What Is The Best Vacuum Cleaner For RVs & Campers 2021?

The Best RV Vacuum Cleaner Is Portable And Easy To Empty

If you’re struggling to keep the carpet and floor clean inside your RV camper, van, cabin, or small apartment you might need a small vacuum cleaner. In this post, I am going to review and share the best options on the market right now.

Unless you’re a full-timer with a large 5fth wheel or Class A, you’re probably not going to need the most advanced model there is. But you’re going to find different types on my list to help you get the best one for your needs.

Related Post: Best Handheld Vacuums For Cars

Only some of the products on the list are cordless but all of them are bagless. A bagless vacuum has a dust bin that is emptied into the garbage can instead of a bag that is filled and replaced.

A cordless vacuum is more portable since it has a lithium battery that lets you clean without having to worry about tripping over a cord. The downside is that you better get done cleaning before the battery runs out of power unless you have several batteries.

If there is carpet in your RV collecting dog or cat hair, it’s going to take not only more time but suction power to do a thorough cleaning. This is why you need to consider several things before making a decision, and I’ve written a “what to consider”-section for this reason.

Now, let’s start by reviewing the best vacuum cleaners for RVers. Then we’ll go through what to consider, what we use in our travel trailer, and do a FAQ.

As always, if you have any questions or comments, please leave a comment.

The Best Vacuum Cleaners Compared

Preview
What We Use
Dirt Devil 3-in-1 Mini Stick Bagless Vacuum Cleaner with Removable Hand Held Vac, Lightweight, SD22015PC, Red
Bissell PowerEdge Pet Hardwood Floor Bagless Cleaner, 81L2A Stick Vacuum, Gray
Budget Cordless
Cordless Vacuum, Stick Vacuum Cleaner 4 in 1, 17000 Pa Powerful Suction, Lightweight & Ultra-Quiet Handheld Vacuum for Car Pet Hair Carpet Hard Floor
Tineco A10 Hero Cordless Stick/Handheld Vacuum Cleaner with Wall Mount, Super Lightweight with Powerful Suction for Carpet, Hard Floor & Pet - Space Blue
Best Corded
Shark UpLight Upright Vacuum, Terracotta
Best Cordless
Dyson V11 Torque Drive Cordless Vacuum Cleaner, Blue
Bagless
Cordless
2-in-1
Dust Bin Capacity
0.4 L
.94 L
No info
0.4 L
0.64 L
0.75 L
Power Cord Length
18 ft
20 ft
N/A
N/A
30 ft
N/A
Size
19.5 x 6.5 x 6 in
10.6 x 11.3 x 43.3 in
22.8 x 10.2 x 5.7 in
11.4 x 8.3 x 43.3 in
10.4 x 11.2 x 43.7 in
10.2 x 49.6 x 9.8 in
Weight
4.3 lbs
7.5 lbs
3.3 lbs
5 lbs
5.5 lbs
6.7 lbs

What We Use

Preview
Dirt Devil 3-in-1 Mini Stick Bagless Vacuum Cleaner with Removable Hand Held Vac, Lightweight, SD22015PC, Red
Bagless
Cordless
2-in-1
Dust Bin Capacity
0.4 L
Power Cord Length
18 ft
Size
19.5 x 6.5 x 6 in
Weight
4.3 lbs
Preview
Bissell PowerEdge Pet Hardwood Floor Bagless Cleaner, 81L2A Stick Vacuum, Gray
Product (Link)
Bagless
Cordless
2-in-1
Dust Bin Capacity
.94 L
Power Cord Length
20 ft
Size
10.6 x 11.3 x 43.3 in
Weight
7.5 lbs

Budget Cordless

Preview
Cordless Vacuum, Stick Vacuum Cleaner 4 in 1, 17000 Pa Powerful Suction, Lightweight & Ultra-Quiet Handheld Vacuum for Car Pet Hair Carpet Hard Floor
Product (Link)
Bagless
Cordless
2-in-1
Dust Bin Capacity
No info
Power Cord Length
N/A
Size
22.8 x 10.2 x 5.7 in
Weight
3.3 lbs
Preview
Tineco A10 Hero Cordless Stick/Handheld Vacuum Cleaner with Wall Mount, Super Lightweight with Powerful Suction for Carpet, Hard Floor & Pet - Space Blue
Product (Link)
Bagless
Cordless
2-in-1
Dust Bin Capacity
0.4 L
Power Cord Length
N/A
Size
11.4 x 8.3 x 43.3 in
Weight
5 lbs

