Have you ever tried to clean an office building or any other commercial premises with a regular vacuum? If so, chances are, it was extremely hard work.
Since most homes don’t end up with serious messes or are cleaned for hours on end, it’s not surprising that a regular vacuum wouldn’t work in a commercial setting.
Whether you have a cleaning business or janitorial service, investing in a powerful commercial vacuum is an absolute must.
A rock-solid motor is the starting point for a great, heavy-duty cleaner. You’ll want something with a lot more power than the base model you use for cleaning the stairs.
The other factor that needs to be a priority in your buying decision is durability. If you need to clean all day long, then you’ll require equipment built for that purpose.
If you attempt to undertake this type of cleaning project with a flimsy vacuum designed for home use, you’re likely to find it lets you down. It’s also probable that you won’t be able to get through as much cleaning as you could with a more robust commercial model.
Today, we’ll walk you through what we think is the best commercial vacuum on the market so you can narrow these down into a shortlist.
We’ll also look at some of the chief factors you need to bear in mind when arming your cleaning business with the most suitable tools for the job.
And if you’re short on time, here are our top 5 commercial vacuums:
- Our #1 Pick: Oreck Commercial XL
- Best Option from Hoover: Hoover Commercial WindTunnel
- Best Shark Commercial Vac: Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away
- Powerful Motor: Sanitaire SC3683B
- Best Backpack Commercial Vac: ProTeam Backpack QuarterVac
|Oreck Commercial XL||8.2 lbs||Upright||1 year|
|Hoover Commercial WindTunnel||15.2 lbs||Upright||1 year|
|Shark Rotator Professional||15.8 lbs||Upright||5 year|
|Sanitaire SC3683B||10 lbs||Canister||2 year|
|ProTeam Backpack QuarterVac||11 lbs||Backpack||3 years|
|Hoover Commercial CH32008||10.75 lbs||Canister||1 year|
|Hoover CH30000||8.3 lbs||Canister||2 years|
Best Commercial Vacuum Cleaner Reviews
Once you’ve determined how much cleaning you need to do and under what conditions, it’s time to sift through several commercial vacuums at your disposal. To begin, let’s get started with an Oreck upright…
Oreck Commercial XL
(Our #1 Pick)
Oreck is an industry titan in the commercial cleaning space. As such, this commercial vacuum cleaner is guaranteed to give you all the speed and power you need, minus the awkward weight of many uprights.
Automatic adjustment lets you glide effortlessly from carpets to hard floors. The vigorous brushroll means the Oreck commercial vacuum XL seamlessly adapts to thinner carpets, which are prevalent in most offices.
You’ll get all the performance you’d expect from a corded model with the added advantage of a lengthy cable, letting you clean for longer without unplugging.
Most users are delighted with the ergonomic handle. Not only does it allow you to work comfortably, but it also assures efficiency as well. What’s more, the Oreck is singled out for its super-powerful suction, derived from the double-helix brushes. These brushes move all dirt toward the inlet for optimum pace and performance.
- Weight: 8.2 lbs
- Height: 47 in
- Cleaning Path Width: 12 in
- Cord Length: 35 ft
- Warranty: 1 Year
Since this is a bagged commercial vacuum cleaner, you’ll need to factor in the ongoing expense of replacements. On the flipside, emptying them is much less messy than with most bagless equivalents.
- Superb suction and highly effective brushroll
- Weighs just 8 pounds which is very light for an upright
- Works best on low pile carpets
- Fairly pricey
- Poor for above-floor cleaning
Hoover Commercial WindTunnel
(Best Option from Hoover)
Hoover’s patented WindTunnel technology provides a trio of channels that agitate, lift and remove all dirt. However deeply embedded, this is the ideal appliance for commercial cleaning jobs.
Since you’re likely to be cleaning in spaces where you don’t want to leave any damage, Hoover has ensured the wheels don’t leave any rubber marks behind. Additionally, there’s also a furniture guard to protect any chairs and tables from being knocked over as you plow through your work.
Automatic height adjustment for carpets is a nice touch if you are cleaning large buildings with multiple surfaces.
