6 tips for vacuuming the proper way

Regular vacuuming is a necessary part of home maintenance, but many Canadians don't know the proper way to vacuum. Here are six tips that will help you vacuum efficiently and save time.

6 tips for vacuuming the proper way

1. Before you begin

Prepare the area before you begin to vacuum.

  • Start by picking up any small, hard objects — pins, buttons, coins, toys and the like — since such items can be sucked into the vacuum and damage the machine.
  • Once inside, they can clog the filter and damage the fan. Or if a small object becomes lodged in the hose, it can cause the motor to overheat and burn out.
  • Also, give yourself maximum freedom to vacuum in corners and around furniture by putting chairs, wastebaskets and other small furnishings out of the room or atop larger pieces.

2. Use the right attachment

Use the right attachment — the wrong one can do more harm than good.

  • For low-pile carpets and woven or braided rugs, for example, use the bare-floor brush or rug-cleaning tool; the harsh, rotating brushes of a power nozzle could damage them.

3. Clear lint, hair or thread

Clear lint, hair, or thread collected on a vacuum's dusting brush with an old coarse-toothed comb.

  • Cut away more-persistent tangles with a knife, since clogged bristles reduce cleaning action.

4. Use the roller brush adjustment

Use the roller brush adjustment on an upright vacuum so that the brush always rides in proper contact with the carpet's pile.

  • If set too low, the vacuum will be hard to push.
  • If set too high, the sucking effect is diminished and the vacuum cleaner will not gather all the dirt, especially when it is running over debris embedded deep in carpet pile.

5. Make repeated passes

Make repeated passes, going over your carpet three times for a light cleaning, up to seven times for a heavy cleaning.

  • And don't hurry. Move the vacuum slowly, and make overlapping, parallel strokes.
  • Pay special attention to doorways and to areas in front of sofas and chairs. People tend to shift their feet as they sit, loosening dirt from their shoes and grinding it into the carpet.
  • Switch to a different attachment when the tool you are using fails to do a thorough job.
  • The work will seem twice as hard, however, if your hose attachments tend to stick when you're pulling them apart. To make the change easier, rub the joints periodically with waxed paper.

6. Vacuums and dust control

Some vacuums are equipped with HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air Emission) filters. These remove some of the irritants associated with some allergies as air moves through the machine.

  • However, if such allergies plague your household, a HEPA filter alone may not fully solve the problem. Use it as one component in a defence that includes high-efficiency furnace filters, annual cleaning of air ducts and minimal carpeting. Consult an allergy specialist for other strategies.

When you rush through vacuuming, you usually have to go back and clean areas you missed. Instead, take your time and remember these tips to finish your vacuuming the proper way.

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
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