Review: Shark Sonic Duo Carpet & Floor Cleaner

GeekMom Household Gadgets

Image: Shark

Susie Homemaker I am not. I manage to do things like laundry and dishes pretty well, and the other chores that you have to do or you’ll run out of things. Floors, though, almost always get overlooked. I’ll sweep sometimes, or vacuum when the floor is clean enough to do so. But I rarely get to any deeper floor cleaning. The process is usually messy with a lot of prep and clean up.

I recently read about the new Shark Sonic Duo Carpet & Hard Floor Cleaner and thought I’d give it a try. I liked the fact that one machine could clean both hard floors and carpet, since my house has both. The packaging claims that it is good for wood, tile, linoleum, laminate, and stone, but my review only covers hard wood floors and no-pile carpet. My floors don’t receive too much heavy traffic, but did have some difficult-to-remove pet stains.

Carpet bits. Image: Shark

I started with the hard floor cleaning setup, and was very pleased with how simple it was. The floor cleaner comes with several different floor pads, so I had to make sure the right one was on the machine. Then I mixed the cleaning fluid with cold water in the included mixing bottle (it includes one for hard floors and one for carpet), and started cleaning. It runs a lot like a vacuum. Plug it in, turn it on, lean it back, and run it over the floor. You press a button to spray the cleaner out on the floor, which you can do more or less of, depending on your needs. You can also have the machine scrub parts of the floor more or less, since the bottom of the machine vibrates in place.

On the hard floors the machine acted a bit like an electric, vibrating Swiffer Wet Jet. But after cleaning, our wood floors looked very clean and shiny. This is probably because it will do 1000 scrubs per minute, much more than my arms can handle. All of the fine dust that inevitably remains after you sweep was gone. You do have to sweep thoroughly before using this machine, though, because any stray dust bunnies will just get wet and ball up. Using the machine was smooth and easy, and felt a bit like a floor buffer. The floor dried very quickly, and didn’t require rinsing.

Hard floor bits. Image: Shark

Next I tried it on our carpet. It was equally simple. I started by vacuuming the area to pick up dirt and lint. Then I pre-treated the pet stains with the pre-treating spray, waiting about five minutes. In the meantime, I mixed up the carpet shampoo. This was also mixed with cold water. Running the machine over the carpet did feel a lot like vacuuming, except the carpet was slightly damp afterward. It also didn’t require any kind of rinse. The carpet took longer to dry than the hard floor, probably because the carpet soaked up the cleaner. And the spots I had pre-treated took a few hours to dry because I had soaked them ahead of time. But the carpet looked great afterward, and once everything dried, it was clear that my tough pet stains were gone. These were stains that I had tried to remove previously with Spot Shot, which had always worked in the past. I guess the combination of the Shark cleaners and the scrubbing action did it better.

What did I think overall? I liked the machine in general, but I think it’s more useful for carpet than hard floors. It works great for hard floors, but it is probably more machine than most people need. But if you have a house with just carpet, or mixed types of floors, this is a good machine to have. Since you mix the cleaner with cold water, you can let the excess sit on your shelf and just use it whenever necessary—spot clean, or do whole rooms. The machine is light and has very little setup time.

I also liked how there were two different reusable bottles, one for the hard floor cleaner, and one for the carpet shampoo. They are color coordinated with the scrubbing pads, which are labeled for their use. The machine came with two different pads for hard floors (one for cleaning and one for buffing) and two different pads for carpet (one for general cleaning, and one for stains). It also came with hard floor cleaner, pre-treater for carpet stains, and the no-rinse carpet shampoo. A tray was also included, to store the machine on when not in use. Since it has Velcro-type fasteners on the bottom, it’s better to elevate it off the floor, especially carpet.

Also, there are two speeds for the machine, a low and a high, depending on your needs.

When choosing what pads to use, read the labels on each one. They are clearly labeled there, but not in the instructions. When you’re done, cleaning the pads is easy. Just wash them in the washing machine with liquid detergent, and either line dry or tumble dry low. According to the instructions, you’re supposed to buy a new pad after 20 washes, which seems pretty frequent, especially if you use this to clean your floors every few days.

The Shark Sonic Duo Carpet & Floor Cleaner retails for $199. If you clean your floors frequently, this might be a really good purchase for you. But if you need deep cleaning less often, you might need something mightier.

