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Vacuum Buying Guides - Billy GuyattsTime for a new vacuum cleaner? There are important questions you need to ask yourself before making the decision.

Bagged Vacuum

Bagged vacuums either have paper bags only, or a cloth bag. However, you will be able to buy a paper bag that will fit. Advice to consider is do not buy a vacuum thinking you will save money because you will only ever use the cloth bag. Treat it like a backup bag in case you run out of bags. The cloth bags become very dirty very quickly. They are problematic to empty and generate very fine dust which is hard to contain. Often bagged vacuums have a greater suction power than bagless vacuums. This is due the bag being positioned before the motor. The motor needs a greater pull to draw the dust to the canister which is generally beside or behind the motor.

Paper Bags

Paper bags offer the simplest, cleanest solution when it comes to emptying your vacuum. Often you can close off a bag before removing it from the canister, to minimize any fine dust escaping from the bag at all. They are kinder to the environment and allergy suffers because the bag is the initial layer of filtration. Bagless do not have this layer and obviously, the more filtration, the less dust escaping from the small seals and joins in your vacuum.

Cloth Bags

Refrain from buying a vacuum to only ever use the cloth bag. Consider it a backup bag if your retail store has run out of your appropriate paper bag. All vacuum cleaners have a paper bag equivalent, even if they are only sold with a cloth bag. Cloth bags are generally associated with cheaper models vacs. However, be warned, what you save on bags, you will be paying for in a replacement vac within 24 months. They generally clog up and reduce the effectiveness of the suction of the vacuum cleaner.


One of the added benefits of bagless vacuums is that their canister is clear, therefore, you can see when they need emptying. You save on the costs of bags and you don’t add to landfill with throw away bags. The more expensive bagless vacs have much better technology and can cope with the fine dust that is generated during vacuuming. They are better at maintaining their suction level as well.

Vacuum Buying Guides - Billy Guyatts

Final Word

Like most things, the better you look after your vac, the longer you will get out of it. Bagless – Canisters require emptying and a wipe out about every third use. Bagged – Require emptying (for an average sized home, with some carpet, with a regular number of family members) around once every 6 vacs. Granted, your bag may not be completely full, but remember- every time you vacuum, the vac will be working harder to suck so it can get past the dirt it has already collected. If you don’t make it work hard all the time, it will be kinder to you and last longer, don’t be afraid to change the bag when it is half full. Comparatively bags are cheap, as opposed to buying a new vac. A box of bags should last you around a year and will be around the $25 mark. A cheap investment in longevity.