Contrary to popular belief, proper vacuuming of your home involves more than dragging the vacuum cleaner across the floor while making quick sweeping motions. That is, if you want to do a good job of it…

Using the appropriate machine attachments and vacuuming techniques will extend the life of your carpet and create a healthier environment. Read on to learn how to effectively clean your house of debris and dust and keep your floors looking their best.

Preparation

Gather loose items off the floor, paying particular attention to objects that could get caught in the vacuum cleaner. Wipe high surfaces and curtains to dislodge dust for later vacuuming. Clean the filters in the machine if required, and empty the bag or canister. Vacuum cleaners do not work at full capacity with dirty filters and overly full bags and canisters. Clear the hose of any obstructions to ensure maximum suction.

Carpet

Vacuum carpet slowly to effectively remove dirt. Do this once a week to minimize the harmful abrasive action of ground-in dirt. Begin by the door, and overlap your vacuuming strips a little bit with each pass since the vacuum cleaner does not work as efficiently at its edges. Pay particular attention to high-traffic areas. Do not clean the corners every time you vacuum; instead, aim for one thorough corner-cleaning every three weeks. When you do clean the corners, use the crevice nozzle and dust brush.

Hard Floors

Turn off the machine’s beater bar, or use a hard-floor attachment to vacuum hardwood floors, and clear the wheels and brushes of any potential floor-scratching debris. Clean the corners of the room each time you vacuum a hard floor since dust and dirt readily collect there. Use the same vacuuming technique you would use on carpet, taking care to overlap swipes. When cleaning hardwood, vacuum in the same direction as the planks.

Tips

  • Stop immediately if your vacuum cleaner suddenly sounds different. Strange noises are often caused by objects caught in the brush bar. The motors in vacuum cleaners can burn out when objects block their operation.
  • Use the crevice tool to clean baseboards each time you vacuum.
  • Clean drapes by running the soft brush attachment over them monthly.
  • Use the upholstery tool to clean debris and dust from upholstered furniture.
  • The crevice tool will remove dust from trim and creases.
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