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Shark Navigator Deluxe Review

This vacuum is a great value, performing well across the board and retailing at a great price
Shark Navigator Deluxe
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Price:   $180 List
Pros:  Excellent at cleaning up pet hair, solid cleaning performance across the board
Cons:  Shorter reach
Manufacturer:   Shark
By David Wise and Austin Palmer  ⋅  Jul 12, 2017
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63
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#7 of 10
  • Carpet Cleaning - 35% 6
  • Ease of Use - 25% 6
  • Handling - 20% 6
  • Hard Surface Cleaning - 10% 6
  • Pet Hair - 10% 9

Our Verdict

The Shark Navigator Deluxe is a great vacuum at an even better price. It performed well across our gamut of tests and retails for less than half the cost of most of the higher-scoring models in our test. This is the vacuum for those that still want a great product but can't spend an arm and a leg for an appliance. This model also does exceptionally well at collecting pet hair, making it a great choice for those with a cat or dog that sheds excessively.

Compare to Similar Products

 
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Price $180 List$200 List
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Pros Excellent at cleaning up pet hair, solid cleaning performance across the boardGood price, cleans carpet very well, picks up pet hair with easeInexpensive, great for pet hair, solid carpet cleaningGood at cleaning up pet hair, lightweightInexpensive, maneuverable, solid at picking up pet hair
Cons Shorter reachNot particularly impressive at cleaning hard floorsLackluster at cleaning hard floors, so-so ease of useMediocre at cleaning hard floors and carpetDoesn't clean hard floors or carpet very well
Bottom Line This vacuum is a great value, performing well across the board and retailing at a great priceIf you are searching for a new vacuum on a budget, then this is a great betIf you are shopping on a particularly tight budget for a new vacuum, this is a good optionFeeling a little let down by the infomercials, this vacuum didn't do very well in our tests at allThis cheap vacuum isn't terrible, but there are far better options for the same price
Rating Categories Shark Navigator Deluxe Navigator Lift-Away... Eureka PowerSpeed Oreck Commercial XL BLACK+DECKER AirSwi...
Carpet Cleaning (35%)
6.0
7.0
6.0
4.0
3.0
Ease Of Use (25%)
6.0
7.0
5.0
6.0
5.0
Handling (20%)
6.0
7.0
6.0
6.0
8.0
Hard Surface Cleaning (10%)
6.0
6.0
3.0
4.0
3.0
Pet Hair (10%)
9.0
9.0
9.0
8.0
8.0
Specs Shark Navigator Deluxe Navigator Lift-Away... Eureka PowerSpeed Oreck Commercial XL BLACK+DECKER AirSwi...
Vacuum type Upright Upright Upright Upright Upright
Model Number NV42 NV356E NEU182A XL2100RHS BDASL202
Bag Type Bagless Bagless Bagless Bag Bagless
Cleaning Path Width 11.25" 11.25" 13.25" 12" 12"
Measured Brush Width 9" 9" 10.5" 9.5" 11"
Measured Weight 15.9 lbs 14.4 lbs 10.1 lbs 10.5 lbs 9.4 lbs
Variable Suction Control Yes Yes No No No
Brush On/Off Switch Slow Yes No No No
Measured Maximum Reach 27' 31' 25' 37' 20.8'
Measured Power Cord Length 25' 30' 24' 35' 20'
Automatic Cord Rewind No No No No No
Measured Noise 74 dBa 73 dBa 76 dBa 79.5 dBa 75.4 dBa
Swivel Head No Yes No No Yes
Carry Handle Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Soft Bumper No No No Yes No

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Navigator Deluxe is a great, second-tier vacuum at a reasonable price. It didn't have any major deficiencies in our tests, nor any major concessions due to its reduced price. While this simple model doesn't have a ton of extra features or functions, it gets the job done without sucking away too much of your hard-earned cash.

Performance Comparison


One of the best value models of the group, the Shark Navigator Deluxe.
One of the best value models of the group, the Shark Navigator Deluxe.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

Carpet Cleaning


This is the highest weighted metric in our test and takes credit for 35% of the overall score for each product. We tested each product by spreading out Cheerios, rice, cereal, and flour on both flat and fluffy carpet, assessing scores based on the amount of material collected and the number of passes required to do it. The Navigator delivered a decent showing.

The Navigator performed decently well in our carpet cleaning set of...
The Navigator performed decently well in our carpet cleaning set of tests.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

The Navigator did an excellent job at collecting rice from flat carpet. It got all of the whole grains out and only left a tiny amount of rice dust behind in just two passes. Performance dropped a little in the fluffy carpet test, with the Navigator taking about four passes and only doing an average to above-average job.

