Shark Wandvac WV203 – hand vac with attitude (cleaning review)

The Shark Wandvac WV203 is a handheld, 115W vacuum cleaner in a slim, lightweight 640g, wand-shaped device. It is a small, powerful device.

It is a ‘dustbuster’ style of handheld vacuum cleaner. And that is with sincere apologies to B&D ‘Dustbuster’ that helped create this market. We use the term generically to describe the handheld format.

Is the Shark Wandvac WV203 sufficiently different from the typical B&D to justify the $199.99 price tag? Let’s find out.

Australian Review: Shark Wandvac WV203

WebsiteShark Clean Company site
Product page
PriceANZ Model RRP $199.99, but use WELCOME10 to 26 December 2024 for a 10% discount. Also seen as low as $149
FromShark Online, Harvey Norman, Bing Lee and Good Guys
WarrantyOne year
Made inChina
CompanySharkNinja is a pioneer in small household appliances and cleaning. Its headquarters are in Needham, Massachusetts, just outside of Boston. Mann&Noble is the exclusive distributor for SharkNinja in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, and Malaysia.
MoreCyberShack cleaning appliances news and reviews

We use Fail (below expectations), Pass (meets expectations) and Exceed (surpasses expectations or is the class leader) against many of the items below. We occasionally give a Pass(able) rating that is not as good as it should be and a Pass ‘+’ rating to show it is good but does not quite make it to Exceed. You can click on most images for an enlargement.

We are also tightening up on grading. From now on, Pass, for example, means meeting expectations for the price bracket. We consider a Pass mark to be 70+/100 with extra points added for class-leading and excellence.

First Impression – Pass+

First, I want to acknowledge B&D. I have owned many of its acclaimed Dustbusters from day one – January 1979. A Dustbuster is perfect for little crumbs on the floor or bench. The current ‘classic’ model has 8 Air Watts and a runtime of about 8-10 minutes from a 3.6V battery that requires a 10-hour charge. Of course, you can spend more and get more powerful models, but these get bigger and bulkier.

The Shark Wandvac WV203 is a slimline wand (10.4 L x 20.5 W x 38.6 H x 640g) with a 115-watt motor, 10-minute runtime, 2.5-hour charge, and a 250ml dustbin capacity.

It looks precision-made in grey with a streamlined feel. The caddy is similarly well-made, light, and well-balanced.

The best use is for spot cleaning, upholstery, cracks and crevices, and places like the car or windowsills. We often use it for edge cleaning when a robot vacuum does not do the job.

If you have carpal tunnel or arthritis, the lightweight and larger circumference handle may be perfect.

In the box

  • Shark Wandvac WV203 ANZ
  • Charge dock and dual brush caddy
  • Multi-surface ‘Velcro’ brush (called a pet multi-tool)
  • Duster/crevice tool (called a moustache brush crevice tool)

Suction/clean – Pass+

I don’t want to suggest that a Dustbuster is inferior—it does the job it promises. But Shark’s 115-watt motor seems quite a lot for a handheld. It turns out that its 115W motor is equivalent to about 7700 Pascal or 960 Air Watts—that makes more sense. Shark suggests it has about twice the suction power of its nearest competitors.

It picks up considerably more and heavier detritus than other unnamed handhelds. The maximum pickup size of an object is about 10mm in diameter and no more than a few grams.

It works equally well on upholstery, carpet, tile or hardwood. The pet tool is excellent for removing pet hair and fine spider webs.

To be clear, it is not a full-blown stick handheld with 1000-1500W motors, motorised heads, and a 60-minute battery life. It is a rapid response, convenience device.

Noise – Pass

It is either on or off—there are no speed settings. The volume is about 75dB, typical of most handhelds. This is acceptable if you don’t use them for extended periods.

Dust capacity – Pass

Detritus is sucked directly into the dustbin and then dual-stage filtered by a stainless mesh and a washable fabric filter (RRP $28.99).

It is a small device, and the 250ml flip-open dust bin is accordingly tiny. Make sure you empty it over the bin—it can fling open. It is also removable and washable.

When the canister is full, it will keep sucking detritus into the ‘spout’, but when you turn it off, anything still in there will fall out.

Again, it’s a small device, and it pays to keep the filter clean. In our tests, it was dry in about 24 hours. Shark should throw in an extra so you can keep using it between clean/dry cycles.

Battery – Pass+

Very few small handhelds last more than 5-10 minutes, and this is no exception. But the best part is the fast charge time of 2.5 hours compared with up to 10 hours for many competitors. The charger supplies 13.3V/800mAh. The docking station is desk/floor mount – not wall mount.

The manual suggests that you can replace the battery, but there is nothing on the website about this. It would be nice to know the charge/recharge cycle rating, but I suspect it will well outlast the warranty.

CyberShack’s view – the Shark Wandvac WV203 is the Mini Cooper of handhelds

It is expensive, especially when you see Hoover, Vax, and B&D, ranging from $29 to $149. But these often have a spaceship-like shape and a rear handle that may be hard to use if your hand movement is impaired.

The Shark Wandavac WV203 is different – more tech, suction power, shorter recharge time and the cylindrical shape may be easier to use.

Our advice. Don’t expect any handheld to do more than the category is designed for.

If you need longer battery life, motorised heads, and more accessories, look at cordless stick vacs that can be used as handhelds—albeit at a much higher price.

Rating 81/100

For 2024 reviews, we use a pass mark of 70/100. Earlier reviews used 80/100, which did not leave us room to reward excellence or class leadership.

  • Features: 80 – It is a cylindrical hand-held with way more power than most and a reasonable charge time.
  • Value for money: 75 at RRP and 80 at $149.
  • Performance: 85 If you understand what a handheld can do, it meets or exceeds that capability
  • Ease of Use: 80 Charge and go. Ten minutes is a long time for a handheld you replace on the charge caddy.
  • Design: 80 – Well-made and well-designed.

Shark Wandvac WV203 handheld vacuum

$199.99 but seen as low as $149







Ease of use





  • Up to 10 minutes run-time and fast 2.5-hour charge
  • It’s a rapid-response cleaner – not for the whole of home
  • Easy to clean and maintain
  • Easier to use for arthritis sufferers


  • Desk, not wall mount.
  • Noisy – about the same as most others