Vacuum Cleaner FAQ

Read below for some general vacuum FAQs, or read our Vacuum Cleaner Buying Guide for more extensive information on how to choose a vacuum.

What vacuum cleaner brands do you carry?

Vacuum Home carries a large selection of vacuum cleaners from top brands such as Dirt Devil, Eureka, Miele, and SEBO. For additional information on some of the brands we carry, click on any of the links below:

What's the difference between an upright and canister vacuum cleaner?

As a general rule, upright vacuums are primarily used for homes with wall-to-wall carpeting. Canister vacuums, on the other hand, are more versatile and can handle a variety of surfaces such as carpet, hard floors, and even upholstery and stairs. Keep in mind that while canister vacuums may seem more convenient, upright vacuum are usually equipped with stronger motors. Therefore, the style you choose will greatly depend on the type of floors you have. To choose a vacuum by floor type,click here.

Do higher amps result in better cleaning?

Consumers are often tempted to choose a vacuum cleaner based on the highest amperage, watts, or horsepower, but these measurements are not accurate indicators of a vacuum's efficiency. They are simply numbers that measure the electrical current used by the vacuum's motor. Instead, a vacuum cleaner's airflow, suction, and waterlift are better indicators of a vacuum's performance. To read more common vacuum mistakes, click here.

What's the difference between a power brush and turbo brush?

A power brush is driven by electricity while a turbo brush is driven by air.

How often should I vacuum my floors?

Ideally, an area with heavy traffic should be vacuumed every day, but once or twice a week should suffice for most homes. For best results, slowly move the vacuum cleaner over your carpet a few times, going back and forth, and then side to side.

How much should I spend on a vacuum cleaner?

While you may be able to find vacuums under $100, it may not be a good idea to buy a "disposable" model that will only last you a year or two. Think of a vacuum cleaner as any major home appliance and invest in one wisely. Furthermore, make your purchase from someone who specializes in vacuum cleaners as opposed to your local discount store.

What is a central vacuum and what are some of its advantages?

Central vacuums pick up dirt and debris from your home without re-circulating the dirty air. A central power unit is placed in an isolated area such as a basement or garage, and inlet valves are installed in various locations within a home. This power unit is connected through tubing, and plugging the hose into the wall inlet activates the vacuum. There are several advantages to owning a central vacuum, but the main one is convenience. With a central vacuum, there are never any heavy units to pull, push, or drag; no switches; and no electrical cords. All you have to do is move the hose from room to room. Furthermore, central vacuum cleaners offer a cleaner home environment, and they can actually reduce indoor airborne particles such as dust or animal dander. For more information on central vacuums, click here. To see our selection of central vacuums, click here.

What makes a stick or broom vacuum different from a regular vacuum cleaner?

Broom vacuums are often referred to as "stick vacuums" and are similar to upright vacuums in design. However, they are thinner, lighter, and do not employ rollers or beaters. These types of vacuums are suitable for hardwood floors, furniture, curtains, and other tight spaces.

What's the difference between a commercial vacuum and a regular household vacuum?

Commercial vacuum cleaners are designed for heavy-duty pick-up in high traffic areas such as hotels, offices, and restaurants. Unless you need a vacuum for one of these cleaning applications, a residential vacuum cleaner will do just fine. Commercial vacuums are also usually equipped with stronger motors and are constructed of more durable materials such as metal. See our selection of commercial vacuums here.

What is the difference between a carpet shampooer and steam cleaner?

Steam vacuums use steam or steam in conjunction with a detergent solution to clean carpets. They look very similar to upright vacuums, but instead of a bag, they have a tank to hold vacuumed fluid and debris. Most units have rotating heads that agitate dirt out of carpet, and powerful suction then lifts out dirt from the carpet.

Carpet shampooers, on the other hand, are primarily used to fight heavy soil or grease. They combine hot water and a cleaning solution to form a foam that is sprayed directly onto your carpets. Rotating heads massage the carpet to ensure the cleaning solution is absorbed. As a result, dirt rises to the surface and the stain is gently pulled out. Thus, carpet shampooers provide deeper cleaning than regular vacuums or even steam cleaners.

Lastly, there are also hard-floor steam cleaners that use steam that is heated to about 220° F. Because they only utilize water, they're great if you're concerned with chemicals.

Where can I get more information on vacuum cleaners?

Take a look at our vacuum review library to get additional information on vacuum cleaners as well as floor care tips. Don't forget to check out the blog for the latest vacuum information!

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