A shag carpet is one of the best ways to instantly improve the aesthetics of any room. It does not only add a hint of elegance, it also makes it feel more comfortable.
However, while shag carpets look nice, they can be difficult to clean. Dirt and dust can easily cling to the fibers and may be difficult to remove. To make things easier, you have to invest in the best vacuums for shag carpet.
A vacuum cleaner made specifically for shag carpet should clean without damaging the delicate fibers. It should be gentle on the surface while being tough on the dirt. If you are clueless on which one will make the top pick, read on and we’ll help you to come up with the right decision.
- Our Top Picks for the Best Vacuum for Shag Carpet
- Soniclean Soft Carpet Upright Vacuum Cleaner
- Shark Rotator Powered Lift-Away TruePet Upright Vacuum (NV752)
- Miele Complete C3 Vacuum for Soft Carpet
- Shark NV803 DuoClean Powered Lift-Away
- Bissell Cleanview Upright Bagless Vacuum Cleaner 1831
- Oreck LW100 Magnesium SP Bagged Upright Vacuum
- Shark Navigator Deluxe Upright Corded Bagless Vacuum NV42
- Panasonic MC-UG471 Bag Upright Vacuum Cleaner
- Hoover T-Series Wind Tunnel Rewind Plus Bagless Corded Vacuum Cleaner
- Shark Rocket DuoClean Ultra-light Corded Vacuum
- Electrolux EL4335B Corded Ultra Flex Canister Vacuum
- How to Choose the Best Vacuums for Shag Carpet
- What is a Shag carpet?
- How to Remove Dog Odors from Shag Carpet?
- Care and Maintenance for Shag Carpets
- Wrap Up:
Our Top Picks for the Best Vacuum for Shag Carpet
Here are some of the best brands and models of vacuum cleaners that are made specifically for cleaning shag carpets and high pile carpet.
Soniclean Soft Carpet Upright Vacuum Cleaner
The Carpet and Rug Institute has recognized this as an exceptional product, which should already make you confident that it will be an exceptional choice for shag carpet. Among others, one of its best features is the patented Sonic Cleaning Technology makes the vacuum easy to push and pull on softer and thicker carpets.
At the bottom, there is a sonic bar that is capable of producing up to 200 vibrations per second to get rid of dirt deep on the high pile carpet. This is even made better by the ultra-soft bristles on the brush roll, which will be gentle on the carpet fibers. It also has an exclusive vent system that allows it to roll smoothly on shag carpets.
Shark Rotator Powered Lift-Away TruePet Upright Vacuum (NV752)
If you have a pet at home and if you are worried about how to clean your shag carpet, this is one product that should be on your list. More than for cleaning shag carpets, it will also be equally powerful when used on hard floors.
There is a True Pet Motorized Brush and Pet Multi-Tool. Even the tiniest strands of pet hair will not be able to escape this vacuum cleaner. It also has HEPA filter and anti-allergen complete seal technology. More so, there is an ergonomic control panel that is easy for your fingers to reach.
Miele Complete C3 Vacuum for Soft Carpet
With this high-end vacuum cleaner, you do not need to exert a lot of effort when cleaning your shag carpet. It is equipped with a 1,200-watt motor that delivers reliable suction. It comes with an electro-brush to clean your carpet. Even for hardwood floors, this will be an excellent choice for a vacuum cleaner.
For your comfort, there is a 5-height adjustable power brush. Meanwhile, with the HEPA filtration, it also effectively gets rid of allergens. The unit comes with three 360-degree swivel wheels for ease of maneuverability. There is also an onboard storage to easily access the cleaning tools that you will need.
Shark NV803 DuoClean Powered Lift-Away
The Shark Duoclean Powered Lift-Away NV803 like a lot of newer sharks have a different type of adjustable suction, instead of a dial you have three options hard floors, low pile carpets with full suction and brush roll, and high pile carpets for reduced suction with the brush roll spinning.
