Shark vs Dyson vacuums: which comes out on top?

If you’re deciding between a Shark vs Dyson vacuum, we’d say you’re in safe hands. These two vacuum brands are so well-known thanks to the quality of the vacuums they produce, each of which is crafted with features to help you keep your home cleaner with less effort. When it comes to quality, you’re set either way with one of the best cordless vacuums soon to be in your home.

Other factors that will determine which vacuum you should invest in are a little more subjective. Molting pets? You’ll need to look closely at hair-busting features. Small apartment space? Then there’ll be no need for a vac with a large capacity. Below, you’ll find the factors that matter when it comes to Shark vs Dyson vacuums - so that you end up with the vacuum cleaner that makes your life easier.

Shark vs Dyson vacuums: Features & Performance

We take a look at the dust capacity, suction power, and pet-friendly features to see how these two vacuum cleaner titans compare.


The versatility of Dyson vacuum cleaners is incredible, especially when it comes to capacity. If you favor the best cordless vacuums but need a big dust bin, then the Dyson Outsize Absolute will tick all of your boxes. It has a 0.5-gallon bin, combined with 120 minutes of run time across two batteries. Even if you’re cleaning a much larger home, that means you should be covered.

Corded vacuum loyalists are also catered to with Dyson. The Dyson Big Ball Multi Floor vacuum has a 0.48-gallon capacity, so you can go longer without having to make a pit stop to empty the bin. It’s a sturdy model with plenty of power and lots of features to like, too. 

There are so many smaller capacity vacuums from Dyson that are unbelievably convenient for apartment living, too. My favorite has to be the Dyson Omniglide, which I reviewed last year; it is unbelievably light and easy to use if you can afford to go with less dust capacity. 

If you need to cash in on capacity but don’t want to lose maneuverability, Shark has options to keep you happy. Looking for a corded vacuum? The Shark Rotator Lift Away ZU632 has a 0.7-gallon capacity (pretty good, right?) and Lift-Away technology, which, in simple terms, means you can lift the pod from the main unit and get to all those tricky places, like the stairs.

If you can afford to keep your dust bin smaller, then you can make the most of it by picking a Shark cleaner that is ultra-lightweight, like the Shark Vertex DuoClean PowerFins Lightweight Cordless Stick Vacuum. It usefully converts into handheld mode for all those little messes, too.

Verdict: Shark. It edges this one with the huge capacity available with the Shark Rotator Lift Away. 

Suction power  

Let’s stay focused on the Dyson Big Ball range, specifically the Dyson Animal Ball 2, when it comes to suction. Designed for seriously tough messes, this model has 227 AW to be working with and, by all accounts, is incredible at picking up dust and debris on any floor type. It is quite a big bulky model, however, so if you’re looking for something smaller with excellent suction credentials (115AW), then the Dyson V8 Absolute is still a fierce contender, with reviewers on the Dyson site praising just how easy it is to use. There’s honestly nothing negative I can say about Dyson when it comes to suction power; even after trying even one of their less powerful models (the Dyson Omniglide with 50AW), I was still blown away by just how much dust was sucked up when first trying it. 

Shark isn’t messing around when it comes to suction, either. OK, it might not be as pretty as a Dyson, but the Shark Vertex Upright Vacuum AZ2002 will surely earn status as a powerhouse. This, the brand’s most powerful offering, also has the most suction, “based on ASTM F558, measured at the hose”, according to its website. Reviewers on the Shark website definitely agree. It might not be the most aesthetic choice, but it’ll get the job done suction-wise. 

Verdict: Dyson has honed suction power across its range, and it's pretty unbeatable after testing.

Pet-friendly features 

What the expert says...

Mallory Micetich, Vice President of Corporate Communications at Angi: "You’ll want a model that has strong suction power and tangle-resistant brushes. A popular choice for many pet owners is robot vacuums that clean floors throughout the day autonomously. For deeper cleaners on multiple surfaces, many vacuum cleaners come with a pet hair attachment."