GeekMom received a unit for review purposes.

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83 thoughts on “Review: Shark Sonic Duo Carpet & Floor Cleaner

  1. I’m a believer. My son just spilled a whole gallon of valspar paint on my newly carpeted living room. I cried… Got out my sonic duo…and it went away…amazing!

  2. Just read all the comments. I am rethinking buying it. I bought the Shark Steam cleaner for floors. Sorry I did. I let three other people try it before they bought it. None of them bought it. It was too hard to use. You had to push the handle down to release the spray. It was too hard to use especially for people with shoulder problems.

  3. So.. we also live in NewZealand and I just finnished watching the long bloated speile on the Shopping Channel about the Shark Sonic Duo.

    Being not as nieve as some i thought that i’d do some googling and see what these contraptions cost around the globe.

    What a surprise when i found that wallmart sells these for less then $180.00 USD , now add 20% to that figgure and it’s just under $200 NZD..
    Shipping from USA i would guestimate at around $50.. so iam wondering how these SHARKS can justify porning off a cheap American mop for $580.00 legendary cleaning machine.

    And then i seen the ‘But wait! , theres more!’ Crap … 5 year guarantee and “Fix it for FREE” BS… as obviously we the consumer would have to falk-out who knows how much for shipping and crap for a machine that costs the supplier less than $100 a pop i’m guessing.

    Glad i read these forums and done some research before reaching for the phone and buying another piece of shit contraption that does bothing other then milk my pocket.. ohh yeah , how much for the shampoo consumables when the lil-pottle runs out?.. or do we just use pert 2in1 as a substitute?.

  4. We use a black & decker steam mop for our dark wood floors and tiled kitchen and it works a treat with no streaks and lasts years. Just need to find a good carpet cleaner now but not willing to buy sonic duo. Anyone have a suggestion on a good one?

  5. Help!!!! does anyone know how to remove the handle as I am sending mine back, but the instructions only say how to put the handle on…..

  6. I bought the Sonic duo and love it. My carpets were cleaned by professionals and always looked just as dirty a few days later. Sonic duo got spots out that I didn’t expect to get up. My den carpet looks clean after a month. I highly recommend it. I just wish I had taken pictures before and after. I even had several red spots from fruit drinks and they have not reappeared. My appliance repairman recommended this to me. He couldn’t fix my old machine that just did hard surface floors.

  7. Wow. I am very glad I’m not totally gullible and researched this product first. Won’t be buying now, on the Australian TV ad, they don’t mention a price, just the try for $19 etc.

  8. ordered and returned the Shark Professional Rotator vacuum in Jan of 2014, used it about 1 month, then it started falling apart, first the headlights quit, then it would turn off when turning to the right, then back on when going straight or to left. they took it back, had to pay S& H, no mention of offering to replace machine using the Famous ,5 year VIP warranty.
    To make this short, my experience has been that all these :”as seen on TV products” and their demo’s are cheap lies and not worth the hassle of trying to get ALL your money back. I don’t care what Shark’s CEO, Mark say’s. They are made cheap, and most the attachments are like wise.
    I agree with other’s remark’s, your better off buying from your local store, Costco, or Sam’s club or Bed-n- Bath ,there you can usually try them out in store or return them to the store for full refund, less the hassle of paying the shipping back fee’s. They should be banned from doing these cheap TV commercial’s, as they’re all set up to deceive you.

  9. I have seen the sonic duo while on holiday in Australia. Have Bissel carpet cleaner at home which whilst expensive does not give the finish displayed by the Sonic Duo. Was going to check out purchasing one when I return home but thankfully I found this site first and so my thoughts have been completely turned round and I will just persevere with the Bissel. Thanks for all the feedback.

  10. I, too purchased Shark Duo. Bought it at Costco for a good price. It was originally $179.00, but was on coupon for $45.00 off. I tried it for one month. It works good on tile floors, but seems to take forever to get all the floors done. Did not use it on carpet. Going back to mop and bucket for now. I found this site while searching how to remove handle so I can return it. I did not see a reply, but was able to figure it out. Lay unit carefully face down. Look on back of unit just below the lower solid cord holder. You will see two holes. There is a round one and then a smaller oblong on. Insert small screwdriver into the large round hole. With just a little pressure, you will feel a release and will be able to pull the handle away from unit. Let me know if this worked for you. Packing it up and going back to Costco!

