How to Choose the Best Vacuum for Professional Cleaning
As as an owner and operator of a janitorial business, I understand the importance of having the right vacuum for the job. Many people think that a vacuum is just a vacuum, but know better. To me, it may be the single most important piece of equipment in my cleaning arsenal. Having the right vacuum is important, but don't be fooled into thinking that there is one “best” vacuum. In reality, there are different vacuums for different purposes. I, myself, own a few vacuums. My advice for someone starting out in the cleaning industry would be to invest in a quality vacuum… or two. If you are getting into the office cleaning or residential cleaning business (or would just like to clean your home more efficiently) I would strongly recommend getting a quality backpack vacuum. A backpack vacuum will be a lifesaver. In fact it will quickly pay for itself by making you much more efficient/ Before, I got my current backpack vacuum, I had to lug around dust mops, brooms, and a dustpan. Now I can effortlessly vacuum hard floors, most carpets, stairways, cobwebs on the ceiling, blinds, and almost everything else. The best part, is that I don't have to stoop or bend over at all. Plus the long wand, allows me to easily vacuum under furniture and get into each and every crevice. If you have to vacuum all day, the backpack vacuum will literally save your back because it virtually eliminates having to bend at the waist.
If all you have to clean is commercial carpet, or low pile carpet, the backpack vacuum may be all the vacuum you may need. However, if you do move-out cleaning you may also want a quality upright vacuum. An upright vacuum has a brush roll which many backpack vacs do not. A good brush roll is essential in getting out hair from carpet – especially if the carpet in thicker. For a quality upright vacuum, I would recommend getting a commercial model, as they are more durable, can be repaired more easily, and have electrical components designed to operate for much longer periods. Vacuums designed for home use are not made to run continuously for several hours. They will probably overheat and short out.
Another factor to consider is whether the upright vacuum has a single motor, or is a dual motor vac. The single motor uses a belt to redirect extra power from the vacuum motor to drive the brush roll. Whereas, the dual motor vac has two separate motors – one powering the suction, and the other powering the brush roll. The advantage of the dual motor vac is that it has more power, the brush roll works better, and also the belts do not break. I would advise getting a dual motor vac if you can. Pro Team, Nobles, and Royal all make excellent dual motor vacuums.
Another thing to consider when buying a vacuum is its power. There is a lot of confusion about how to measure vacuum power. Many vacuums advertise that they are 15 amps or whatever. This is a meaningless distinction. This measurement only tells you how much electricity a vacuum uses. A lot of low quality, weak vacuums will use a lot of electricity, while other high quality vacuums use less electricity – they are simply more efficient. Another misleading measurement is water lift.
Water lift is important for a wet vacuum, or a carpet extractor (carpet cleaning machine) because it measures how well the vacuum can suck when it has an airtight seal. The famous Oreck demonstration lifting a bowling ball with the vacuum is a demonstration of water lift. However, in regular vacuuming you cannot get an airtight relationship with the surface because the vacuum is a small distance from the surface. In reality for dry vacuuming, what you really want to know is the airflow which is measured in CFM (cubic feet per minute). If you go to a professional retailer of vacuums like cleanfreak.com or jondon.com, they will list it's CFM. Hope this has been helpful.