How to choose the right vacuum by Taf Baig Everyone says they use
one... its use is listed in almost every carpet cleaning guide and standard.
Vacuuming a customer’s carpet before cleaning is important.
But don’t just purchase a vacuum cleaner because you found a great deal. You
are a professional and you want a professional-grade vacuum cleaner.
How does the vacuum "look"? You must consider the appearance of your
new vacuum cleaner.
As a professional carpet cleaner, it’s very important that you have an
industrial-looking, heavy-duty vacuum that will show your customers the value of
service you are going to provide.
Remember the marketing saying, "Sell the sizzle, not the steak"? It doesn’t
necessarily have to be a pile lifter, but definitely something your customer
will likely not already have.
Don’t pick on "watts" alone Watts has very little to do with the power
of the vacuum. It is only an indication of the amount of electricity the vacuum
Some vacuum manufacturers will use the wattage listing as a selling point.
Don’t be fooled by how much electricity a vacuum will pull – or not pull.
HEPA or not to HEPA High efficiency particulate air filtration (HEPA)
has become a buzz word these days, but in reality HEPA has nothing to do with
the power of the vacuum or its pickup ability.
Instead, it is the ability of the filter to filter 99.97 percent of particles
that are .3 microns (micrometer) or larger.
When prepping a carpet to be cleaned, pickup ability and removing insoluble
soils are important. HEPA filtering is good, but not as vital. Your carpet
cleaning process will remove smaller, soluble matter.
Green Label or not to Green Label Green Label is a voluntary testing
program for vacuum cleaners that is conducted by the Carpet and Rug Institute
The tests are performed on the vacuum’s ability to efficiently remove soil,
keep the dust in the machine instead of blowing it back out of the bag (cup) and
keeping the carpet looking good.
This test is performed on uprights, canisters, backpacks and even central
If a vacuum has been tested and approved by the Carpet and Rug Institute,
then it will have an IAQ (indoor air quality) green label either on the
packaging or the vacuum.
This is not the only indication of a good vacuum cleaner, but it is a good
gauge in selecting one that has been tested and approved.
Do it yourself test Take some coins, hair, rice, paper clips, and
whatever else you would normally run across when vacuuming to your commercial
Test the vacuum cleaner on those items. In the residential carpet cleaning
market, you will have coins, hair, rice, paper clips and similar items that your
vacuum will have to remove.
Many distributors have a 30-day trial as well.
This is a great way to take one vacuum on some real jobs and see how it
performs. Your own test will give you practical information on how the vacuum
will work for you.
Taf Baig, an IICRC-certified Master Textile Cleaner, started a successful
carpet cleaning company in 1991 and sold it in 2003. He is the founder of the
Magic Wand Company, a carpet cleaning equipment and chemical manufacturer. He
can be reached through his website at www.magicwandco.com.