Best Corded

Preview
Shark UpLight Upright Vacuum, Terracotta
Bagless
Cordless
2-in-1
Dust Bin Capacity
0.64 L
Power Cord Length
30 ft
Size
10.4 x 11.2 x 43.7 in
Weight
5.5 lbs

Best Cordless

Preview
Dyson V11 Torque Drive Cordless Vacuum Cleaner, Blue
Product (Link)
Bagless
Cordless
2-in-1
Dust Bin Capacity
0.75 L
Power Cord Length
N/A
Size
10.2 x 49.6 x 9.8 in
Weight
6.7 lbs

Note: Scroll left/right on tablets and phones

Each Product Reviewed


1. Dirt Devil 3-in-1 Mini Stick

Dirt Devil 3-in-1 Mini Stick Bagless Vacuum Cleaner with Removable Hand Held Vac, Lightweight, SD22015PC, Red

Check Price at Amazon

The Dirt Devil 3-in-1 mini stick is one of the most portable and simple vacuums you can get, but it’s still a good choice that can be used in several ways.

It’s not a cordless option, but it is bagless so you don’t need to buy bags and replace them. All you do is take off the dirt cup and empty it into a garbage can.

Between the suction motor and the dust bin, there is a rinsable F113 filter. Since it’s rinsable, you can take this off and rinse it under cold water. Dirt Devil also sells a replacement filter.

The dust bin can also be rinsed and cleaned with cold water. Just make sure the filter and bin are dry before putting it back on.

You can use the Dirt Devil 3-in-1 as a regular vacuum, or you can take off the handle and wand to use it as a handheld. Last but not least you can remove the floor nozzle and use it to clean windows or corners.

With such a versatile vacuum, you can use it not only in RVs but also in cars and trucks. If you have a small apartment with limited storage space, an affordable and lightweight option like this might be your best bet.

It doesn’t have as much suction power as the more advanced products on the list, but it will take care of the big pieces of dirt and debris.

The Dirt Devil is a simple, yet effective option that will do the job for most RVers as long as you don’t have a lot of carpet in your camper, or pets. It’s best on hard floors and light carpets.

If you have pets, I recommend getting something with a little more suction power.

Dirt Devil includes a crevice tool to use when cleaning in tight spaces like vehicles.

PROS

  • 3-in-1
  • Lightweight, easy to store
  • 18 ft power cord
  • Bagless, easy to empty
  • Easy to clean (rinse bin and filter in cold water)
  • Includes a crevice tool

CONS

  • Doesn’t do a great job with pet hair and carpet

2. Bissell PowerEdge

Bissell PowerEdge Pet Hardwood Floor Bagless Cleaner, 81L2A Stick Vacuum, Gray

Check Price at Amazon

Next up, the Bissell PowerEdge. You can identify this small corded vacuum by its somewhat unique V-shaped foot. It reminds me of an open crab claw.

So what’s the thinking behind this? Well, the shape of it makes dirt and debris get directed to the middle part of the foot, which is where the suction happens.

Small debris can be sucked up along the edges of the foot, but bigger dirt like cat litter and cereal will be brought to the middle and then taken care of.

Another benefit of having a V-shaped foot is that it’s very easy to clean edges. There are tons of edges and corners in an RV, so with this, you’ll clean each edge and corner with ease.

The rubber squeegees on the bottom of the foot also make it great at picking up pet hair.

The Bissell PowerEdge is a bagless vacuum, meaning that you don’t have to purchase bags that you fill and throw away every other month.

With a bagless vacuum, all you have to do is take the dust bin off and empty the debris into a trash can. Since it has a built-in HEPA filter, dust particles are caught so the vacuum expels fresher, cleaner air.

It’s becoming a more and more popular way of dealing with debris in stick vacuums and I can only say good things about it. Less trash means better sustainability.

The Bissell PowerEdge might not be as versatile as the other stick vacuums we’re looking at today, but it’s still a good choice for somebody that wants a corded vacuum cleaner for the RV.

