Enter any modern home and you are bound to notice floors and carpets. If they are clean you will feel that the home has a nice feel to it, get in to a dirty floor home and you will find yourself repulsed by it. At the work in every clean modern home is a vacuum cleaner that is helping clean the carpets or the floor tiles. In most homes vacuums are used for much more than carpets they are used to clean upholstery and even walls making them even more vital part of any home. These days it seems vacuum cleaner makers have added a whole suite of other items that can be cleaned using this compact device. You can now get a vacuum just for car or a vacuum for work shop or garage floor. While these uses are increases the old traditional use of vacuum cleaners to clean home carpets and floor is still going strong.
How we review vacuum cleaners
Before we get in to the details of how and why vacuum cleaners are becoming ever more popular. We will quickly review information on how we rank these appliances. We analyze vacuum cleaners primarily on their ability to clean quickly. We then look at vacuum cleaners noise and power consumption. We also provide information on vacuum’s capacity to hold dust and how easy or hard it is to clean a vacuum cleaner. Price and design aesthetics also play a role but they are assigned less importance as compared to the other features.
Why using vacuum cleaner has become so important:
Modern home have become completely enclosed air tight chambers that allow little fresh air to come in side or go out. This results in carpet fibers to accumulate inside the homes or dust partials from outside to come in and accumulate. This along with dust mites and lack of sun light can cause a dangerous situation inside the home – if it is not cleaned regularly. If a home is not cleaned regularly the follow can pile up and cause major health problems:
1. Dust: Dust gives any surface aesthetically unpleasing look. The problems with dust are however not limited to just aesthetics. Dust can also cause serious health issues. Dust inhaled through nose can cause dust allergies. It can also get the lungs and overwhelm the breathing system. Once dust gets in to a home or an apartment it tends to accumulate and it becomes really hard to get it out of a living space. One of the most reliable solutions to dust problem is to use a vacuum cleaner regulars and make sure dust is sucked out of carpet and floor. If someone in the home has a allergy problem then its even more important to vacuum regularly.
2. Clean Up Jobs: Every so often you have a cleanup job at home that requires removal of spilled salt or cleaning up after garage work. Some of these messes can be cleaned up by hand but others require a vacuum cleaner for a thorough job. Use a vacuum and these messes are gone like they never happened. If left un attended these messes can turn in to dust and cause all kinds of health issues.
3. Dust Mites: Dust mites have become an ever increasing problem in the recent times. With homes becoming increasing air tight and virtually no UV light from outside getting in the homes, dust mites grow and thrive inside homes. Causing bites and allergic reactions. In such conditions dust mites are not limited to just the home bed rooms, they can spread quickly in to the carpets and floors throughout the homes, causing a nightmare inside the home. An effective way to control these dust mites in carpets and floor is to use HEPA filter vacuum cleaner. These vacuum cleaners have a special filter that captures dust mites and doesn’t let them go back in the carpet and floor.
4. Common Allergies and Asthma: Those homes that have allergy sensitivities or asthma penitents need to especially make sure that allergy causing partials stay to a minimum level inside the living spaces. Vacuum with HEPA filters can go a long way in reducing the allergies and improving the overall health of a home’s inhabitants.
5. Pleasant Looking Rooms: A clean living space looks and feels pleasant. A vacuum cleaner can help you get a long way to a clean living space.
Regularly using a vacuum cleaner can greatly enhance aesthetics of any home but going the extra mile and using a HEPA filter vacuum can really help improve your quality of life.
How Vacuum Cleaners Do Their Job
While vacuum cleaners have been around for a long time, they have only in recent times become compact enough for use in common households. Modern vacuum cleaners can be classified into the following types based on their features. A given vacuum have one or more of these features:
1. Bag less
Most traditional vacuum cleaners have bags, that needs to be cleaned and replaced frequently. These vacuum cleaners can become very costly as the cost of bags pile up. Bag less vacuum cleaners overcome this issue by doing away with bags. These vacuums use powerful motors along with a plastic mesh or other type of trap to spin the dust and trap it. These vacuum cleaners are great for lowering the cost, they do have a major drawback through. Since there is no bag filling the landfalls, these vacuums are great for the environment as well. Recent studies have shown that Bag less vacuum cleaner tends to throw more dust in the air. Putting more pollution in the air that it takes out. This might leave home air more troublesome for allergies and it could end up being bed for health. It is best to avoid bag less vacuums if you have health concerns for your family.
2. Bagged Vacuum
Bagged vacuum cleaners are based on ages old bags that capture dust. These bags can then be disposed off easily and replaced with a new bag. These bags were traditionally made using three ply of thin papers, that has however changed in recent time with HEPA filters and introduction of several other types of filters that capture allergy and asthma causing particles. The only major drawback to bagged vacuum cleaners is the fact that you need a constant supply of bags to keep replenishing the disposed off bags. These bags costs can really add up, in some cases a year’s supply of vacuum cleaner bags can exceed the price of vacuum cleaner itself.
