There is no “one-size-fits-all” when it comes to vacuum cleaners, according to Randall Davis, owner of Braintree Vacuum Co. in Quincy, Mass. Upright vacuums are best for carpeting and canister-style vacuums are great for hardwood floors and getting under furniture.
Finding the vacuum cleaner that is right for you depends on the type of flooring you have.
“There is no one-size-fits-all in vacuum cleaners,” said Randall Davis, owner of Braintree Vacuum Co. in Quincy, Mass.
For carpeting, upright vacuums are best, Davis said. Canister-style vacuums are great for hardwood floors and getting under furniture.
Steam vacuums, which release hot, soapy water and suck it back up, are good for carpet cleaning, he said.
“The newest craze is bagless vacuums,” Davis said. “It’s one of the worst things ever foisted on customers.”
He said that while bagless units are marketed as ultra-convenient, users must constantly clean the filters.
Barbara Hallisey, owner of The Vacuum House in Marshfield, Mass., recommends changing bagless filters every three to six months. “The dumping of bagless units is quite messy,” she said, recommending a face mask when doing it.
Vacuum cleaners vary greatly in price. Davis gave a range of $49 to $1,800. “They’re like cars,” he said. “You can buy a Kia or a Mazarati. ... You mostly get what you pay for.”
An economic choice would be to buy a refurbished vacuum, or a vacuum reconstructed with parts from other units. A vacuum that sells for $1,200 new could cost only $250 rebuilt.
If you are a homeowner, Hallisey recommends a central vacuum system. Once it is installed, users can attach a vacuum hose to the wall on any floor level and clean without having to drag or push a unit.
Hallisey estimated that for a 1,800- to 2,000-square-foot home, the cost of a central vacuum would be $1,400 including parts and labor.
Most vacuums come with a one-year warranty, though higher-end models can come with a three-, five- or seven-year warranty. Central vacuum systems often come with a 10-year warranty.
Davis and Hallisey both stressed the importance of buying a vacuum from a store that also has parts and a service department for when your vacuum needs repairs.
Ashlee Fairey may be reached at email@example.com.