Nobody likes doing the vacuuming! There are so many more fun things you could be doing.
It has to be done though, so why not make the most effective use of vacuuming time? Get the perfect vacuum cleaner for your needs. It will do a better job in a shorter time and you can get back to more important things.
So which one is for you? Which is the best vacuum of 2018?
While once it was dominated by one brand and choosing was fairly simple, there is now a big range to select from, making it a challenge to find the right one. But, don't worry, read this guide, and you will be able to choose the perfect one easily.
*Note that on this guide, we only discuss about the primary vacuum cleaners for home. If you are looking for secondary or specialty models such as car or handheld vacuums, please click here!
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Table of Contents
Types of vacuum cleaners
Regular home vacuum cleaners, excluding specialty models like wet and dry or hand vacuums, can be categorized into two types: Upright and Canister.
The upright vacuum cleaner is an immediately recognizable icon of household cleaning. Turn on any sitcom form the 60’s and at some stage you would see one being pushed around.
The upright has a cleaning head attached to a handle with which it is directed. Mounted on the handle is the bag or plastic dust receptacle, in the case of bagless. The motor is either a part of the cleaning head or mounted above the bag.
One notable feature of the upright vacuum is that it employs a rotary brush in the cleaning head. Powered by its own motor, the brush sweeps up particles on any floor type as it vacuums. This double action makes it an effective cleaner of even the plushest carpets or rugs.
On top of that, brushes can be turned off for use on polished surfaces such as hardwood floors also. Most models combine several additional cleaning attachments to make it more than just a floor cleaner.
The canister vacuum is a completely different unit. The motor and bag (or dust receptacle) are housed in separate unit from the cleaning head. That unit features wheels that enable it to be pulled behind the user as they clean while the cleaning head is connected to the motor by a flexible hose.
Cleaning heads can be interchanged with ease. The basic cleaning head uses suction only to clean. However, some models have a brush unit powered by the suction of the motor or by their own motor to provide a similar performance to that of the upright cleaner. Different sized heads are also available.
The versatility of the canister is that with the log hose and variety of cleaning heads you can clean in higher and more difficult spots as well as confined spaces and under furniture.
Which vacuum should I get for which type of cleaning?
The best way to determine which vacuum will be best suited to your home is to have a look around. What different flooring surfaces do you have? How big are they? Do you have stairs? Is there a lot of furniture to get around or under?
Apart from the floors, are there shelves, fans or blinds that you may need to vacuum? This should be a secondary consideration though.
Once you’ve looked at this you can get a better idea of what you need.
For example, stairs can be a big factor in choice between upright and canister vacuum cleaners. The design of an upright makes it difficult to navigate stairs and the larger rotary brush cleaning head would be less effective for getting into stair corners. The basic cleaning head on a canister would be far more suitable and the unit would be easier to move up and down stairs.
The types of floors should be a consideration too. A combination of flooring types must consider the flexibility of both models. Thick carpets would benefit from the powerful brushes of an upright to dislodge dirt and hair from carpet fibers.
Polish floors however, may get scratch from these brushes so it is important to be able to turn them off on an upright cleaner or have a cleaning head without them on a canister unit.
In addition, it is also very important to consider the amount of traffic and type of soiling that may occur, and if vacuuming carpet or rugs what type of fibers they are made of.
Traffic and carpet soils
Traffic refers to how many and how often people will walk down a particular segment of floor.
A hallway is an area that would attract higher traffic than others as it is the main path to multiple rooms. High traffic areas, particularly carpeted ones, will attract more soiling as well as increased wear. To combat this, as well as regular vacuuming, removing shoes before walking in these areas is advised.
Carpet soils are simply dirt or particles that are brought in on people’s shoes. The dirt and particles, however small, can be abrasive to carpet fibers, especially in high traffic areas. It is this abrasion of fibers that makes carpets look dirty and dull.
Additionally, pet hair can be an issue with carpets. If not removed regularly it can embed in the carpet almost becoming knotted, again making the carpet look dirty.
Homes with more people, such as big families are more likely to have high traffic and soiling. As such they should choose a more powerful vacuum cleaner to combat this and increase the life of the carpets. Alternatively, low traffic low soil houses can use a lower performance option.
Traffic and carpet soils
As much as traffic and soiling can do damage to a carpets appearance without regular vacuuming, not considering the carpet fibers you have when choosing your vacuum can be just as damaging.
Carpets can be mad from synthetic and natural fibers. Synthetic fibers such as nylon are more common and more durable. They are perfect for high traffic areas and are usually the choice for many family homes. The advantage when it comes to vacuuming is that they can stand up to the harshest of cleaners without suffering from fiber damage.
On the other hand, natural fibers need a more delicate touch. Fabrics like wool or even silk in the case of some oriental rugs. These fabrics can also be durable, some revolving brushes are ok to use on these fibers but only if they have soft bristles. Harder bristles will cause damage to the yarn.
Valuable rugs should not have any brushes used on them at all and be cleaned only with a suction cleaning head.
