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Consumer Reports’ latest vacuum report doesn’t include Hoover among its list of recommended uprights

Posted Thursday, February 24, 2011

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Well-known name gets edged out by more reliable brands

Yonkers, NY — For the first time in years, Consumer Reports’ latest vacuum report doesn’t include Hoover among its list of Recommended uprights. Hoover still tops Consumer Reports’ Ratings overall, and its canister models still make top picks; the Hoover Platinum canister, $365, was named a CR Best Buy and delivered superb carpet cleaning and excellent cleaning on bare floors and pet hair. But while Consumer Reports’ surveys found only two brands that were more reliable than Hoover among canister vacuums, there were many more-reliable brands among uprights.

“Hoover uprights have been left off our recommended list because many other upright brands had fewer problems in our brand-repair surveys,” said Bob Markovich, home and yard editor at Consumer Reports. “That’s why it’s critical to check out both our performance ratings and the results from our brand-repair surveys when shopping for any vacuum.”

Additional results revealed some models really are new and improved, while others aren’t as good as those they replace. LG’s Kompressor Total Care LuV 400T bagless upright, $550, is one model that’s truly new and improved. It’s a notch above the previous models in carpet cleaning, a vacuum’s toughest test, and the rotating blade in its bin compresses what it picks up to boost capacity and ease emptying. On the other hand, Kenmore’s bagged upright Intuition 31810, $350, costs $90 more than the old model, yet it slipped in airflow and plummeted in pet-hair pickup. The gap is wider between the new bagless Intuition 31811, $350 and the older-but-better Intuition 31040, which cost $50 less. And while the bagless upright Bissell Pet Hair Eraser 87B4, $150, and PowerClean 16N5-4, $220, claim “superior” and “non-stop” suction, respectively, both were middling in Consumer Reports’ airflow tests.

How to Choose

Consumer Reports offers the following tips for choosing a vacuum that truly meets the needs of shoppers:

  • Pick a type. Uprights do better overall on carpets and canisters are easier to maneuver.
  • Choose a bagless vac carefully. In the canister category, the Hoover Platinum bagless canister got excellent ratings on bare floors and pet hair tests, in addition to superb carpet cleaning. However, roughly one-third of bagless-vac owners surveyed confirmed that emptying any canister-vacuum’s bin is typically a messy, dusty chore—an added concern for those with asthma and allergies.
  • Check the features. Look for edge-cleaning tools for corners and baseboards, along with manual carpet-height adjustments over automatic systems to better match the brush of the carpet. Also look for an on-off switch for the brush. And don’t choose a model just for its HEPA filter; some vacs with regular filters kept in dust equally well in Consumer Reports’ tests.
  • Try it out. Visit a store and push, pull, turn and lift any vacuum before buying, even if the final purchase will be online.

The full report on vacuums appears in the March issue of Consumer Reports and online at

Consumer Reports has no commercial relationship with any advertiser or sponsor appearing on this newspaper's web site.

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Consumer Reports’ latest vacuum report doesn’t include Hoover among its list of recommended uprights

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