As easy as vacuuming sounds in theory, actually removing dust from your home via suction is trickier than it seems. A clunky and inefficient vacuum can make it tough to get everything up, which turns the task from something quick and easy to laborious—add in extra frustration if the vacuum can’t reach all the nooks, crannies, and corners where dust bunnies hide, or can’t effectively clean non-carpeted surfaces like upholstery and hardwood floors. That's why housekeeping expert Cindy Inman, founder of Ask Cindy How, relies on two particular favorite options when it comes to vacuums that she knows she can count on.
Inman's tested her fair share of cleaning tools in the more than 35 years she's been cleaning corporate spaces and houses, which is how she understands what to look for in a good sweeper. “I certainly have gone through a lot of vacuums,” she says. “They break easily, and it takes away from the efficiency if you have to go over an area more than once, so I’m one to say, 'Let’s get it right and make the investment.'”
Two key features of a great vacuum, she says, are power and maneuverability—you need to be able to tote it all around the house without throwing out your back and to navigate into hard-to-reach places, like baseboards and under furniture. A strong motor and suction ensures every particle gets picked up so you don’t have to go back over areas, she adds.
Housekeeping expert Cindy Inman's two favorite vacuums
The vacuum manufacturer Miele makes two models that check both of Inman's boxes: the Triflex HX2 Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner ($749) and the Complete C3 Canister Vacuum ($899). Inman owns both of these sweepers and gives them the highest marks in her ranking—she’s advised countless clients to purchase them, too.
Originally $1,369, now $899
This corded canister vacuum is a powerhouse that’s been the backbone of Inman’s personal and professional cleaning business for many years. Perfect for anyone looking for a reliable vacuum built to last (but more nimble and powerful than other models), Inman says this is the one suited for every tough job in your house. Use it to tackle intense garage clean outs, area rugs with high piles, and grimy kitchen and bathroom floors.
A newer model than the canister vacuum, the cordless Triflex vacuum runs for 60 minutes in between charges and is especially adept at getting all those places you don’t want to reach and tangle with the cord. “It cleans like an upright vacuum but it’s so lightweight and ergonomic,” says Inman.
Lightweight and bagless, the vacuum is easy to carry all around the house; Inman says she particularly recommends this model for seniors and for those who vacuum daily. “You can break it down and use it as a telescopic wand, and you can clean edges and corners with the narrow crevice tool,” she says.
The only drawback? You have to be efficient with your cleaning. “It’s truly a 60-minute routine because when that 60 minutes hits, you have to plug it back up,” she says. But she adds that it only takes a couple hours to charge.
“Both of these [vacuums] absolutely possess efficiency and can pick up deep [debris] within the pile or floor surface,” she says. "The motor is what really drives a vacuuming system, and Miele makes a good one.” The C3 Canister Vacuum boasts a 1,200 watt Vortex motor, while the Triflex is powered by digital efficiency motor for up to 60-percent more power compared to its prior iterations.
The classic canister model is her old reliable, but Inman particularly likes the newer cordless Triflex model, which she says is the perfect combination of power and maneuverability. The stick vacuum has three adjustable modes: one upright, one with a telescopic wand for hard-to-reach places, and one compact handheld setting. This is the tool she recommends to those who do daily, shorter cleans that'll be done within 60 minutes (the max amount of time the vacuum's rechargeable battery can operate between charges).
Inman’s favorite feature on the Triflex?
The automatic floor type detection. Typically you’d have to switch brush heads to go from carpet to hard flooring and actually clean everything, but this model senses the surface change and adjusts. “I just flick on the switch and I can do my wood kitchen floor and then go immediately to the carpet without having to hit anything,” Inman says. Despite its slim profile, the Triflex packs a serious punch; it thoroughly penetrates the thick pile of the many area rugs in Inman’s home.
The canister vacuum, on the other hand, is perfect for those deeper cleans that require you to go all around the house. Despite its heavy-duty capabilities, the C3 Canister Vacuum is "powerful yet lightweight enough to easily lift," says Inman. Other features that make it one of this housekeeping expert's favorite vacuums? It includes a HEPA filter to pick up tiny particles and germs, plus the main head is wide enough to cover plenty of ground for the efficient and thorough cleans Inman expects. This vacuum also comes with a dusting brush, upholstery nozzle, and crevice tool.
The factor that seals the deal for Inman on both vacuums
The easy disposal method built-in with these vacuums is also a big selling point for Inman. Who among us hasn’t accidentally blown dirt and dust all over when removing a vacuum bag? The vacuum bags ($22) required for the canister model include a locking mechanism that helps trap dirt and dust to prevent more mess on the way to the trash can. “When you remove that bag, you immediately just pull a latch that surrounds that opening and it seals all the dirt in,” she adds. Meanwhile, the Triflex vacuum is bagless and is emptied by opening the sealed filter directly into the trash.
While these machines don’t come cheap, if you find yourself balking at their price tags, Inman assures that they're worth it because the vacuums get the job done efficiently and last for years. “I only have Miele in my home, and I only want to clean customer’s homes with Miele,” she says. “No one has ever come back to me and said, ‘Cindy, this is a waste.'”
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