Offering improved battery life over the previous model as well as a new, more efficient floor head, the Shark ICZ300UKT is a cordless upright vacuum cleaner that performs brilliantly on all surfaces. It has a large bin, lots of accessories (although no onboard storage), and comes in at a great price. If you want an upright cleaner with the flexibility of a cordless model, this one is for you.
- Very flexible
- Replaceable batteries
- Great selection of tools
- No onboard tool storage
- TypeA cordless upright vacuum cleaner, the Shark’s Lift-Away mode delivers extra flexibility to allow you to reach into tight areas and get under furniture.
- Battery lifeUp to 60 minutes of run-time without motorised tools on Eco mode. Expect to shave off a few minutes with motorised tools, over 30 minutes on the Standard setting, and more than 10 minutes on Turbo.
I think it would be fair to say that Shark has a cordless vacuum cleaner to suit every need. The new Shark Anti Hair Wrap Cordless Upright Vacuum Cleaner with PowerFins, Powered Lift-Away & TruePet ICZ300UKT is an upright replacement that’s easier to push around than a regular stick cleaner.
Converting into a handy cylinder for detail cleaning, this vacuum cleaner can get into tight areas, too. It lacks onboard storage for tools, although there’s a handy accessory bag included – but if you want a cordless upright replacement, this is a great choice.
Design and features
- Smart upright design
- Lift-Away gives flexibility
- No onboard tool storage
Not everyone wants a traditional stick cordless vacuum cleaner, so it’s good to see the Shark ICZ300UKT upgrade on the older ICZ160UKT with more power, a new floor head and longer battery life.
This vacuum cleaner basically apes the design of Shark’s plug-in Lift-Away vacuum cleaners, going for cordless convenience. Here, the ICZ300UKT looks, feels and operates like a standard upright vacuum.
It makes the vacuum easier to push around than many cordless stick cleaners, since the weight is lower down; not all in your hand. In addition, the vacuum cleaner will also stand up without having to be propped against a wall or a piece of furniture. It’s pretty nimble, too, although that large main cylinder does mean that the vacuum won’t get underneath furniture with it attached.
Fortunately, you also have Lift-Away mode, where you can pick up the entire cylinder and remove it from the main stick. This leaves you with a more nimble cleaner that will happily reach under sofas and the like.
For this model, Shark has redesigned the controls. There’s now an LCD screen that shows battery life as a percentage. This is far better than the old display, where you’d get a set of lights to indicate the rough level of charge remaining; but it isn’t as good as the Dyson V15 Detect, which shows you battery life in minutes.
There are three power modes to choose from (Eco, Standard and Boost), plus you can choose between carpet and hard floor modes, which adjust the speed of the floor head.
Shark has included its Anti Hair Wrap technology on the floor head, which stops hair from becoming caught around the rollers. And it works, meaning you won’t have the dirty job of cutting away hair on a regular basis to maintain optimum performance. This floorhead is the new version with PowerFins, which are designed to agitate dirt in carpet better, making the vacuum cleaner more efficient and effective.
When you want to go into detail mode, you can remove the handle and/or stick from the main unit, and use the collection of tools. For the likes of stairs, you can go into Lift-Away mode, so that you don’t have to carry around the floor head, too.
The combination of stick and hose deliver decent range, so cleaning up and around ceilings will be no problem, and you can cover the ground with the accessories easily enough.
In the box, Shark provides a crevice tool, pet tool, dusting brush and upholstery tool. That’s all that you’ll need, although it’s a shame that there’s no onboard tool storage with this model. Shark does provide a tote bag to put everything in, though.
Power comes courtesy of a battery, which you pull out and drop into the provided charger. There’s one battery in the box, with spares costing £99.99.
There’s a large 0.6-litre bin on this model, which should see you around an average house without having to be emptied. It’s easy enough to pull out, and opens at both ends to make it easy to clear dust and to clean.