The V-shaped foot is genius for RVers since there are so many corners and edges in RVs.

If you have pets and want a quick way to clean up the carpet and floors and don’t need to have a handheld section that you can take off, this might be the best choice for you.

Bissell sells replacement filters for this model.

PROS

  • Unique V-Shaped Foot
  • Bagless, easy to empty
  • Rubber squeegees, great on pet hair
  • 20 ft power cord
  • Easy to clean (rinse bin in cold water)
  • HEPA filtration

CONS

  • Heavy
  • Struggles with straight edges

3. Orfeld Cordless Vacuum

Cordless Vacuum, Stick Vacuum Cleaner 4 in 1, 17000 Pa Powerful Suction, Lightweight & Ultra-Quiet Handheld Vacuum for Car Pet Hair Carpet Hard Floor

Check Price at Amazon

Orfeld is not as known as the other brands on the list, but I still recommend considering this model.

It’s a cordless stick vacuum cleaner, so you don’t have to worry about tripping over a power cord.

Its battery can last up to 30 minutes of fade-free vacuuming in standard mode, which should be enough time to get the job done in most RVs and trailers. The batteries are user-replaceable.

The standard mode provides up to 8,000 kPa and lasts up to 30 minutes. When in turbo mode, it provides up to 17,000 kPa, but the battery only lasts 15 minutes.

That might not sound like very long, but I usually get done vacuuming my 30 ft travel trailer in about 15 minutes.

The standard mode is obviously the more quiet mode, while the turbo is louder.

What’s special about this specific model by Orfeld is how lightweight it is. It weighs in at only 3.3 pounds! That makes it the lightest vacuum on the list.

It’s a very versatile option since it’s a 4-in-1 that can be used as a stick or a handheld with different attachments.

Orfeld includes a LED motorized brush, a soft roller brush, a hard roller brush, a crevice nozzle, and a combination nozzle.

In addition, a storage charging station, a washable HEPA filter, and a spare washable screen filter is included with the purchase.

The HEPA filter captures 99.7% of dust particles so you’ll be cleaning not only the floor but also the air.

I call the Orfeld the best cordless vacuum if you’re on a budget, since it’s a great option to the more advanced ones if you only need to clean a small camper or apartment.

PROS

  • Cordless, battery-powered
  • Bagless, no need to replace bags
  • Easy to empty the dustbin
  • 30 minutes runtime
  • Replaceable batteries
  • 2-in-1
  • Wall-mounted charging station
  • Several attachments/brushes included
  • HEPA filtration

CONS

  • Not as powerful as more advanced models

4. Tineco A10 Hero+

Tineco A10 Hero Cordless Stick/Handheld Vacuum Cleaner with Wall Mount, Super Lightweight with Powerful Suction for Carpet, Hard Floor & Pet - Space Blue

Check Price at Amazon

A brand that has gotten more and more popular in the past couple of years is Tineco.

Just like Dyson, they sell a lot of different bagless and cordless vacuums. Being both cordless and bagless means that you don’t have to worry about a cord while cleaning, or about having to empty a bag.

The Tineco A10 Hero+ model is one of the most popular models, and it’s easy to understand why when you take a look at what’s it capable of.

Its high-performance motor creates enough suction to work on multiple surfaces like linoleum, wood floors, stairs, tile, furniture, mattresses, and carpet. With the right attachment, it does a great job on pet hair.

The A10 Hero+ model includes three specialized brushes, and the 2-in-1 design makes it easy to use in different scenarios and places.

All accessories can be stored together with the stick vacuum on the wall-mounted charger, which makes it very convenient to store in an RV or camper if you have a wall to hang it in or a closet to hang it in.

The 0.4-liter dust bin empties into a garbage can with the push of a button, so it’s a quick and effortless process

Just like with the Bissell and Orfeld products above, the built-in HEPA filter takes care of dust particles and expels clean air.

Where it doesn’t do quite as good of a job as the Dyson, is in the battery life department. It can only last up to 25 minutes at most, which means that it can only clean for half the time of the Dyson down below. One good thing about the batteries is that they are replaceable.

All in all, the Tineco A10 Hero+ is a great entry cordless stick vacuum with enough suction and battery life to do a thorough job in most RVs and trailers.

