Here are a few thoughts about vacuum cleaners. I think the basic differences are between the uprights and the canister types. I’ll admit right here that I prefer the canisters. I grew up with the old Hoover Constellation that came out in the 1950’s. The world was getting excited about space travel and that excitement was showing up in people’s homes. The Constellation was advertised to “float on air.” I remember my mother getting her new upright in the ’70s and how heavy it was. So much has changed. If you are interested in vacuums and their history, you can visit www.137.com , which has a cyber museum with a variety of pictures and information.
Uprights seem to be most practical for wall-to-wall carpeting. There are many now that come with attachments, but I find them awkward to use. The wands are stiff and usually too short. Canister vacuums are more versatile. They are perfect for hardwood and other hard flooring as well as carpeted rooms. They are generally lightweight and easy to maneuver which is important in a two story house. Stairs are often carpeted and if you don’t want to buy two vacuums, you’ll be carrying that baby up and down more than you want to think about. Depending on the model, canisters have four or five attachments to use on an arm of adjustable lengths.
When I got married we were given a small Eureka canister called the “Mighty Mite”. It was satisfactory and gave us no trouble until the day, twelve years later, it completely gave out. I shopped around a bit and decided on the Miele White Star. We have had it for about five years now with no trouble at all. I like the variety of heads it comes with to accommodate any flooring or fabric. One of it’s best features is the infinitely adjustable suction that prevents curtains and other light fabric from being sucked up.
We don’t have allergy problems, but I still appreciate the fact that Miele offers a variety of filters for this model, although some come at additional cost. I discovered that the bags are not available at discount stores like Target, they must be purchased at vacuum stores that specialize in Miele products and are a bit pricey. I believe Miele is discontinuing this model soon, but they are sure to be coming out with a similar one. The newer one will likely have more standard features and be a bit more expensive. That just seems to be the way it goes.
I haven’t tried all the brands available out there, but it seems to me that a vacuum is a fairly straightforward machine and that leaves the consumer deciding on a brand or model for it’s ease of use. If anyone has an opinion they’d like to share about performance, service, or their experience with a particular vacuum, we’d love to hear about it.