How to Pick a Vacuum For Both Carpet and Hardwood Floor

Carpet on top of hardwood

This can be a tricky question to answer. It seems most vacuums these days tout themselves as being all-purpose, but we’ve all learned from experience that some work better than others.

What things should you look for when when picking out your next floor monster?

What are some of the different types of vacuums out there, and what makes them unique?

Flooring Types and Quantities

How many individual floors and types of floor makes a huge difference. Is your house mostly hardwood, carpet, or 50/50? Do you have a lot of stairs? Do you have a lot of flooring, or is your home more compact?

Is my hardwood hard?

Wooden floors come in tons of varieties. Some are softer than others, protectively coated, or have deep groves (that are a pain to clean). Knowing if your floor is softer is important in deciding on your next Dustbuster. For example, if your wood floor is soft, they an upright (as we’ll see later) might scratch it up too much. Know your floor.

Knowing your floor types is important when looking at vacuum types. Each category of vacuum has it’s own emphasis:

Types of Vacuums

Upright Vacuums (Carpet masters)

Upright vacuums are an all-in-one piece. They can stand on their own for convenient storage and typically have powerful suction, a hose attachment, and decent filtration system. A con is they tend to have pretty rough bristles (not good if you mostly have hardwood) and you have to push their full weight. They can be heavy; some bagged uprights weigh over 20 pounds!

Canister Vacuums (The wood wonders)

Canisters have a hose attached to a mobile engine. It looks something like the barrel you’d use for bobbing for apples. They’re two connected pieces, which makes mobility easier and is great for hardwood. Typically, Canister Vacuums come with a variety of heads, to make cleaning on different surfaces a great deal easier. However, they are bulkier and can be harder to store.

Stick Vacuums (pet handlers, small clean up)

Stick Vacuums are pretty similar to an upright, but smaller and fall into the category of portable vacuum cleaners. They have reasonable sucking power, but are typically quite small, often battery powered, and generally designed for spot-cleaning. They’re a great choice for a more compact home or studio apartment. However, they generally shouldn’t replace your main vacuum. You can learn more about portable vacuum cleaners over at Mailoref.

Robotic Vacuums (better it than me)

The main pro of a robot vacuum is that it does the work while you do something else. You get what you pay for; more expensive models can do more sophisticated things like cord avoidance and app control. They don’t have the suction power of an upright though. Better for hardwood dominate and low-carpet set ups.

The Decision

The vacuum best suited to your individual needs will depend on your carpet set up, but generally uprights are good for mostly carpet houses, canisters handle hardwood and stairs well, sticks do small jobs, and robots do the job on small carpet and wood so you don’t have to. Phew, that was so much easier!

Quick Tip: Be sure to keep an eye for sales and discounts. It’s not uncommon these days to see vacuum sales of 10-20% or more. May help you fight the urge to wait until black Friday to get a good deal.