With several attachments, a wall-mounted charging station, and an easy-to-empty dustbin, it has what most buyers are looking for.

PROS

  • Cordless, battery-powered
  • Bagless, no need to replace bags
  • Easy to empty the dustbin
  • 25 minutes runtime
  • Replaceable batteries
  • 2-in-1
  • Wall-mounted charging station
  • Several attachments/brushes included
  • HEPA filtration

CONS

  • Not even close to beating the battery life of the Dyson V11

5. Shark Apex UpLight Upright Vacuum

Shark UpLight Upright Vacuum, Terracotta

Check Price at Amazon

If you’re not sold on the cordless models and see corded vacuums as the more powerful and reliable options (I don’t blame you), the Shark UpLight is the best option on the market right now.

We know that Shark can make excellent vacuum cleaners, since they’ve been doing it for so long, and the Shark Apex UpLight is a collection of great features and ideas that have made Shark so successful throughout the years.

Even though it’s a full-size model, it’s a lightweight product that was made with portability in mind. The retractable wheels make it possible to store it standing upright, in a closet for example.

One neat thing with the UpLight is the brush roll that cleans itself, which makes it the best option for pet owners that have dogs or cats with long hair. It’s a simple yet ingenious design that works.

For regular floors and carpets, the DuoClean attachment is the way to go. It combines a soft and a bristle brush to handle different types of materials and surfaces.

When cleaning tight spaces, stairs, mattresses, or vehicles, you can use the lift-away pod with the built-in hose for a more handheld setup. It can also be useful in closets with lots of shelves.

The Apex UpLight weighs 5.5 pounds and has a 30 ft power cord which is much longer than the alternatives. A long power cord can be necessary for large RVs unless you want to use extension cables or move the plug around.

A HEPA filtration system traps dust particles and allergens which results in cleaner air through the exhaust. It’s not a quiet vacuum, but it’s quieter than the other corded products on the list.

Overall, the Shark Apex UpLight is the best corded option on the list. With its included attachments and brushes, and 2-in-1 design, you’re going to be able to do a very thorough cleaning of your RV very efficiently.

PROS

  • Long 30 ft power cord
  • Bagless, easy to empty
  • 2-in-1 (lift-away pod with a built-in hose)
  • Pet power brush, excellent on pet hair
  • Several attachments/brushes included
  • HEPA filtration
  • Retractable wheels for easy upright storage

CONS

  • Not cordless (both a pro and a con depending on preference)

6. Dyson V11 Animal

Dyson V11 Torque Drive Cordless Vacuum Cleaner, Blue

Check Price at Amazon

I have written about Dyson products before, and they keep improving, which is why they’re up to version 11 now. This is the most advanced cordless vacuum cleaner on the market in 2021.

The Dyson V11 Animal is a portable cordless and bagless vacuum with a battery life of up to 60 minutes on ECO mode, which puts it at the top when it comes to battery power.

For extra dirty floors and surfaces, the boost mode provides more intense suction. The third mode out of the three is the auto mode.

But what’s a good battery life in a vacuum without great suction power? Well, Dyson is known for its excellent suction power, and the V11 delivers 20% more suction power than the older V10.

Like the rest of the products on the list, the V11 is a 2-in-1 that can be used as a handheld vacuum when needed.

This makes it easy to clean vehicles, tight spaces, stairs, and furniture where you need to carry more of the weight than when the brush is on the floor.

A wall-mounted charging dock is included, so storing and charging it is easy to do. Being able to hang it on the wall is useful, especially in an RV or a small apartment where space is already limited as it is.

One unique thing with the newer Dyson products is the Dynamic Load Sensor (DLS) which senses the surface and adjusts the motor speed to provide more powerful and efficient cleaning.

Overall, the Dyson V11 Animal is one of the quietest options, so if noise matters a lot to you, it might be worth it on its own.

PROS

  • Cordless, battery-powered
  • Bagless, no need to replace bags
  • Easy to empty the dustbin
  • 60 minutes runtime (quiet ECO mode)
  • Relatively quiet
  • 2-in-1
  • Wall-mounted charging station
  • Intelligent cleaning modes (dynamic sensors)
  • Several attachments/brushes included
  • HEPA filtration

CONS

  • Hard to replace batteries

What To Consider When Buying A Vacuum For Your RV Or Camper

Corded Vs. Cordless – First thing to consider is whether you need a corded or cordless stick vacuum.

