Canister Vacuum Cleaner: Best Lightweight Vacuum 2016

If you’re on the fence about whether to buy a canister vacuum cleaner or an upright model, hopefully we can help.  Both canister vacuums and upright vacuums have their pros and cons.  It’s up to you to decide what is most important to you in a vacuum cleaner.

Canister Vacuums v. Uprights


Canister vacuums have highly maneuverable wands that make it easier to vacuum under low furniture like coffee tables, couches, and chairs.  Uprights on the other hand often can’t bend flat enough to fit under couches.  Even if they do bend enough, their vacuum heads are so large and bulky they will only fit in the largest of spaces beneath furniture.Miele S2121 Olympus Canister Vacuum Cleaner Wand View

Some newer upright models have longer hoses and attachments which make it easier to reach under furniture and into corners, much like canisters.  One criticism of uprights has been that the brush roll rotation can cause debris to be kicked up when attempting to vacuum bare floors.  Newer models solve this problem with variable-speed brush rolls and height adjustment.


This is a tough area of comparison.  Canisters have traditionally been easier to use on stairs because they already have the hose length to reach.  Uprights have more recently been incorporating an accessory port with hoses to help with stairs.  Unfortunately hose lengths vary and depending on the number of stairs uprights can still have trouble with reach.  If you have stairs, carefully compare hose lengths to make sure they reach.

Miele S2121 Olympus Canister Vacuum Cleaner Canister ViewWeight and Ease-of-Use

Canister vacuum cleaners have become very compact and lightweight in recent years and that makes them easy to carry up and down stairs or around the house.  The bulk of the weight of a canister vacuum cleaner is in the canister itself freeing the wand to be very lightweight and easy even if it is motorized.  Being lightweight, wands are easy to push over bare floors and low pile carpeting.  Upright vacuums have all their weight spread vertically from the vacuum head to the handle.  This makes them more difficult to push over floors and more difficult to transport around the house and between levels.

Canister detractors will say that it seems to take more energy to pull the canister behind them than to push an upright in front of them.  Canisters can also run into furniture and you if you’re not careful when pulling the canister unlike uprights which are completely in front of you.


Self-propelled models of upright vacuum cleaners are available to make pushing and pulling them across floors even easier.

Canisters force you to bend over to reach their controls while uprights typically have finger-operated controls in the handle or foot-operated controls on their base.  In either case, you usually don’t have to bend over to change functions of an upright.

Miele S2121 Olympus Vacuum Video


Canisters are compact and easy to store standing on end and do not interfere in closets with hanging clothes like uprights can.  Uprights only require one piece to be stored and may take up less overall space.

You can buy both canisters and uprights with retractable cords if that is a feature you like in vacuums.

Floor Types

You can expect separate heads for bare floors and carpets to come along with a canister vacuum cleaner.  That means when you switch between floor types, you will have to change the head.  Uprights on the other hand are designed to be adjustable, sometimes automatically, between floor types.


You can expect a quality canister vacuum will usually cost more than the equivalent upright vacuum.


Think you might like an upright vacuum instead of a canister?  Learn more about some great uprights in our articles: 


Uprights are very popular with their no-loss-of-suction capability and bagless operation.  If you want something less bulky and easier to maneuver, a canister vacuum cleaner may be what you need.

In any case, this article is about canister vacuum cleaners.  We did the research and found what we think is the best canister vacuum and maybe even the best vacuum cleaner for the money.  Read on to see if you agree with our pick!

Canister Vacuum Cleaner: Best Lightweight Vacuum

Miele S2121 Olympus Canister Vacuum Cleaner

Miele S2121 Olympus Canister Vacuum Cleaner Full ViewMiele is well-known in the vacuum industry for their high quality and performance.  A Miele vacuum canister deliver powerful cleaning ability in compact, lightweight canister unit.  Their S2 series features variable power settings that allow it to adjust to virtually any cleaning situation.  All-in-all this is a great hardwood floor, bare floor, and low pile carpeting vacuum.  Take a look at all of its great features.