As with most vacuum cleaners, this model has two filters. The main filter is easy to get out, but the HEPA filter is a little fiddly. Both filters can be washed to keep them working at optimal efficiency.
- Cleans brilliantly on hard floors and carpet
- Works well on pet hair
- Edge performance left a tiny amount of dirt behind
I started off by measuring the Shark ICZ300UKT’s raw performance in AirWatts (AW), which is a combination of suction power and airflow. On Eco mode, I measured a result of 35.65AW, which is similar to a lot of handheld models; 56.98AW on Standard is similar to your average cordless; and 175.24AW on Turbo is a lot of power for really tough jobs.
While raw power tells us a bit about a vacuum cleaner, real-world performance will largely come down to the quality of the accessories. Fortunately, Shark didn’t let me down.
I started with my carpet test, sprinkling a teaspoon of flour onto the surface. Using the vacuum on Standard power, I gave it a sweep forward and backward through the mess. As you can see from the image, the carpet was left super-clean right through the path of the vacuum, with traces of dust left towards the outer edges of the floor head.
I finished off the test using Eco mode at the bottom of the mess and Turbo at the top. As you can see, the vacuum performed well in Eco mode, although it left a trace of dust behind; for smaller spills, this lower power mode will do the job.
Next, I moved on to my pet hair test, combing cat hair into the carpet’s fibres. On Standard mode, the Shark ICZ300UKT managed to pick up everything.
Moving on to the hard floor test, the Shark ICZ300UKT impressed. Its floor head is a DuoClean model, which means that it has a hard floor roller built-in; there’s no changing floor heads to move between surfaces, as you do with a Dyson.
Performance is excellent, with Standard mode cleaning a path through my spilt rice grains, with nothing dropping out at the end.
I ended with the tough edge test, sprinkling a teaspoon of flour onto carpet tiles, right up against the skirting board. Running the Shark ICZ300UKT down the skirting board on Standard power, it managed to pick up almost everything, bar one small patch.
I upped the power to Turbo, approaching the leftover mess at different angles, but there was still a tiny amount left remaining at the end. It was nothing that the crevice tool couldn’t deal with, mind.
This vacuum cleaner comes in about average for noise, at 67.5dB on Eco, 72.6dB on Standard and 75.6dB on Turbo. You can clearly hear the Shark ICZ300UKT and can’t really hold conversations over it, but it isn’t so loud as to be annoying.
Battery life is quoted at 60 minutes, although this is on Eco mode with a non-motorised tool. The floor head shaves off a few minutes. Switch to Standard mode, and you’ll get over 30 minutes of run-time, while I found that Turbo mode pushed this down to just over 10 minutes in my tests.
Overall, this remains decent battery life and, mostly using Standard mode, you can clean an average-sized house on a single charge. Once the battery is depleted, it takes 3.5 hours to recharge.
Should you buy it?
If you want the feel of an upright with the flexibility of a cordless vacuum cleaner, this model is hard to beat.
A stick vacuum cleaner offers a bit more flexibility at the expense of having something that feels heavier in the hand.
If you’re someone who wants a cordless vacuum cleaner but doesn’t want a stick cleaner, such as the excellent Shark IZ320UKT, then the Shark ICZ300UKT is a great choice. It works and feels like a regular upright, while Lift-Away mode delivers added flexibility. Considering the price and performance, it’s a superb choice. If you’re after something a little different, then my guide to the best cordless vacuum cleaners can help.
How we test
We test every vacuum cleaner we review thoroughly over an extended period of time. We use industry standard tests to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what we find. We never, ever, accept money to review a product.
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Used as our main vacuum cleaner for the review period
Tested for at least a week
Tested using tools to measure actual suction performance
Tested with real-world dirt in real-world situations for fair comparisons with other vacuum cleaners
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It lasts up to 60 minutes on the lowest power setting, but expect closer to 30 minutes with powered tools and the Standard setting.
This lets you lift out the main cylinder, so you can use just the stick and hose to get under furniture or clean in harder to reach places.