A Buyers Guide to Vacuum Cleaners

Your vacuum is the piece of cleaning equipment you will use the most frequently (especially if like me you have messy kids!) so it is important to buy one that you are happy with. But with so many different models on the market, how do you know which is the best one for you? These tips should guide you through the tricky terrain of vacuum cleaner buying.

Cylinder or upright?

The more traditional upright vacuum cleaners can deliver better performance when cleaning carpets but are quite cumbersome when carrying around a large house. Cyclinder vacuums are more easily manoeuvrable and more able to clean into small corners and spaces.

Type of flooring

Different floor surfaces require different types of vacuums. Cylinders work better on wooden, tiled or vinyl flooring whereas loop pile or cut pile carpets may need special attachments.

Features to consider

Both bagged and bagless varieties of vacuum are available in the majority of stores and electrical appliance websites such as Electric Shop nowadays. Bagless vacuums have the advantage of being more convenient but can be more expensive (although you save money in the long run by not having to buy bags) whereas bagged models are said to be more hygienic as you can throw away sealed bags.


Look at the wattage of a cleaner to get an idea of its power. This is important on cylinder vacuums were the dust has to travel an especially long way due to its tube design. Lots of upright cleaners have variable power which is useful when cleaning a variety of carpet thicknesses.


A choice of charcoal, stage, lifetime and HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) filters are featured on different types of vacuums. Stage filters use between 3 to 7 stages achieving a varying level of sophistication. Lifetime filters will last for the 7-10 year lifespan of your vacuum. HEPA are known to be the best filters for users who suffer from allergies and charcoal filters effectively neutralise smells which is handy if you have pets.

Alternative cleaners


A variation from the standard home vacuum cleaner, handheld cleaners are more likely to be used for cleaning furniture, interiors of cars or stairs. They are handy and portable but suffer from a lack of power and dust capacity.

Steam cleaners

The choice of professionals, steam cleaners powerfully remove stains and dirt from carpets but do require extended periods of time to dry so they are not the most convenient form of cleaner.

Wet and Dry Cleaners

Multi-purpose wet and dry cleaners come with a range of adaptors to enable with to fulfill a number of roles such as unblocking sinks or sucking up smaller bits and pieces on a variety of surfaces.

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