  • Very stylish modern canister in Lotus White
  • Exceptionally lightweight canister body
  • XXL Handle provides convenient and ergonomic use simplifying your vacuuming experience and reducing fatigue
  • Six distinct power settings accessed with a front-mounted rotary dial allow you to vary vacuum power as needed
  • FiberTeQ floor tool ideal easily transitions from carpet to bare flooring with a flip of the toggle switch
  • VarioClip with Three Onboard Accessories including a dusting brush, upholstery tool and crevice nozzle, provide handy access for optimal cleaning for any task
  • High quality telescopic, stainless steel wand delivers a superior operating radius of 29.5 feet
  • Auto-Seal Closing FilterBag Miele vacuum bags immediately lock dirt, dust, and allergens inside when the FilterBag is removed
  • Long auto-Rewind electrical cord provides outstanding reach and reduces outlet switching during cleaning
  • Three accessories are included with the Miele Olympus S2121:
  • Dusting brush
  • Upholstery tool


  • Lightweight and easy to maneuver
  • Powerful suction
  • Very quiet operation
  • Easily reaches under furniture


  • Head does not have brush roll for deeper pile carpets
  • Plastic shell does not feel durable
  • Vacuum bags are expensive
  • Pricey

Miele S2121 Olympus Canister Vacuum Cleaner Review


Canister Vacuum Cleaner Comparison Chart

TitleEureka 3670G Mighty Mite Canister VacuumBISSELL Zing Bagless Canister Vacuum, Caribbean BluePanasonic MC-CG917 "OptiFlow" Bag Canister Vacuum CleanerMiele S2121 Olympus Canister Vacuum CleanerDirt Devil FeatherLite Cyclonic Canister Vacuum, SD40100Miele S2121 Capri Canister Vacuum CleanerNEW ProLux Quiet HEPA Sealed Canister Vacuum with 3 year warranty Pro Lux
FeatureLightweight 12 amp canister vacuum safely and completely cleans bare-floor surfaces
Power-Touch handle with easy-to-use fingertip controls; deluxe floor brush; bare-floor nozzle
Blower port; 20-foot cord; compact size; auto shut-off protects against overheating
On-board tools include a dusting brush, crevice tool, and upholstery nozzle
Measures 11 by 8 by 15 inches; 1-year limited warranty
Boss Mighty Mite 12a Canister Vacuum
Designed For Filter Hf8 Use #60666b. For Bag Mm Use TV #718-855; For Bag Filteraire M Use #60296b
Includes Seven Piece On Board Tools, 20' Cord with Convenient Storage, and Large Easy Roll Wheels
Lightweight 12 Amp Canister Vacuum Safely, and Completely Cleans Bare-floor Surfaces
Vacuum Is Lightweight, and Compact
Bagless Convenience: Cyclonic action and powerful suction provides thorough cleaning. Plus, no more bags to buy or change ? EVER
Multi-Surface Cleaning: Easily go from cleaning carpets to hard floors with the flip of a switch
Three-Stage Filtration: Dirt cup filters and post-motor filter help to capture more fine dust and particles. Filters are washable and re-usable
Includes: Easy Empty Dirt Cup, Combination Crevice Tool/Dusting Brush, Automatic Cord Rewind, Air Flow Regulator
Powerful "Bag" Canister with 12 Amp Motor, 24 foot Power cord w/Cord Reel
OptiFlow System with separate large bag caddy for easy emptying of dust bag and 20% more use of bag for optimum bag usage and airflow
Power Nozzle with Overload Protection reset, Bare Floor switch on handle
Tools on-board include: (Floor brush, Dusting & Upholstery Brush, Crevice Tool, Pet Turbine Mini-brush) and Alumimum Telescopic Wand
Measures: 12" (L) x 8.75" (W) x 21.5" (H), 12.3 lbs, Ebony & Green
Exceptionally lightweight
Air Clean filter
Dusting brush, upholstery tool and crevice nozzle on VarioClip
29.5-feet cleaning radius
Classic combination carpet/smooth floor tool recommended for low pile carpeting, rugs and smooth flooring
Lightweight Design - Compact with handle for easy carrying from room to room.
Automatic Cord Rewind - rewind cord with press of button.
Cyclonic filtration for added dirt separation.