Extra plush carpets and other flooring materials such as sisal, may need specialty cleaning heads to clean them properly. It is best to check the product guide for the best results on specialty flooring. Be sure to pick a vacuum cleaner that can accommodate the needs of you most hard wearing and most fragile floor surfaces.
Bag or bagless?
An option that has become a more prominent feature in more recent years is the ‘bagless’ option. Rather than having a bag that holds everything that is sucked up by the vacuum cleaner that can then be disposed of in the trash, the bagless vacuum cleaner has a container that can be emptied.
The advantage of the bagless is that it doesn’t have any replaceable bags that you need to purchase regularly. However, some sufferers of asthma, hay fever or allergies usually prefer the sealed nature of the bagged option. When emptying a bagless container the dust collected can often become airborne again.
Often the bagless unit will also use filters that may require additional cleaning and the seal provided by bagless vacuums can make it difficult to stop some of the air going back out into the air.
Modern design has remedied all of these somewhat by offering bottom emptying containers that dump dust directly into the bin, minimizing dust clouds. Some models incorporate a self-cleaning filtration system or cyclonic separation (to remove a need for a filter) and additional seals to again minimize dust becoming airborne. The dust bag type of vacuum cleaner is still the best option for asthma sufferers, however.
Corded or cordless?
Anybody who has used a vacuum cleaner has tangled furniture, the vacuum cleaner or even themselves in the power cord. But a vacuum needs power and if it’s not plugged in where does it come from?
Obviously it’s a battery. While once cordless was the realm of small hand vacuums only, there are now many cordless options with rechargeable lithium batteries available.
So why would you still buy a vacuum cleaner with a cord?
It all comes down to run time. You are limited to how long the unit can operate for. Units only run for about half an hour and can have recharge times longer than run times. If only cleaning a small apartment or one room at a time it is an easy option, but large houses could require multiple recharges or additional batteries.
What to expect in a good vacuum cleaner?
If you will be using your vacuum as a primary cleaner, you need one that:
- allows you to clean around furniture, as extra moving can damage the flooring;
- scrubs and cleans in addition to providing suction;
- is easy to empty;
- is easy to use - if it's not, you won't be cleaning your floors as often as you should; and
- has a long enough cord to reach all areas.
Some of these specifications are definitely true for all vacuums you seek, but pay extra attention to the features specifically intended for tile and wood. Your standard carpet vacuum won't have these features.
Best Vacuum Cleaner of 2018
Our team has searched the internet and compiled a list of the best vacuums for cleaning your tile floors, and provided you with the details so you can make an informed purchase.
Hoover FloorMate SpinScrub with Bonus Hard Floor Wipes
Hoover is a well-respected brand that is almost synonymous with good, clean floors. This particular model has a 3-in-1 bagless system that allows you to vacuum, scrub, and dry your floors with the same machine. The revolutionary counter-rotating SpinScrub brushes have a mighty - yet gentle - cleaning power that will attack dirt from all angles without damaging your flooring. The extra long power cord with quick release features allows you to clean an entire room without having to move the plug – a must. For around $120 and meeting all the necessary standards, this is the epitome of clean.
BISSELL PowerEdge Pet Hard Floor Corded Vacuum, 81L2A
Like the Hoover, this brand is well known for providing quality machinery that makes cleaning a breeze. This particular vacuum was specifically designed with hard flooring in mind – eliminating the need for attachments or broom-assisted vacuuming. The V-shaped cleaning head allows you to get into corners effectively and efficiently, while channeling larger debris into the center of the V. It can work over low pile area rugs and around furniture legs, which minimizes the time spent on each room. Partnered with a 20-foot cord and an easy-to-empty dirt cup, this vacuum is a steal at only $49.99.
Eureka 3670G Mighty Mite Canister Vacuum
This vacuum was designed with convenience in mind, and as such it excels at both home and automotive cleaning. The addition of such accessories as a dusting brush and an upholstery nozzle guarantee that it will allow you to detail your car's interior with ease, while the deluxe floor brush and bare floor nozzle help to clean your hard surfaces at home. The lightweight, compact canister is easy to empty, although smaller – it is certainly best when you are able to keep up with cleaning demands, but less suited for large all-at-once jobs. It offers a full-length 20 foot cord to allow you a better range than many car vacuums, while the built-in automatic shut-off ensures that you won't damage the machine by overheating. For around $60, it's a bit pricey for an automotive vacuum, but if you're looking for a budget tool that can handle both your kitchen and your car, it'll be tough to beat.
So, which vacuum takes first place as the overall winner? You simply can't beat the Hoover on this one. It won't be efficient for cleaning your car, like the Eureka, and it won't fit as well around your furniture as the Bissell, but if you want a true clean, this is the only one on our list that keeps the clean water separate from the dirty water and can actually replace both your mop and your broom – without the need for you to scrub your floors the hard way. Truly, the Hoover FloorMate lives up to all the expectations set by the brand, and will ensure that your floors are as clean as they can possibly be.