Bagged vacuum cleaners have several advantages as well. Besides being clean, bagged vacuum cleaners are less hassle to run. When a bag is filled up with dust you simply remove it and throw it away. There is little to no cleaning involved. Bags have to be cleaned regularly though. Otherwise they can get clogged up which can lead to reduced performance of vacuum motor or worst a burnet motor. As long as you can work with these disadvantages, bagged vacuum cleaners are the best way to go.
3. Upright vacuum
Another aspect of vacuum cleaner design that comes up every so often is weather you should get an upright vacuum cleaner or a canister. These two terms refer to how a vacuum clear is constructed for use. Upright vacuum cleanersare compact with more weight coming down on the suction inlet. This allows the section inlet to be forced in to the cleaning surface and be able to pick up dust and dirt much better. This type of vacuum cleaners are great for carpet cleaning but they don’t work so good on flat surfaces such as tiles. They are also hard to maneuver on upholstery and stairs. Some of these shortfalls are being overcome in the newer models with the introduction of special moveable section heads and flexible pipe choices that change the vacuum inlet from under the upright vacuum cleaners to the top section. A pipe and smaller moveable section inlet is attached to this top area, this inlet can then be used to clean stairs and upholstery. These vacuum cleaners also include adjustable height setting on the bottom inlet. It can be used to adjust the vacuum for carpets or flat surface.
Modern upright vacuum cleaners are easier to operate, they come with powered front wheels. In those cases where wheels are not powered – the weight of the vacuum still helps propel them forward. The button used to start and top vacuum cleaner are also easily accessible in these vacuum cleaners. Vacuum cleaner can be started with the same hand that is used to operate it. Upright vacuum cleaners are generally more popular and offer a better choices when looking for a new vacuum cleaner.
4. Canister Vacuum
Canister vacuum cleaners have a simpler and elegant design. A canister shaped housing contains the suction motor and filters. A pipe attaches the canister with cleaning head. Canister vacuum cleaners are great for flat floor and stairs cleaning. They are also great for jobs that require cleaning around tight corners and areas with heavy traffic. The best part of canister vacuums is the ability to easily maneuver their inlets and the ability to change it cleaning head. They can also house bigger motors, as the motor doesn’t have to be pushed around all the time. This allows for far superior suction as compared to upright models.
Robotic vacuum cleaners have become a popular choice in recent times. These vacuum cleaners come in compact form that can be left in home to run around and clean an areas. These vacuum cleaners clean the home while their owners sleep or do other chores. They have advanced electronics which plot their path to ensure complete cleaning of a living space. They also tend to stop on their own when their capacity is full. These vacuum cleaners are still evolving and it will be a few years before we see what all has to come in these robotic vacuum cleaners.
6. Hand Held Vacuum Cleaners
Some times small spills require vacuum cleaners that are small and easily moved around. These might include jobs such as cleaning a car or attic space inside the home. Handheld vacuum cleaners are specially made for jobs like these. They are generally powered by rechargeable batteries. This makes them ultra portable but also require them to be charged frequently. A major down side of these vacuum cleaners is lack of power. This makes their use limited to only hard to reach areas.
7. Dry Wet Vacuum Cleaners
Dry wet vacuum cleaners are ideal for commercial space and garage cleaning.
How to choose the right vacuum cleaner
If you are in the market for vacuum cleaners, a wide array of choices are available. This makes the job of choosing the right vacuum a bit hard but you can find just the right vacuum for your use if you analyze all the aspects carefully.
1. Size and Capacity
In the world of vacuum cleaners size matters. A vacuum cleaner that is too small will fill up with dirt quickly, before you are even done cleaning a single room. If you buy a vacuum with large capacity it would be too hard to maneuver. First determine the square foot area of space you will be cleaning. This is generally available in home maps or apartment ads. If this information is not available you can measure it by using the length and width of room and multiplying them. All rooms square foot area can then be added up to get the complete area of space you will be cleaning. Find a vacuum cleaner that cleans size of area that you have or a little more.
2. Motor Horse Power
Motor’s horse power plays an important role in suction power and the cleaning ability of a vacuum cleaner. An average size vacuum comes in 0.6 to 2 HP range. There are some that fall outside of this range but they are built for specific uses and not for general home use. Motors horse power directly influences its Amps consumption. The more Amps it uses the more electricity it will consume and higher the electricity bill will be.
3. HEPA Filter
HEPA stands for “High-Efficiency Particulate Air”. These type of filters are excellent at capturing dirt and allergy causing particles. More specifically a filter that captures 99.97% of all particles above 0.3um qualifies as HEPA standard filter. These filters are built using small fiber held together in a random layout. With a distance between the fibers equal to or more than that of particles it is supposed to trap. These filters have to be replaced every 3 to 10 uses depending on filter type and area being cleaned. The advantage of these filter is that reduce any pollution by the carpet vacuum cleaners. These filters are available as an option in some of the vacuum cleaners. This means that they don’t always have to be installed but can be installed if and when needed.
