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Best Vacuum Cleaners For Carpet
For Required Carpet Care & Maintenance
With so many vacuums on the market, it can be hard to figure out which one is the best for your home. From cordless vacuums for carpets to popular vacuum models and features, this guide will provide you with tips and tricks on finding the perfect vacuum cleaner. You'll also learn about when you should vacuum, as well as which cheaper models to avoid in order to get the most bang for your buck.
Why is Vacuuming So Important?
Most Carpets don't wear out, they "Ugly-Out!"
"Ugly-out" is a common term used for any carpet that suffers from the damaging effects of abrasion, or when loses it's shine and mats down, especially along main traffic lanes, down hallways and stairs.
Once your carpet fibers lose their shine, they start to look dull and dingy and that is what makes your new carpet appear worn out. Unfortunately, there is nothing you can do to make your ugly, dull carpet look like-new again.
Dirt, grit and grime is the main reason why carpet fibers lose their shine. It's the grit from embedded dirt and dust that grinds into the carpet pile that causes of the loss of carpet shine.
Frequent vacuuming and regular professional cleanings is the secret to keeping your carpet looking like-new as long as possible! Visit my Carpet Care Guide to learn how to make your carpet last years longer.
Q. How Often Should I Vacuum?
How Many People / Pets Live in Your Home?
Do you have three people and a dog living in your home? Then you should vacuum your carpet about four times a week! Some folks might need to vacuum everyday! More people means more vacuuming.
This is the minimum you should vacuum per week and more vacuuming may be necessary if you:
This means you should be vacuuming almost everyday. But vacuuming everyday won't help if you don't have a good quality vacuum or if your vacuum is not operating at it's peak efficiency.
If your vacuum is not doing a good enough job, the dirt that penetrates the nap of your carpet will begin grinding away at the fibers.
This leads to dulling of the color and matting and crushing of the pile, which in turn makes your carpet appear worn-out fast. And once your carpet starts looking dingy, nothing can be done to make it return it's original like-new appearance.
There's more to maintaining your carpet than just dealing with the problem of dirt and dust penetrating the nap of your carpet, small children and active teens can significantly increase the daily wear and tear on your carpets.
Running, jumping, dancing, and other common activities are very hard on carpet. Rigorous activities force dirt and debris deep into the nap, often too deep for some older or less-powerful vacuums to remove.
Enough Vacuum Suction Power?
Abrasion is the main cause of carpet wear. You can see the effects of abrasion most obvious in the hallways or other main traffic lanes. Carpet fibers can only tolerate a certain amount of abrasion before they start to show the damaging effects.
While diligent vacuuming won't undo damage caused by active kids, it will help reduce the damaging effects by removing the majority of gritty sand-like dirt and debris.
It takes quite a bit of suction to remove all the deep down dirt and grit, especially from carpets that have a pile height of more than 1/2". If your carpet is thicker than that, you will need to have a vacuum with serious suction power.
Go Slow and Steady
It is also important that your regimen involves doing a thorough vacuum job, not just a quick two-minute chore. Go slow and run the vacuum in more than just one direction. It should take about five minutes to vacuum a standard 12' x 15' bedroom. Larger areas will require more time and effort to do the job properly.
One sure-fire way to tell if you are vacuuming long enough is to do a second vacuuming to see how much dirt and debris you didn't remove the first time. Of course you will need to empty your bag or canister after the first vacuuming to see what you find after the second pass. This can be an eye opening adventure, great for teaching kids!
Which Carpet Vacuum Should I Buy?
Depending on the carpet style you buy, some carpet manufacturers might suggest that you use a vacuum without a beater bar or roller brush. They fear that carpet will become damaged by the revolving brushes.
This is true with some Berbers and other looped style carpets. The carpet warranty may be voided if you do not follow their carpet care instructions to the letter.
Some carpet manufacturers warn against using a vacuum with too much suction and will not cover any carpet damage if this should happen.
I think that if a carpet can be sucked apart with a residential quality vacuum, the carpet is not made well enough and should be avoided. Who wants to buy a carpet that will fall apart just from using a good quality vacuum? Not me!
Popular Carpet Vacuum Brands
It was way back in 1906 when the Kirby vacuum was invented. Then, in 1955 the Rainbow vacuum was introduced. Salespeople would go door to door offering free demonstrations of these vacuums. These were heavy duty and quite costly, yet they could easily last a lifetime.
The most common vacuum brands offered today are Bissell, Shark, Eureka, Dyson, Miele and Hoover. They all have several models to choose from and prices that cater to practically every budget.
