17 May Dyson or Shark?
Both Dyson or Shark are excellent but choosing the one that is right for you will depend on the type of home you have, how much money you are prepared to spend and the level of convenience you are prepared to pay for in terms of corded or cordless.
Everyone knows someone that has either a Dyson or Shark vacuum cleaner and so deciding on which one to go with is easier said than done.
Dyson has stopped developing corded vacuum cleaners so the only real option from them is going with their famous cordless stick vacuum cleaner but is it worth the money?
Dyson has finally worked out how to get the same amount of suction from their cordless hoover as you can get from the best vacuum cleaners that you have to plug into the wall so they have decided to not bother with anything else.
It’s not worth buying any of their older corded vacuums because they are already out of date and Dyson will not be updating them ever again.
If you go for the mega convenience of the super powerful cordless vacuum cleaner that they now dedicate all of their attention to you will feel the impact of that in your bank account.
Who would have thought only a few years ago that spending £500 or more on a hoover would be something anyone would ever do but millions of people have done exactly that and in this article we will help you decide if you should as well.
Or perhaps there is another option. Shark is the relatively new kid on the block. They built up a big reputation in the USA but have moved into Europe in recent years and have made a big impact.
Many people swear by their Shark vacuum cleaner and so we’ll help you navigate through the minefield of both brands to work out which one is best for you and how to find the best model for your needs.
Dyson and Shark Vacuum cleaner types
Vacuum cleaners as a whole are broken down into three main categories and then those categories are broken down into different types of those categories.
Cylinder vacuum cleaners
Cylinder vacuum cleaners have a main unit that contains the motor and waste container and attached to that is a hose and a telescopic pole.
The most famous and best-selling cylinder vacuum cleaner of all time is Henry the Hoover.
Cylinder vacuum cleaners are corded hoovers that you have to plug into the wall and change the socket as you move from room to room.
Dyson and Shark do not do cylinder vacuum cleaners so we won’t discuss those any further.
Dyson has done them in the past and you can still buy one if you search hard enough but they haven’t developed a new one for a number of years and they do not intend doing so ever again as they are concentrating on cordless going forward.
A good vacuum cleaner should last you at least 5 years and by that time something much better will have been invented so there is not much point in buying something that is already old such as a Dyson cylinder vacuum and so you are much better off looking at the latest and best that Dyson and Shark have to offer.
Cordless vacuum cleaners
As the name would suggest these types of hoover only need to be plugged into the wall to charge the battery.
They do not require any cord nor do they need to be plugged into the wall whilst you are cleaning as they are powered by a battery.
The biggest benefit by far of a cordless hoover is the convenience that it offers. Never again do you need to concern yourself with the cable getting in the way or hindering you as you move in and out or hard to reach areas.
Dyson is so convinced that cordless vacuum cleaners are the future that they are only developing this type of vacuum cleaner going forward and have ditched everything else.
One of the hardest things to achieve until now was getting the same amount of suction power from a cordless vacuum that you can get from a corded one that you plug into the wall.
Dyson has managed to do that with their latest range of cordless vacuums but it does come with a few downsides.
One of the most expensive component parts on a cordless vacuum is the battery and the better the battery the more costly it becomes and that is one of the main reasons that Dyson and Shark cordless vacuum cleaners are costly compared to other types.
Shark offer corded and cordless vacuum cleaners and their corded ones deliver the same level of performance as a Dyson cordless in terms of suction power but they cost a lot less because they don’t need an expensive battery.
So one of the things you need to decide is whether you want to pay more for the convenience of a battery-powered cordless hoover or perhaps you are happy to have a cord and get the same level of performance and pay less with a corded hoover.
The other downside of cordless vacuum cleaners is battery life. No-one has worked out how to get a long life out of one battery on full power.
Dyson will make claims of up to 60 minutes on one battery but that’s always followed by the small print and reflects using it on low power on a certain type of flooring.
The reality is that if you want to use a cordless vacuum cleaner on full power all the time you will be lucky to get 20 minutes out of it.
With a corded vacuum you can go on full power for as long as you want because it’s plugged into the wall.
