Perhaps you have known vacuum cleaners as basic appliances used to clean carpets and floors. But with the addition of some attachments, the standard vacuum cleaner can be upgraded to a versatile appliance which can be used to clean various surfaces around your home. For every cleaning need, there are various attachments that can be connected to the hose to make cleaning easy, convenient and enjoyable.
While most of these extensions are standard inclusions which come with the vacuum cleaner, there are some that can be bought and attached separately, adding to the usefulness of your cleaning device. However, you should note that not all attachments will be useful and relevant to your cleaning needs. Some of these are actually inclusions that you may not even understand how to use. Putting the less essential aside, this guide explores the most important attachments in the world of vacuum cleaners and how you will use them. Here they are, listed from A to Z:
First is first. You have to have a place to put all the accessories that I’m listing bellow. Usually, manufacturers thought about this and offer in most cases an accessory bag. You can put it in your garage, closet, tool shop or a close-by storage facility. Either way, make sure you keep this close, as you might find out the meaning of the word “utility” by using the right tool for the right job.
Where it is used: For better and easier storage. For being an organized person. For keeping the peace in the universe.
1-1/4-inch Round brush
This is a simple rounded brush which can be used with both hoses and wands. It may be used to clean wood surfaces and blinds besides helping in general dusting. It’s bristles are rather soft and medium long, making them perfect for removing dust from furniture and TVs.
Where it is used: because of its versatility, the brush can be used for general purpose cleaning.
2-1/2-inch Multi-angle brush
It is a convenient brush that is mostly used with wands and hoses when picking up dry and bulky particles from various surfaces. It is made of soft bristles which may not damage even the softest of places that you fear cleaning using your vacuum cleaner. Due to its design, it can be oriented in any direction.
Where it is used: Although the right angle brush can be used for general purpose cleaning, it is ideal when working on wood surfaces and blinds. It is also an ideal attachment for cleaning in the workshop.
Floors are very tough to clean because they should be worked on regularly. The floor brush is one of the extensions meant to handle this tough job. It is designed with a beater bar and has the most durable construction which can stand daily usage.
Where it is used: a floor brush can be used to handle all kinds of floor cleaning, but there are several types of these brushes. While some are meant for hardwood floors, the rest are specifically designed for tiled floors. Depending on your needs, therefore, you will be required to choose a floor brush that suits your surface.
Different manufacturers have different names for this tool. I.e., Bissell calls it TurboBrush. Shark calls it the Multi-tool. Its main feature is that it has an independent motor powering a smaller brushroll.
Where it is used: this tool is used for general cleaning tasks, just like the normal brushroll. The only difference is the size which allows users to reach in tighter places. Having fewer bristles also means lesser cleaning power, so don’t use it as a regular brushroll.
This extension resembles the vacuum brush but its bristles are more brittle and quite long, making it ideal for working on carpets. Similarly, it is essential to force soap and cleaners into furniture and carpets to get rid of all dirt, odor and stains.
Where it is used: This extension is helpful when getting rid of stains from furniture or shampooing your carpets. You can also use it to remove debris from your couches and armchairs.
This is a wide attachment whose base looks like that of the hard floor tools, but it has longer and thinner bristles extending from it. These bristles can loosen dirt, hair and dust that has been lodged into the fibers of any fabric. Whether it is a sofa or carpet therefore, a vacuum brush can help loosen and ultimately clean away the tiniest particles.
Where it is used: this brush can be helpful when dusting curtains or cleaning some of the chairs on which your pets love to sit and sleep.
Ceiling fan attachment
Do you realize how hard it is to reach and clean the ceiling fans together with their blades? Well, the ceiling fan attachment offers a simple solution to this. It is basically a long strong tube which has a bend at the end to reach all areas around the ceiling fans. Some of these extensions are made in such a manner that they wrap flexibly around the fan blades so that both sides of the blade are dusted and cleaned at the same time.