It might be a good idea to ask your friends, neighbors, co-workers and family members what vacuum experiences they have and consider their advice or suggestions.
There are plenty of good quality vacuums available today at a reasonable cost. I don't personally recommend any one model or brand in particular. You have to decide which vacuum will meet your household needs.
In My Home....
I own a Dyson Vacuum. It cost $549 at Bed Bath and Beyond. It has been quite handy and a very powerful vacuum for our growing family. It has easy to use attachments and my wife loves it too. With four teens and two cats in the house, we needed a super powerful vacuum to deal with all the long hair, pet fur and pounds of tracked in dirt and grit.
Dyson has several new models to choose from, including models designed for those with pets, that's the one we purchased for our family.
Invest in a Good Quality Vacuum
Cheap vacuums don't last or perform very well. That $89 vacuum advertised at a discount store won't do the job. You have to consider the cost of your vacuum in relation to the increased lifespan of your carpet. A good quality vacuum can literally help your carpet last years longer. Using a poor quality vacuum or not vacuuming enough can cause your carpet to lose as much as half of it's intended life span.
Check Your New Carpet Warranty!
Some carpet manufacturers say the Dyson vacuum is too powerful and can cause damage to the carpet pile. This is often the case they say, with looped Berber carpet styles. Personally I've had no problems with it but I do hear it can happen. I don't think it happens as often with a looped Berber made of Nylon as much as it would with Berbers made with the Olefin fiber.
Carpet manufacturers can use any number of reasons to deny your carpet defect claim and when they do, homeowners are usually left holding the bag, meaning that the claim was denied. Using the wrong vacuum is just another reason they can use to deny your warranty claim.
So please read your new carpet warranty and follow their maintenance requirements to the letter. It could help you increase your carpet's lifespan and avoid future problems.
New High-Tech Vacuums
Gone are the days where all a vacuum had to do was suck up loose dirt. Today's new technology allows the vacuum to help clean the air, remove pollutants, pollen, mites, and even kill bacteria with the new UV light feature.
Still, there are two main features that your vacuum must be able to perform well:
One: To beat and/or brush the carpet to help loosen dirt, dust and debris. This is why it is important to have a beater bar / roller brush on your vacuum.
Many canister type vacuums do not have a beater bar and therefore do not do a sufficient job of removing dirt.
Two: To have sufficient suction to remove all the dirt and debris trapped in the carpet pile. The suction power of vacuums is determined by the motor amperage or amps.
Older model vacuums used to get plugged up and lose suction power as soon as the bag became full. Newer models use a cyclonic effect that prevents the vacuum from losing it's suction power when the dirt container gets full.
Vacuum Features, Options and Benefits
Beyond these two basic functions, every other added feature you may opt to have on your vacuum just makes using your vacuum more fun, easier to use, and makes you feel better about what it cost you.
You don't have to spend more to get features you don't need so consider your situation carefully.
It's like buying a car, you can pay extra to get air conditioning if you want, but you may not need to if you live in Alaska. Here are some of the options you may want to consider having on your next vacuum:
Carpet Vacuum Maintenance and Repair
No matter what the vacuum maker says in their ads, all Vacuums require regular care and maintenance and unless you can do this yourself, you need to have your vacuum serviced on a regular basis.
In my home, my daughters all have long hair and it gets wrapped up around the roller brush / beater bar. I have to remove the hair several times a year.
Finding the right vacuum cleaner is very important. The best vacuum will have features that suit your needs as well as have the capability to do a good job of cleaning your carpets, furniture and other household duties.
Easy To Use and Not Too Heavy
You need to have a vacuum that is simple and easy to operate and has the features you need to help you get the job done properly and efficiently.
I have found that if a vacuum is too complicated to use or too heavy, no one will enjoy operating it, especially teenagers. If everyone in your household dislikes using it, your carpet will not get the deep-cleaning it requires.
Your Vacuum, Proper Care and Your New Carpet Warranty?
You must follow your carpet manufacturer's carpet cleaning guidelines to the letter if you want to keep you carpet warranty in force.
You can clean your carpets yourself if you keep all the receipts for cleaning solutions and detailed records. Before and after photos would be nice to have too. Otherwise, you should hire a professional to clean your carpets every 12 to 18 months.
Keep the sales receipts! Read your carpet warranty and follow the carpet maintenance suggestions to the letter. Visit my Carpet Care Guide to learn how to make your carpet last years longer.