HEPA Media filtration protects against over 99% dust and allergens.
Stores easily - compact design helps storage in tight spaces.
Exceptionally lightweight
Air Clean filter
Dusting brush, upholstery tool and crevice nozzle on VarioClip
29.5-feet cleaning radius
Two floor tools included: Turbo Comfort turbobrush, ideal for low to medium pile carpeting, area rugs and all smooth flooring; and a Parquet floor tool for the gentle cleaning of smooth surfaces
Prolux ))) Quiet Sealed HEPA Vacuum - Powerful and Quiet Deep Cleaning HEPA sealed vacuum produces an amazing 107 CFM of airflow with its adjustable 12 amp motor. With allergen HEPA bags and Sealed HEPA filter this vacuum is designed to keep all the dust inside the bag leaving your air clean and fresh.
LED indicators tell you what cleaning mode the vacuum is on AND when the bag or filter needs changed. Simple to use cleaning settings allow the user to easily adjust the vacuum for dusting or upholstery cleaning or hardfloor cleaning or carpet cleaning.
3 Year Warranty - 2 Year bumper to bumper and 3 Year Motor Factory Warranty. Built from high grade plastic, stainless steel and sealed bearings this vacuum is designed to last many years. Vacuum Specs - 120 volt 60Hz motor, 70 to 107 CFM of airflow, canister size is 19 x 13 x 9 inches, shipping box size is 27 x 13 x14 and retractable cord. As low as 67 db of sound.
Possibly the worlds quietest full powered vacuum. As little as 67 db of sound is producted. On board tools allow for quick and easy clean ups. On board tools include the hardfloor combi tool, crevice/upholstery tool, and dusting brush. Adjustable main wand adjusts to your perfect height for easy comfortable cleaning. Pet Mini Head tool - This also comes with the famous pet mini head tool. This is the popular tool with spinning brushroll that works so good for vacuuming upholstery (like cars and couches), stairs, and works awesome at vacuuming up pet hair.
Best Electric Power Nozzle - This comes with a high end quality electric power nozzle with spinning brushroll. Power Nozzles of this quality usually sell for as much as we are selling the entire vacuum for. It is quiet (uses sealed bearings) and powerful. It has a headlight and brushroll view window. With the brushroll window you can easily see string that has wrapped around your brushroll and remove it. Speaking of brushroll..... stainless steel, sealed bearings and removable bristles means this power nozzle is designed to last for years. The best feature of course is the geared belt. Never replace a worn out belt again. This power nozzle is designed to deep clean your carpets and last for many years.
Height13.56 inch11.75 inch8.75 inch15.24 inch27.25 inch14.57 inch13.25 inch
Weight10 pound12 pound28.2 pound13 pound14.5 pound15 pound
Width13.62 inch10.9 inch12 inch22.68 inch9.38 inch23.23 inch21.25 inch
Length18.24 inch16.25 inch21.5 inch9.45 inch12 inch17.24 inch13.63 inch
Warranty1 Year1 YEAR LIMITED WARRANTY1 year parts/labor1 year parts and labor. Years on the motor and 7 years on the casing1 Year Limited warranty1 year parts and labor. Years on the motor and 7 years on the casing
Rating0 out of 5 stars0 out of 5 stars0 out of 5 stars0 out of 5 stars0 out of 5 stars0 out of 5 stars0 out of 5 stars
ReviewsRead ReviewsRead ReviewsRead ReviewsRead ReviewsRead ReviewsRead ReviewsRead Reviews
LinkMore InfoMore InfoMore InfoMore InfoMore InfoMore InfoMore Info

Product prices and availability are accurate as of Jul 3 1:45:52 UTC but are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on the merchant site at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.


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As always, thanks for reading our vacuum cleaner post!  We sincerely hope that it has provided you with valuable information that helps you choose the best canister vacuum cleaner for your needs!

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