Starting a trend, the Navigator also did a fantastic job at collecting flour from low-pile carpet. However, it did drop back slightly when it came to extracting flour from fluffy carpets. It still did well, just not amazing.

The Navigator did very well, but it was still bested by other models.
The Navigator did very well, but it was still bested by other models.
Credit: Austin Palmer

Moving on to our cereal test, the Navigator delivered an unimpressive but not disappointing performance. It did well on flat carpet but took an additional third pass to collect all of the fragmented Cheerios it had crushed up and failed to collect. It did have one of the best first passes of the entire group, collecting over 90% of the mess, just requiring a few cleanup passes to complete the task. It then did about average in the medium-pile version of this test, tending to plow the cereal around rather than collecting it.

The Navigator required an extra cleanup pass on the Cheerio test.
The Navigator required an extra cleanup pass on the Cheerio test.
Credit: Austin Palmer

For the final test of this metric — oatmeal collection — the Navigator did decently well. It took two passes on shallow carpet but left behind a fair amount. However, its performance improved considerably on fluffier carpet, though it did take 6-8 passes.

Ease of Use


The Navigator performed about average in this metric as well. This metric makes up 25% of the total score, consisting of tests comparing the ease at switching between different types of floors, maximum reach, noise levels, cleaning under furniture, and in close to edges.

The Navigator is one of the easier models to use.
The Navigator is one of the easier models to use.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

This model doesn't do anything to adjust the height for different floor types, but it does have an option to turn the rotating brush off, usually for hard floors. The Navigator did an excellent job in our edging test, with only a small amount of rice pushed into the corner. It had a little trouble collecting this but eventually whittled it down after subsequent passes.

This vacuum did well at cleaning along edges, but not in the corner.
This vacuum did well at cleaning along edges, but not in the corner.
Credit: Austin Palmer

This vacuum did about average at cleaning under furniture, hampered by its lack of a lift-away feature. The Navigator reached about 5.5"-6" under our simulated sofa — about half the distance of the top models in this test. In terms of maximum reach, the Navigator was relatively subpar, having one of the shortest reaches of our whole pack of vacuums. This model only could reach about 27' from the outlet, comparing somewhat poorly with the rest of the group.

The Navigator only reached about half the distance under furniture...
The Navigator only reached about half the distance under furniture of the top scorers.
Credit: Austin Palmer

Handling


Comprising 20% of the total score for each vacuum cleaner, this metric consisted of three tests: maneuverability, pushing/pulling effort, and competency at cleaning stairs. The Navigator did reasonably well in this metric, though again landing about in the middle of the pack.

Most upright vacuums have an accessory cleaning hose for getting...
Most upright vacuums have an accessory cleaning hose for getting your stairs or other difficult to reach places.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

This model does well at cleaning stairs, having a decently long reach. The cleaning hose attachment can reach 12 stairs before the vacuum needs to be moved, though it does tend to fall over when using the hose at its maximum reach. At 15.9 lbs, the Navigator is also of average weight compared to our other tested models. At this weight, it is still decently maneuverable and the swivel head makes it exceptionally easy to turn.


Hard Surface Cleaning


For this metric, we once again reverted to spreading oatmeal, cereal, flour, and rice on the floor and comparing how well each vacuum picked the debris up. The Shark landed in the middle of the pack yet again.

The Navigator performs just fine on hard floors - again its...
The Navigator performs just fine on hard floors - again its performance didn't blow us away, but held its own.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

This model did an excellent job at collecting the rice in our test, getting all of it in a single pass. We used the hard floor option, meaning the rotating brush head was disabled. Moving on to the flour, the Navigator was a bit of a disappointment. This model collected plenty of flour — on its wheels, rather than in its collection bin.

The Shark struggled severely in this test.
The Shark struggled severely in this test.
Credit: Austin Palmer

Continuing with our Cheerios test, the Navigator did fairly well. It caught some of the cereal in its brush but did an acceptable job at collecting it for the most part. In the oatmeal test it collected a decent amount, but still pushed some of the oats into a pile.

Pet Hair


For all those pet owners out there, we compared the prowess of each vacuum at collecting pet hair for our final metric, which accounted for the remaining 10% of the total score for each model. Here, finally, the Navigator did an exceptional job, picking up 96% of the hair that we laid out. This hair was spread evenly and pressed in a section of low-pile carpet, with each vacuum getting about four passes over each section to clean it.

Value


The Navigator is of decent value, offering a good performance for a lower price point than most top contenders. If you need something to focus on pet hair, this may be a good choice.

Conclusion


For those shopping on a budget, the Shark Navigator Deluxe is a fine choice, particularly if pets are involved. This vacuum is capable of handling most common messes and is more than capable of keeping your floors nice and clean, though you may still want to keep a broom handy.

David Wise and Austin Palmer