You might think that pet-friendly features within the Dyson range start and end with the Animal Ball vacuum; after all, they are great, powerful corded vacs with a range of attachments for lifting pet hair from all types of different surfaces and a pet grooming tool, helping you to get right to the source and prevent shedding hair. Well, Dyson goes further with their cordless range, too: the Dyson V15 Detect, which we’ve tried and tested and found to be excellent at dealing with hair, especially the hair screw tool. The downside? The $700 price tag.

Those with animal companions can also invest in a Shark with peace of mind. Let’s revisit the Shark Vertex Upright Vacuum AZ2002, a corded vac that boasts the brand’s signature self-cleaning brush-roll. Combine that with the crevice tool, and you’re onto a winner when dealing with your pet’s messes. If you feel the need to go cordless as you chase your pets around, then the Shark Stratos Cordless with Clean Sense IQ might just be the one for you. I’m trying it out at the moment, and I can’t quite believe how good it is at picking up hair without it getting tangled. The odor-neutralizer that you can also pop into the vacuum head is genius and especially useful for if you have (sometimes smelly) mucky pups!

Verdict: Dyson is the expert on pet features for now, but Shark is really not too far behind with those latest releases.

Dyson stick cordless vacuum used on wood floors with a green light.

(Image credit: Dyson)

Shark vs Dyson vacuums: Price & Warranty

Dyson vacuums are expensive. Even the most affordable band of vacuums from Dyson will take serious thought before you invest, though there is a guarantee of incredible engineering quality if you do decide to take the plunge. What’s more, Dyson has a hassle-free warranty that covers two years on cordless vacuums and five years on corded ones, giving you a solid cover.

Shark is less straightforward to navigate when it comes to warranties. These can range from 1 to 7 years, depending on the exact model you purchase, so be sure to check this before you hit ‘checkout.’ As far as the price range is concerned, Shark is more affordable, but still expect to think twice about the price tag of certain vacuums, especially ones engineered with new technology. Ultimately, if you’re on a budget, you can find a vacuum from Shark for under $200, both corded and cordless.

Verdict: Shark win when it comes to affordability and a range of prices, but don’t forget that you get what you pay for when it comes to Dyson.

Shark vs Dyson vacuums: Care & Maintenance

If you get hold of one of Dyson’s newer cordless vacuums, like the V15 Detect, make sure to learn how to clean a vacuum filter. This is essential to the longevity of your new vacuum. Beyond that, if you need to do more maintenance, it is pretty handy that you can shop for spare Dyson parts on the website or visit the dedicated customer service center if you need to send your vacuum back for further work. A colleague of mine recently had her Dyson malfunction and found it hassle-free and easy to have another model delivered to her free of charge. 

You can similarly file your request for maintenance on the Shark website, given that it falls within your warranty period. The Shark website also states that they have customer service advisers on hand via telephone to assess your situation if you’d prefer not to go online.

Verdict: Dyson’s website and information on maintenance is certainly easier to navigate than Shark’s, so it earns a win from me.

Shark Cordless Detect Pro in use

(Image credit: Future)

Shark vs Dyson vacuums: Our verdict

Dyson is truly the superior vacuum brand, with features to shout about and a product that is genuinely quite fun to use, even when you’re cleaning. My all-time favorite Dyson model is the V12, which has the incredible laser technology of the V15 and also packs in tonnes of incredible attachments for every corner of your home.

Even with this strong position in mind, it has to be said that recent offerings from Shark have really impressed me with the suction power and technology on offer. The Shark Stratos range is very much worth your attention in giving Dyson a run for their money and is absolutely perfect if you’re on a budget.  

Molly Cleary

Molly is the Staff Writer for the Home Section at Top Ten Reviews, joining the team after finishing college. When she's not writing she enjoys baking and embroidery, as well as getting stuck into a good book. She now enjoys writing about kitchen appliances, gardening tools, and will even dip her toe into writing about fridges and ovens.

With contributions from