It works really well in lift away mode. The powered in the name refers to the fact that when in lift away mode the brush roll can still spin if you want it to so you can get a lot of power for those hard to reach places.
I personally don’t use lift away mode much unless I am vacuuming under beds, but I will say that I really liked the feel of lift away mode on hard floors, but I don’t really like it with the brush roll on with carpet. The brush roll is too strong without the weight of the vacuum on it and it pulls away too much and is akward. I would stick with the normal upright mode when vacuuming carpets.
It was quiet, easy to use, had so many attachments I didn’t even know what to do with them and it has a lift away feature, so you can take it up and down the stairs easily or use it to vacuum curtains or shelves. By far my favorite accessory though was the dusting brush.
I often clean frieze carpet on kitchen and bedroom with the vacuum. It is light-weight and easy to use on stairs. Power brush easily cleans pet hair off of chairs and sofas. I’m always amazed at how much dirt is in the canister at the end of cleaning. No regrets buying the Shark Duoclean Powered Lift-Away NV803.
If you have mostly hardwood and carpet and pets, I would give this Shark a try since it is powerful and gets deep into the carpet.
Bissell Cleanview Upright Bagless Vacuum Cleaner 1831
If you are looking for an affordable vacuum cleaner under $100 and that will work for a shag carpet, this is another option worth considering. It has One Pass technology, which does exactly what it implies – to clean in one pass. It also has a multi-cyclonic cleaning system to get rid of tough dirt even on high-pile carpets.
This is also made possible because of the 8-amp motor that comes with the unit. Meanwhile, the dirt cup has a capacity of two liters, which means that it will take quite a while before there is a need to have it emptied.
Oreck LW100 Magnesium SP Bagged Upright Vacuum
This vacuum cleaner has two-speed settings. The high speed is recommended if you are cleaning shag carpets. Meanwhile, the low speed is best when you are dealing with low-pile carpets or Persian rugs. It is also a good thing that it has brushes on the side, which will be effective when it comes to cleaning baseboards.
Meanwhile, with the SaniSeal System, it seals the dirt automatically, which will make cleaning the unit an effortless task. It also has large wheels that offer excellent maneuverability on different surfaces.
This is a powerful and lightweight vacuum cleaner that is designed specifically for soft carpets. Weighing only 15 pounds, there should be no problem with maneuverability as it is easy to move around. It has a powerful motor that does not lose suction, regardless of the dirt it is dealing with.
This is basically because of the 1,000-watt 10-amp motor of the unit. It also excels in terms of versatility as it comes with different attachments for a variety of cleaning applications. It comes with a crevice tool, dusting brush, and upholstery tool.
Panasonic MC-UG471 Bag Upright Vacuum Cleaner
With a plastic and metal construction, this is one vacuum that is also promising when it comes to cleaning shag carpets. The 12-amp motor allows it to clean in a manner that is almost effortless. There is a 15-inch cleaning path.
It also has an automatic adjustment depending on the height of the carpet that it is cleaning. There is also a Motor Protection System, keeping the dirt and dust away from the motor, effectively prolonging its lifespan. The headlight in front of the unit is also great as it provides illumination in dark areas.
Hoover T-Series Wind Tunnel Rewind Plus Bagless Corded Vacuum Cleaner
One of the reasons why this vacuum perfect for cleaning shag carpets is that it has 5-position carpet height adjustment. Regardless of how high or thick the carpet is, there is a setting that will be ideal for deep cleaning.
The vacuum has the revolutionary Wind Tunnel Technology, which provides it with exceptional power. For your convenience and comfort, it is also easy to maneuver, especially because it weighs less than 17 pounds. It also has an eight-foot hose for an extended reach. Plus, with the 25-foot cord, you do not need to be always near the source of power.
Shark Rocket DuoClean Ultra-light Corded Vacuum
While it will definitely be able to clean shag carpets, this is an impressive choice as it is equally powerful when it comes to cleaning hardwood floors. It has a bristle brush-roll that will provide a deep cleaning for carpets. Even large debris will be effortless for it to remove out of the surface.
