We Tried It: Shark Detect Pro Vacuum Review
No mess high or low can escape this smart and powerful mobile Shark vacuum.
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Cleaning is certainly an activity that I enjoy despite not making it a priority in my life. Manual and traditional cleaning methods such as mops, dusters, scrapers, microfiber cloths, brooms and dustpans are my bread and butter. However, over the years my allergies to dust and dander have seemingly intensified so deep cleaning with brooms often put me out of commission. Curiosity struck when I learned that the Shark Detect Pro Vacuum contained an ingenious feature: a HEPA filter.
I was further intrigued by the discovery that the Shark detect vacuum has an auto/self-empty feature. This combination of features plus the fact that it’s a stick vacuum means I will virtually never come in contact with dirt and dust, which is ideal for a cleaning product for people with allergies.
I’m a big fan of the more traditional methods of cleaning. However, I don’t mind expanding into automatic and smart devices especially if efficiency increases. The Shark Detect Pro boasts many features, and I had to see if they were up-to-snuff and if the vacuum was worth it.
What is the Shark Detect Pro Vacuum?
The Shark Detect Pro Vacuum is a cordless stick vacuum that utilizes various built-in “detect” technologies for unparalleled floor cleaning, upholstery cleaning and small-area cleaning. The vacuum comes in two varieties and one color. The cheaper option is the solo vacuum with crevice tool attachment.
The more expensive option includes the charging base, crevice tool and pet multi-tool. The colors of the vacuums are “rotator white” and “beats brass,” a lighter and shiny brass color. The color of the brushroll is purple. The version of the Shark Detect Pro Vacuum I tested has the auto-empty base and two head/tool attachments.
The buzz around this vacuum stems from its handy and plentiful cleaning features and its Auto-Empty System. It is so fun to see a secondary vacuum effortlessly suck out and clean your vacuum. While the Shark Detect vacuum isn’t a smart device, it’s the closest vacuum apart from a robotic vacuum that’ll make any home feel like a smart home. It’s that factor and many more that add the luxury feel of this special Shark vacuum.
WE TRIED IT
Shark Detect Pro
This cordless stick vacuum utilizes various built-in “detect” technologies for unparalleled floor cleaning.
Shark Detect Pro Vacuum features
There are a plethora of features for this version of the Shark Detect Pro. Four features act as the main selling point for the vacuum and are also the vacuum’s namesake.
- Dirt Detect: uses sensors to detect hidden dust and dirt and boosts suction power to remove them.
- Edge Detect: uses sensors to detect perpendicular vertical surfaces and doubles suction power to clean towards that surface.
- Floor Detect: uses sensors to recognize floor types and optimizes performance through customization.
- Light Detect: uses sensors to automatically adjust LED brightness to illuminate the floor and show hidden messes.
This Shark Detect Pro Vacuum has a pistol grip handle similar to a power tool. The handle contains an LED HUD display that shows battery power, the current vacuum mode and the Dirt Detect indicators but only while in Detect mode. The handle section also holds the clear plastic transparent canister for the vacuumed materials and a HEPA filter. The same clear canister lets users see how full it is and what’s inside. On the back of the handle is where the battery is located.
The detachable stick adds just over 23 inches of length and removing it turns the Shark Detect Pro into a powerful hand vacuum. Equip both the end of the stick and the end of the handle with any of the attachable heads.
The attachable heads include the main QuadClean brushroll, the 8-inch crevice tool and the pet multi-tool. The 10-inch width QuadClean brushroll is designed never to get tangled up with string and long hair strands. This head also contains white LED lights and circular lights that are indicators for Detect Mode. It works on carpets and hard floors and rotates 80 degrees to each side. The crevice tool is a precision tool that allows users to reach all the nooks and crannies of their homes. The pet multi-tool removes pet hair and dust that’s stuck to upholstery and even carpets.
Lastly, the charging base contains an Auto-Empty System that cleans the continents of the vacuum every time it’s placed on the base to charge. Place the Auto-Empty System on hold with a “snooze-like” button built into the base. This is perfect for not making too much noise at unwanted times. The base is bagless and has a bin that can hold up to 30 days of dust and debris. There is a section that holds the main filter as well as a small compartment to fit the optional odor-neutralizer. The Odor Neutralizer has a built-in adjustable filter that removes smells at the user’s discretion.
How we tested it
The amount of vacuum force differs between the modes, yet each mode has strong suction. Eco Mode is energy-saving so it has the lowest cyclonic force. Meanwhile, Detect Mode doesn’t reach the low level of Eco Mode but gets as strong as Boost Mode. Boost is extremely powerful and will quickly suck in items like clothing, papers and other things that shouldn’t be vacuumed.
The vacuum is sometimes picky about what it sucks up as it appears not to like “wide” objects. It will pick up long strap-like pieces of paper, but it seldom completely sucks up snack wrappers. However, this vacuum will pick up any debris and dirt from other types of vacuums in all of its modes. The number of passes may shift from one to four, depending on the mode used.