I know that a cordless vacuum sounds awesome and more convenient to use, but it has its limitations with battery life being the biggest one.

A vacuum that you’ll have to place near an outlet and charge up suddenly doesn’t sound as convenient.

But then there are the limitations a corded one has, you’re going to need an outlet.

If you’re the kind of camper that likes to boondock, you’ll need an inverter or a generator to be able to use a corded vacuum cleaner.

You can also use a solar-powered generator, and I recommend reading our post about the best ones if that’s something you’re interested in.

If you’re in a small apartment or cabin with access to a lot of AC outlets, either kind is going to be fine.

2-in-1 – Are you going to clean more than your RV floors? Like your truck, mattress, ceiling, or closets?

A 2-in-1 is extremely versatile due to the fact that you decide what and how you want to use it. Note that there are also 3-in-1, and 4-in-1 products. That usually just means that there are attachments included meant for specific purposes.

Since most include several accessories, you’ll have a lot of choices where one tool might work better on a hairy couch than a different tool.

A portable 2-in-1 vacuum cleaner with the right tools can be a godsend when it comes to cleaning the inside of an RV. But if all you’re going to clean is your floors, there’s no need to splurge more for a 2-in-1.

Battery Life – If you do decide to go for a lightweight cordless vacuum, battery life is the biggest factor.

You probably won’t need than 15 minutes to clean a small RV, but if you have a big RV and a big truck that needs to get clean, you might need at least 30 minutes.

Grab a broom and a dustpan and see how long it takes to go through your whole RV, to get an idea of how long it takes to clean your specific RV.

Suction Power – If you have pets, kids, or a dirty husband/wife, suction power is going to be more important.

Without a lot of suction power, you’re probably going to have to use a broom and a dustpan before you vacuum to get rid of most dirt and debris.

Storage – Where are you going to store it, and would you prefer it if you could take it apart and put it in a box?

Some products let you do this, while some don’t. Some stick vacuums come with wall mounts so you can hang them in a closet while not in use.

The corded options have a way to coil up the cord for easy storage.

Noise – More suction power or output power usually means more noise, although it’s not guaranteed.

If you live in an RV park or an apartment complex and want to keep it as quiet as possible, this might matter to you.

Weight – Another reason why 2-in-1 vacuums are great is due to how lightweight they often become when you take off the handheld section.

A lightweight stick vacuum can be held over your head to clean ceilings and shelves. If the vacuum is just one big piece it won’t be as easy to lift it off the floor.

Weight also matters if you’re traveling since every pound adds to the total weight of your RV with all of your stuff in it. Not only does this decrease your gas mileage, but also brings you closer to the total weight limit of your setup.

I recommend reading our post on towing capacity to understand how the total weight of your RV, or truck and trailer, is very important.

What We Use

When we started our full-time RV living journey, we thought a broom and a dustpan would be enough since the space inside our 30 ft travel trailer is so small compared to an apartment or a larger RV.

Some RVs come with built-in vacuum systems, but our travel trailer didn’t.

Boy, were we wrong! With nature right outside our home on wheels, it’s impossible to stop dust, dirt, and debris from entering our camper as soon as we open the door or even just a window.

Also, since we boondock (dry camp) a lot, the dust from the gravel roads always finds a way in.

dog on mat
Somebody that is not excited about the vacuum.

We ended up buying a small and relatively cheap stick vacuum cleaner (similar to the Dirt Devil 3-in-1) that doesn’t take up a lot of space when not in use.

It’s not cordless, but it’s bagless which means that the dirt collects in a dust bin that we empty into the garbage.

Even though it’s one of the cheapest models, it does an OK job with cat and dog hair on the linoleum. It can be frustrating to use since we have to go over it more than once, but it’s acceptable.

It does struggle with carpet, and we’re going to upgrade to one with more suction soon. It does clean the carpet, but we have to go over it more than once.

Still, my point is that you don’t necessarily need to spend hundreds of dollars to keep your RV clean.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does kPa mean?

