Vacuum Cleaner Picks

Shark Navigator Zero-M ZU560, ZU561 and ZU562 Lift-Away Speed Upright Vacuums

Shark Navigator Zero-M ZU560, ZU561 and ZU562 Lift-Away Speed Upright Vacuums are a group of versatile, corded, bagless, upright vacuums.

Shark Navigator Zero-M vacuums incorporate several Shark's cleaning technologies, including so-called Zero-M cleaner head, which actively removes pet and human hair, lint and similar debris from motorized brushroll.

Also, ZU560, ZU561 and ZU562 feature flexible cleaning hose and Lift-Away pod for cleaning elevated surfaces, from the floor to the ceiling.

Updated: January 29, 2020.

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Most important features of ZU560, ZU561 and ZU562 vacuums include:

- Zero-M cleaner head technology - most prominent improvement in Shark Navigator Zero-M models (hence the name 'Zero-M'). Main cleaning head brushroll is motorized tool, enabling the unit to deeply clean carpets and rugs, helping pull hair from the carpet's fibers and agitate deeply embedded dust, pollen and other dirt allergens, which are then picked up by strong suction.

Zero-M cleaner head technology does a good job, but a nonetheless, user has to manually remove some stubborn hair from the brushroll. Brushroll cover is transparent, allowing the user to monitor condition of the brushroll.

Just in case, brushroll has status indicator, helping the user to determine the condition and operational status of the brushroll:

- Solid Green: the brushroll is working as it should.

- Solid Red: the brushroll is jammed, requiring the user to turn off the unit and remove any jammed objects and other blockages.

- Flashing Red: the ZERO-M floor nozzle is overheating, requiring the user to turn off the unit and wait for at least 45 minutes for the floor nozzle to cool down. Before resuming with the cleaning, unplug the unit and check if there are any blockages causing the overheating.

Note: Shark Navigator Zero-M are simple to use and maintain vacuums, but just in case, before the first use, read the manual thoroughly.

shark zero m zu560 zu561 zu562 cleaner head

- Flexible Cleaning Hose allows these vacuums to be used as both classic upright vacuums, but also as canister vacuum cleaners. Additional cleaning attachments are attached to the cleaning hose/handle, allowing the user to clean both floors and elevated surfaces.

- Lift-Away pod can be detached from and lifted (hence the name 'Lift-Away') from the rest of the unit, allowing the user to vacuum surfaces that would otherwise be very hard to clean, even with flexible cleaning hose.

- Anti-Allergen Complete Seal technology is combined with felt, foam and high-performance HEPA air filters. While Anti-Allergen Complete Seal technology prevents unfiltered air from escaping the unit, multilayered air filtration enables the unit to exhaust practically clean air into the vacuumed room - very important for people with asthma and allergies.

Also, due to the compact design and swivel steering, Shark Navigator Zero-M vacuums are easy to maneuver around common objects and obstacles found at homes and apartments.

Shark Navigator Zero-M vacuums feature 5-Year Limited Warranty.

 Shark Navigator Zero-M Vacuums

Shark Navigator Zero-M are very similar vacuums, and they differ mostly in color and available cleaning attachments.

Their specifications are given in the following table:

Model Shark Navigator Zero-M ZU560 Shark Navigator Zero-M ZU561 Shark Navigator Zero-M ZU562
Photo shark zu560 table shark zu561 table shark zu562 table
Unit Weight 13.4 pounds (~6.1 kg)
Dirt Bin Capacity 2.2 quarts (~2.1 liters)
Motor 800 Watts (6.7 Amps)
Power Cord 25 feet (7.6 m)
Cleaning Hose 6.6 feet (2 m)
Air Filters Felt, Foam, HEPA  
Dimensions (L x W x H) 12 x 9.5 x 45.6 inches (30.5 x 24.1 x 116 cm)  
Duster Crevice Tool Yes Yes Yes
Hair Removal Multi-Tool Yes Yes Yes
Wide Upholstery Tool No Yes No
Pet Power Brush No No Yes
Amazon Link Shark Navigator Lift-Away Zero-M Upright Vacuum

Note: Amazon affiliate link in the table opens in the new window, feel free to check it for the most up-to-date offers and prices.

Shark Navigator Zero-M vacuums weigh on average 13.4 pounds with power cord and one vacuum attachment carried onboard. Since most of the weight rest on the floor, combined with swivel mechanism, unit can be used even by elderly people and kids (kids under supervision of adults, of course).