While Hoover specializes in residential vacuums, this XL is a much appreciated and sturdier addition to their range. With its raw suction power, it can handle any mess. Users also compliment the ergonomics and ease with which you can clean low down by reclining the handle.
The Hoover comes with a great deal of plastic which raises questions about lifespan. But, while it feels pretty light, it doesn’t seem flimsy.
- Weight: 15.2 lbs
- Carpet Height Adjustment: 5 level
- Cleaning Path Width: 13 in
- Cord Length: 35 ft
- Warranty: 1 Year Commercial, 2 Years Motor
- Handle reclines neatly to simplify cleaning under furniture
- Non-marking wheels leave the workspace clear of damage while providing excellent traction as you clean
- Furniture guard to minimize scuffs as you work
- Too much plastic gives a lightweight feel
Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away
(Best Shark Commercial Vac)
While not strictly a commercial vacuum cleaner, the Shark Rotator is durable and capable unit. If you’re cleaning more than your house, this model can cope with the extra workload.
Shark’s Complete Seal Technology and HEPA-filtration combine to leave the air as clean as the floors. For allergy sufferers, this is absolutely wonderful.
The main upright will get the majority of your work done effortlessly. You can detach the handheld vac when you work on the stairs, under furniture and anything above the floor.
Since many commercial cleaning jobs take place in dim lighting conditions, the LED headlights are a wonderful extra and ensure you leave everything looking spotless.
User reviews are overwhelmingly positive with praise leveled at the suction power and the multi-purpose nature of this combined unit.
- Weight: 15.8 lbs
- Height: 45.7 in
- Cleaning Path Width: 9.5 in
- Cord Length: 35 ft
- Warranty: 5 Years
Customer service can be shaky at times, but the build quality of the Rotator is such that you shouldn’t run into any problems in the first place.
- HEPA-filtration perfect for anyone sensitive to dust
- 2-in-1 functionality with a detachable lift-away section for cleaning in tight spots
- LED headlights ideal for dim environments
- Fairly heavy at over 15 pounds
- Some issues with warranty
Next, we have something slightly different, a futuristic looking commercial canister from the highly reputable Sanitaire.
This is a bagged vac so you’ll need to factor in the cost of replacements. Changing and cleaning the bag and filter is a cinch. If you want HEPA-filtration, this is available as an optional extra.
Many canisters offer convenience but let you down in terms of firepower. The Sanitaire, on the other hand, has a hard-hitting 1200-watt motor that can take on any disaster zone. The bonus is, all this suction comes in a very compact and lightweight unit, ideal for long shifts on the job site.
The Sanitaire can dance from surface to surface with ease, and even copes with deeper pile carpets. Thus, making this a top-tier vacuum for both home and commercial.
There’s a great deal of positive feedback for its revolutionary design. Along with its excellent workmanship, the suction power and compact nature all receiving rave mentions.
- Weight: 10 lbs
- Canister Vacuum Type: Bagged
- Cleaning Path Width: 10 in
- Cord Length: 20 ft
- Warranty: 2 Years
We need to draw attention to the short power cord which is inexcusable on a commercial vacuum cleaner but made somewhat less problematic by the lengthy hoses.
- Fantastic design to complement solid performance
- Tough 1200-watt motor delivers stunning suction
- Weighs in at just 10 pounds and comes with a shoulder strap to make cleaning simple, even for longer periods
- 20-foot cord is too short for commercial jobs
ProTeam Backpack QuarterVac
(Best Backpack Commercial Vac)
Looking like something from the set of Ghostbusters, the ProTeam backpack is a fantastic cleaner, tailor-made for prolonged and heavy cleaning.
4-stage HEPA-rated filtration ensures that the air is stripped of all those fine particles that can irritate and cause breathing issues.
Designed expressly for scrubbing up larger areas, the 50-foot power cord gives you a fantastic cleaning path without much need to keep unplugging your vacuum cleaner.
You can choose from 4 variants depending on the extent of your needs.
Many satisfied cleaners point to the lightweight and convenient nature of this commercial vacuum, alongside its hard-hitting suction and impressive durability. Overall, the general opinion is extremely positive, even given the price tag.
