Ryobi Stick Vac Review

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

Last week we reviewed the Ryobi Wet Dry Vac and gave it high praise.  Now we have a new Ryobi vacuum to talk about, the Ryobi Stick Vac.  As you probably know, I am a huge fan of Ryobi.  I love the large 18V ONE+ cordless platform.  I love how they give you professional features for a homeowners tool but don’t overcharge you.  I love how I can buy bare tools right at my local Home Depot.  But what I really love is their wide spectrum of practical tools for the homeowner.  So let’s jump into the Ryobi Stick Vac Review.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review Overview

Let’s face it, there are other stick vacs on the market with well-known names such as Black & Decker.  Black & Decker is known for their Dustbuster and ever since they released the Dustbuster, they have been creating handheld vacs, including stick vacs.  While I love the Black & Decker stick vacs, they always seem to lack a ton of power and a ton of runtime.  Again, they are great for quick pick ups and quick cleaning.  For me, it would be nice to have a little more.

This is where the Ryobi comes into play.  Do I think it will replace your full-size plugin vacuum?  No, it won’t replace that vacuum.  However, the Ryobi has a ton of power and will allow you to take out that big upright fewer times, which is a win.

The Ryobi is not going to replace your upright, but it’s much stronger and longer running than the popular Black & Decker stick vacs.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review Features

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

The Ryobi Stick Vac comes with a crevice tool, a wall mount, the wall mount charger and a 18V battery.  I wish Ryobi included a soft brush attachment with the kit.

The vacuum is designed with a brushless motor which means longer run times and a longer life.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

The stick vac runs off the Ryobi 18V ONE+ battery platform which has over 100 tools in the lineup.  Ryobi includes a 4Ah battery.  The best part about this battery is that if the vacuum runs out of juice, you can grab another battery and keep on working.  You don’t have to sit around and wait for it to charge.  I love the removable battery.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

The power button is a push button that has 3 cycles.  Push it once and the vacuum will turn on high mode.  Push it again and the vacuum will drop down to low mode.  One more push and the vacuum will turn off.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

Once you turn on the vacuum, the brush will automatically start spinning.  There isn’t a separate switch for turning off the brush.  At first, that worried me since we have hardwood floors.  Usually, you have to turn the brushes off for hardwood floor otherwise it will just spit all the debris in different areas of the floor.

I found with the Ryobi, if I put it in low mode, it does a great job on the wood and hard surfaces.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

The stick vac lays down flat so you can get under the couch, bed and other low areas.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

The vacuum runs on two plastic wheels.  The wheels are not extremely hard or soft.  It’s a weird type of rubber.  The wheels spin extremely nice, so I am sure they have some nice bearings in the wheels.

Besides the vacuum laying down flat, the head also rotates left and right which makes it easy to turn and get around items.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

The handle has a nice feel.  The location of the power button is located in an area that is very easy to access with your thumb.  So no need to use two hands.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

The battery is located on the back of the tool.  While it’s not the lightest stick vacuum I have ever used, it’s really not bad.  With the battery on the back, it has a nice balance so you’re not fighting the vacuum while using it.

The floor attachment and the stick are both easy to remove.  Just depress a button and you can disassemble.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

All the dirt is sucked up into a canister that is located on the main unit.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

With a quick push of a button, you can empty the canister into your trash.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

If you want to take the canister off to clean the filter, just depress a button and the canister slides off.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review

The filter is reusable and easy to access and clean.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review Performance

While I am still under the assumption that this can’t replace your corded upright vac, this is pretty close.  I have two rugs downstairs.  One rug is 4′ x 6′ and the other is 8’x12′.  I took my Shark upright vacuum, which I love and rave about.  I vacuumed both rugs with the Shark.  Then I took the Ryobi and did the same rugs.  Amazing, even after I vacuumed with the Shark, the Ryobi still found dirt to suck up.  I wish I would have taken a picture but this one you have to trust me on.

Again, I am not saying this blows away a Shark or upright, I am just saying that for a small, cordless upright, this has awesome power.

