Vacuum cleaner suction power is one of the biggest factors for anybody looking to purchase a new vacuum cleaner. Most best-selling vacuum cleaners will have good, strong suction. There are a few units of measurement that go into figuring out what this term even is and how it is determined. We’ll explore all of that in the article below.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • The main measurements used in suction power are airflow (CFM), air watts (AW), water lift (inches of H20), amps, and horsepower.
  • The power of your vacuum’s suction is determined by the suction motor which converts electrical power into the power of suction.
  • When looking to buy a new vacuum cleaner, most consumers place suction power as their highest valued feature.

What Determines Vacuum Suction Power

There are a few different measurements that are used to determine vacuum cleaner suction power. This is the most important factor behind your next floor cleaning investment so making sure the machine is up to the task is crucial.

Insider Tip

The suction power of your vacuum is decided by the manufacturer that creates it.

How Suction Power is Determined in Vacuums

In the quest to understand how the power of suction is determined, the biggest questions regarding the topic are laid out below. After that, we’ll look into the different measurements used.

What Determines my Vacuum’s Suction Power?

The suction power of your vacuum is decided by the manufacturer that creates it. They put their models through several tests, using the units above, to figure out the model’s rating. Different types of vacuum cleaners also come with different suction power.

What is Suction Power?

Suction power comes from the suction motor. This is the part of the vacuum that takes electrical power and converts it over into suction power.

How Suction Power is Measured in Vacuums

There are a variety of measurements that go into figuring out how much actual suction power a vacuum has. You can find them and a brief explanation of each below.

Airflow (CFM)

The airflow refers to the volume of air that is being moved through the machine. This is measured in Cubic Feet per Minute or CFM.

Air Watts (AW)

The air watts are related to the produced power, as well as the power used. The higher this number, the more intense the suction will be.

Insider Tip

There are a variety of measurements that go into figuring out how much actual suction power a vacuum has.

Water Lift (Inches of H20)

This unit of measurement is attached to a simple test. The motor of the vacuum is completely sealed up and tasked with lifting up a one-inch water column. How far it lifts this column is measured in inches of water lift, or inches of H20.

Amps

Amps refer to the presence of electrical power, or current, which flows through your machine. You get watts by multiplying the power voltage drawn by amps.

Horsepower

While horsepower is seen in many advertising campaigns, they are not truly a way you should be measuring your vacuum cleaner’s suction power. The above values are far better at showing you what the machine is capable of doing and how much suction it can provide. And if you end up buying a Shark vacuum, don’t forget to register your Shark vacuum within the time specified by the manufacturer.

Warning

While horsepower is seen in many advertising campaigns, they are not truly a way you should be measuring your vacuum cleaner’s suction power.

F.A.Q.

Are robot vacuums worth it?

Your lifestyle and needs will determine this. Lower-end robotic vacuum cleaners can get into frustrating situations, such as accidentally tracking mud or other messes across the house. Even higher-end models may get into hairy situations where they get stuck.


How to fix a vacuum cleaner that has lost its suction power?

It is highly recommended that you call the original manufacturer or brand for your model if sudden power loss occurs. You can also contact a repair shop to see if they are able to help.


How much suction power is enough?

That depends solely on your needs and budget. The cheapest models will have smaller motors and less suction power. Larger, more expensive models will have more power. Different floor types will have varying requirements to get them entirely clean.



STAT: It’s estimated that 76% of people agree that one of the most important factors in choosing their next vacuum is suction power. (source)

Christen Costa

Grew up back East, got sick of the cold and headed West. Since I was small I have been pushing buttons - both electronic and human. With an insatiable need for tech I thought "why not start a blog focusing on technology, and use my dislikes and likes to post on gadgets."

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