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The 5 Car Vacuums (2022 Review)

Car vacuums can keep the seats and floors of your sedan or SUV clean. In this review, the This Old House Reviews Team researched the five best car vacuums on Amazon to help you find the product that’s right for you. The products included in this article are available at local home centers, large retailers, and online retailers like Amazon.

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Top 5 Car Vacuums

Most Energy-Efficient: BLACK+DECKER Dustbuster Handheld Vacuum

After four hours of charging, this portable, cordless vacuum provides a powerful clean using 50% less energy than most models on the market. Additionally, the extendable crevice tool and flip brush assist in cleaning tough messes.

Key Features

  • Rechargeable battery
  • 20.6-ounce capacity
  • 2.6 pounds
  • 15.2 watts
  • Flip brush, crevice tool, and filter included

What Customers Are Saying

Customers complimented the vacuum’s powerful suction and high quality. Most reviewers agreed that the vacuum was tough on dirt. However, one common complaint among customers was that the lithium-ion battery couldn’t be replaced if it sustained damage or stopped holding a charge.

Best For Pet Hair: Shark Handheld Vacuum

This Shark vacuum has a large dirt cup for holding crumbs and cyclonic air streams for providing powerful suction. With added attachments, including a Pet Power brush, the vacuum provides an efficient and effective clean.

Key Features

  • Rechargeable battery
  • 0.45-quart capacity
  • 2.8 pounds
  • 80 watts
  • Pet brush, crevice tool, and scrubbing brush included

What Customers Are Saying

Most customers enjoyed this vacuum’s long battery life and lightweight design. However, some dissatisfied customers said that the lithium-ion battery took several hours to fully charge after each use.

Best For Wet Messes: Vacmaster Red Edition Portable Wet Dry Shop Vacuum

This vacuum has a 2.5-gallon tank to vacuum everything from shoe dirt to spilled drinks. The strong suction from its two-horsepower motor allows you to pick up any mess, including large pieces of debris and thick gel-like substances.

Key Features

  • 14-foot cord
  • 2.5-gallon capacity
  • 6.16 pounds
  • Two horsepower
  • Scrub brush, crevice tool, wet filter, dry filter, extension tube, and wall bracket included

What Customers Are Saying

Happy customers liked this vacuum cleaner’s affordable price, strong suction, maneuverability, and long cord. However, some customers said that the vacuum started to lose suction the longer they owned it.

Most Accessories: THISWORX Car Vacuum Cleaner

This car vacuum cleaner comes with convenient features and accessories. The protective lid prevents debris from spilling, and the metal turbine provides consistent suction. It comes with a 12-volt cord, extension tube, brush head, case, and more, making it perfect for on-the-go cleanups.

Key Features

  • 16-foot cord
  • 2.4 pounds
  • 106 watts
  • Carrying case, flathead hose, extension tube, brush head, filter, and filter brush included

What Customers Are Saying

Customers said that the car vacuum was impressive, stating that it was a must-have car gadget. Customers who were unsatisfied stated that the vacuum’s suction wasn’t as powerful as they expected.

Most Lightweight: SwiftJet Car Vacuum Cleaner

This vacuum is small but mighty, weighing one pound but offering 120 watts of power. It can reach every crevice of your car with its 14.5-foot power cord. Plus, you can keep all of the attachments together in the included carrying case.

Key Features

  • 14.5-foot cord
  • One pound
  • 120 watts
  • Carrying case, extension hose, crevice tool, brush tool, and filter included

What Customers Are Saying

Most customers agreed that the vacuum cleaner’s lightweight, intuitive design made it a breeze to use. However, some customers said that the machine wasn’t durable, limiting how long it lasted.

Buyer’s Guide

Car vacuums vary greatly in terms of capacity, suction, and more. This buying guide will help you determine the car vacuum that best suits your needs.

Suction Power

The suction power of a vacuum cleaner has a large impact on what it can clean. The average suction power for a car vacuum is around 100 watts. This allows you to clean up small and medium messes. However, if you want to be able to pick up larger or heavier pieces of debris, consider a more powerful model. For example, the Vacmaster Red Edition Portable Wet Dry Shop Vacuum is measured in horsepower. With a 2.5-horsepower motor, it’s about 20 times more powerful than the standard handheld vacuum.


The capacity of a vacuum cleaner determines how often you need to empty it. Finding a vacuum with a larger capacity allows you to clean more in one session. However, a large dustbin will also make the vacuum heavier.


Most car vacuum cleaners come with attachments to make them more efficient and versatile. Some of the most helpful attachments are extension wands, scrubbing brushes, and crevice tools.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should the filter in my car vacuum be replaced?

Car vacuum filters should be replaced every three to five months.

How can I clean stains in my upholstery?

You can clean upholstery with a liquid upholstery cleaner. After letting the cleaner soak for a few minutes, use the brush attachment of your vacuum to scrub the stain and suction the remaining cleaner.

How can I maintain my car vacuum?

You can properly maintain your vacuum cleaner by replacing the filter every few months and dumping the dustbin after each use.

Why Trust The This Old House Reviews Team

This Old House has empowered homeowners for more than four decades with top-notch home improvement content in the form of television programs, print media, and digital content on its website and social media platforms. The This Old House Reviews Team focuses on creating in-depth product and service review content to help inform your purchasing decision for just about any item or resource that you might need for your home. The This Old House Reviews Team has written over 1,000 reviews on products in the home space, from cordless drills to kitchen trash cans, lawn mowers, and dining room decorations.

We recommend products in each review using an intensive research process, spending hours combing through the best available models on Amazon. For a product to make our list of top picks, it must hold a solid sales record on Amazon, have consistently positive customer reviews, and offer unique features, among other factors. After narrowing down our list of recommendations, we conduct additional research and sometimes in-person testing to ensure that the products meet our standards. Once we conclude the research phase, we craft a well-rounded, user-friendly article that includes our recommended products and additional information to help homeowners like you make the right purchase.

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