There is no doubt we are willing to spend big to banish dust balls from our homes. We have found dirt sensors to be less helpful. Manufacturers suggest they tell you when an area is clean, but these sensors actually indicate only that the vacuum cannot pick up any more dirt in that area. That might encourage you to vacuum past the point of diminishing returns, which could be needlessly tiring and time-consuming.
How Excellent Canister Vacuum Is?
No vacuum cleaner is perfect in every respect. To determine which type suits you best, figure out how you’ll be using your vacuum and which attributes are most important to you. Then look for a model with the best performance, features, and price.
Generally speaking, uprights – the best canister vacuum for carpet has the edge over canisters for deep-cleaning carpeting. Most also do a fine job on bare floors. If you want a vacuum that weighs less than the typical 20 pounds or more, you will find more choices among the uprights than canisters. However, you may sacrifice some cleaning power in opting for a lighter vac. Also, uprights are often cheaper and easier to store than canisters.
Canisters tend to do an excellent job cleaning bare wood or tile floors, but are not as effective on carpets. To get the best performance on carpets, be sure to get a canister with a power nozzle. All the canister vacuums we tested have power nozzles. Canisters are generally better than uprights for cleaning drapes and upholstery because they’re more stable with the hose extended and is more likely to have suction control. Another plus: Most canisters have better clearance for cleaning under furniture and in tight spaces.
Getting along Repair Path
Vacuum cleaners have historically shown rather high repair rates. You can minimize potential problems by choosing a reliable brand. Our brand repair histories have been quite consistent over the years, though they are not infallible predictors. Repair rates for specific models may vary, and products can of course change. The graph shows the percentage of full-size uprights and full-size canisters with a power nozzle that have ever been repaired or had a serious problem. Differences of less than 4 points are not meaningful.
- Vacuum cleaners
The typical upright has: a disposable microfiltration dust bag. Flexible 5- to 7-foot hose, upholstery tool, crevice tool, and brush, all stowed onboard. A 30- to 35-foot power cord with quick-release wrap-around storage. A blower motor protected from jamming, overheating, or electrical overload. Manual carpet pile-height adjustment is at least a one-year warranty on parts and labor.
If an upright is your preference, any of the new models we tested would be a very good choice. There are also fine choices among the top-rated vacuums tested previously and their similar brand mates. It was excellent on both carpeting and bare floors, but only fair when used with its tools. Its HEPA filter did an excellent job reducing dust emissions. However, this 20-pound model was hard to push and (like many uprights) prone to tipping over when the hose was fully extended. You can turn off the brush when using tools to prevent problems, though.
Canister was good overall, excellent on bare floors, and easy to push and carry. But it wasn’t as good as other canisters at cleaning carpets or cleaning with tools, so it ranked lowest among the 11 canisters tested recently. Pluses include an on/off switch for the brush and suction control. But its filter could fall out when a very full bin is removed, allowing contents to spill. Be sure to hold the filter in place or turn it face up during transport of the dust bin.
- And More
Some other brands did an excellent job on bare floors. It was a bit less effective on carpets, but still very good. Although this upright weighs only 9 pounds, it wasn’t easy to carry because the handle is rather high. It isn’t designed for use with cleaning tools, but its separate canister vacuum has attachments. It was also on the noisy side.
Hoover Bagless was the best performer of the bagless vacuums we have mentioned so far. It was very good on carpet and excellent on bare floors, but a bit noisy. It has a HEPA filter and manual pile-height adjustment for deep-cleaning carpets. It’s also very easy to push.