Few people would deny the fact that vacuum cleaners, of all sorts, are truly remarkable machines. They make our lives so much easier, and so much more convenient, and they take something that is, normally, a very annoying and tedious process – that of cleaning the floors – and they turn it into a much simpler, much easier, and much more enjoyable process that doesn’t require as much time or energy.
Back in 1901, the first vacuum cleaner was invented. If you go back and look at pictures of what this vacuum cleaner looked like, the differences are quite striking. The first vacuum cleaner was a rather ugly machine.
– Difficult to use
And, not particularly powerful or useful, in a practical sense.
However, that was over one-hundred years ago. Since then, the technology that goes into vacuum cleaners has developed in many unique ways. Vacuum cleaners have changed a lot since that fateful day in 1901, and today, there are many different types of vacuum cleaners, each one with its own unique set of uses, features, and attributes that lend themselves to a very particular cleaning experience.
As you might have guessed, one of these vacuum cleaners is that of the “central vacuum”, which is a type of vacuum cleaner that is, in many ways, unlike any of the other vacuum cleaners that you can find on the market.
Today, we’re going to dive into what, exactly, a central vacuum is, what it does, the advantages of owning a central vacuum. And then, you’re going to learn what the top nine central vacuums for cleaning houses, apartments, and garages, are. Finally, you’ll learn the key features and attributes that you need to know about and look for when searching for a good central vacuum.
What Is A Central Vacuum Cleaner?
To illustrate the unique features and qualities of a central vacuum cleaner, we need to first look at what the most popular type of vacuum cleaner is. This is, of course, the standard upright vacuum.
Upright vacuums are the most popular types of vacuum cleaners because they are, essentially, the “original” vacuum cleaner. They are inexpensive and very powerful.
In terms of the design, they stand tall and upright, and they tend to be rather bulky and heavy. Moving them within smaller and tighter spaces isn’t always easy, and because of that, there are other types of vacuum cleaners available, that manufacturers have designed to fulfill the needs that those types of spaces present.
Most vacuum cleaners are machines that are designed to be moved around. Using wheels and a small handle, you can push the vacuum around your floors, which gives you the mobility to clean the entirety of your home, using that machine.
In essence, most vacuum cleaners aren’t stationary.
With a central vacuum, you’re looking at something that is quite a bit different. Central vacuums are systems, rather than single devices/machines. These systems consist of the main unit that serves as the motor for the vacuum cleaner, and as a space for disposing of the dirt, dust, and debris that is vacuumed up.
From this system, there are a series of pipes that are attached. These pipes run throughout the walls in your home, and they connect to suction ports. With these suction ports, all you need to do is connect a vacuum hose, to the suction port, and then this vacuum hose is given suction power by the main central vacuum system. Whatever you vacuum up is sent through those pipes, and back into the central vacuum.
Unlike other types of vacuum cleaners, central vacuums aren’t stationary. They also require you to either install them yourself or to hire someone to do just that.
What Are The Advantages Of Owning A Central Vacuum System?
Owning a central vacuum system presents many distinct advantages. As well as some disadvantages, but these are all directly related to the cost and inconvenience of having to install such a large and bulky system.
One of the biggest advantages is the power that a central vacuum offers. When it comes to sheer suction power, central vacuum systems are easily the most powerful vacuums that you can purchase.
The main central vacuum system can produce an incredible amount of suction power, and this suction power, when attached to the suction hose that the manufacturer provides, enables you to clean any kind of space/surface, in an efficient and effective manner.
Since the system is so large, it can support a big motor. Other vacuums cannot do this, since they are designed to be portable, and they need to be a smaller size so that they can actually move throughout the spaces they have been designed to clean.
Another advantage is the lack of noise that central vacuums produce. Most of this, however, comes from the fact that the motor will, most likely, be placed somewhere far away from the most commonly used spaces in your home. So, you’ll probably be storing your central vacuum in the basement, or somewhere similar. What this means is that you won’t be hearing that much noise when cleaning, and this is very nice if you are sensitive to noise, or simply don’t enjoy hearing the loud sounds of the engine pulsing and throbbing.
