The Shark NV681 is the lightest vacuum cleaner within the Shark Rotator range.
The NV681 has been specifically designed to be easy to move around and an excellent choice for people who need a compact unit that’s both fast and easy to use.
Like most products, there are several model numbers for this particular design of Shark vacuum cleaner:
In this review, we’ll find out whats good and bad about the NV681. We will also look at each of the model numbers to find out what the differences are.
The Shark Rotator range of cleaners is the upgraded version of the Shark Navigator.
The improvements include lights to let you know the brush roller is working correctly and to light up the way, a sleeker design and extra accessories that don’t come with the Navigator family of cleaners.
For a quick introduction, let’s have a look at the advertising produced by Shark
The NV681 is designed for quick and easy access around the house (hence the word “Speed” in its description). It’s Sharks most compact Lift-Away model which is capable of deep cleaning hard-to-reach areas.
As you would expect, the compact design means the suction is not as powerful as the full size (and much heavier) model NV752. But don’t let this put you off. The NV681 is more than capable of handling everything you can throw at it.
In fact, sometimes the suction is too strong and Shark have included a setting to reduce the amount of suction when cleaning rugs or really dense carpets. If you use the cleaner at full suction on lose rugs, it can sometimes lift the rug off the floor and slow down your cleaning efforts.
The dust cup can be removed from the main cleaning unit to make it easier to empty into the trash without taking the whole unit outside.
The bagless design has a capacity of 0.9 liters (roughly 0.25 gallons) and includes a max-fill line to make it easy to see when the cup needs to be emptied.
Emptying the dust cup is really simple and is done by holding the dust cup over a trash can or bin. A button on the bottom of the dust cup flips the door open at the bottom of the canister. This allows the dust and dirt to fall out the bottom without having to handle it with your hands.
For especially persistent dirt, or to wash the dust canister out, the top can also be opened in a similar way.
If you’re allergic to dust or mites, this is an ideal vacuum cleaner. The HEPA filter is rated to 0.3 microns and is designed to capture over 99.9% of dust and allergens.
The HEPA filter is installed in the motor exit vent and cleans the air before it re-enters the room.
As well as a Post-motor HEPA filter, the vacuum cleaner also has two felt filters that clean the air before it enters the motor.
All of the filters can be rinsed and left to dry in the air. The manufacturer recommends that the felt filters are cleaned every three months, and the HEPA filter is cleaned or replaced annually. You can normally tell if the filters need replacing by a reduction in suction power.
Replacement filters can be purchased on Amazon, directly from SharkClean or at good vacuum cleaner stores.
NV680 Filter Replacement Set
It’s important that the filters are left to dry completely before reusing them. if you put wet or damp filters back into the vacuum cleaner, they tend to grow mold and can put spores back into your environment.
Depending on the model you select (more on that shortly), the cleaner comes with a range of different attachments.
The entire Shark NV680 range comes with the standard rotating roller head. This is what gives Shark the ability to pick up so much dust and hair from carpet and other soft surfaces.
Instead of relying on suction alone, the hard bristle brush rotates to dislodge particles lodged firmly into carpet and rug fibers. Once the particles have been dislodged, they are quickly sucked up into the bagless dust cup on the main body.
As soon as you start using the NV680 cleaners you will notice how much dust and debris your previous vacuum cleaners were leaving behind. The rotating brush is exceptionally good at picking up human and pet hair as well.
The powered head includes two led headlights that light up the areas you are vacuuming. This works especially well to locate dust and dirt under beds and other household furniture.
The Dust-Away hard floor attachment is included with the NV682 and NV683.
It can be used with, or without a microfiber pad and it can handle big crumbs or fine dust on delicate hardwood floors and hard tile surfaces.
When the microfiber pad is attached, it also works at cleaning away fine dust that most other vacuum cleaners would normally miss.
The Pet Mult-Tool and the Pet Power Brush are two different small sized attachments that can be used to pick up pet hair on upholstery, stairs, cushions and hard to reach places.
The head can be used with or without the hard bristles. The stiff bristles help remove stuck in debris from a wide range of surfaces. When you remove the bristles, the head has a soft felt pad that can be used on upholstery and soft cushions etc.
This attachment relies on manual brushing and the suction of the cleaner to pick up debris. The next step up form this is the Pet Power Brush.
The Pet Power Brush is a mini motorized brush that uses the power supplied by the cleaning head to rotate a brush located within it housing.
Only the NV682 model comes with this brush. Often you will find it referred to as the TruePet brush. (Branding that was used on later models)
This is a highly effective tool that can remove debris from all types of soft surfaces without needing manual brushing or multiple passes.
Even though the NV680, NV681, and NV683 don’t come with attachment in the box, it can be easily purchased through Amazon or SharkClean.
It is important that you select the correct part number, as many of the other Shark models use a similar brush and they won’t fit on the NV680 range. We have included a link to the correct part number below.
Without going to the expense of buying a complete car detailing kit, this tool allows you to vacuum into deep spaces between objects or behind sofas etc.
The brush at the top of the attachment slides down the length of the tube to expose a thin hose that can fit into most small spaces. The dusting brush at the end is good for cleaning cobwebs and getting into corners, tops of shelves and ledges etc.
Designed as a lightweight unit, the cleaner weighs 13.8lbs. This is almost 2lbs lighter than the standard unit.
When it comes to storage, the NV681 comes in at 47.5 inches x 11 inches x 12 inches.
All of the models in the NV680 range come with the Duster Crevice Tool and the Pet Multi-Tool attachments.
Depending on the model number, some units come with extra attachments for picking up pet hair or cleaning hard surfaces or detailing a car interior.
|NV682||Blue||Dust-Away Attachment, Pet Power Brush|
|NV683||Plasma Blue||Dust-Away Attachment, Home & Car Detail Tool|
Other than the difference in the supplied accessories and color, all of the units are functionally the same.
In summary, the main differences are:
In the end, it doesn’t matter which unit you purchase, as the additional accessories can be purchased online and added to whichever model you select. (Be careful you select the correct part for the TruePet motorized brush)
The NV752 vacuum cleaner is the big brother of the NV681. The main difference is that it has a larger motor and weighs an extra 2lbs. This is Shark original full-size lift-away model. (It has now been superceded by the NV801)
The NV801 (and NV803) vacuum cleaners are a newer design than the NV681.
They include DuoClean rollers which do away with the need for the Dust-Away head. By combining two brushes in a single head, the NV801 can clean hard and soft surfaces without swapping accessories.
|Shark NV681||Basic Unit|
|Shark NV682||with Pet Power Brush|
|Shark NV683||with Car Detail Kit|
The Shark NV683 is the most popular model in the NV680 range. It includes the car detailing kit, and for a few extra dollars, you can also add the powered pet brush.
All of the NV680 models are a good choice if you have allergies etc. The HEPA filter clean 99.9% of the air that passes through the vacuum cleaner. Its lightweight design also makes it easy to move around the house and to get into tight spaces.
With over 1,400 positive reviews on Amazon, you can’t go wrong with the NV680 range of vacuum cleaners.
Image credits: sharkclean.com and Amazon.com