Laminate flooring vacuum cleaners you can rely on
If you’ve recently purchased laminate flooring, you may be wondering about the best vacuum to use on your laminate floors: So I thought I would provide some guidelines for selecting the best vacuum for laminate well as my top recommendations.
Please note that this article may include affiliate links. You can read my full disclosure at the bottom of the page.
If you’re curious (or in a hurry)
It’s an excellent vacuum specifically designed for laminate and hardwood. It’s light weight and easy to use, and you’ll also find that it’s also one of the most affordable laminate vacuums you’ll find online.
If you can get it for under $175, grab it. That’s one heck of a deal on a GOOD laminate flooring vacuum! (check current price).
Background on laminate flooring and maintenance:
Laminate flooring has become a popular alternative to hardwood floors. Laminate is less expensive and the technology has really improved over the last 5 years, so they look and feel much more realistic. Laminate floors can be installed on top of tile and concrete, and if you’re handy, you can even install them yourself.
It’s important to understand that laminate is made with recycled hardwood, and it’s not waterproof. As a result, you want to treat them as if they are hardwood and avoid water, dampness or extra moisture (So avoid steam mops or regular mops at all costs; the added moisture may cause laminate to delaminate or buckle.
Maintaining your laminate flooring is important, and one of the most important aspects is keep your floors clean (dirt and debris can scratch and wear down the top layer). Vacuuming can definitely help in this pursuit, but you do want to be careful about the vacuum cleaner you pick. Believe it or not, some vacuums can actually damage your laminate floors.
But, with the right vacuum, you’ll be able to properly care and maintain your floors for years to come. You’ll have a clean home and keep the luster of your new laminate flooring. When you have the right tools at hand, cleaning laminate floors becomes a breeze.
The Mistake of using ordinary vacuums on laminate floors
I understand the reluctance to buy a new vacuum, especially if your current vacuum still works. But, this can be a mistake, as most top rated vacuums are designed to clean CARPET. Your new laminate floors need more care. Here are the 2 big issues:
- First, most traditional vacuums have roller brushes with thick bristles and these can leave scratches on your hardwood floors. In addition, the beater brush can also scatter dirt and debris, making it even more difficult to clean.
- Vacuums designed for carpets tend to have plastic wheels, and these can easily scratch up wood and laminate surfaces. Additionally, these vacuum wheels also lack the padding needed to further prevent damage.
By the way, choosing the best vacuum cleaner does not mean choosing the most expensive one. In fact, you’ll see from the recommendations in this article that most of the best vacuums designed for laminate floors are very reasonably priced. And, beware that many review sites such as consumer reports, don’t separate out vacuums for hardwood and laminate floors.
And, you’ll be happy to know that you can use the same vacuum on your hardwood and laminate floors.
The top 3 vacuums for laminate flooring
My top recommendation
When it comes to getting the best value for your vacuum (i.e. balancing quality and price), I’d recommend the BISSELL Hard Floor Expert 1161. I’d encourage you to read the reviews on this product as well as the suggestions below.
This vacuum is compact and lightweight and compact, so it’s easy to maneuver and easy to store. It’s specially made for laminate floors with rubber wheels and felt treads. It has powerful suctions, yet delicately cleans to protect your floors.
My 2nd choice vacuum
If you have a bit more money in your budget, I’d recommend the Shark Rocket DuoClean vacuum (HV382).
It comes with a double brush roll for triple particle cleaning so it gets rid of small particles from the floors. It comes with powerful LED lights to help you easily spot hidden debris
It’s bagless and lightweight (only 7.6 pounds) and comes with fingertip controls so it’s easy to adjust. And, best of all, it never loses suction or power since it’s a corded vacuum.
The reviews are very positive and you can read the reviews here.
This vacuum is very versatile and can also be used on hardwood and carpet.
Best budget vacuum for laminate floors
If you’re budget constrained and need a vacuum that’s a great value, I’d recommend the Bissell PowerEdge Pet Vacuum.
It’s V shape makes it easy to maneuver and clean around furniture legs. The V shape also directs larger debris to the center suction pathway while the outer portions capture the finer particles.
It’s a great value if price is super important. But it is more limited than the other options as it doesn’t have a hose and isn’t recommended for carpets or rugs.
Tips for Picking the best laminate vacuum cleaner:
These principles should help guide you to find the best laminate vacuum for your home.
- Avoid rolling brushes – Rolling brushes are designed to lift dirt, hair, and debris that hide inside carpets. For laminate, this isn’t an issue. And, the brush will actually do more harm than good as they will scratch the wood. If you can’t find a vacuum without a rolling brush, then choose one that allows you to switch off the brush to prevent it from spinning.
- Padding and rubber wheels – Rubber wheels and extra rubber padding will help prevent scratches, digs and other damages. Also, as a general rule, check the wheels before you start vacuuming to remove any extra dirt.
- Compact and lightweight – Lightweight models are easy to carry around and easily glide across the floor for effortless cleaning. The less pressure you apply to floor, the better. Your back will also thank you for this.
- Good suction power – Superior suction quality and power are a must (and a feature you would look for anyway). This ensures that no dust, dirt or debris is left behind.
What about robotic vacuum cleaners?
When it comes to robotic vs regular vacuums, the automatic vacuums are not as powerful as the standard types. Instead, they are designed to be used much more often. As a result, they can keep your home very clean with minimal effort on your part. (Note: these are usually used in conjunction with a standard vacuum, and the combo seems to work very well). Please note that robotic vacuums are not the best choice for carpets.
Best robotic vacuum for laminate floors:
The most well-known robot vacuum brands currently in this industry are iRobot (which includes the Roomba and Neato Robotics. Note: several name brand names are starting to enter this segment with cheaper options, but they don’t seem to work as well (and may be more likely to scratch your floors).
When it comes to getting the best robot vacuum for the money, iRobot is still the number one choice, both in terms of quality and customer satisfaction.
Here are some great choices.
Frequently asked questions about vacuum cleaners:
1. How often should I vacuum my laminate floors?
Generally you should vacuum twice a week in high traffic areas and once a week in moderate to light traffic areas.
2. How many vacuum strokes should I do?
For a thorough clean, 6-7 vacuum strokes is idea for heavy traffic areas (e.g. entryway, family room, kitchen, etc.). For lower traffic areas, 3-4 strokes should suffice.
3. What is a HEPA vacuum?
HEPA stands for High-Efficiency Particulate Air, and these vacuums differ from conventional vacuums in that they contain filters that are can trap extremely small, micron-sized particles. It traps bacteria, pollen, dust and other allergens.
4. Should you use a steam vacuum or steam mop on laminate flooring?
No. I would never recommend using a steam vacuum on laminate floors (nor hardwood floors nor luxury vinyl plank flooring). The moisture (as well as the heat) can damage the hardwood floors and finish. These can also result in boards separating.
And, you should know that if you use one, it will invalidate the warranty on most hardwood floors. You are much safer with a microfiber mop and vacuum specifically designed for hardwood.
Final thoughts on laminate floor vacuums
So there you have it. My top recommendations on vacuums for laminate floors. Choosing the right vacuum can make a big difference on keeping your floors clean and helping the last longer.
Related Articles for Floor cleaning and maintenance:
- How to prevent and reduce scratches in your hardwood floors
- Recommended cleaning products and items to prolong the life of your floors
- Best steam mop for file floors
- Best carpet steam cleaners
What is the best vacuum for laminate floors? (2019 Reviews)