  11. Does anyone have a suggestion as to how to remove the handle so I can return it? I have not used it because after reading the instructions I find that it won’t work well on heavily trafficked hardwood floors, and ours are pretty heavily trafficked in some areas…

    1. Yes. Lay unit face down on floor or counter. Using a very small screwdriver(like eyeglass one) insert into the small hole just below the cord holder. With very little pressure, you will feel it release and pull handle off.

  12. Do not use the orange bottle of polish that comes with this machine! It totally ruined my hardwood floors. The customer service person (AMY) is terrible. I had to spend money to remove the wax and it still has not come off. They said I should try a professional company at my own expense! Thanks so much for this continuing nightmare!

  13. I love the Sonic Duo for both ceramic tile and high pile carpet. I previously had the hoover spin scrub for the tile and hoover max terrain for the carpet – Sonic Duo beats both hands down. For those looking for a cheaper yet effective alternative for the solution for both carpet and tile, I use white vinegar in place of the concentrated solution and add water. I’m used to using vinegar water ratio in the previous machines, but the Duo outperforms both; for carpet, just wait for it to dry, and then vacuum.

  14. The Sonic Duo was amazing on my white, textured kitchen floor which traps dirt in the texture. I have allergies and didn’t want to risk their hard floor cleaning solution so instead I sprayed sections of the floor with Krudkutters. Then, I put water in the spray bottle. As I cleaned a section, I would spray water to mix with the Krudkutters. The floor was very clean.

    I quickly saturated the 2 green hard floor pads that came with the machine. I had microfiber scrubber pads that came with my Reveal mop. I attached a microfiber scrubber pad to the front and to the back sections of the Sonic Duo. It ran as well with my scrubber pads as with the green pads. My husband also wondered if you could use Swiffer Wet Jet pads and just toss them. I didn’t try Wet Jet pads, but it’s an interesting idea.

  15. Bought this for a b-day/xmas gift for a friend who really wanted one. She says it works very well, but it does leave a heavy, sticky white substance behind which vacuums up. Only problem.. the substance clings to her vacuum canister & canister has to be rinsed out w/water each time. Her concern is what is it doing to the motor of her vacuum. She called Shark & they said it might cause a clog in the vacuum. We are sending the Sonic Duo back as defected.

  16. Bought a shark duo floor cleaner (lowes) item stop working had to give a credit card # so they could return one but also had to fork out 45.00 to send the unit to them. don’t ever do business.

  17. Thanks for writing about Shark Sonic Duo Carpet & Floor Cleaner. It is amazing that the product is efficient on all flooring types like wood, tile, linoleum, laminate, carpet and stone. Many houses have indeed both hard floors and carpet. So this product is certainly a great saver as one machine could clean both hard floors and carpet with difficult-to-remove pet stains. I have read about other Shark models that are efficient on all surfaces at http://thebestvacuumforhardwoodfloors.com but your recommended model looks equally good.

  18. Good review, do you still recommend the Shark Sonic Duo carpet and floor cleaner after some of the comments above, I am considering an all round cleaner that can steam clean and vacuum both hard and soft surfaces. What would you recommend?

  19. I’ve had my shark sonic duo for two years. I do not like it. It’s okay for wood and tile floors but for carpets it does n the job. The TV ad is deceiving. The ad shows the area being cleaned as much lighter and brighter. The machine has special lighting, after the cleaner is moved to a different area you then realize that the carpet is not brighter and cleaner, it was just the lights that gave that appearance. It did cost a lot of money and so I therefore bring it out occasionally., which I did today. Each time I use it i am disappointed. I got to this website bty googling because I was wondering if there was a recall on them because of the false advertising. It is lightweight, it can clean tile and hardwood floors, but so does a Swiffter. It does not clean carpets. The first time I used it I wondered were the dirt and liquid cleaner went to. It is rubbed into the carpet, it is not extracted. DONT BUY THIS. Actually this is the second Shark item I have bought and I was unhappy with the first. Obviously this is my last Shark

  20. Hello, I bought a shark sonic duo and after I used the floor cleaning bottle i wasnt able to open it, any advice please?

    Thank you

    Lula.

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