If you’ve looked at some of the more advanced vacuum cleaners, you’ve probably come across a number that tells the kPa rating.

What this is talking about is the kilopascal measurement, which is the difference between the normal atmospheric pressure and the pressure inside the vacuum cleaner hose.

A higher kPA difference means more suction pressure.

What’s a good kPa rating?

The typical vacuum creates a suction of around 17-20 kPa.

How long does it take to vacuum an RV or camper?

It depends not only on how big your RV is but also on how dirty it is.

If you have limited power or battery power, I suggest getting a broom and a dustpan to get the bulk of the cleaning done. Then you can use a vacuum to finish it up.

To know how long it takes to clean your specific RV, you can grab a broom, start a stopwatch, and sweep until you’ve covered every part of your camper.

Then you will have a rough estimate, even though you’re going to be faster with a vacuum.

How does a bagless vacuum work?

A bagless vacuum still takes care of your dirt, but instead of going into a bag, it goes into a bin.

The bin is easy to remove so you can empty it into a garbage can. Most of them are also easy to clean and safe to rinse under cold water. Just make sure it’s dry before putting it back together.

Can you use a robot vacuum in an RV?

Sure, most robot vacuums can be used in RVs and do not require Wi-Fi to run.

Wi-Fi is used mostly to connect to apps on phones and computers, but it’s not required with most models.

I recommend the iRobot Roomba 675. It’s a good entry-model that works well for pet hair, carpet, rugs, and hard floors. It’s self-charging and has Wi-Fi connectivity for smartphone monitoring and control.

robot vacuum cleaner on the floor
You can use a robot vacuum cleaner inside an RV or small cabin.

What is a 2-in-1 stick vacuum cleaner?

A 2-in-1 stick vacuum cleaner means that it’s a stick vacuum with a handheld section that comes off. This is great if you’re not only cleaning floors but want to be able to stick the vacuum in your closets, under counters, your truck, or in furniture.

A 2-in-1 vacuum often has parts that are easy to pick apart so you can within seconds change out a tool for another etc.

It also makes it easier to store since you can take parts off and store on top of each other, compared to a stick vacuum that is a fixed length and is bulkier to store.

What’s the best 12V powered vacuum?

12V vacuums are mostly for cars and trucks, since they’re powered off of the 12V cigarette plug.

If your RV or van has a 12V cigarette port in the living area of your camper, you could use one to clean floors and carpets as well. Since they’re mostly handheld, it’s not as convenient but it’s doable.

I recommend the Black+Decker Flex 12V which is bagless, has a flexible hose, and is relatively powerful.

Why does it matter if a battery is removable?

If you can’t remove the battery, what happens when the battery capacity has dropped to half after a year or two? It probably goes in the trash.

Do you want to buy a new vacuum every two years, or just buy a new battery for it and have it perform as new? Being able to buy a new battery and recycle the old one will not only be better for your wallet but also the environment.

The more parts that the user can replace on their own when they underperform, the better.

Can Dyson batteries be replaced?

A lot of the Dyson models have replaceable batteries. I recommend buying from their website directly since you want to get a genuine Dyson battery. This is where you can also see whether your specific model has replaceable batteries or not.

There is also a detailed instructional video made by Dyson that shows how to replace the battery.

Can you use a stick vacuum on the carpet?

There is a lot of different types of stick vacuums out there. A lot of them come with different attachments and most of the time a carpet attachment is included.

How do you clean a Dyson filter?

Dyson filters are pretty easy to clean. You simply remove the filter, clean it in cold water, let it dry, and you are good to go. For more detailed instructions check out Dyson’s website.

How do you clean RV floor vents and ducts?

You can remove the vents and stick a long vacuum hose down there, but you need to be careful since the duct material might not be very durable. You don’t want to stick a hole or tear the ducts.

Are stick vacuum cleaners any good?

Yes, they are. Stick vacuum cleaners are very versatile and often come with a lot of attachments making them great for cleaning all kinds of surfaces.

There are two main kinds, corded and cordless. The right one for you is a personal choice but corded ones usually last longer and have better suction power.

Have any questions? Leave a comment below.

by Jenni
Jenni grew up in a small town in Idaho. With a family that loves camping, she has been towing trailers since a very young age.

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