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Shark Navigator vs Shark Rotator 

If you’re in the market for a Shark upright vacuum, chances are that you’ll want to get familiar with the Shark Navigator vs. Rotator.

These are two of Shark’s most popular models in the upright vacuum class.


The overall body style of both of these vacuums is pretty similar. They are both full-size uprights with a wide cleaning head, large see-through dust bin, upright cord wrap, and on-board accessories.

2-IN-1 | Both the Navigator and the Rotator have the ability to run as an upright or as a handheld vacuum.

As an upright, the Shark Navigator weighs about 13.7 pounds. As a handheld canister, it weighs only 8 pounds.

As an upright, the Shark Rotator is slightly heavier, at 15.5 pounds. As a handheld canister, it is about the same as the Navigator, coming in around 8.4 pounds.

 Shark Navigator Shark Rotator 
Best Priceclick hereclick here
Product Dimensions15 x 11.4 x 45.5 inches
45.7 x 12.1 x 12.2 inches
Shipping Weight12.5 pounds
15.5 pounds

DESIGNED IN PARTS | Both the Shark Navigator and the Shark Rotator are designed in parts, for versatile assembly options. Each vacuum has four basic points:

  1. Cleaning head
  2. Canister
  3. Upright wand
  4. Attachments

The Navigator and the Rotator both have two cleaning head option; one brushroll for carpeted floors and one for hard surface flooring.

They also both have large capacity dust bins. The Navigator can hold 2.2 quarts of dry debris, while the Rotator can only hold 1.3 quarts of dry debris.

The Rotator comes with a few more advanced accessories, while the Navigator’s accessories are more basic.

Cleaning Tools

Both the Navigator and Rotator clean using brushrolls and suction, with a separate cleaning head for hard floor cleaning. The brushrolls help to agitate dirt and debris from high-pile carpet and strong suction forces the debris up into the dust bin.

CLEANING HEADS | Shark manufactures two main styles of cleaning heads:

  1. Traditional brushroll for cleaning carpeted floors
  2. Hard surface cleaning head for hardwoods and tile

Both the Navigator and the Rotator come with one brushroll cleaning head and a hard floor cleaning head.

The exact style of hard floor cleaning head varies by model. In the case of our Modern Castle reviews, we were looking at the Shark Navigator Pro NV356E and the Shark Rotator Pro NV501.

These models use two different cleaning heads for hardwoods. The Navigator comes with a sleeker looking head that matches the body style of the rest of the vacuum, a modern white. It also includes a microfiber cleaning head wrap that helps it to capture debris.

By comparison, the hard floor cleaning head for the Shark Rotator is a solid gray, which does not match the body of the vacuum. This cleaning head also does not include any microfiber cleaning pads.

Size & Dimensions

Shark Navigator Lift-Away Pro is 45” tall, 12” wide (with a 9.5” wide cleaning path) and 15” deep. The Navigator weighs 13.7” as an upright, and about 8 pounds as a handheld canister vacuum.

Shark Rotator Lift-Away is 45.7” tall, 12” wide (with a 9.5” cleaning path), and 12” deep. The Rotator is slightly heavier, weighing in around 15.5 pounds as an upright and 8.4 pounds as a handheld canister.

Accessories & Parts

In this comparison, we’re looking at the Shark Navigator Lift-Away Pro (NV356E) and the Shark Rotator Lift-Away Pro (NV501).

The Shark Navigator and the Shark Rotator include the following accessories:

Shark hard floor cleaning head

Hard floor cleaning head: Used when cleaning hard floors, like hardwoods, tile, or a hard composite flooring. The Shark Navigator hard floor cleaning head includes two microfiber cleaning clothes for a deeper clean.

  • Dust Away genie cleaning head:  Used on hardwood floors and other hard surfaces to remove ultra fine dirt, dust, and debris that might otherwise be used with the traditional brushroll
  • Shark Crevice tool

Crevice tool: A long narrow tool used to get in hard-to-reach spaces

  • Shark dusting brush

Dusting brush: A brush with soft bristles, used for dusting furniture, fans, or other finishes you don’t want to scratch

  • Pet power brush: A motorized brush with rotating bristles, specifically designed to clean pet hair, without excessive tangling
  • Upholstery brush: Used to clean upholstery, like sofas, chairs, love seats, or bedding.

Shark Navigator vs Shark Rotator 

- Lift-away: Press a button to lift the canister away and easily clean hard-to-reach areas.
- Anti-allergen complete seal technology and a HEPA filter trap dust and allergens inside the vacuum.
- Powerful and lightweight upright vacuum. Portable and versatile at only 12.5 pounds
- Brushroll shutoff allows for both deep carpet and gentle bare floor cleaning
- Anti-allergen complete seal technology, HEPA
- Rotator technology enhanced swivel steering and better deep carpet cleaning
- Lightweight & ultra quiet operation. Hose length (feet): 8.4
- Premium pet tools and ergo cleaning accessories

Shark Navigator vs. Shark Rotator – Which Should You Buy?

The Shark Navigator has a wide range of included accessories, an XL Dust bin, swivel steering, and the 2-in-1 ability to run as an upright or a handheld canister vacuum.

The Shark Navigator Lift-Away Pro is considered for those who expects:

  • A lower price tag – the Shark Navigator does generally fall at a lower price than the Shark Rotator Pro. Though both of them are affordable, the Navigator Pro will save your budget a little more.
  • A large dust bin capacity – If you need a larger dust bin, then the Shark Navigator Pro is the vacuum to go with, as the size of its dust bin is almost twice of the Shark Rotator Pro.

On the other side, The Shark Rotator Lift-Away Pro is slightly more expensive than the Shark Navigator. If you would like the sleeker design and improved usability, and also the larger dust bin than the Navigator, it means the Rotator Pro could be your best choice.

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