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What Type Of Vacuum Should I Use On My Carpet?

By 8 January 2020January 17th, 2020Flooring

This might seem like the daftest title ever for a blog, but bear with us here. Because contrary to popular belief, not all vacuum cleaners are created equal. Oh sure, there are hundreds of brands out there, and they all try to differentiate themselves with unique USP’s, but for the most part those differences are minimal. However, there are certain vacuums that are built better for different types of task, and if you’ve got a particular task in mind, you’re always going to get better results with the right tools. One of the things we see clients struggling with a lot is which vacuum cleaner they should use to keep their carpets clean, and today we wanted to share the answers with you.


Avoid Henry

Don’t get us wrong, Henry Hoover is one of those quintessential British brands that has been around forever and forges a great reputation in the process. It’s also a workhorse that could survive the nuclear apocalypse, which is why it’s a popular choice in UK households. But for carpets, they are the enemy. The harsh suction and incredibly sharp bristles are well known to cause damage to carpet over time, especially light pile or very thin carpets, where the bristles can actually tear through to the padding beneath. The suction and nozzles are also notoriously bad at pulling the pile back up to standing after they flatten it, which means your carpet will wear much quicker than it should and could result in premature balding patches. Besides that, they aren’t really designed to clean carpet effectively – they often leave dirt and grime deep in the carpet, so while the top might look nice and clean, your carpet is still harbouring dirt and germs. This gets worse the thicker your carpet gets, so it’s worth watching out.


To Beat or Not to Beat?

A lot of vacuums nowadays feature a rotating brush as part of the design, known as a beater bar. This bar is designed to agitate the carpet fibres to help loosen soil and dirt buried deep in the pile. While that sounds like a great idea in principle, it might not be the best choice for all carpet types. For example, when used on looped styles of carpet it can damage the fibres, loosening them and causing a ‘fuzzy’ appearance. And if there is a small strand of fibre that has pilled loose, it can get wrapped around the bar and pulled with such force that it pulls several rows, creating a run in the carpet. Far from ideal! Other kinds of carpets that can be damaged by beater bars include frieze styles and carpets made from natural fibres like wool.


Carpet Settings

This might seem obvious, but not all vacuums come with a carpet setting or specific attachment – so it’s important to check yours. And if it does have a carpet setting – use it! The main difference in settings is how close the brush or want comes to the ground. When you vacuum a carpet, the brush will suck the fibres into an upright position, thereby allowing dirt to be sucked up from between the fibres. If you have a shag or deep pile carpet, then the higher setting would leave sufficient space for the fibres to “stand up”, allowing the vacuum to suck up the dirt that’s trapped in the fibres. If you have a low pile carpet (short fibres), then you would use the lower pile setting. The correct setting makes a big difference as it sets up more of a “seal” for the actual vacuum action to properly function.


So What Should I use?

That’s an awful lot about what you should avoid, so what should you actually use to vacuum your carpets? Well, some of it is down to personal preference of course – what you find comfortable to use and what’s within your budget. But if you want to prolong the life of your carpet and make sure it actually gets a good clean, we recommend either a Dyson or a Shark, preferably with a beater bar (unless you have those very loose looped pile carpets we talked about). These brands tend to give the best performance across all models, are very reliable and won’t cause premature wear to your carpet.


To summarise, most brands of vacuum cleaner will have an option that is best for the care and cleaning of carpets, so it’s just a case of finding one you like. All we would say is to stay away from Henry hoovers, as these tend to cause nothing but trouble, and we’ve lost count of the amount of damage we’ve repaired that’s caused by the little red machine! If you would like more information or advice on which vacuum to use on your carpet, or how to take care of a new carpet in your home, just get in touch with the team at Floor24 today and we would be happy to help.

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