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Where is the best place to empty a canister vacuum?

This question has a pretty obvious answer, right?


In addition to knowing where to empty their canister vacuum, some of our readers also ponder when they should empty it – meaning how often (or otherwise) should they clean their model and its dirt filter. Not to mention a third category of our readers who ask as to how they should empty it.

To answer all these three questions – where, when and how – we have come up with this short guide. Go through it, and you’ll get answers to all your questions.

Design of Canister Vacuum Cleaners

Design Of Canister Vacuum Cleaners
Design of Canister Vacuum Cleaners

At the cost of sounding pedantic, you need to know how canister vacuum cleaners are designed. Otherwise, the below-mentioned answers might go above your head.

How Canister Vacuums Are Designed?

These vacuum cleaners have a canister shaped body which is connected to the powerhead via plastic tubes and a hose. The body contains a filter, engine and dust bag – with wheels supporting it from the underneath.

Due to their two-piece design (canister body and Motorhead), these vacuums provide are bigger in size than their upright counterparts. That extra-size allows them to provide more attachments in their package, thereby increasing their utility.

Also, while some canister vacuums have a bagged design, the others come bagless. Experts recommend that you choose the former because the latter’s cleaning mechanism makes the bagless models prone to emitting dust and other pollutants into its surrounding area.

3 Steps to clean your canister vacuum

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Here’s what you need to do to empty your canister vacuum cleaner:

 Step 1: Dealing with the canister

  • Remove the canister from the Motorhead by pushing a button.
  • Take a dry microfiber cloth, and use it to wipe the canister’s inner side.
  • Once you’ve wiped it clean, wash the canister with warm soapy water.
  • Rinse away all the remnants of soap
  • Leave the canister in an airy area for it to dry.

Step 2: Dealing with the filter

  • Before you remove the filter, read your model’s user-manual to be fully sure that its filter is washable.
  • Once you’re sure that it is washable, remove the filter. Repeatedly tap it against the wall to force the embedded dirt to come out.
  • Follow steps three to six from the previous section.

Step 3: Dealing with the Motorhead

  • Take the Motorhead – the one which you disconnected from the body in step # 1 – and manually pick any threads or hair in its bristles.
  • Once you think nothing more could be done manually, use a grout brush to rid the beater bar of any debris
  • Use a dry microfiber cloth to wipe down the Motorhead.

How often should you clean your canister vacuum

How Often Should You Clean Your Canister Vacuum
How often should you clean your canister vacuum

Ask experts, and they might tell you that you should clean your canister vacuum every 12 to 18 months. However, it isn’t a rule set in stone. Rather, depending on your usage, you might have to push your vacuum under a tap sooner.

If you’re still confused, follow the below-mentioned tips to determine when it’s time to clean your vacuum:

1.   Has its suction power decreased?

As you might already know, a vacuum’s suction power determines how effortlessly (or otherwise) it picks up dirt and debris.

You can easily check your vacuum’s suction power by using it to pick specks of dirt from a carpet. If one or two sweeps are enough to clean the carpet, then there’s nothing to worry. Otherwise, it’s time you clean the vacuum.

2.   How Often Do You Vacuum?

It goes without saying that if you vacuum regularly, you’ll have to clean the vacuum more often than a person who cleans their room once-in-a-blue-moon.

That said, if you live in an area where dirt-storms are always making their way into your home, then you might have to clean your vacuums more regularly (every month) even if you use them infrequently.

Just to make sure that there isn’t any confusion, we’re talking about vacuums here – and NOT their filters. While vacuums work well even if you clean them once a month, filters – especially of bagless vacuums – need weekly cleaning routine. Otherwise, their capacity to hold on to the captured dirt will markedly reduce.

Where is the best place to empty a canister vacuum?

Best Place To Empty A Canister Vacuum
Where is the best place to empty a canister vacuum

Having answered all the other questions, it’s time answer that one query which lead you to this article. Though we have to say that you may already know the answer.

For those who don’t live in an apartment building

What is your main aim – apart from cleaning the vacuum itself – when you’re emptying it? That’s right, you don’t want its dust to blow into your face. At the same time, you want to make sure that none of the trapped pollutants make their way into your home.

That’s the reason why we recommend that when you decide to empty your vacuum, go outside. And by outside, we don’t mean that you should do the need in your building’s hallway – provided your apartment is in a multi-story building.

Instead, when we say outside, we mean in the open. Somewhere where there’s a lot of space for the dust to scatter. And where there’s no chance that the dust coming out of your vacuum makes its way into the homes of those living around you.

For those who live in an apartment building

But what if you live in an apartment?

In such a scenario, you can use your balcony for this purpose. However, if you don’t have a balcony, we recommend that you use your bathroom – with its room locked as you’re emptying the dirtbag. Otherwise, your family members won’t thank you for filling their rooms with dust.

Once you’ve emptied the vacuum, seal the dirtbag before dumping it into the trash can. Keep the room locked to give the dirt which might have escaped during all this the chance to settle down.