejector. It automatically ejects trapped dust and dirt with a single action. No need to remove filthy canisters or touching the dirt with your bare hands. It seems Dyson has thought of everything to make their vacuum cleaners the best in the world, and it shows in the V7 Trigger.


Pros

  • Magnificent design
  • Powerful battery pack for longer cordless operation
  • The ultra-powerful motor sucks ground-in dirt
  • One-push dirt ejecting action
  • Ergonomic trigger design

Cons

  • It’s an expensive piece of kit but worth the money

You think we’ll forget all about canister vacuums, right? Of course not! While the Dyson V7 is simply mesmerizing, there’s no reason why you can’t use a canister vacuum in any type of vehicle. Yes, the Armor All Wet/Dry Vacuum is not exactly the most portable tool, but the size is just right for heavier-duty automotive applications. It comes with a 2.5-gallon polypropylene tank to hold large amounts of dirt, debris, and liquid spills. 

But the great thing about Armor All’s Wet/Dry Vacuum is the powerful motor. Churning out two horsepower of sucking action, it makes quick work of heavily soiled thick-pile carpeting. Imagine what it can do to car seats and the headliner. Of course, you can do using the standard 6-foot long hose and included utility nozzle and crevice tool.

This car vacuum cleaner also comes with a reusable cloth filter and reusable foam sleeve. The included blower nozzle makes good use of the blower function to effectively clean and dry various surfaces in half the time. This is ideal if you need to wax or polish the paint after washing the vehicle with soap and water. The 10-foot long power cord allows you to move around, although you need to plug it into a conventional 110-volt socket. And you get all this for less than $33.


Pros

  • The super-strong motor provides powerful sucking power
  • Ideal for wet and dry applications
  • The extra-large 2.5-gallon tank holds larger amounts of dirt and liquid
  • Blower function makes it ideal for auto detailing and drying
  • The size is just right for auto cleaning
  • Great price

Cons

  • It’s a bit heavy

Conclusion

The best car vacuum cleaners should be portable, powerful, and easy to use. We gave you a list of the best that money can buy. The choice ultimately depends on what you want and how much you can afford. We declare the Dyson V7 and Armor All Wet/Dry as the best vacuum cleaner for cars, but both Black+Decker vacuum cleaners are tied for third place. 

George Bradley
 

George is an enthusiastic blogger and an auto mechanic expert whose mission is to provide the readers with the best tips, guides, and recent events in the automotive industry. He has been involved in researching on various topics that are essential to the car owners, especially when it comes to an understanding, maintaining and handling their vehicles.

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