Is there a cheap vacuum that would work on this thick wool rug?
September 1, 2020 5:06 PM   Subscribe

I want to buy this rug. It would be the only rug I have, and some internet research leads me to believe a stick vacuum isn't good for this type of rug.

I'm not buying a $400 vacuum for 6x9 feet of my apartment. The rest of it is wood floor that I sweep and mop. I've never owned a vacuum before and can't tell if a stick vacuum would be ok but not ideal, or just not ok. My apartment is small, so a cheap but large not-stick vacuum is also not great for me. I can just move on to another rug if this isn't going to work for my cheap vacuum lifestyle.
posted by Mavri to Home & Garden (9 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I'm not sure what is so special about it that some sources are saying a stick vacuum wouldn't work? Maybe you are concerned about the loop type construction, instead of being cut as a shag rug.

I used to work at a place that had loop-type carpet and we had a stick vacuum. It didn't harm the carpet in any way. It's possible that it didn't clean as well as a different type of vacuum, or it's possible that a stick vacuum isn't really suitable for use in a business with 50 people a day walking across the carpet.
posted by yohko at 5:12 PM on September 1, 2020 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I have a similarly thick rug and found that a vacuum for animal hair (I don't have pets) seems to work best. You just want something with really strong suction to be able to clean it well.
posted by pinochiette at 5:15 PM on September 1, 2020

Response by poster: Some reviews said stick vacuums aren't good for thick/high pile rugs because they don't clean them well. I've never given any thought to vacuums and can't tell if "not well" means 'tolerable' or 'do not do this.' It's also possible I'm wildly overthinking this.
posted by Mavri at 5:23 PM on September 1, 2020

I don't think it's a huge deal to use a different type of vacuum, but my old Miele doesn't work that well on mine. Before Covid, I borrowed a Dyson animal hair vacuum from my neighbor.
posted by pinochiette at 5:35 PM on September 1, 2020 [1 favorite]

You don't need a vacuum cleaner at all if you are willing to hang and beat that rug occasionally.
posted by SaltySalticid at 6:14 PM on September 1, 2020 [4 favorites]

Best answer: I'm with SaltySalticid. Your other option is to get a cordless combo vacuum, something like this, that does dual duty as a regular vacuum for your rug and as a dustbuster for sucking up spills, spiders, and the like. Having had lots and lots of dustbusters through the years, I can tell you that Dyson is a definite cut above and worth the extra money. There may well be other brands that are as effective, especially more recently, but I've been a Dyson devotee for several years. (And, sadly, I receive no payment from Dyson to say that. Heck, I'm still waiting on my check from George Soros for the demonstrations I've participated in.)
posted by DrGail at 7:01 PM on September 1, 2020 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I have a wool area rug with a super deep pile and vacuumed it regularly for 2 years with a small cheapish Shark cordless vac. It looked and felt clean. Then I moved and in the process took it outside to shake/beat it and literally HANDFULS of filth just fell out of it. Ewww.

So: if you don't care that there is secret grit and dirt lurking within your rug that you can't really see or feel, cheap vac will do the trick. Or beating the rug regularly, though maybe it's too heavy for that? I now have a Dyson and can confirm that it does actually get way more dirt out of the rug than the stick vac, for what it's worth, and I also use it on the hard floors in the rest of my apartment as well as my other (large) area rugs.
posted by sparkling at 7:16 PM on September 1, 2020 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Looks like, if that has a loose shag pile, you might want to avoid vacuums with beaters, but that's fine. Most beater vacuums have a hose and attachment for those circumstances so you can use the hose with a simple floor head instead. Does your current vacuum have a beater?
posted by How much is that froggie in the window at 9:04 PM on September 1, 2020

Yes! I got the Shark Navigator Lift-Away to vacuum the rugs in my little condo. Strong motor. Wanted a stick, but I didn’t like the weight of the motor at the top (not great for my wrists).
posted by cotton dress sock at 6:36 AM on September 2, 2020

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