The pros of upright vacuums
The floor cleaning heads on upright vacuums are generally wider than the floor tools supplied with cylinders. This means the cleaning path is wider, cutting down on the amount of time it takes to vacuum large areas of carpet.
Many upright vacuums have adjustable height floor cleaning heads allowing the user to raise or lower the cleaning head, according to the depth of pile on the carpet.
Some uprights also offer the option of switching off the brush-roll in order to vacuum hard flooring.
A frequent complaint about older uprights was that they did not clean the edge of carpets. However, most now feature "edge cleaning" which removes dirt and dust right up to the skirting board.
The suction hose on an upright vacuum is incorporated into the body of the cleaner unless it is being used in conjunction with the tools. Combined with onboard tool storage means uprights take less storage space than cylinder cleaners.
The cons of upright vacuums
Using the tools
If you want to dust furniture or walls, or clean upholstery and soft furnishings, you have to remove the suction hose from the floor cleaning head of an upright. Then attach the correct tool. This makes the process of switching from floor cleaning to above floor cleaning more time consuming than in the case of a cylinder.
Upright vacuums cannot balance on stair treads. The safe way to vacuum stairs with an upright is to stand the cleaner at the bottom and work upwards. This means you must ensure the suction hose will extend sufficiently to allow you to do so.
If you have large areas of wooden flooring to clean with a special attachment you have to remove the suction hose, attach the extension wand and place the tool on the end. Remember, you cannot pull an upright along like a cylinder. Instead, you have to lift it as you move around the room.
If you have a lot of furniture and narrow gaps to clean you will find an upright less easy to manoeuvre. You will also have to use the tools a lot more as the cleaning head will not fit into narrow spaces.
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