You are probably using the wrong vacuum cleaner.

While you may think any store-bought model is fine, there’s actually a chance it’s not cleaning as well as you might think.

Vacuuming has many health benefits and if you suffer from allergies or have a lot of carpets in your home, choosing the right vacuum can help create a significantly cleaner environment.

This guide will break down the different varieties and types of vacuums available so you can learn the options and pick the right one for your needs.

The Different Types of Vacuum Cleaners

Do you prioritize health, cost, or performance?

Before going over the types, it’s important to understand the different varieties available since each provides their own unique advantages.


While bagged vacuum cleaners seem old-fashion, updates in technology have made them a viable option especially for people who suffer from allergies.

The bags help keep all the allergens and contaminants contained so that when it comes to disposal, they aren’t thrown back into the air. And unlike bagless models, you don’t need to clean the filter as often saving you time and effort.

The main disadvantage is that each bag you use is thrown away so you will need to purchase more bags. This cost can add up over time so only go for this option if the advantages are worth it.


Bagless vacuum cleaners, by comparison, are a much more inexpensive option.

Unlike the bagged option, you can see how much space is left in the container which is useful for ensuring you don’t overfill it. Once the dust container is full, you simply empty the contents into the trash.

On the downside, these require more occasional cleaning and the process of emptying the container can throw dust and other contaminants back into the air.


Cordless vacuums are more convenient to move around making cleaning an easier task.

However, the battery time is limited so these are usually only effective in apartments, smaller homes, or for quick cleaning.


If you’re one of the 79 million cat or dog owners in the US, your home is likely to be covered in fur that is difficult to remove.

You may also have found that most vacuum cleaners, regardless of their type, are incapable of sucking a lot of fur up. Fortunately, you can buy specialized vacuums for pets that are engineered with stronger suction with some models even designed to avoid tangles.

Although more expensive, the joy of having a cleaner home free of fur is something many find worth the extra cost.

As you go through the list below, bear in mind that you can find almost any of the above varieties for the types mentioned.

The Deep Cleaners

Created for powerful suction and able to pull up the most clingy dust and dirt from your carpets, these vacuums are popular because they’re effective.

Upright Vacuum Cleaners

These models are easy to use and come with a variety of attachments to help you clean every part of your home.

When looking at this option, research the different brands to ensure you find one with the right accessories and features.

For example, some have settings you can switch between making it more effective for cleaning smooth floors or carpets. There are even models that allow you to adjust the height depending on the thickness of your carpets and rugs.

Just be aware that they do tend to come with fewer accessories and are heavier to push and pull when compared to other types of vacuums.

Canister Vacuum Cleaners

Versatile and powerful, these types are excellent for a wide range of cleaning around the home.

Rather than having to move the entire machine to vacuum, canisters have long hoses making it very convenient for moving around and getting into tough spots.

They also tend to come with the most accessories allowing you to adapt the hose to suit your cleaning needs.

However, it can be cumbersome to move the canister from room to room and the weight can be difficult for some to carry upstairs. Also, the slackness of the hose can make these painful for those with back issues and the size of the canister can make them tricky to store.

The Lightweights

There are many advantages to these types. They’re much lighter, often cheaper, and are a great alternative if your apartment or home is small with little to no carpeting.

Stick Vacuum Cleaners

Thin and easy to use, these vacuum models are excellent alternatives to the bulky, heavy options mentioned above.

Their small heads and simple design make them great for sliding underneath tables, sofas, and other tight spaces. This feature also makes them much easier to store away after use. Some models even feature the ability to detach into a handheld for extra convenience.

Of course, it’s worth noting that these models have considerably less suction so will be much less effective on thick carpets and rugs. Also, their slim design means less space for dust meaning they require more frequent emptying.

Handheld Vacuum Cleaners

A quick and effective type, these vacuums are very useful for those annoying moments you spill crumbs all over the floor or just want to clean a small area.

Rather than having to lug out a giant vacuum or bend over to sweep up, these help save you time and effort with their simple, lightweight design. They can also be used for cleaning your car with some corded models featuring a car adapter so you don’t need to worry about battery life.

However, they are naturally poor options for cleaning large areas of the home and ineffective at reaching the dust deep in your carpets. Because of this, many people choose to have a full-sized vacuum and a handheld to enjoy the best of both worlds.

Robot Vacuum Cleaners

best robotic vacuum

When it comes to light cleaning, you can’t get a more stress-free option than these useful models.

Similar in strength to a handheld, these clever robots navigate your floors sucking up any loose dust and debris as they go. Lightweight and small, they easily get into hard-to-reach places saving you time to relax. There are also options to purchase models that you can control or even program to turn on while you’re away from home.

The main downside to these is their expensive price tag and the fact that you’ll still have to use a larger vacuum for deeper cleaning.

Buy Smart

While you can get by on cheaper models, finding the perfect vacuum can completely change the freshness and cleanliness of your home. Knowing the different types of vacuums available will make your decision much easier when looking to get your next model.

Before you start your search, just ensure you take some time to consider your needs and the type of space you live in.

In the meantime, read up on these vacuuming tips and tricks and other useful articles to keep your home clean and tidy.

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