The one thing I did notice about the Ryobi was on the smaller rug, I had to put it on low.  When the vac was on high, it kept trying to pull up the rug and was a pain to vacuum.  When it comes down to it, it’s just a powerful vacuum.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review Value

The Home Depot retails this for about $200 and that is with a battery.  For $200 I think it’s a good value.  Yes, I know you can buy uprights for less money, but you still have to worry about the cord.

I also know that Dyson has a cordless version for about $200.  Yes, that is a nice vacuum but you get about 20 minutes of run time compared to 45 with the Ryobi.  Also if you run out of power with the Dyson, you have to sit around and wait for it to recharge.  With the Ryobi, just insert another battery and you’re set to go.

This is just one of the vacuums you have to try and see for yourself.  This isn’t one of those cheap vacuums that offer a little suction.  This vacuum is powerful and gives you freedom, which is why I am not balking at the price tag.

Ryobi Stick Vac Review Final Thoughts

Bottomline, I love this vacuum.  The vacuum is powerful and has great run time.  However, I do see one problem with the vacuum.  Both my wife and I love this vacuum but I already told my mom she could have it since she has a small place and she is getting older and the weight of the uprights is harder for her.  So here is the problem, I now have to go buy another Ryobi Stick Vac for our house.

If you are looking for a quality and powerful upright, the Ryobi is the one to own.  I love how I can change the battery if need be.  I don’t have to wait around for it to charge.  The unit is great for carpet, rugs and hardwood floors, even ceramic.

The Home Depot


    • Good question. I haven’t had any issues with mine and haven’t even heard of this issue. Check on our forum as I know some of the people own that vacuum and might be able to help you out.

  1. Same issue with mine. Replaced the belt and something going on. I noticed what looked like a small plastic piece that probably acted as the belt tensioner had broke off. NOW WHAT? I can not find the roller head anywhere. Help.

  2. Have you had any issues with charging the battery? Just purchased the vac and had it on charge for 12+ hours and it still wasn’t fully charged. Returned to Home Depot and exchanged for same. Have it on charge now and after 1 hour the battery is still flashing at the same level as when I plugged it in.

    • I haven’t had any issues. Are you charging via the wall or battery charger? I know if you use the black battery charger, it takes a long time. If you use their green battery charger, it’s about an hour or sooner for a charge.

  3. The filter for the Ryobi cordless is horrible. I can’t even vacuum 5 minutes before I need to clean the filter. The dirt container doesn’t hardly ever get anything in it custom filter always seems to get stopped up with dust! ? I loved the convenience of having a cordless vacuum cleaner but I wasted my money on this one!!

  4. Getting a cordless stick vacuum will be lifesaving. I hope it’s as awesome for me as it is for you. I will let my parents know about the vacuum it’ll save them a lot of trouble. Thanks.

  5. I am trying to choose between the ryobi stick vacuum and the ryobi handheld vacuum. Does the stick vacuum conveniently convert to a handheld vacuum?

  6. I purchased a Ryobi stick vacuum in late December to deal with dog hair and winter debris in the house as a quick way to keep from buying a new larger vacuum. Worked great for a week and then the beater bar froze up. Dirt got in around the drive mechanism and melted the driver. Was replaced under warranty. Fine. Now I have a problem with dog hair wrapping around the bearing and seizing up. Was told to send in under warranty. This does not solve the problem. Do you not have parts for this product to fix it ? I need a roller bar only and another piece and we can be up and running. I have 7 other pieces of Ryobi tools and have not had problem one in over 10 years use.

  7. The grinding issue is real, I’ve been through two complete units, Ryobi has been good about replacing them, as well as two different heads, again Ryobi has been good about replacing them, while in warranty, which I am now out of. Replacing the belt does nothing to eliminate or reduce the grinding. The unit works great but is useless as a long-term tool. I have stuck with Ryobi because of the ability to use the same battery, but I’m giving up on it. It is a lousy investment. By the way it doesn’t get abused or overused.


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