With a central vacuum, you also have access to a wide variety of different accessories. These accessories and the suction hoses make it easier to clean many different types of spaces. When you pair this general design with the sheer suction power that a central vacuum produces, you get an experience that is truly fantastic.
Using a good central vacuum, whatever you need to clean, you can clean. With a good central vacuum, you have so much versatility, so much freedom, and so much flexibility, that you are able to clean anything that is in your path. And, since you can buy suction hoses of any length, and since you aren’t confined to a large vacuum unit, which prevents you from cleaning certain spaces, you have the flexibility to clean large, open spaces, and small tight spaces, such as a closet.
There are many other advantages, and we’ll cover these as we get deeper into the article, but the last thing that needs to be mentioned is the fact that central vacuum systems are pretty expensive.
You need to consider the central vacuum system itself, which tends to cost a pretty hefty chunk of change, and then you also need to consider the costs that come with the installation process for this central vacuum system.
When you add up all of those costs, it’s pretty easy to see that purchasing a central vacuum system isn’t exactly the most inexpensive thing to do.
However, this is actually tied to one of the main advantages of owning a central vacuum system. They are an investment. A big investment. But, as investments go, central vacuum systems are a wise investment, and they pay for themselves, many times over.
With a central vacuum system, you are purchasing an exceptionally durable and useful system that has been designed to last for at least 20 years. Many of them last for longer, such as 30 or 40 years, which is quite exceptional.
When you consider the longevity of a central vacuum system, it’s easy to see just how wise of an investment a central vacuum system can be. And then, when you consider the power and sheer effectiveness that they offer, it becomes even more apparent.
Ultimately, central vacuum systems are great. They are powerful, efficient, quiet, convenient, and they last an incredibly long time, ensuring that your investment is not a waste.
Now, we’re going to look at nine of the very best central vacuums that you can purchase today!
What Are The Top 9 Central Vacuums For Cleaning Houses, Apartments, And Garages?
Top 3 Central Vacuums For Cleaning Houses
Allegro MU4500 Champion Review
Right off the bat, we’re going to start with the Allegro MU4500 Champion. As vacuum manufacturers go, Allegro isn’t really one of the most popular or well-known manufacturers. But, that doesn’t mean that they haven’t built any good products, because the Allegro MU4500 is a truly fantastic central vacuum that is great for cleaning houses.
For a relatively inexpensive price – especially in comparison to other central vacuums – you get quite a bit. Obviously, there is the main central vacuum system, which offers 124 CFM – Cubic Feet Per Minute – suction, 15.7 amps of sheer motor power, 600 air watts, and a five-gallon debris capacity.
Each one of those things is great, and they make the cleaning process very efficient, due to the sheer amount of power that is at your disposal.
To aid in that, you have access to several different hoses. Each one with a slightly different length, designed for spaces of varying sizes. Then, you also have things like the “Carpet Electric Powerhead”, as well as a “Dust Mop”, and a myriad of other attachments and accessories that give you the flexibility you need to clean every part of your home.
Due to all of those features and attributes, the Allegro MU4500 Champion excels at cleaning houses of all sorts.
PP500 PurePower Central Vacuum System Review
Next on the list is the PP500 PurePower Central Vacuum System. In terms of marketing and popularity, Nutone hasn’t put a lot of time or energy into this one, but don’t let that dissuade you, because the PP500 PurePower Central Vacuum System is absolutely fantastic when it comes to cleaning your house.
Every central vacuum system has what’s known as a “MAC”. This stands for “Maximum Area Coverage”. For the PP500 PurePower Central Vacuum System, the MAC is 4,000 square feet. Now, for a house, this is quite a bit. If you live in a mansion or something a little bigger, then, obviously, this isn’t the ideal central vacuum system for you. But, for most people, this is a perfect MAC.
When using the central vacuum system, everything flows back into the system, and this system can hold up to six gallons of dirt, dust, and debris. Emptying it is quite easy, as well, due to the simple design and the focus on clarity that PurePower has given to every single aspect of this central vacuum system.
Due to the sheer size of it, Nutone has said that you will only need to empty it every six months, or so.
