Consumer Reports rates small vacuum cleaners

Sometimes you need a full-size vacuum. Sometimes you don't.

When our news partners at Consumer Reports rated small vacuums, they found only three they'd recommend.

The Shark Pet Perfect II was the highest rated small vac. It's cordless. The editors said its carpet-surface cleaning was impressive and it did even better on bare floors and edges. Pet hair was no problem. The Shark Pet Perfect II is the only had vac Consumer Reports recommends that is good at keeping in all of the dust it sucks up.

The editors call the Eureka Easy Clean 71B "the best of the corded hand vacs, especially for noise." It was tops for bare floors and edges, did fine with pet hair, but Consumer Reports found that it wasn't as good as other small vacs at cleaning carpets, not even surface dust and spills.

The Bissell Pet Hair Eraser 33A1 did a great job on bare floors and edges, but despite its name, Consumer Reports says the Bissell Pet Hair Eraser "isn't great on pet hair" and it isn't very quiet. One more bummer: The motor can blow around debris before you get to it.

More Information: Vacuum Cleaner Buying Guide