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5 Best Car Vacuums For Cleaning Inside Your Vehicle

Do you know what to look for in a car vacuum cleaner? Here's our shortlist of the best car vacuum cleaners — including what makes each a standout.

Every editorial product is independently selected, though we may be compensated or receive an affiliate commission if you buy something through our links.

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What to Know About Car Vacuum Cleaners

The two most important features to compare when shopping for the best car vacuum are suction power, measured in air watts (AW), and tools. Must-haves include a floor/upholstery tool, extension hose for hard-to-reach places and crevice tool for tight spaces and edges. Nice-to-have features include a washable filter and dust bin that empties from the bottom. The following five contain plenty of both.

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Best Handheld Car Vacuum Kit

Unlike many bulky alternatives, this vacuum is lightweight enough to be easily maneuvered around the nooks and crannies of your vehicle with just one hand, making it a great choice for a car vacuum. It might not be big enough to clean up heavier messes, but the handheld nature of this device and its kit of versatile attachments make it ideally suited for regular vacuuming and cleaning up small spills. The carrying case is a nice touch, giving you a simple way to discretely stow the whole kit in your trunk.

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Best Lightweight Handheld Car Vacuum

Weighing in at just 1-4/10 pounds with a run time of 9-1/2 minutes, the Shark WANDVAC Handheld Vacuum is ideal for quick and frequent cleaning of everyday messes. The lithium ion battery is fast charging and provides constant suction from start to finish. A two-year warranty and all the right tools are included. Bonus: The dust bin is washable.

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Best Corded Handheld Car Vacuum

A corded handheld car vacuum is the way to go if you prefer the portability of a handheld with unlimited run time. The Shark Rocket Corded Hand Vacuum features a 15-foot power cord and all the tools you need to clean the interior of your car. Perfect for pet owners, this corded vacuum can also be used indoors to remove pet hair from furniture and pick up cat litter like a boss.

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Best Wet/Dry Car Vacuum

Also known as shop vacuums, wet/dry vacuum cleaners offer the most powerful suction of any vacuum cleaner. That makes it the ideal choice for cleaning vehicles that tend to collect heavy, hard-to-remove debris such as sand, pebbles, pine needles and pet hair — and, of course, liquid messes. The Armor All 132500 Utility Vacuum is our top pick for power and versatility.

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Best Pro-Quality Car Vacuum

With the supreme cleaning power of a shop vacuum, the Metro Vac ‘N Blo Car Vac is a slimline canister vacuum that mounts to the wall. It doesn’t deal with wet messes, but does have the pro-level suction, perfect for deep-down cleaning and detailing of your vehicles. It comes with a 12-ft. power cord, 24 feet of extension hose and full range of automotive cleaning attachments.

Donna Smallin Kuper
Donna Smallin Kuper is an award-winning organizing expert, certified House Cleaning Technician and bestselling author. She's written more than a dozen books, including her latest, Clear the Clutter, Find Happiness. Her tips appear regularly in many popular print and online publications. She also shares her expertise as a blogger at Since 2013, she and her husband have been full-time RVers, living a simple life of abundance on the road.