It weighs only 4.6 pounds, which is excellent in terms of maneuverability. Even when cleaning a large room, you won’t easily feel tired. It is also a good thing that there are LED lights for cleaning dark corners. The kit is also inclusive of a pet multi-tool.
Electrolux EL4335B Corded Ultra Flex Canister Vacuum
If you have an ultra-plush carpet at home, this will be a great vacuum cleaner to have. There is a three-level height adjustment for customized cleaning depending on the shag carpet that you have. Powered by a 12-amp motor, you can be confident that its cleaning performance will be hard to match. It also has HEPA filtration, which allows it to get rid of up to 99.97% of allergens and dust. Lastly, for your peace of mind, the manufacturer offers a five-year limited warranty.
How to Choose the Best Vacuums for Shag Carpet
To easily narrow down the possibilities, here are some of the most important things you have to take into consideration:
- Suction Power: This will depend on the motor that powers the vacuum cleaner. The motor should be powerful enough since it has to penetrate deeply into the fibers of the long-pile carpet and not just on the surface
- Weight: As with other types of vacuum cleaner, you will benefit from choosing one that is lightweight. This will be easy for you to move around. You won’t easily feel tired if it is lightweight. It will also be good if it comes with wheels.
- Steering: Swivel steering is a good feature for your comfort. This is going to be a huge time-saver. You do not need to exert too much effort in moving it around, which will be especially useful if you have to clean a large area.
- Filtration: You will also benefit from choosing a vacuum cleaner with excellent HEPA filtration, which will allow it to get rid of irritants, dust, and allergens. Plus, a washable filter will also be great, especially for saving money.
- Light: This is an optional feature that you might find useful. A lot of higher-end models have light in front of the brush or the cleaning head, which will be useful when cleaning under the seats or in dark corners.
- Versatility: A versatile vacuum cleaner is one that comes with a wide array of accessories for different cleaning functions. For instance, you will benefit from one that comes with a crevice tool or a multi-pet brush.
- Canister: This refers to the container that holds the dust and dirt that will be extracted from the carpet. A large container is good since it means that there is no need to frequently have it emptied. It will also be good if it is transparent to easily let you know when there is a need to empty it.
Warranty: In case the vacuum cleaner becomes defective, if it is still within the warranty coverage, the manufacturer can have it repaired for free or provide replacement of the damaged parts, depending on their conditions.
What is a Shag carpet?
Before anything else, let us first have a quick look at what exactly a shag carpet is, which will also provide you with an understanding why it cannot be cleaned with just any vacuum.
The deep pile of a shag carpet is what makes it different from the other types of carpets. It has a shaggy appearance, which is exactly why it was named as such. It first became popular in the 1970s. While it became less popular in the past decades, it is getting back in the scene. The carpet is typically made of long yarn fibers of varying thickness.
Compared to regular carpets, it has longer piles. This is also the reason why you need a special type of vacuum. When you use a regular vacuum, it may clean only the top part and won’t be able to penetrate deeply on the fibers. There are also instances when the fibers can be damaged when you use the wrong type of a vacuum cleaner.
The following are some of the common materials that you can find in a shag carpet:
- Flokati: It is a handmade wool rug that is popular in Greece. The color is usually white or cream, which gives it an elegant appeal. It is 100% wool, including the backing. This is a soft and fluffy rug that will remind you of a sheep wool.
- Wool: The shag carpets that fall under this category can be generally classified into two. The first one is noodles, which are made of thick fibers. Shaggy wool, on the other hand, is a lot finer.
- Leather: It looks like crumpled paper that transformed into a carpet. Compared to other materials for a shag carpet, leather is a lot easier to clean. However, they are expensive and not pet-friendly.
- Acrylic: This is a budget-friendly option for a shag carpet. However, you might want to stay away from acrylic since it is a material that is highly flammable.