Where it is used: ceiling fan attachments are used to clean the upper parts of ceiling fans and blades that are rather hard to reach.
Claw utility nozzle
This is an attachment that is shaped like a wedge and curved inwards towards the head. It is used to clear both dry and wet messes, and is mostly attached with hose ends. Many handheld vacuum cleaners, shop-vacs and cordless units come with this attachment.
Where it is used: the claw utility attachment is excellent for use in cleaning campers, boats and car interiors.
This is a hose attachment that is narrowed towards the end such that it can clean corners, tight areas, along baseboards and in corners. These are the hidden places which are bypassed by the normal vacuum cleaner path. Some producers offer variants of this tool, such as the extended crevice tool or the 2 in 1 Crevice/Dust brush.
Where it is used: it is helpful when cleaning between sofa cushions, carpet corners and baseboards.
This attachment will fit the ends of a 1.25 or 2.5-inches hose. It is mostly used for bathroom and kitchen cleaning where valuables as well as dirt are meant to be retrieved from drains. This attachment is meant for shop-vacs, but there occasionally come commercial vacuum cleaners that support this feature. Just make sure your vacuum cleaner is one of those before mounting it, as you may damage it due to misuse.
Where it is used: it is best suited to unclog sinks, tubs, drains and showers.
Thanks to one of my readers, I’ve discovered a new attachment called the Dustbender. This tool can be attached to a vacuum cleaner and used together with a can of compressed air to simultaneously blast air and vacuum the dust released in the process.
Where it is used: on shelves, offices, cabinets, electronics
This is a rigid tube used to make an attachment to the vacuum hose. Similarly, an extension wand may be used to link other attachments, offering someone an extended reach to clean areas that could otherwise not be reached by an ordinary vacuum cleaner.
Where it is used: An extension wand is essential when cleaning areas below the refrigerator or when dusting some crown molding.
This is a simple sanding tool which comes complete with an extension hose, sandpaper and an adapter to increase its versatility. The attachment makes use of a sandpaper or standard screen and is ideal for use alongside wet dry vacuums for sanding dry walls. Most shop-vacs come with this extension.
Where it is used: The hand sander is used to clean dry walls where an ordinary vacuum cleaner may not be effective.
Hard Floor tool
This appliance is wide and flat in shape, featuring short bristles to help in sweeping. It is also equipped with wheels for easy motion along the floor, perhaps a reason why it is the most convenient attachment for handling hard flooring. Some hard floor tools may feature a minor scalloped edge which is used to clean areas over seams.
Where it is used: hard floor tools are ideal for clearing any dry mess on your tiles, hardwood floors and any other flat surface which is not carpeted.
Mini blinds and Vertical blinds attachment
The mini blinds attachment is mainly identified by its slotted design. It makes it possible for many mini blinds to be cleaned together and on both sides. The vertical blinds attachment looks similar to the mini blinds attachment, and is made of slots that are longer and widely spaced, in order to dust between and clean vertical blinds.
Where it is used: these attachments can be used to dust and clean several blinds at the same time.
Multipurpose floor nozzle
This attachment resembles the vacuum brush closely, a tool that is easy to use and can fit in 1.25-inch hoses. With a flip of one button, you can adjust the height of this floor nozzle, which makes it expedient for cleaning all types of floors. There are many times when this tool is seen as the same with the vacuum brush.
Where it is used: this is a great attachment for cleaning bare floors that have been littered with sand and loose dirt.
For those of you who own pets, this attachment is invaluable. You can use this accessory to groom you dog or cat, and while doing so, you will also gather all the hair that was about to fall directly out of its fur. Just make sure your animal friend likes this process before actually doing it.
Where it is used: On your pets, of course, although I’ve seen some friends of mine scratching their backs with this.
These are easy-to use liners which makes it easy to clean the collection tank. They require minimal replacement and can be used in all cleaning circumstances. Depending on the brand, one pack contains approximately twelve liners.