Shark gives you a choice of corded or cordless but with Dyson you only get cordless as an option (if you want the latest technology)
With Shark, you can decide what works for you but if you go with Dyson you are choosing convenience over price and you need to be comfortable that the battery will last as long as you need it for.
With Shark and Dyson they have both gone down the route of “stick” cordless hoovers which make them very versatile as you can detach the central “stick” and easily turn it into a handheld hoover for use with various attachments.
With Dyson, you can choose from one cordless vacuum cleaner (different variations come with different accessories but the main hoover is the same).
Shark gives you more choice to select one that is tailored to your needs. Some Shark models end in a “T” and this stands for pet tool. If you have pets or a home with lots of hair then you can choose a model ending “T” and it comes with a motorised pet tool.
With Shark, they are available with or without a mini motorised tool but with Dyson, you get one whether you need it or not.
With Shark, some cordless models come with “flexology” which means the “stick” part becomes bendy and you can get underneath furniture without bending down. Dyson’s can’t do that.
Some Shark cordless models come with “powered lift away” that allows you remove the central unit that contains the motor and waste container and makes it super easy to clean anywhere above floor such as the stairs.
Here is a short video that shows powered lift away in action:
Upright vacuum cleaners
All vacuum cleaners are upright so it can be a little confusing to understand the difference between upright, cordless and cylinder but when it comes to Dyson or Shark cordless means no cord and upright means it comes with a cord.
Dyson only does cordless (new and future models) but Shark recognises that not everyone needs the convenience of cordless and some people would rather have a cord and save money.
With a corded upright not only can you save money compared to cordless but you don’t need to worry about the battery running out or running it on a lower power setting to preserve the battery.
With all corded hoovers you can just crank it up to full power and vacuum to your heart’s content.
In our view, the best value for money lies within a corded upright because the high cost of a battery is eliminated but the best Shark corded hoovers provide a very similar level of performance to a Dyson cordless but they cost a lot less.
Dyson doesn’t do any new corded hoovers so you don’t have that option with them.
Corded stick upright vacuum cleaners
Similar to cordless stick vacuums this type of hoover is only available from Shark and not Dyson.
With these you can choose from “flexology” where the central wand bends making it easy to get into hard to reach areas and another where you can easily convert it into a handheld as well.
The main benefit of these is the price. They tend to be a lot cheaper than their cordless equivalent.
Those are all the different types of vacuum cleaner that are available from Dyson and Shark.
Next, we will take you through the best ones and how best to choose between them.
These are the best Dyson and Shark Vacuum Cleaners in the UK:
Shark IZ300 & IZ320 Cordless Vacuum Cleaner
Sharks best ever suction power is incorporated into this hoover and it has a feature not included in previous models called “powerfins” which is an addition to the roller as it spins round that digs right down into carpet fibres or sweeps across hard floor to ensure that more dust and dirt than ever before gets captured in the first pass making it easier and quicker than ever to achieve an extremely high level of cleaning performance in the shortest possible time.
Its got some great features including a digital display that shows battery life remaining, a bendy central column so you can get under things without bending down and duo clean for seamless cleaning across hard floors and carpets.
This is about half the price of a top-end Dyson and in our opinion it does an equally good job.
Shark IZ201 & IZ2251 Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner
You can tailor this cordless model to suit the specific requirements of your home so that you don’t need to spend more money than you need to. There are 4 different ways you can buy this cleaner. With or without a motorised pet tool and with one or two batteries (there is a 5th triple battery option as well but we can’t imagine anyone needing more than two batteries).
With Dyson, you get what you get and you can easily never use it to its full potential. With this one, if you don’t have pets don’t buy the pet tool and if you have a smaller home or never spend more than 20 minutes hoovering at any one time you only need the single battery version.
If you live in a 5 bedroom home and you have cats and dogs then the pet tool version with twin battery is the way to go.
The “Duo Clean” floorhead allows you to seamlessly switch between hard flooring and carpets so you don’t need to give a second thought when you move from the kitchen to a carpeted area. Suction power is exceptional and you can expect 20 minutes cleaning time on full power with one battery or up to 40 minutes if you preserve power on one of the lower power settings.
If you go for the twin battery version the battery pops out with one click and you can just switch in the spare which will be more than enough runtime for the vast majority of homes.