- Synthetic: They are also budget-friendly and easy to care, especially when compared to wool. However, they do not look beautiful and elegant. They are also inferior in terms of quality, and hence, they will not last long.
How to Remove Dog Odors from Shag Carpet?
How to Remove Dog Odors from Shag Carpet With Vinegar
White vinegar and apple cider vinegar have a strong smell on their own, but actually neutralize dog odors as well, and the vinegar smell fades as it dries. Fill a spray bottle with approximately 1 part vinegar to 5 parts water and liberally spray it onto the shag carpet.
Towel dry the carpet by pressing with a towel, then let the carpet air dry until it is completely dry. Open windows and turn on a fan if necessary, particularly in humid climates, as letting shag carpet sit wet for too long can cause mold and create new odors.
How to Remove Dog Odors from Shag Carpet With Baking Soda
Baking soda absorbs odors and is easy to use on large surfaces. Sprinkle baking soda liberally over the entire dry shag carpet surface, moving furniture out of the way as necessary. Leave the baking soda on the carpet for 24 hours or at least overnight so the baking soda can absorb the dog odors. Vacuum up the baking soda, remembering it might take several passes to get it all up.
How to Remove Dog Odors from Shag Carpet With Chemical Cleaners
When natural deodorizers such as vinegar and baking soda don’t remove your dog odors, try purchasing a chemical carpet cleaner targeted toward removing pet odors.
Most chemical carpet cleaners contain perchloroethylene and naphthalene, which the Environmental Protection Agency warns can cause dizziness, nausea, sleepiness and even cancer or liver damage when inhaled. Open the windows or wear a face mask to avoid inhaling dangerous fumes, and make sure your pets and/or children aren’t inhaling the fumes from chemical cleaners either.
Care and Maintenance for Shag Carpets
Carpet generally wants to be vacuumed frequently, ideally twice a week and more often in high traffic areas. Shag carpet is no different. However, one major difference does exist between shag and other carpets, and it has to do with beater bars…
Vacuuming Shag Carpet
The best way to care for your shag carpet is to vacuum it with a suction-only vacuum. If your vacuum has a beater bar, be sure to disengage it when vacuuming your shag carpet. When disengaged, the brushes on the beater bar should not come in contact with or abrade the fibers as you vacuum.
The reason? Using a beater bar or brush may cause the yarns to “feather out” or lose their twist, resulting in pilling or fuzzing. That means your shag carpet would no longer look they way it did when you fell in love with it;. It would lose its unique character.
If you have a particularly thick shag carpet, you might consider using a pilator or grooming rake to keep your carpet looking well-groomed and carefully coiffed.
Caring for your shag carpet with frequent and suction-only vacuuming will ensure that your shag carpet provides you with the Beauty, Comfort and Durability you expect from it.
Aside from regular vacuuming, here are other things that you can do to maintain the best appearance of your shag carpet:
- One of the most effective ways of cleaning a shag carpet would be through a process that is known as dry shampooing. Look for a carpet shampoo, usually in the form of granules. Sprinkle it on the top of the carpet. Brush the top or have it vacuumed.
- If there is a spill, make sure to clean it immediately. The longer you leave it, the harder the dirt can be and the more difficult it will be to remove. Spot cleaning is the best way to clean spills. A solution made of vinegar and water will be a great natural way to get rid of stains caused by spills.
- Sometimes, a simple shake will be more than enough to clean shag carpets, especially if they are made of delicate materials. It will also be good to air it out or dry it under the heat of the sun to get rid of germs.
- If you have a large and expensive carpet and if you are too afraid to clean it on your own, your best course of action is to call professional carpet cleaners and let them handle the job.
The best vacuums for shag carpet will be an essential cleaning tool to have at home. They make sure that your high-pile carpets are free from dirt, dust, and allergens. They make them look better and removes irritants. Nonetheless, not all options are created the same. So, to avoid having regrets, limit your choices to the products that have been mentioned above.