The power-tool-like pistol grip handle is surprisingly comfortable and feels natural in my hand. The pistol grip is ergonomic, and I was able to test and use the Shark Detect Pro with no pain or discomfort at all. It’s a lightweight stick vacuum so there’s no real pressure against your hand. Furthermore, there is no trigger to start or stop the vacuum on the handle. Hands and fingers won’t be stressed by prolonged use of this machine.
Ease of use
It is without question that the Shark Detect Pro is easy to use. All pieces click in and lock in place in mere seconds. Each piece is swiftly removed with a simple button press and a small pulling motion. The vacuum works out of the box in less than two minutes because the battery has a partial charge. The stick and handheld vacuum modes allow for quick cleaning job adjustments.
Mobility is never a problem for a couple of reasons. One reason is that the vacuum is lightweight, easy to carry and move around with one hand. The other reason is that the stick vacuum and QuadClean head combo has slick lateral movements and the head rotates 80 degrees to the left or right. Both of these movements can be performed with one hand.
Users will rarely have to touch the dust, dirt and debris because whatever is vacuumed is sucked into the canister and deposited into the Auto-Empy System bin. This bin is a fully enclosed container with a nifty handle to take and deposit the continents with the press of a button into the trash.
Again, this Shark vacuum has no trigger to turn on or off or change modes. Turning the vacuum on and off requires two hands and pressing the associated buttons, but this wasn’t an issue. The only issue is perhaps the battery charging as it takes three hours to charge a dead battery fully. This can put a damper on cleaning activities especially when time is of the essence. However, this shouldn’t be an issue as most jobs can be performed in Detect and Eco Modes without dying and the battery always charges when docked.
Vacuums are nosey. Even the best vacuums aren’t silent like their air-purifier cousins. Eco Mode offers the greatest opportunity to hear surroundings such as TVs in the same room. Conversations are also easily held in Eco Mode. Detect Mode doesn’t impede hearing too much. Sounds are audible, but there may be issues with comprehending radio and TV sources. Boost Mode doesn’t make holding conversations difficult, but people will feel the need to raise their voices. Hearing surroundings, bangs and bumps is possible in Boost Mode but understanding the TV or radio will be difficult. None of these modes emits sounds that hurt the ears.
The vacuum for the Auto-Empty System is about as powerful and loud as Boost Mode. However, this feature is only active for 15 seconds.
Power stress test
The purpose of my battery power test was to see how long the vacuum could run on Boost Mode which is the Shark Detect Vacuum’s max power. The vacuum could only work for 10 minutes, running completely on Boost Mode.
I first vacuumed my living room with wood flooring and a small brick segment for the fireplace. The vacuum effectively picked up dust, dirt and even some small leaves that found their way inside the house. Detect Mode worked; however, I wasn’t completely satisfied with the cleaning of some of the room’s edges. This was quickly remedied after remembering that it’s better to vacuum parallel to a wall and not perpendicular to it. The Shark Detect Pro made it easy to vacuum under chairs without excessively bending over or getting on the floor.
I did find myself switching from Detect Mode to Boost Mode because I enjoyed the power of its vacuum force. This test day was partially cloudy, so I was thankful to see better what and where I was vacuuming with the LED indicator lights. All in all, I effectively cleaned and spruced up the living room with ease.
Den & bedroom
I stepped into the den/bedroom while vacuuming the living room. I began to vacuum under the bed after I flipped up the overhanging comforter. Almost everything was picked up by the vacuum except for abnormally large dust bunnies. I moved on from the dust bunnies and continued to vacuum under the desk and alongside a dresser. I was pleased with how well the Shark Detect Vacuum cleaned in stick form. When switching to its hand vacuum mode, I used the crevice tool to pick up the large dust bunnies. Lastly, I finished up by cleaning in-between wires and power extenders. The vacuum died shortly after I touched up the living room and vacuumed a small portion of the dining room.
Courtesy Spencer Kildare
If there was one area of the home that would test the limits of Shark Detect Pro, it’s the linoleum tile basement stairs. The basement stairs have been the throughway between the garage, backyard and home. Soil, mud, dust, small pebbles, hair, dander and snow salt have found their way on these stairs. However, these stairs are not frequently cleaned as guests don’t often use them.
Tools on stairs
I started off the job on the bottom step which, pro-cleaning tip, isn’t exactly the correct way to clean stairs. The vacuum is lightweight so it was easy to treat the back of the stairs like a wall and clean parallel to it. I moved the vacuum back and forth (my right-to-left) on the stairs while switching from its locked upright position to its mobility mode to get better leverage for cleaning. There were a few larger objects that looked like dry-wall pieces left on the stairs but I was able to clean these and dirt in the corners of the staircase with the crevice tool and Shark Detect Pro Vacuum’s handheld mode.
Finally, I used the animal hair tool as a tiny abrasive to clean up any caked dirt and extra cobwebs. I’m honestly impressed with how clean the stairs are. I haven’t seen the stairs so clean in at least 20 years so the Shark Detect Pro is definitely one of the best vacuums for stairs.
