No, I’m not telling you off. I swear! I’m just answering your burning questions. Because that’s how I roll. Like this one, from Ginger:
Oh very wise and pretty Mir,
I am in desparate need of a vacuum cleaner. Kirby and Dyson are soooo out of my price range at the moment. I have a very large dog (80 lbs) and a 10 year old boy, so vacuuming is a necessity on almost a daily basis. Any advice? Free and/or cheap shipping also would be helpful.
Thanks for the help!
I love this question, because I have something of a vacuum cleaner fetish. Also because it brings everyone out of the woodwork; no matter what I say, someone is going to have a differing opinion. Which is fine. I’m looking forward to your contributions to the topic (just keep it civil).
But let’s start with my ideas.
As I discussed in a previous post, I happen to own a Kirby. It was insanely expensive (although I did get a good deal on it; I managed to get a $300 credit for my old vacuum, which probably only cost $100) and it’s also very heavy. It’s not for everyone, for sure. I am never going to recommend that everyone run out and buy a Kirby.
(But Kirbys do pretty much live forever. Just sayin’.)
Anyway, when I wrote that other post, someone left a comment about how Consumer Reports actually rated a couple of Kenmore models as being the best. Ever your intrepid fact-checker, after a knee-jerk and professional response of “Nuh uh!” I did some research and discovered that this was true. Their top picks are the Kenmore Progressive 35922 and 36932, so you may wish to check out your local Sears or go online and see what you can see. (Looks like they’re running a financing special online right now, as well as offering a few rebates on vacuums… though I don’t see either of the two lauded models online.)
The Consumer Reports picks are still going to run you around $200 on sale, which isn’t cheap. On the other hand, I’d argue this is an investment item (like a stove or a fridge) and much cheaper than that and you’re probably looking at something crappy.
And as long as we’re talking about Consumer Reports, check out their general tips on choosing a vacuum. Knowledge is power.
Okay. Have you done all of your reading? Are your eyes rolling back in your head, yet? Now here’s what you do:
- Decide what you want. After you’ve completed your research, you should have narrowed it down to a couple of models you think will meet your needs both performance-wise and price-wise.
- Decide on your timeframe. Do you need it right now, as in, you are currently without a vacuum? If you don’t have time to wait for a sale, you have to just bite the bullet and buy. But even if you decide on one that can only be bought in one location (like a Kenmore, which you have to get at Sears), you may want to open a charge account to get some percentage off. If you have a bit of time, shop around and/or wait for a sale.
- Don’t overlook the road less travelled. You may have a local vacuum-cleaner repair place and not even know about it. They may sell vacuums, and if they do, the prices are likely to be excellent (though I don’t suggest going this route if they don’t offer a warranty).
- Surf online for deals. You never know what you’re going to find at Amazon. It’s worth a few minutes of your time to see if they have anything acceptable (they also have a wide range of reconditioned products, which—as always—is a great way to save some money). And there’s a really good Overstock coupon coming up tomorrow, so come back for it and look there, too.
- Just do it. At some point, you have to just make a decision and purchase something. I’m not saying to go into it blind, but make peace with your purchase and get it overwith within a reasonable period of time, and then stop thinking about it. It’s a vacuum, not a mechanism for world domination. No appliance is worth making yourself mental.
Notice that I’m not recommending a specific vacuum. That’s because I think this is one of those many-sizes-may-fit types of things. You have to choose what works for you… and then, of course, get the best deal on it.
Happy sucking! Wait. That didn’t come out right….