Dirt bin is transparent, allowing the user to see type and amount of vacuumed dirt. Dirt bin capacity is 2.2 quarts (slightly less than 2.1 liters) when the dirt bin is filled to the 'Max Fill Line' - considering the dimensions of these vacuums, this is excellent capacity.

Dirt bin features bottom empty system, allowing the user to quickly and easily and the most important, without making a mess, empty the dirt bin directly into the trash can.

Air filtration is excellent and is based on pre-motor felt and foam filters and post-motor HEPA air filter. All filters are washable with cold water - the use of soaps and detergents is not allowed. When rinsing the HEPA filter, be sure to rinse the filter with dirty side down and wash it until the water runs clear.

Depending on the vacuum's use, foam and felt filters should be washed every 3-6 months, and HEPA filter every year. If/when the filters get so dirty that they can't be properly washed, they should be replaced with the new OEM filters.

Note: After washing, be sure to properly dry filters - never assemble the unit with wet filters and never use vacuum with wet filters or no filters at all. You have read the manual, right? :)

Shark Navigator Zero-M Controls

Main controls are positioned conveniently on the handle.

Power switch has three settings:

- '0' Power Off - unit is turned off.

- 'I' Hard Floor - unit is turned on, but the brushroll doesn't spin. This setting is recommended for bare floors and area rugs.

- 'II' Carpet - unit is turned on, and when the unit (handle) is tilted, brushroll starts to spin. This way, when the user has to leave the unit in upright position, brushroll stops even when the 'II' Carpet setting is selected, protecting the floor underneath the vacuum from any possible damage.

Suction control is mechanical and is located next to the handle. Electronic control would be more energy efficient, but the air filtration system requires certain air flow in order to function properly.

Position of other controls, for example Wand Release Button, depends on the function they do and in most cases, they are very intuitive. Nonetheless, reading manual and getting familiarized with the unit before actual cleaning is highly recommended.

 Shark Navigator Zero-M ZU560, ZU561 and ZU562 Cleaning Attachments


Main difference between these models are their cleaning attachments. These attachments include:

- Duster Crevice Tool: this 2-in-1 tool combines dusting brush and crevice tool in one cleaning attachment. Dusting brush features soft bristles for gentle dusting of sensitive surfaces - as the bristles traverse the surface, they agitate the dust, pollen and other small particles, which are then picked up by strong suction. Crevice tool is designed for cleaning narrow and tight areas and gaps, like corners, edges, between cushions and seats and similar.

Duster Crevice Tool comes with all three Shark Navigator Zero-M models.

- Hair Removal Multi-Tool: this 2-in-1 tool combines rubber bristles brush and upholstery tool. Rubber bristles brush is used for cleaning tough messes and stains and for removing pet and human hair, fibers and similar debris from various surfaces. Upholstery tool is used for fine cleaning of upholstery (hence the name) and other similar surfaces.

Hair Removal Multi-Tool comes with all three Shark Navigator Zero-M models.

- Wide Upholstery Tool is similar to upholstery tool, except it is wider, allowing the user to clean larger surface faster. Note that when using both upholstery tool and Wide Upholstery Tool on sensitive surfaces, one has to lower the suction.

Wide Upholstery Tool is available only with Shark Navigator Zero-M ZU561 model.

- Pet Power Brush features rotating brushroll, which is designed for deep cleaning of smaller areas like smaller carpets, stairs, couches, sofas and similar. While Pet Power Brush does better cleaning job regarding pet and human hair and similar debris when compared with Wide Upholstery Tool or Hair Removal Multi-Tool, it is also 'more aggressive' cleaning tool. Also, from time to time, user has to clean rotating brushroll within Pet Power Brush tool itself.

Pet Power Brush is available only with Shark Navigator Zero-M ZU562 model.

Note that there are other cleaning attachments, tools and accessories that fit these vacuums, but at the moment, they are not available by default - if required, they can be ordered separately.

 Shark Lift-Away Upright Vacuums Comparison

Shark is one of the leading vacuum manufacturers and they offer several upright vacuums with similar features and specifications. Here is the comparison table of some of their most popular models.

