Is a Canister Vacuum Better Than Upright
It can be confusing to choose a vacuum cleaner.
There is a deluge of designs on the market, each with a different
shape, dust capacity and vacuum motor size. With so many makes and
models these days, how does one begin to choose which vacuum will work
best on a given area?
The first thing to do is to assess the area to
be cleaned. Is there carpeting or hard-flooring? Are there
hard-to-reach areas under office furniture or overhead like
cobweb-strewn corners? Answering some of these kinds of questions can
really narrow down the search for the perfect vacuum cleaner. The
luxury of choosing the bells and whistles (kinds of accessories, or
the size of the actual vacuum motor) can wait until the overall shape
of the vacuum is decided.
Take, for example, an area that is comprised of
mainly carpeting. Cleaning carpeting requires a vacuum cleaner that
has faster airflow because the airflow determines how well dirt gets
sucked out of carpet fibers. One would assume that suction, rather
than airflow, is the determining factor for sucking dirt out, but
suction comes into play more for accessories like hand tools than it
does for broader area cleaning. Therefore, if you are looking at
cleaning carpet and a lot of it, an upright machine with a strong
vacuum motor will clean much better than a canister vacuum ever could.
The other thing that uprights have in their favor when it comes to
carpet cleaning is that the cleaning path is usually much larger than
the floor tools found as attachments on canister vacs, allowing the
operator to clean a wider area in fewer passes and therefore, in less
Canister vacuums certainly have their advantages
in other areas though. If you are looking at cleaning hard-to-reach
areas or things like upholstery where hand-tools are required, nothing
beats the sheer suction power of a canister vacuum. The vacuum motors
of canisters create such pull over a much smaller width that they are
preferable for accessories like upholstery or crevice tools. These
extra attachments can be found on upright vacuums too, but the suction
from uprights is less than what the canisters have to offer. At the
same time, canisters can also have powered floor tools that mimic the
beater-brush action that uprights offer, but the extra motor in the
powered floor tool can add up to an added expense that isn't justified
given the inferior carpet-cleaning capacity of the canister.
The other thing to consider is how comfortable
the operator is with either pushing an upright or pulling a canister
vac. Depending on the model and heaviness of the vacuum motor, an
upright can be tough to push. Likewise, a canister can literally be a
drag-particularly if the vacuum motor is huge. Canisters can be very
handy, but if the wheels aren't well-designed, the whole unit can flop
over and be a nuisance. Longer hoses can help with this problem, but
even hoses will give out with too much stretching over time if the
machine they are attached to is heavy. Upright vacuum cleaners often
have a self-propelling system where the machine actually moves on its
own with relative ease, relieving the operator of some of the heavy
work involved with pushing a unit back and forth.
In conclusion, the very first consideration to
make before you decide to choose a vacuum cleaner should be to look
carefully at the area that needs cleaning. If more than 50% of the
area is carpeting, by all means choose an upright. If there are a lot
of nooks and crannies that require hand tools, opt for the canister.
Taking these things into consideration will ensure choosing the right
machine for the job every time.