When it comes to cleaning, stairs are the bane of any homeowner’s existence. These high-traffic areas often attract the most dirt in your house and yet, thanks to their often constrained space and numerous nooks and crannies, are often the hardest surface to clean. This is doubly so if your stairs happen to be carpeted since, unlike the wide open area that your floor provides, your narrow stairs are often extremely difficult to place a vacuum on.
That’s why we’re going to take a moment here to survey a few different types of vacuum cleaners and determine which vacuum type is your best bet for stair cleaning.
One of the most recognizable forms of vacuum cleaner is the humble “upright” model. Upright models typically consist of a base module which holds the brushes and other “vacuum-ey” components and a long handle on which the bag or holding tank is mounted. The user operates the vacuum by grasping the handle and using it to push the base along the ground, sucking up dirt as it goes.
While this type of vacuum is highly efficient at cleaning floors, there are some obvious disadvantages when it comes to tackling your stairs. These vacuums tend to be heavy and cumbersome to lift on each individual step, and the bases are usually too wide to comfortably sit on the step in the first place. Some upright vacuums try to mitigate this by offering a hose attachment, but those hoses are more often than not far too short to be of any real use.
A more classic approach to floor cleaning is the “canister” model of vacuum. In this type of machine, the bag/tank and vacuum components are all mounted in a single large “canister” module, which typically sits on small wheels on the floor.
The user takes a handle mounted on a long hose and runs that along the floor to perform cleaning, while the canister gets pulled behind them. When it comes to cleaning stairs the canister vac has some advantages over an upright. Since the model relies on a hose attachment to do its job, that hose tends to be much longer. Further, the end of the handle is usually much narrower and therefore a lot easier to run across a stair step.
Despite all of this, a canister vacuum still isn’t the best choice. Even though the hose is longer than an upright it’s still usually not long enough to accommodate an entire flight of stairs, and since the canister is usually very heavy and unwieldy it’s not really practical to drag it all with you as you climb your stairway.
That brings us to, what I believe, is the best option for getting your stairs cleaned: a portable cordless vacuum. These handheld battery driven units are often overlooked because of their relatively weaker sucking power and lower bin capacity, but their mobility and flexibility of operation more than make up for it.
Unlike the other types of vacuums discussed, a cordless vacuum is lightweight and easy to move from step to step. The nozzle of most cordless vacs is extremely narrow. So narrow, in fact, that you’ll not only be able to comfortably clean your stair’s surface, but also its risers and the tight corners where two steps meet.
With all that in mind, it’s plain to see why a cordless vacuum is the best fit for cleaning your stairs. A typical cordless vac should have more than enough battery capacity to clean several flights of stairs in one go, allowing you to get the task done in a much shorter time overall than you would with a traditional vacuum cleaner. While they may not be ideal for general floor cleaning, a cordless vacuum is a must-buy addition for any home.
March 7, 2017