Model Shark NV202 Shark AX912 Shark NV803 Shark ZU561 Shark NV752
Photo shark nv202 table shark ax912 table shark nv803 table shark zu561 table shark nv752 table
Main Features

DuoClean, Lift-Away, Anti-Allergen, Slim Design

DuoClean, Powered Lift-Away, Anti-Allergen, Compact Size DuoClean, Powered Lift-Away, Anti-Allergen, Compact Size Zero-M, Lift-Away, Anti-Allergen, Compact Size Powered Lift-Away, Anti-Allergen, Full Size
Weight 14.1 pounds 14.8 pounds 14.5 pounds 13.4 pounds 16.7 pounds
Dirt Bin Capacity 0.8 quarts 0.9 quarts 0.9 quarts 2.2 quarts 3.3 quarts
Motor 650 Watts 900 Watts 1150 Watts 800 Watts 1200 Watts
Air Filters Foam + HEPA Foam + HEPA Foam + HEPA Foam + HEPA Foam + HEPA
Power Cord 25 feet 30 feet 30 feet 25 feet 30 feet
Cleaning Hose Yes 6 feet 6 feet 6.6 feet 6 feet
LED Lights On Floor Nozzle On Floor Nozzle On Floor Nozzle No Lights On Floor Nozzle and Handle
Cleaning Attachments Duster Crevice Tool, Pet Power Brush, Pet Multi-Tool, Multi-Angle Dusting Brush MultiFLEX Under-Appliance Wand, Anti-Allergen Dust Brush, Pet Multi-Tool, Duster Crevice Tool Pet Multi-Tool, Duster Crevice Tool, Under-Appliance Wand, Pet Power Brush, Accessory Bag Duster Crevice Tool, Hair Removal Multi-Tool, Wide Upholstery Tool Hard Floor Hero, TruePet Mini Motorized Brush, Pet Multi-Tool, Duster Crevice Tool
Amazon Link Shark NV202 DuoClean Lift-Away Shark AX912 APEX DuoClean Speed Powered Lift-Away Shark NV803 DuoClean Powered Lift-Away Shark ZU561 Zero-M Lift-Away Shark NV752 Powered Lift-Away

Note: Amazon affiliate links in the table open in the new windows, feel free to check them for most up-to-date offers and prices.

When compared with other Shark's Lift-Away vacuums, Shark Navigator Zero-M ZU560, ZU561 and ZU562 Lift-Away Speed Upright vacuums are the lightest, but nonetheless they have very large dirt bins.

Although ZU560, ZU561 and ZU562 models have slightly weaker motors, they are newer designs and they also feature newer Zero-M cleaning nozzles which compensate for relatively weaker motor when compared with AX912, NV803 and NV752 models.

One of the interesting facts about Zero-M cleaning nozzle found on ZU560, ZU561 and ZU562 is that it lacks LED headlights, which can come really handy in certain situations.

DuoClean vs Zero-M cleaning nozzles: DuoClean nozzles feature two different brushrolls that operate together when cleaning floors, but they also lack any automatic hair removal technology. Zero-M nozzles feature single, but improved brushroll and Zero-M automatic hair removal system, which is not perfect, but it does good job.

Personally, people with long hair pets should consider getting Zero-M uprights, while people without long hair issues should consider DuoClean upright vacuums.

Shark Navigator Zero-M features 'shortest' power cords - 25 feet like NV202, shorter that 30 feet power cords found at AX912, NV803 and NV752, but it also features the longest cleaning hose of 6.6 feet (2 m!).

All units feature several cleaning attachments, designed and selected for cleaning common dirt found at homes and apartments. If or when required, they can be ordered separately.

Powered Lift-Away vs. Lift-Away: these are two very similar technologies from Shark and they are all based on detachable Lift-Away pods. However, Powered Lift-Away vacuums in 'Lift-Away mode' can use both main powered cleaning nozzle attached directly to the cleaning hose and wand and available cleaning attachments and tools, while Lift-Away vacuums in 'Lift-Away mode' can use only available cleaning attachments and tools, but NOT the main powered cleaning nozzle.

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For Short: Shark Navigator Zero-M ZU560, ZU561 and ZU562 Lift-Away Speed Upright Vacuums are compact units that are suitable as the main vacuums at homes and apartments, especially for users with pets and kids.

They feature good suction, good cleaning performances on various surfaces, they are convertible units and can be used as classic upright vacuums, as uprights with cleaning hoses or as 'Lift-Away' units.

Also, Shark Navigator Zero-M vacuums have HEPA grade air filtration, automatic brushroll hair removal system (Zero-M) and they come with 5-Year Limited Warranty.

If you are looking for a good upright vacuum cleaner that will not bust your budget, consider one of the Shark Navigator Zero-M models.

For more reviews and recommendations, and for the most up-to-date offers and prices, check Shark ZU561 Zero-M Lift-Away Upright Vacuum Amazon link (link opens in the new window).

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