The Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away is a versatile cleaning machine, functioning as a handheld vac, upright vacuum and canister vacuum in one. Packed with tools and accessories that store on-board for easy access, this quiet-yet-powerful vacuum cleaner is a strong contender against more expensive models like the Dyson DC41 Animal. There are some reports of loss of suction over time, although the Shark is backed by a five-year warranty.
Ultra-quiet, excellent value. The Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away earns solid scores for carpet and bare-floor performance from one professional testing organization, but a lower rating for pet-hair pickup. It's awarded a good score for airflow and an excellent rating for emissions. Editors at CNET say the Shark Rotator, which has an 11.5-inch cleaning path, is a better value than the expensive Dyson DC41 Animal, performing better on carpets than the Dyson but not quite as well on hard floors. Both professional testers and owners posting to sites like Amazon.com and BestBuy.com praise the Shark's ultra-quiet operation.
Packed with versatile tools. Owners say the Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away is incredibly versatile, functioning as an upright vacuum, canister vacuum and a handheld vacuum in one. It automatically adjusts for pile height and a switch operates the brushroll, while suction strength is controlled by a rotating collar on the handle. The HEPA filtration system is sealed to prevent leaks. Users love the many accessories, including a power pet brush, straight suction nozzle, crevice tool and two dusting brushes. The power head is equipped with LED headlights, but some reviewers say they're not very bright. The non-retractable cord is wrapped manually.
Swiveling and rotating nirvana. The Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away's 30-foot cord is shorter than the Dyson DC41 Animal's 35-foot cord, but owners say it's adequate. At 15.5 pounds, the vacuum is easy to maneuver, but users say it may topple over when the hose is extended. It doesn't rotate to a full 180 degrees for cleaning under beds and furniture, but lays flat enough that most spaces are easy to access. The swiveling head navigates easily around chair legs and other obstacles, and emptying the dirt canister is easy and mess-free. Tools are stored on-board in an included canister caddy for easy access.
No filters to replace. Despite the lightweight design of the Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away, owners posting feedback to sites like Amazon.com and Kohls.com say this machine is solidly built. There are a few isolated complaints that the plastic parts develop a squeak over time, and a few users say it loses suction, clogs and fails after a few months of regular use. The Shark Rotator is backed by a five-year warranty -- but one owner says Shark doesn't honor warranties for vacuums purchased through Amazon.com. Three lifetime, washable filters make up the sealed allergen filtration system, including a washable HEPA filter.
The Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away goes up against popular brands like Hoover and Dyson in this latest round of vacuum cleaner testing. Editors rate 89 upright vacuums on carpet and bare floor performance, pet-hair pickup, emissions, noise, maneuverability and total airflow.
Review: Upright Vacuum Cleaner Ratings and Reliability, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, Not dated
Editors at CNET.com pit the Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away Bagless Upright Vacuum to the Dyson DC41 Animal, Oreck Touch and Electrolux Precision Brushroll Clean in thorough testing. Editors say it's "a master of versatility," and while it didn't beat the Dyson in all performance tests, it offers the best value.
Review: A Budget Vacuum That's Full of Features, Editors of CNET.com, Oct. 11, 2013
3. Good Housekeeping
Testers for the Good Housekeeping Research Institute try out the Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away Vacuum Cleaner, noting its easy-to-empty dirt canister, washable filter and quiet operation. Editors say it performs well on both carpets and bare floors, and has good airflow at the end of the hose.
Review: Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away NV501 Vacuum Cleaner, Editors of Good Housekeeping, May 2013
More than 360 owners comment on the Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away Bagless Upright Vacuum, which earns an average rating of 4.5 stars out of 5. Owners are impressed by its suction power and pet-hair capabilities, noting that it's lightweight and easy to maneuver yet feels solidly built.
Review: Euro-Pro Operating Shark Pro Rotator Upright Vac Floor Care, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of December 2013
More than 170 owners contribute to a near-perfect average rating for the Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away Bagless Upright Vacuum. A few owners say they chose this model over a Dyson for the price and are happy with their purchase, noting the Shark's easy maneuverability, strong suction and easy-to-empty canister.
Review: Shark - Rotator Lift-Away Professional HEPA Self-Propelled Bagless 3-in-1 Upright Vacuum - Red, Contributors to BestBuy.com, As of December 2013
More than 100 owners contribute to a perfect 5-star average rating for the Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away. Owners love the three-in-one design; the Shark Rotator operates as an upright, a canister vac and a handheld for maximum versatility. Several say it's a better value than expensive Dyson vacuum cleaners.
Review: Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away 3-in-1 Bagless Vacuum, Contributors to Kohls.com, As of December 2013
More than 20 owners weigh in with comments on the Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away, which earns an average rating of 4.5 stars out of 5. Users say this upright vac is lightweight and easy to operate, and extremely quiet. Several say it's better than Dyson models.
Review: Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away - White/Red (NV501), Contributors to Target.com, As of December 2013