It easily converts into a handheld as well by just popping the top section off and adding one of the accessory tools making it super easy to clean the stairs and car.
It also includes Sharks anti-hair wrap technology ensuring that no hair ever gets wrapped around the brush roller ever again. Here is a short video showing how anti-hair wrap works:
Because of the different variations, you can choose this hoover is suitable for any home size from flats to larger homes with multiple bedrooms.
Shark ICZ160 & ICZ300 Cordless Vacuum Cleaner
This model incorporates the best of everything that Shark has to offer. There are two different variations available, with or without pet tool. If you have cats and dogs then the motorised pet tool is well worth having for above-floor cleaning for the likes of stairs and sofas.
With no wires or cables in sight it offers ultimate ease of use and convenience. It comes with the Duo Clean floorhead for super easy switching between hard floors and carpet and this model also comes with cordless “powered lift away”.
This allows you to remove the central unit with one click and with no cables so you can manoeuvre into any spot that is awkward such as under furniture, up to the ceiling and up and down stairs with no bother.
You also get Sharks anti-hair wrap technology as well so you won’t even need to remove any hairs from the brush roller.
Suction power is very strong and the battery will last around 25 minutes on full power or up to 50 minutes with the ICZ160 or 60 minutes with the ICZ300 if you vary the power settings.
This is a workhorse of a vacuum cleaner suitable for medium to large size homes.
Dyson V10 Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner
This is not Dyson’s very latest cordless hoover but we think that it does as good a job and it costs less so represents better value for money. The V10 was a big improvement in technology from its predecessor the V8 with a great improvement in suction power and battery performance but that wasn’t matched as the V10 was replaced by the V11.
Don’t get us wrong, the V11 is an excellent vacuum cleaner but we just don’t think it is worth the money they are asking for it. I have been using this model (V10) in my home for a while now and it is an exceptional hoover.
The suction power is second to none and the motorised accessory attachment is amazingly effective and leaves absolutely nothing behind.
One click to remove the top section from the central wand and it becomes the best handheld cleaner you’ll ever use so much so that I have started doing the inside of my car myself because it does as good a job at vacuuming as my local hand car wash.
Dyson set the bar for cleaning performance when they turned the world of hoovers upside down a few decades ago and they are still hard to beat as long as you are prepared to pay premium prices.
The only real thing to be aware of is the battery life. Low and medium power are good in their own right for a lot of dust and dirt but if you keep it on full power the whole time you won’t get much more than 10 minutes out of it.
Dyson V11 Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner
This the Harrods of vacuum cleaners. If you love top-end brands and only the best is good enough then you may not need to look further than the Dyson V11.
You will pay an ultra-premium price but you do get the best suction power you will find in any vacuum cleaner and the top of the range model now has a digital display that will show you how much battery life you have left so you can adjust the power settings if you are getting low but still have some work to do.
It can also prolong the battery life by automatically sensing the type of surface you are cleaning and adjust the power accordingly. For example, on hard floors you don’t need full power but on deep pile carpets you do and it will just do it for you without you having to think about it.
This is an exceptional vacuum cleaner for medium to large homes but you just need to decide if it’s worth the money.
Shark NZ801 / NZ850 / PZ1000 Corded Upright Vacuum Cleaner
If you looked at the Dyson prices and you had a sharp intake of air at the horror of how much they cost then you will get a similar level of cleaning performance from this Shark model but it won’t cost as much.
There is the NZ801 / NZ850 and the PZ1000. The only difference between the 3 of them is the size of the waste container so if you have a large home and you want to empty the waste container as little as possible then the PZ1000 has a huge 1.6 litre capacity. Most homes will be fine with either the NZ801 with 0.83 litres and the NZ850 1.3 litres
There is no digital display to tell you different things and you will have to plug it into the wall but if you are prepared to put up with the cord then you’ll never have to worry about the battery running out because its plugged into the wall and you can keep it on maximum power the whole time.
It comes without or without a pet tool according to your needs, powered lift away so you can remove the central unit for easy use around the home and it comes with anti-hair wrap on the brush roller for hair-free cleaning.
This is a great option for all home types if you want to save money but still want premium cleaning performance.
