Best window vac 2021: The best cordless window vacuums you can save on this Black Friday

Our Pick

Best window vac 2021: The best cordless window vacuums you can save on this Black Friday

Best Buys

Danielle Amato
@onehangrywoman

Jane Hoskyn

24 Nov 2021
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Banish condensation and streaks with the best window vacs for cleaning your mirrors, shower screens, worktops, tiles – and windows

Removing condensation or dirt from your windows is no easy job but the best window vac will make things a whole lot easier. Of course, you could spend a weekend struggling with buckets, squeegees and towels or you could invest a good window vacuum and do a better job in a fraction of the time.

Handheld window vacuum cleaners are designed to remove dust, dirt and water from your windows and other shiny surfaces, leaving them squeaky clean and streak-free.

Here, we’ve rounded up the best window vacs you can buy in 2021, taking into account factors such as battery runtime, portability and edge-to-edge cleaning efficiency. Before we reveal our top picks though, why not read our quick guide to choosing your ideal window vac below?

READ NEXT: Best cordless vacuum cleaner

Save over £10 on the Vileda WindoMatic Power Window Vacuum (was £45; now £34)

You can now save over £10 on the Vileda WindoMatic Power Window Vacuum thanks to Amazon’s Black Friday deals, which has reduced it down to £34. It was chosen as our best lightweight window vacuum thanks to its power-to-size ratio, but you can read more about it in our review below.

How to choose the best window vac for you

What specifications should I pay attention to?

You’ll notice a surprising range of features and extras when shopping around for a window vac, but there are only four factors that really matter:

1. Cleaning efficiency: It doesn’t matter how long a window vac’s battery can last if it’s not cleaning your windows. Suction should be strong enough to remove dust, dirt and water quickly and evenly, all the way along the suction nozzle, so it can clean right to the edge of your window. One model, the Vileda WindowMatic, has a turbo-power ‘Max’ setting for extra suction when needed. This runs down the battery faster, but it’s a clever option that we’d like to see on more models.

2. Leak-proof suction: Window vacs suck wastewater into their tanks, rather than dry dirt like a standard vacuum cleaner. That can get messy, especially if you’re working with odd-shaped windows in hard-to-reach places. You don’t want gunky water running down into your armpit. So, we looked for models with good leak-proofing, and tanks that were easy to empty on the go.

3. Battery runtime (and charge time): Windows vacs only run for about half an hour per charge. That may sound miserly but it’s usually long enough to clean your car or blitz condensation on a chilly morning. However, to avoid having to give up halfway through more extensive cleaning missions, check that you can recharge the battery quickly and conveniently. Most models take around three hours for a full recharge.

4. Weight and capacity: A kilo may not feel like much at first, but after half an hour of holding the unit at arm’s length it’ll start to hurt – especially when it fills up with 300ml or so of dirty water. The bigger the tank, the more cleaning you can do without having to stop and empty it, but the heavier it will get. So, tank size is less important than leak-proofing and easy emptying.

What extra features and accessories are worth having?

Interchangeable suction heads: Most window vacs come with a 280mm suction head as standard, but many include an additional smaller head for fiddly jobs such as leaded windows and front door panels. Pivoting suction heads can also help to get into awkward spots.

Extra chargers and batteries: All our featured window vacs come with a standard DC mains plug and cable. Some models add convenient backup options such as removable batteries (and the option to buy a spare), and USB and in-car chargers.

LED charge indicator: Useful for revealing how much longer the battery will last before it needs a recharge.

Extendable pole: A few models on our list come with, or are compatible with, telescopic or multi-section poles to help you reach high windows and skylights without wobbling up a ladder. On the downside, a pole can make the vac hard to control, especially if it’s heavy.

Cleaning extras: Many window vacs come with cleaning bottles, microfibre pads and even their own branded cleaning spray. While useful, these extras are unlikely to perform any better than the stuff you already have in your cleaning cupboard.

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The best window vacs to buy

1. Karcher Window Vac WV5: The best all-round window vacuum cleaner

Price: £70 | Buy now from Argos

The Karcher WV5 is about as pricey as window vacs get. It’s still cheaper than paying a human window cleaner, though, and its power, features and efficiency are the best you’ll find in a window vac designed for home users.