4. Noise Levels
Vacuum cleaner manufacturers for a long time ignored the issues of noise. They just assumed the higher the motor speed and suction the more noise customers will have when using these vacuum cleaners. This is however changing in more recent designs. Vacuum motors are now housed in more isolated spaces. This results in quieter operation of these vacuum cleaner. Operator doesn’t have to worry about being a noisy neighbor. Typical vacuum cleaner noise level are expected to be 70dB or less. Noise levels higher than this can be disturbing and can cause temporary hearing problems.
Vacuum cleaner house motors and other parts that move at fast speed. This can cause quite a bit of wear and tear. Cheaper models don’t account for durability in their design and as a result they might lose suction of worst catch fire in a few months of use. Durable vacuum cleaners on the other hand have features to make sure they keep running for a long time. They also offer ease of cleaning, this helps keep suction better through the life of vacuum cleaner. Another aspect of reliable vacuum cleaner is that it doesn’t lose its speed or suction if there is too much dirt trapped in it.
6. Special Features
Many manufacturers offer specialized features only available in their models. These features might include a liquid spray head to clean floors or an extra suction head for cleaning curtains or a cordless setup that allow you to clean home without being attached with a cord all the time. These feature however small they might be could be valuable. It is important to analyze what extra features that are available in the vacuum cleaner models that you are looking to buy. Other special features might include things like lightweight vacuum or a stick shaped vacuum cleaner.
Accessories, small or big are important part of a vacuum cleaner. Common accessories include bags for bagged vacuum cleaners. Belts for vacuum cleaners, HEPA filters and cleanup heads are also popular accessories for some of the vacuums. Some manufacturers sell a basic vacuum cleaner with no filters or extra cleaning heads. They sell these as extra add on accessories. If you are in the market looking for vacuum cleaners you get a better deal by buying everything in a package deal. Some planning and knowledge ahead of time can go long way in getting the best deal.
Recommended Models & Brands
There are numerous brands and each brand has multiple vacuum cleaner models in the market. Some brands take special care to target and focus on specific customer needs, while others take a broad approach and make these appliances suited to a broad consumer type. Here are few more popular brands:
Hoover Vacuum Cleaners
Hoover makes vacuum cleaners for home and commercial use. Their upright models especially the WindTunnel technology is popular for home carpet cleaning. Hoover vacuums are not however limited to upright, they have several light weight stick models and a few canister vacuum cleaners that are ideal for flat surfaces and areas that are hard to reach. Hoover also makes steam vac that are excellent for deep cleaning carpets.
Dirt devil has numerous economical models that are liked and used frequently by users. These include upright and stick models. Dirt Devil vacuum cleaners are mostly available in red color. If you are not a big fan of red then these vacuums are not for you.
Eureka has traditionally made canister vacuum cleaners. Several of its canister models are still popular. It also makes hand held and stick models.
Bissell makes several types of vacuum cleaners, with its upright Helix models leading the popularity contest. Bissell vacuum cleaners are available in a wide array of color choices making it popular among home makers.
Dyson Vacuum Cleaners
Dyson has made its name by making innovative high end vacuum cleaners. Dyson produced the first cyclone technology based bag-less vacuum cleaner that can such unparallel amounts of dust from carpets and floors. This was followed by introduction of Dyson Ball technology that made vacuum cleaners steering easy.
iRobot is unique among vacuum makers. It focuses mainly on robotic vacuum cleaners that propel themselves and have the intelligence to navigate and clean around the area they are designated to clean.
LG Vacuum Cleaners
LG has a long history of making consumer electronics and electrical appliances. As part of this work LG also makes canister and upright vacuum cleaners. These are generally aimed at high end market. LG’s Kompressor series is popular in high end vacuum cleaners.
Black and Decker
Black and Decker is an American household name for appliances and hand tools. This history gives Back and Decker a unique position in hand held vacuum cleaners. It makes several handheld models as part of its Dustbuster series of models.
Oreck has made bagged vacuum cleaners for a long time. It makes these vacuum cleaners in a traditional design. These vacuum cleaners are great for cleaning jobs but the cost of bags can add up quickly.
Specialized vacuum cleaners
There are several types of vacuum cleaners that are specially built for doing a specific job. These include:
Steam Vacuum Cleaner
Steam vacuums are popular choice for deep cleaning carpets and upholstery from time to time. They are especially useful for cleaning high traffic areas inside a home or other commercial places.
Best Vacuum Cleaners
We review an array of vacuum cleaners, which include top vacuum cleaners of the year and vacuum cleaners build for specific jobs such as workshop cleaning. This includes lists of top vacuum cleaners available today.