Shark HZ400UKT Corded Stick Upright Vacuum Cleaner
This corded stick model converts easily into a mini-lift away for easy cleaning of stairs and upholstery. It also comes with the same technology as the more expensive models such as Duo Clean and anti-hair wrap.
Shark AZ910 & AZ950 Corded Upright Vacuum Cleaner
Similar to the NZ801UK with its features and specification Shark offer yet more choice with both the AZ910 and AZ950. These are both full spec models that have DuoClean technology with a soft roller for hard floors and a brush roller for carpet all integrated into the floor head.
They also have an anti-hair wrap brush so no hairs ever get tangled, unlike all other hoovers we have tested and the powered lift away feature offers maximum versatility and flexibility for cleaning all above floor surfaces
The difference between these and the NZ801 is that the AZ910 & the AZ950 both have larger floor heads and the AZ950 has an extra-large waste container that is double the size of the NZ801 & the AZ910.
Both of these models have been made with busy medium to large sized homes in mind.
Dyson V7 Trigger Handheld Vacuum Cleaner
Dyson and Shark have the two best handheld vacuum cleaners on the market but they are both targeted at two different types of customers. This V7 trigger from Dyson is basically a small version of their full-size cordless cleaners.
It provides the same unbeatable suction power and exceptional cleaning performance on all above-floor surfaces.
It’s lighter than it looks at 1.4kg but it is a little bulky for a handheld. As you would expect from a premium product like this, it comes with a two-year guarantee and an excellent filtration system that keeps all the dirt in without releasing any back into the air like some cheaper handhelds do.
If the best possible suction is what you are after this is the one for you but be prepared to pay for it.
Shark WV200UK Handheld Vacuum Cleaner
With most handheld cleaners you find a place in the cupboard to keep it because they are not exactly the kind of thing you want to keep out on show but that is exactly where I keep mine – out on the work surface in the kitchen because it looks too good to be hidden away.
It doesn’t have the raw suction power that the Dyson has but its very powerful and plenty to deal with the spills and mess that happen all the time in a busy home.
It’s incredibly slim at 9.5cm wide and just 38cm tall but it still packs a big punch when you put it to the test. The waste container is small and it’s not intended to be used for big jobs but it’s great for all the things you don’t want to drag the main hoover out for.
Shark S6003Uk “Klik n Flip” Steam Mop
Dyson doesn’t do steam mops but Shark do and it’s worth pointing a few out because they are so much better than a manual bucket and mop, much quicker and more effective as well.
The S6003UK is their premium steam mop and it glides across the floor surface leaving a small film of water that dries within 60 seconds. It also comes with a “blast of steam” option that gets rid of the toughest stains without bother and is activated easily by just flipping the pad to blast away the offending stain.
This is a very highly rated mop by many thousands of happy customers over the years.
Shark S1000UK Steam Mop
This entry-level mop from Shark doesn’t come with all the features of the “Klik n Flip” but it still does a miles better job than a manual bucket and mop.
It’s lightweight at 2.6kg and comes with a 5-metre cord. It’s a great option for smaller homes.
Is Shark Better Than Dyson?
We believe that Shark is better than Dyson when you compare all of the most important factors to consider when choosing the best vacuum cleaner for your needs.
Dyson has decided to only develop cordless stick vacuum cleaners going forward.
If you are looking for a new vacuum cleaner you quite rightly do a lot of research to find the right one to suit your needs but let’s be honest you have a lot more important things to be thinking about than choosing a hoover every couple of years.
If you want to get the most from your vacuum cleaner and get it to last the maximum amount of time possible you should choose the latest model with the latest technology and if you do you can expect it to last 5 years or more if you look after it properly.
If you are prepared to spend hundreds of pounds on a hoover that will clean your home then get the best you can within your budget then it will be cheaper in the end because you won’t have to replace it as often as a cheaper one.
There is no question that Dyson and Shark are the best choice out of any manufacturer as long as you are willing to invest several hundred pounds or more as they are firmly positioned at the premium end of the market.
So when it comes to the things that matter how do they both fare when compared to each other?
If you want the latest technology and the best cleaning performance Dyson give you a choice of 1 to choose from and Shark gives you a choice of about 12.