Among its many included accessories are a smaller 170mm suction head for hard-to-reach areas and a microfibre attachment to spread detergent on your windows. There’s a built-in LED battery indicator and you can buy additional batteries so that you’ve always got a fully charged one ready to go.

None of that would matter if the Karcher didn’t clean windows brilliantly – and that’s where it really excels. Suction is strong and efficient right across the nozzle, so you can clean and dry into the silicone seal around your windows. The finish is about as streak-free as a window vac can achieve, although you may want to give your glass a final buff with a dry kitchen towel.

Key specs – Weight: 1.1kg; Battery runtime: 35mins; Cleaning area: 105m² per charge; Accessories included: Additional small suction nozzle, microfibre cleaning head, extra spray bottle (with 20ml branded detergent), charger

2. Vileda WindoMatic Power Window Vacuum: The best lightweight window vac

Price: £45 | Buy now from Amazon

Vileda’s minimalist window vac runs the Karcher a close second in our rundown. It’s about half the weight of the Karcher (until the large 300ml wastewater tank fills up, anyway) and is the only vac in our list to have an additional turbo power level.

Switch to ‘Max’ mode to boost the WindowMatic’s power by 50% (and drain the battery faster, of course). It’s a real help when cleaning tenaciously grubby surfaces, and generally speeds up the process. The Vileda also has a flexible neck, ideal for hard-to-reach places, and the tank is easy to remove for emptying and sticking in the dishwasher.

Key specs – Weight: 640g; Battery runtime: 40mins; Cleaning area: 120m² per charge; Accessories included: Charger

3. Bosch GlassVAC Cordless Window Vac: The best window vac with USB charging port

Price: £60 | Buy now from Amazon

If you want your window vac to look like a serious power tool, this Bosch is the one for you. It feels wonderfully robust and offers the same wiper technology used by the car industry to achieve a streak-free finish on windscreens. We also love that you can charge it via USB using the included micro-USB charger – an increasingly convenient option for drivers. Like the Karcher, the Bosch has a battery indicator to let you know when it’s running low.

Suction power is excellent and you get oodles of extras in the box, including a smaller head and microfibre attachment. However, what pushes the Bosch behind the Karcher and Vileda in our list is its failure, reported by some users, to clean quite as well to the very edges of your windows.

Key specs – Weight: 700g; Battery runtime: 30mins; Cleaning area: 105m² per charge; Accessories included: Additional small suction nozzle, microfibre cleaning head, extra spray bottle, USB charger

4. Leifheit Window Vacuum Cleaner: The best window vac to remove condensation from skylights and conservatories

Price: £96 | Buy now from Amazon

Leifheit’s lightweight model is the Spider-Man of window vacs, able to operate efficiently at all angles. So if you’re struggling to clean and dry your skylights, conservatory roof and weirdly positioned mirrors without ending up covered in gunk, this leak-free model is the vac for you. Convenient design touches include a stopper that lets you drain the tank without needing to remove it (although you can remove it for cleaning). It’s a great little vac, although its suction power could be stronger at the edges.

Key specs – Weight: 739g; Battery runtime: 45mins; Cleaning area: Not given; Accessories included: Charger (telescopic handle available separately)

5. Monzana Window Vacuum Cleaner: The best extendable window vac

Price: £43 | Buy now from Amazon

Clean entire walls of tiles with ease using this extendable window vac. The unit itself is light enough to remain manageable even when the telescopic pole is fully extended, although a few users have experienced water leaking out both ends of the silicone nozzle blade.

Key specs – Weight: 680g; Battery runtime: 30mins; Cleaning area: ‘Up to 30 windows’ per charge; Accessories included: Telescopic extension pole, microfibre cloths, spray bottle, charger

5. Beldray Window Vacuum Cleaner: The best budget window vac

Price: £20 | Buy now from Wilko

At just £20, Beldray’s handheld window vac is considerably cheaper than the other models on our list, and also somewhat less powerful. It can only be used in a vertical position, so while it does a good job of cleaning and drying windows, mirrors and shower screens, it won’t help you with spills on worktops or grimy skylights.

But it’s cheap and lightweight (partly down to the small 60ml tank, which needs emptying rather frequently), so it’s a good spare vac to keep handy for quickly dealing with condensation or whizzing over the car windows.

Key specs – Weight: 921g; Battery runtime: 30mins; Cleaning area: Not given; Accessories included: Charger

Buy now from Wilko


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