Using a sound suppression system, the vacuum only runs at 70 decibels, which is quite low. This ensures that your overall experience with the vacuum is pleasant since too much noise can be rather disruptive and annoying.
Finally, in terms of sheer power, the PP500 PurePower Central Vacuum System offers you more than enough power to thoroughly and efficiently clean your home, while also coming with the other features, that lend themselves to a nice and easy cleaning experience.
Electrolux 4B-H403 Review
In comparison to the other central vacuum systems on this list, the Electrolux 4B-H403 isn’t as powerful, or as efficient, as some of the others. But, it compensates for this when it comes to sheer affordability and the ease-of-use that Electrolux has given this central vacuum system.
With a motor that delivers 500 air watts of power and 110 CFM of suction power, this central vacuum system is still very powerful. Everything you suck up then flows to a debris tank, that is connected to the main system, and this tank can hold a total of 4 gallons of dirt, dust, and debris. Not as much as others, but still quite a bit, and you shouldn’t have to empty it out that often.
Due to the size and design of this central vacuum system, the MAC is 3,000 square feet. For a decent-sized house, this is more than enough. When paired with the powerful suction and efficient design, which focuses on practicality and simplicity, you get a very nice, and even somewhat enjoyable, cleaning experience.
Top 3 Central Vacuums For Cleaning Apartments
Imperium CV300 Central Vacuum Review
First on our list is the Imperium CV300 Central Vacuum. As central vacuum systems go, this is a rather basic one that has a simple and concise design, while offering a tremendous amount of power.
Within the power unit of the Imperium CV300, you have access to 740 air watts of power. That’s A LOT of power, and this particular central vacuum system has been designed for homes that are really large, and in need of strong, efficient, in-depth cleaning.
For the Imperium CV300 Central Vacuum, you have a MAC of 7,500 square feet. This is a lot of space, and this means you can clean a single apartment exceptionally well, but you can also clean an apartment complex, too. Now, it won’t be the largest apartment complex – although, it will be pretty large – but it will be a larger apartment complex.
When you pair this with the insane suction power that the Imperium CV300 offers, you get a simple and easy cleaning experience that is truly efficient and effective, in all respects.
Electrolux QuietClean Central Vac Review
Here, we have yet another Electrolux central vacuum system. Before we dive right into this central vacuum system, it’s important to mention that this one doesn’t actually come with any accessories or attachments. Not even a single power hose, Unfortunately, this does limit your overall cleaning ability, since it’s hard to find accessories for this central vacuum system, and may make it a little harder to clean certain types of spaces. Along with that, the power hoses can be hard to find, as well.
However, this is made up for when you consider the price of the Electrolux QuietClean Central Vac, as well as the simple and clear design.
With the Electrolux QuietClean Central Vac, you get a very well-designed and very efficient central vacuum system. It’s simple and easy to use, and the power that it offers is great for cleaning a smaller apartment complex.
OVO Powerful Central Vacuum System Review
Next up is the OVO Powerful Central Vacuum System. This central vacuum system comes directly from OVO, and it’s a very well-made central vacuum system that offers a couple of fantastic features and attributes.
With 700 air watts of power, you have the ability to clean any kind of surface. And, you can clean any type of material you want, as well. This level of power is, in many respects, unparalleled. Along with that, the MAC for the OVO Powerful Central Vacuum System is 9,000 square feet, which means that you can clean a larger apartment complex easily, without needing to worry about having a restrictive MAC.
One of the distinct advantages that OVO has given this central vacuum system is the fact that it’s quite easy to set up. You don’t need to hire a contractor, for the most part, to install this one. Not that it would be a bad idea to do so, but it isn’t necessary since it easily connects to the piping you already have, rather than requiring you to install new piping.
Along with that, it also doesn’t require its own dedicated circuit, which makes it easy to set up, in terms of the electricity that will power the device.
Top 3 Central Vacuums For Cleaning Garages
Prolux CV12000 Central Vacuum Review
With the Prolux CV12000 Central Vacuum, you have access to a truly insane amount of power. In fact, many publications consider the Prolux CV12000 Central Vacuum to be one of the most powerful and efficient central vacuums in the world!