Where it is used: a liner my not contribute directly to cleaning but it has a crucial role in enhancing the efficiency of a vacuum cleaner. Besides easing the cleaning job, it protects the collection tank from premature wear. As long as the collection tank and other parts of the vacuum cleaner are kept tidy, the appliance will perform at optimal levels.
There are various styles and designs of stair cleaner attachments. A number of them, however, are defined by a wide and supportive opening towards the end of an extended hose. It mostly works with standing vacuums, allowing you clean areas around moldings without necessarily carrying the vacuum cleaner from the bottom of stairs. Regardless of how big the stairs may be, cleaning will not be much of a burden because the extension takes care of it all. A powered brush is also one of the most used extensions for cleaning stairs.
Where it is used: Its used is confined to the cleaning of stairs.
Y splitter adapter
This is a Y-shaped adapter which enables one to split any hose connection into two parts. This increases productivity because you can use more than one hose alongside other attachments to diversify the cleaning job. You can also clean with both hands, provided that the vacuum cleaner has enough power to handle both hose ends. If you have 2 children, you will really enjoy this accessory.
Where it is used: the Y splitter adapter is specifically used for tuck pointing.
1-1/4-inch Anti-static replacement hose assembly
This is a specially designed replacement hose assembly which is used to prevent accidental shocks in case there is a huge build-up of static electricity once the vacuum cleaner has been used for quite a long while.
Where it is used: the attachment is used with dust extractors because there is a high risk of static electricity building up when dusting some ground. To prevent the possible shock, this is the kind of hose assembly recommended for use.
2-1/2-inch conversion unit
Where it is used: the conversion unit makes it easy to use other accessories by converting a hose for use with 2.5-inch accessories to make cleaning convenient.
There is general trend that can be established when assessing vacuum cleaners and the attachments that can be used alongside. Looking at upright vacuum cleaners for example, most of them are designed with a standard hose size. Most of the appliances in the market too will be designed to fit this standard hose size, so you must be keen not to buy anything outside of your standard hose size unless you are going for extra extensions such as adapters to convert the size of your hose.
It is true that some attachments will be supplied with the vacuum cleaner but never dispute the fact that there are a lot more tools that you will be required to buy separately.
Just like the vacuum cleaners and accessories that come along, the brand is a critical concern when looking at the attachments that will complement your cleaning responsibilities. When buying these attachments, therefore, take note of the brand and always strive to buy from a trusted manufacturer. If you cannot get right-hand recommendations, at least look at the number of years that the manufacturer has been in the industry, together with the length of warranty they offer and what it covers.
Buying extensions online
It is true that the convenience of online stores cannot be downplayed because they save the burden of visiting one store after another in search of the right cleaning tools. However, one must be careful when shopping online. Unless you buy attachments that are best suited to work alongside your vacuum cleaner, it may be a waste of valuable resources. Always keep it in mind that not all online retailers have an attractive return policy and even if they do, most of these will demand some unexplained fee for the replacement. To avoid these inconveniences, therefore, study your vacuum cleaner well and order for attachments and accessories that are fitting and functional.
In case an upright vacuum cleaner does not have the standard hose size, it is important to order these attachments from the manufacturer in order to maintain quality and ultimately extend the shelf life of your vacuum cleaner.
In summary, buying a vacuum cleaner alone is not satisfactory. There are numerous attachments and accessories that go into making the cleaning job a success and an interesting activity to take part in. However, you must be careful when looking around for the right attachments because not every piece in the market is designed to enhance the efficiency of your appliance. For an easy cleaning experience though, pay attention to each of these attachments and find out a couple of them that will be most appropriate. The considerations herein are as valuable as the attachments, so be sure to follow the same for an improved cleaning experience.
Did I miss any attachment or extension? Do you have problems with your vacuum cleaner accessories? Comment bellow!
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