Floors get a big workout in any house. So why not make cleaning them quick and easy by investing in the right tools? It’ll save you the time to do the things you most enjoy in your beautifully clean house.
Firstly, let’s get an understanding of how your household works…
Layout and finishes
Do you have a lot of furniture or wide open spaces? Do you have stairs and lots of rooms? Are the ceilings high? What material is your floor? These things are necessary to consider when you’re in the market for a vacuum as there are quite a few extras that will assist you in cleaning your household, such as extendable wands.
When do you clean and how often? How do you like to clean? Do you prefer more or less tools to get the job done?
How busy is your household? Do you have children or pets? Are you constantly picking up Lego pieces or wiping up mud brought in from the football field? How often do you entertain or have kids’ play dates?
Do you have allergies to dust or pet hair? Do you need to be aware of safety feature for young children?
Now, let’s take a look at the different types of vacuums available, and when you’re ready to find your new vacuum, take a look at our floor care product reviews here.
These vacuum cleaners are built to go where you need them – up stairs, hard to reach places and even the car. They have wheels to follow you as you clean and use either a bag or bin to collect the dust and dirt. They have different heads which you can change depending on where you’re cleaning and will work on most surfaces.
When choosing the barrel vacuum that suits your household there are a few things you should consider…
Barrel vacuums collect dirt in one of two ways – a disposable bag or a bin. Whichever one you choose will come down to personal choice, so here are some facts to help you decide:
Less messy to empty
Cleaner filter system due to bag changes
Collects more dirt before it needs to be emptied
Releases less dust into the air when disposing of waste
Quick Tip – If you choose to go with a bag model, make sure you use the manufacturers bags as alternatives may void your warranty.
Easier to see how full the bin is and to find something that’s accidentally been sucked up
No ongoing cost of purchasing a bag
Waste can be dumped in the garden as compost
More environmentally friendly as no bag is required
Longer term cost savings
There are plenty of different features to help make your job easier. Here are some that you should look out for…
Vacuuming is made easier with different attachments. Whilst a normal head suits floors, slim line crevice nozzles or brushes can help you get to hard to reach spots and clean different surfaces.
The pole that is attached to the cleaning head is called a wand. Make sure yours is adjustable so you can change it to suit your height.
Adjustable head height
If you have different floor coverings in your house, having and adjustable head height is useful as you swap from carpet to flat surfaces like wood or tiles.
To vary the strength of the suction for different surfaces, simply flip the vent on the wand.
Dust bag indicator
There’s nothing worse than realizing the reason why the vacuum is not picking up dirt is because the bag is full. A volume indicator is a handy alert so you can be prepared.
This is an important feature as it is used to filter the air coming out of the vacuum. There are plenty of options and a common one suitable for asthma sufferers and those allergic to dust is the HEPA filter. It’s an international standard that traps tiny particles like pollen and dust mite faeces.
Where: Smaller areas for quick cleaning, hard to reach places and car
They are portable and lightweight and perfect for quick cleans and hard to reach places. Some feature both stick and handheld options in one unit.
They are small and can be held in your hand to clean small areas and hard to reach places behind furniture, high shelves or in the car.
Need a hand with cleaning the floors? Then take a look at a robotic vacuum. All you need to do is set it up and let it do the hard work for you. It can operate whenever you want, even when you’re not home. They are ideal for sweeping and gathering surface dust, not for deep suction.
Things to Consider
Whichever vacuum suits your lifestyle you should consider the following…
Cord vs Cordless
Vacuums can either be directly plugged into your electricity or have a rechargeable battery. Either model has different ideal uses…
Endless power supply
Greater suction power
Bigger bin space
Convenience and flexibility of no cord
Great for quick cleans
Useful for hard to reach places
Understand how easy the vacuum is to manoeuvre. Some are designed with specially curved bodies that will right itself if knocked over or wheels that can swivel 360 degrees. A long power cord is also a useful feature, so you don’t have to continually re-plug when you get too far. Another factor to consider is the size and weight of the vacuum. If you need to take it between multiple floors a smaller, lightweight model might suit best. If you have a big house, you may consider a larger model as the bag or bin will have a greater capacity.
If you’re sick of ringing out the mop countless times to get your floors clean, then take a look at steam mops. They use a water boiler to create steam, which loosens grime and then the cleaning head wipes it away.
Make sure they are suitable to use on your floors as they shouldn’t be used on unsealed or waxed timber. Also clean the water reservoir every now and then to ensure it stays clean and free of bacteria and germs.
Important features to look out for…
Refillable water tank that can be used while cleaning
Different types of cleaning pads
Detachable built-in hand cleaner
Stand up feature
Adjustable wand to suit your height
Long power cord
Nozzles and brushes for different surfaces
Fast heat up times
Multi-tasking – pick up dry dirt as well as steam
Safety Tip – Having a stand-up model and a pad to rest it on is highly recommended as it not only protects your floors if you need to pause to answer the phone, but also prevents it from tipping over while heating or cooling.