It may look like Dyson have some choice but they only really have one model that is the latest. There are different variations of the same model in terms of the accessories that it comes with but essentially it’s the same.
The other models represent the technology of previous years and they tend to reduce the price on those each year and make the older models available for a few years before discontinuing them.
Dyson is an excellent choice if you have a large home with lots of people and pets that create a big mess.
The suction power their latest model delivers is second to none and the fact it is cordless and light makes it super easy to clean anywhere and everywhere.
But it comes at a price. A big price but if you have a big, busy home it may be worth it.
Shark knows that one glove doesn’t fit all so they offer a much bigger choice to accommodate individual homes specific needs.
Whether you live in a one-bedroom flat or a six-bedroom mansion Shark have covered every eventuality and give you a range of different options tailored to your needs.
Shark win when it comes to choice.
Dyson vacuum cleaners cost a lot of money but it doesn’t mean they are expensive.
We judge whether something is expensive if you don’t get good value for money for your purchase.
Because Dyson vacuum cleaners cost a packet, in order to get value for money and benefit from the convenience of cordless and the incredible suction power they provide you really need to have a big home with lots of mess to benefit fully.
To give an extreme example, if you live in a small 1 bedroom flat on your own and you have no pets and you take your shoes off when you come in then you would pretty much be wasting your money if you bought a Dyson vacuum cleaner,
There are plenty of Shark hoovers that are cheaper than a Dyson and will do an excellent job of cleaning small to medium-sized homes and larger homes as well.
Where Dyson have deliberately targeted the top end of the market and are best suited to larger busy homes, Shark accommodates all home types with a broad choice of hoovers.
It’s a draw on price between Dyson and Shark, just don’t buy a Dyson if you don’t need one and won’t benefit from one.
Budget & value for money
Most people have a budget in mind when it comes to how much you are prepared to spend on a vacuum cleaner.
It’s a bit like a car. Everyone would be happy with a Porsche but most people don’t have the budget to be able to buy one.
For most people, it’s the same with a vacuum cleaner. You have an upper limit that you are prepared to spend and above that it just isn’t affordable and doesn’t make any sense.
Dyson is the Porsche of vacuum cleaners and has decided that delivering the absolute best quality and performance is the most important thing and the price is secondary.
If you don’t have a budget then, by all means, go for a Dyson, they are really really good vacuum cleaners.
If you want to get performance that is ever so slightly less but still excellent AND save lots of money and it will still do a superb job at cleaning your home then Shark is a better option.
Shark wins if you have a limit to how much you want to spend.
The most outstanding product regardless of price
Dyson is at the forefront of technological development when it comes to vacuum cleaners.
They spend a lot of money on research and development and that shows in the outstanding cleaning performance that their vacuum cleaners deliver.
The convenience of cordless truly delivers corded suction power with the latest Dyson cordless cleaners.
If money is no object and you just want the absolute best then go for the latest Dyson cordless. You won’t be disappointed with the cleaning performance and how easy it is to use and manoeuvre around your home.
Dyson wins when it comes to the best if you don’t mind how much you spend.
It may seem that we are biased towards Shark but we have no specific incentive to recommend them over Dyson so we just look at all the facts and take an impartial view as to who is best once you take everything into account and this is what it boils down to:
If you have a lot of money and a large home and pets and you don’t mind spending a lot of money on a vacuum cleaner then Dyson is an excellent choice.
They are at the cutting edge of technology and make brilliant vacuum cleaners that do an incredible job of cleaning your home.
But. Not everyone wants to or can afford to spend the kind of money that Dyson asks for their vacuum cleaners and a lot of homes just don’t need the super top end cleaning power that a Dyson vacuum cleaner provides,
Shark offers a much bigger range of vacuum cleaners at a budget and price level to suit everyone, not just people with loads of money and big homes.
Dyson also has a lot on their plate with loads of other products in their range from haircare to hand dryers and aircare and lighting and more.
Shark focus all their energy on one thing – floorcare. They are all in to produce the very best product for cleaning your home.
And we like that when a business has all their eggs in one basket because it means they have to make sure it works because they have nothing else to fall back on. And it works, Shark has an excellent range of vacuum cleaners.
Once everything is said and done and everything is taken into account Shark is better than Dyson.