In the modern world, there is quite a bit you need to know about vacuums in order to make the best decision. To help make your choice a little easier – and avoid going broke when trying to clean your house – we have compiled this vacuum buying guide to help make sure you make an educated decision and get the best vacuum for your particular needs. Whether you live in a small apartment or own a large 10,000 square foot house, your needs are going to be different when it comes to what vacuum will work best for you. Another thing to consider is whether your floors are wood or carpet primarily.
First, let’s take a look at the various types of vacuums that are available. There are four basic types of vacuums that you can purchase to help keep your house clean. Depending on your needs and your house, one or the other types of vacuums may be best for you. Many people have two (or more) vacuums to help handle different tasks throughout the house. From wood floors to tile to carpets of all lengths, finding the right type of vacuum for the job is important. Here is a little information on the vacuum styles that you may find useful wherever you need it – car, house, or office.
- Handheld Vacuums: These small vacuums are pretty much described by their name, being small units that you can hold in one hand. They are great for vacuuming furniture and other hard to reach areas. They come in versions with cords and also extremely portable battery powered models. The latter makes it super easy to clean out your car, the garage, or another area that might not have easy access to an electrical outlet. They do have their limitations, however, as they’re not good for routine cleaning of large areas. Still, many find it very useful to have a handheld vac around the house for small jobs.
- Stick Vacuums: These vacuums are small, lightweight and easy to maneuver. They give up suction power for this lightweight quality, but for many this is a fair trade, especially if you are looking for something to help clean up light messes. If you want something easy for quick touch-ups, this might be the best type of vacuum for you. They are also very good on stairs because they weigh so little and are easily moved around. There are different sizes of stick vacuums, but they all are less powerful than most upright vacuums. Chances are very good you’ll be able to find one that’s the perfect size for you to be able to take care of small, routine maintenance. If you get a cordless stick vacuum, the maximum battery charge drops over time so they work best for small apartments or 1-2 room cleaning.
- Canister Vacuums: The canister vacuum often offers the portability and maneuverability of the stick vacuum with the suction power of an upright vacuum. For many, this compromise makes the canister vacuum the best option, especially if they do not want to purchase more than one vacuum. For others, the canister vac may not be enough of this or that for them to be happy with. Canister vacuums do have their place among the most popular types of vacuum cleaners. One thing you will notice is that usually the more you spend, the more attachments (and cord and hose length) you will get. Still, there is likely to be a canister vacuum for you no matter what price range you are looking in. Some canister vacuums are useful for cleaning up in the garage as they can pick up wet materials or larger objects like screws. However these wet/dry vacuums tend to be louder.
- Upright Vacuums: Upright vacuums are the power-houses of the vacuum family tree. While they are usually the most powerful types of vacuums that you can buy, they are also usually the largest, heaviest and most difficult to maneuver – especially in tight spots like under the couch or beds. These are usually better on all varieties of carpets. If you have a large house with open space that is carpeted, an upright vacuum is going to most likely be a necessity for you. If you have a lot of out of reach places or don’t feel like “lugging out” the large upright vacuum all the time, you might consider adding a stick vacuum to your closet.
- Robot Vacuums: These robot vacuums have come a long way since when they were first introduced. The Roomba is one of the more popular brands of robotic vacuum cleaners. They could be considered a combination of the canister vacuum with the handheld vacuum and a dash of upright vac with a primitive brain that allows it to move autonomously around your house, keeping your hardwood floors and carpets clean at all times. There are limitations to the technology, but advances are being made all the time.
Features to Consider
- HEPA Vacuums: These vacuum cleaners include a HEPA type filter that can really help with collecting small dirt particles, pollen, pet hair, and other things that may cause problems with allergies. With this extra peace of mind comes a higher price, but most are okay with paying the extra money for the quality of clean achieved. Miele, Dyson and SEBO are some of the more popular brands of vacuums that offer models with HEPA filters built in.
- Bag or Bagless Vacuums? Bagless vacuums are popular because it is a vacuum that does not require you to purchase additional vacuum cleaner bags which saves money. On the other hand, bagless vacuums usually include a filter or two that will need replacing. Sometimes these filters in bagless vacuums will cost as much or more than a year’s worth of vacuum bags. The other thing to consider is how easy it is to pop a bag of dirt and dust out and dispose of it opposed to trying to carefully empty a plastic container full of dirt and dust. As you can see, both have their pros and cons. It comes down to how you prefer to empty out your vacuum. The technology of both types of vacuums has come a long way over the years.