What is a HEPA filter and do I need one for my vacuum cleaner?

HEPA is an acronym that stands for High Efficiency Particular Air (filter). HEPA is a marker to indicate a particular quality of filter that is utilized for those who suffer from allergies or have health afflictions. These HEPA filters are not only used for vacuum cleaners, but also air purifiers. Those who require air that is not burdened by dander, lint, and dust utilize HEPA filters because they are capable of cleaning up more dust, dirt, and dander than other filters. While HEPA filters are not necessary for everyone. It is hard to imagine why you would want to keep a higher percentage of dirt and dust floating about when you have a clear solution. It is not only that fact, but also that the point of owning a vacuum is to keep one’s house clean. With a HEPA filter, one is capable of keeping their floors, stairs, and anywhere else carpeted more cleanly.

So what is a HEPA filter? True HEPA filters are filters that pass a test. This test is designed to calibrate their ability to pick up particles. If a filter is capable of capturing 99.97% of particles that are 0.3 microns or larger, then the filter passes the test. When it passes, it is given the distinction of being HEPA worthy. While the particle filtering ability may seem a bit overly drastic, for those who suffer from allergies this is not the case. Those who have severe respiratory ailments also require such high-quality filters.

Be aware that there are HEPA-like filters. These filters are designed as if they are HEPA filters. Furthermore, they may be made to look almost exactly like HEPA filters. However, these filters are often not put through the same test and standards of HEPA filters. Because of this, they are often inferior products that will not meet the standards necessary for some. These filters are often bought because they are less expensive than true HEPA filters. They will generally pick up 80-90% of the partials a HEPA filter can. While this may be enough for some, those who have severe allergy or repertory ailments should avoid HEPA knockoffs.

If you are concerned that you may be purchasing a knockoff, simply check for the testing result information on the side of the filter. If the filter says 99.97% or better, then it is HEPA quality. It should be noted that HEPA filters have different ratings. You can ask your sales clerk or a HEPA representative to specify the separate rating levels. However, most are posted clearly on the sides of the filters. Double-check the test for a 0.3-micron limit so you can be sure it is a true HEPA filter. Eliminating particles is also simply a great way to make your home cleaner. If health and cleanliness are of utmost importance to you, then a HEPA filter may be the best choice for you.


Upright vacuum or canister vacuum

Which one to pick – Upright Vacuum or Canister Vacuum?

Many users get confused when it comes to decide which type to buy as the best fit – upright vacuum or canister vacuum. Practically, the decision lies on the individual needs and personal preferences. However, knowing the types well and the pros and cons of each type may help potential buyers make a quick purchasing decision.

Upright vacuum cleaners employ a motor and a suction head in one unit that’s pushed in front of the user; Canister vacuum cleaners are engineered with a wheeled body and that is pulled behind the user. A hose and a nozzle are connected to the body of a canister vacuum.

Upright Vacuum

Pros of Upright Vacuum Cleaners:

Benefits of upright vacuums
Benefits of upright vacuums

• Upright vacuums are convenient to slide out of the closet, glide over the floors and placing it neatly. Those employing self-propelled feature make it even easier to move forward and backward. Floor cleaning becomes virtually effortless.
• Some upright models incorporate the reach and maneuverability of the canister with a long hose and attachments. These features help users to clean upholstery, reach under furniture and into corners and even clean bare floors without the traditional upright kickback of dust and debris onto your feet. A good number of uprights available today feature telescoping hoses that reach 15 feet and more – enough for most staircases.
• The majority of uprights has dual motors and allows transition between a beater head for carpets and a static suction for bare floors. With just the tap of a foot switch, this type allows users to switch-off the brush role motor during hardwood floor cleaning and clean the floor without the brush-roll scattering the dirt. Some people have difficulty bending over to use a canister. For them emptying an upright is easier, be it a bagged or a modern bagless one.
• Upright vacuum cleaners provide a wider cleaning path than canisters. Those having homes with large open areas, uprights are a much better candidate to consider.
• Uprights tend to be less expensive than canisters. The bags or dirt containers are also usually larger than their canister counterparts. With an upright, you don’t have to replace the bag or empty the dirt cup as frequently. If you are suffering from back pains, consider to buy an upright as it is easier to empty an upright.
• Upright vacuums are sometimes preferred by its proponents as, generally, an upright bag will collect more debris than a canister bag as the bags or dirt containers are also usually larger than their canister counterparts. Proponents consider it time and money saver as it does not require them to frequently replace the bag.

Cons of Upright Vacuum Cleaners:

• Upright vacuum cleaners are criticized as it gives difficulty to users in reaching into tight spaces. However, this complaint is negated or proved false as many uprights today have the detachable hoses with specialty attachments.
• Some users complaint that uprights are way too heavy to carry up and down stairs – especially for the frail.
• Perhaps the upright vacuum’s greatest flaw is its sheer bulk, making it harder to carry. However, even to negate this complaint, there are lightweight models available today.

Canister Vacuum

Pros of Canister Vacuum Cleaners:


• Canister lovers love the convenience of vacuuming under low-profile furniture like coffee tables that this type allows.
• Another advantage of canister vacuum is that even very small houses can afford to store it. It can be tucked very neatly into a tiny closet.
• Canisters that come with a retractable cord is even more preferred as it eliminates the boring task of wrapping the cord around the unit before storing.
• This vacuum is preferred by many for its compact and lightweight design which makes the job of moving up and down stairs easier.
• Proponents consider this type easier to maneuver than uprights and love for its greater versatility. Featured with a long flexible hose, wand and various attachments, canisters are ideal for above the floor cleaning, tall furniture like bookcases or ceiling areas.
• Canisters generate less noise than uprights as they employ a wheeled barrel to allow a better sound insulation.
• Canisters also give a special advantage. If its power head breaks, there is no need to fix the entire unit as this can be solved by easily replacing the attachment.

Cons of Canister Vacuum Cleaners:

• Users who have used both a canister and an upright opine that canisters require more energy y to haul the unit from behind than to glide an upright ahead of them.
• Critics also cite the tiresome manual task of switching between the separate heads for carpet and bare floors.
• In general, average price of canister vacuum cleaners are more than upright vacuum cleaners of similar quality.

Find out the best canister vacuum and reviews by Best Vacuum World to get your canister vacuum that fit your need, budget and house.