I had an opportunity to use more emptying features from vacuuming the basement stairs. The Auto-Empty feature didn’t work because of the amount and kind of materials that were picked up. I went to my garbage and used the convenient open/empty button located on the left-hand side of the vacuum. The back of the canister opens in half via a latch and the materials deposit into the trash. I used my fingers to clean a small portion of the canister and then closed the canister and returned the vacuum to its base. The Auto-Empty System kicked into action and any remaining dirt and dust sucked into the base. I then took the lightweight base canister and easily emptied it into the garbage with a touch of a button.
Courtesy Spencer Kildare
On my final day of testing, I wanted to focus on Detect Mode in the foyer. The foyer short pile carpet, a standard mat and two rough mats for dirt and mud. Detect Mode did successfully clean the majority of the area. I enjoyed how the more powerful suction kicked in on the surfaces that needed that extra cleaning boost. Moreover, the LED display on the handle indicated what was clean with the blue line and what needed to be cleaned with the red line. Admittedly, the Dirt Detect feature isn’t perfect as there are delays and some inaccuracies, but the feature does work overall.
I finished by touching up the corners and sills with crevice attachment in handheld mode. I was very satisfied with the Shark Detect Pro’s performance in the foyer. The seven to 10 minute job left the battery at around 50%.
- Easy to use and has fantastic mobility
- Light enough to carry and move around
- Use as a stick vacuum or a handheld
- Eco, Detect and Boost Modes have strong suction and clean in 1-4 passes
- Auto-empties and charges when docked
- Light indicator on the Quadclean Brushroll head is bright and also shows where it’s focusing power
- Cleaning and emptying the vacuum is virtually hands-free
- Slim profile
- Appliance-like design that fits and blends well in any home environment
- Potentially low battery life—up to 15 minutes on Boost Mode and up to 60 minutes on Eco Mode
- Slow to charge
Courtesy Spencer Kildare
How many years does a Shark vacuum last?
The lifespan of a Shark vacuum is dependent on a variety of factors. Usage is a major component as the frequency of use and the type of debris vacuumed affects the vacuum’s life. Proper cleaning and maintenance also play a role. Shark sells parts like batteries and filters on their website to help maintain a vacuum. Carolina from SharkNinja support informed me that customers have had their vacuums for at least 10 years.
Do Shark vacuums have a lifetime warranty?
No, Shark vacuums do not have a lifetime warranty. The Shark Detect Pro specifically has a two-year battery warranty and a five-year limited warranty.
Can you return a Shark vacuum after using it?
Returns are always based on where it was purchased. Retailers have their own individual return policies. Retail return policies are often extended in December for the holiday season. Purchasing a Shark vacuum directly from the Shark website has an incredible 60-day money-back guarantee that allows customers to return the unit at no charge.
What other reviewers have to say
The Shark Detect Pro Vacuum is the best vacuum cleaner that five-star reviewer Amanda ever had. She noted it’s perfect for hairy situations when she wrote: “This is hands down the best vacuum I have ever owned. The fact that it is self-emptying, and charges on the base takes care of half the mental blocks I have surrounding vacuuming. It is seriously the best product I have ever owned. I have one cat, and it does well with cat hair.”
Dee declares this vacuum as a “must-have” and starts off her five-star review with high praise, stating, “Amazing value for the money. It picks up hair with no issues. The power on this machine is amazing. It can even get things off our fluffy rug that no other vacuum seems to be able to get.”
“Very pleased with this vac” is how Carrie titled her insightful five-star review. She wrote, “The Shark Detect Pro is easy to use and does an amazing job. I have used it on carpet and hard surfaces, and it picks up the dirt with no problems. I used it on the carpet for over 20 minutes, and the battery still had two bars. It is equipped with edge detectors. The sweeper turns up the suction when it senses a wall on the side and picks up any dirt with ease. At first, we were not sure about having a dock with an Auto-Emptying System, but it turns out we love not having to empty the canister after every use. Overall this is an amazing vacuum that I am very satisfied with.”
All in all, I adore and love this vacuum. As a former Home Consultant for Bed, Bath & Beyond, I’ve used some of the best Dyson vacuums at work, and this vacuum is more than comparable. The Auto-Empty System definitely puts Shark ahead of Dyson in the Shark vs. Dyson debate. This vacuum is easily my favorite among other notable vacuum brands. The three-hour charging time is a downer, but I did stress test the battery. The battery charge has the potential to be short, but I didn’t have an issue under general cleaning circumstances.
This vacuum has both a stick and hand-vac mode that provided me with easy and superb cleaning of staircases, ceilings, furniture, window sills, drawers, corners and more. For me, the Shark Detect Pro is a must-have for my particular living space. It truly is a powerful and dependable device that is a total blast to use. It’s pricey but all the features simplify cleaning while making it fun.
Where to buy the Shark Detect Pro Vacuum
WE TRIED IT
Shark Detect Pro
The vacuum features four deep-cleaning technologies that detect and react to dirt, combining for up to 50% better pickup.
Grab the Shark Detect Pro Vacuum from Amazon, at retailers such as Walmart, Target or directly by Shark on their website for around $450. I’ve seen sale prices as low as $370. It’s a little pricey, but this lightweight and smart powerhouse is well worth the investment.