With 150 CFM, you have a tremendous amount of suction power. You can use this suction power to clean up anything, and during the cleaning process, things will be efficient and easy. Due to this power, and the overall design of the central vacuum, the MAC is 12,000 square-feet!
Ultimately, for sheer power and efficiency, you cannot beat the Prolux CV12000, it is truly one of the most powerful central vacuums out there!
Bissell Garage Pro Review
Next on the list is the Bissell Garage Pro, which is a great central vacuum system for garages, cars, and workshops. This is because it has been designed with specific features that enable it to clean those particular spaces, in a much more thorough and efficient manner, in comparison to other types of central vacuums.
One of the unique features of the Bissell Garage Pro is that it is a wet/dry central vacuum. This means it can pick up dry material, as well as wet material, such as water and even small oil spills, among other things.
With the Bissell Garage Pro, you have 12 amps of power. This power makes it easy to vacuum up most things quickly. There are also several attachments that give you some more flexibility and versatility. For example, there is an attachment for cleaning upholstery, which is great if you intend to clean your car. There is also an attachment for cleaning the carpeting in your garage, and several other attachments, as well.
Hoover Vacuum Cleaner GUV Review
Finally, last, but definitely not least, is the Hoover Vacuum Cleaner GUV. This comes directly from Hoover, and Hoover is a very well-known and well-respected vacuum manufacturer, due to the attention-to-detail and general quality that they give all of their vacuums. Naturally, the Hoover Vacuum Cleaner GUV is no different.
With a 10 amp motor, you have access to a lot of suction. And then, when you combine this with the suction hoses, and the myriad of attachments and accessories that the Hoover Vacuum Cleaner GUV comes with, you get a cleaning experience that is easy and effortless. You won’t have any problems or difficulties using the Hoover Vacuum Cleaner GUV, and it’s very good at cleaning up garage workstations, and other, similar, spaces.
What Do I Need To Look For When Searching For A Good Central Vacuum?
Whenever you buy any tool, there are always going to be a few things that you’re going to need to take note of and to consider. Central vacuums are no different, and we’re going to take a look at three factors that you must consider when searching for a good central vacuum.
The Power That The Central Vacuum Offers
In many ways, this is a bit hard to define, since there are many different measurements that go into defining the overall “power” of a central vacuum system. Because of this, you should pay less attention to those measurements, and more on the different spaces that the central vacuum system has been designed for.
More often than not, on the product page, this information will have been provided by the manufacturer. This is very useful, and it enables you to understand what spaces and materials the vacuum is good at cleaning up. If you know what you will be using it for, this makes it easy.
Sometimes, though, this information isn’t provided. So, you’re going to need to look at the reviews, and see what other peoples experience with the vacuum has consisted of, and whether or not that aligns with what you need.
The Maximum Area Coverage That The Central Vacuum System Offers
When you buy a central vacuum system, it’s important that you understand the size of the space that you are going to be cleaning. You don’t need to know the exact measurements, but you need to have a good idea of the overall size, and then you need to look at central vacuum systems that align with that.
For example, if you’re cleaning an apartment complex or some kind of office building, it is extremely important that you purchase a central vacuum cleaner that is able to accommodate the size of that building, or else you will have a cleaning experience that simply isn’t effective.
The Cost Of The Central Vacuum System
In the end, it comes down to cost. But, here’s the thing, costs can be a bit tricky, since some central vacuum systems are a bit more expensive, initially, but cheaper in the long-run. Whereas others are cheaper initially, but more expensive down the road.
Some central vacuum systems only come with the systems, but not the hoses or piping necessary to actually use the system. But, these systems are cheap, so if you already own those things, you don’t need to purchase one with those things.
However, other central vacuum systems come with all of those things, including a piping system that works with your existing piping, rather than requiring you to install a new one. This saves you a lot of money, even if the initial investment is a bit larger than some other central vacuum systems.
Ultimately, make sure to consider all of those invisible costs, because they will greatly affect how much you end up spending.
At the end of the day, central vacuums are fantastic cleaning devices. They make cleaning a much easier and much more efficient process, and they last for a very long time. By reading this guide, you now know how to get the best central vacuum system, in order to ensure that your investment is truly worthwhile.