- Weight: 11 lbs
- Cleaning Path Width: 14 in
- Hose Length: 4.5 ft
- Cord Length: 50 ft
- Warranty: 3 Years
Although the ProTeam backpack set-up is not cheap, the best things in life rarely are. If you have a cleaning business, the extra spending on this commercial vacuum cleaner will save you money over time. That’s because, in the end, you’ll be able to operate far more rapidly.
- Extremely efficient method of deep cleaning quickly
- Work hands-free due to the carry-on nature of this vac
- 50-foot cord gives you the next best thing to a cordless without the limitations
- Reasonably expensive although still great value
Hoover Commercial CH32008
While uprights can work very well in a commercial cleaning backdrop, canisters are also a smart move. Up next, we’ve got another excellent unit from the legendary Hoover.
Aware of the heavier requirements of commercial cleaners, the CH32008 can hold almost 10 quarts of debris before it needs emptying.
Despite its capacity and suction power, the Hoover runs very quietly. When you activate Hush Mode, it kicks out just 62 decibels. And so, you can avoid disturbing anyone as you go about your business.
Suction is first-rate on both carpets and hard flooring. However, the Hoover is extremely lightweight so you won’t feel burdened even if you’re using this commercial vacuum cleaner all day.
Also, the HEPA-filter completes this package from Hoover, and it’s surprisingly affordable.
In areas where cleaners have worked alongside the general public, they’ve been particularly impressed with the quiet nature of this commercial vacuum.
- Weight: 10.75 lbs
- Dust Cup Capacity: 9 dqt
- Cleaning Path Width: 10.5 in
- Cord Length: 50 ft
- Warranty: 1 Year
Although it might be preferred to use a canister vacuum cleaner for working on large areas, the power and portability of the Hoover might make you rethink that.
- Super-long cord ideal for commercial projects
- Weighs under 11 pounds to reduce user-fatigue
- Generous capacity to clean more in one stretch
- Can feel cumbersome dragging canister around
Hoover CH30000 Commercial Vacuum
Hoover rolled out another lightweight canister, in the form of the CH30000, suitable for anyone with a cleaning business.
At just over 8 pounds, you’ll be able to work with the Hoover for long stretches without feeling strained.
There’s a cloth bag and paper bag provided so you can set things up according to the type of waste you’ll be dealing with.
The built-in blower is a nice touch when you take into account the high-end price of this canister.
Cleaners working in awkward and tight spaces have highly praised the ultra-compact Hoover for delivering first-class power in a very small unit.
Although the power cable could be slightly longer, you should still get more than enough reach. Especially, as this commercial vacuum works so well in smaller spaces.
- Weight: 8.3 lbs
- Canister Vacuum Type: Bagged
- Cord Length: 20 ft
- Cleaning Path Width: 10 in
- Warranty: 2 Years
- Integrated blower adds another dimension to your cleaning
- Very small footprint so ideal for cleaning confined spaces
- Incredible value for money considering the functionality
- Cord could be longer
The Best Commercial Vacuum Buyer’s Guide
We’ll now explore some of the main considerations when determining the best commercial vacuum cleaner for your cleaning business.
We’ll focus purely on the 3 main types of commercial vacuums normally used for industrial purposes:
An upright vacuum cleaner packs a great deal of power, without being too heavy and awkward.
Nowadays, there are many fairly lightweight uprights on the market, giving you all the suction you need in a scaled-down unit.
Most uprights work well on all types of flooring. Check that you can disable the brushroll to reduce the risk of scratches all over your hardwood.
The majority of uprights are corded, offering you the very best suction and versatility in an appliance while packing a punch.
The ability to sling a rucksack vacuum over your shoulder and work hands-free makes them a go-to choice for many commercial cleaners.
Check that the weight and set-up of the model you have in mind are appropriate for the intended user.
Carry-on vacuums like this make cleaning stairs a dream, and it also offers an enormous amount of freedom while working on larger buildings.
Related Post: Best Backpack Vacuums
Canister vacs boast power that rivals an upright, all while having a chassis that looks more like a stick.
Weight is of central importance when you’re looking at canisters. Since you’ll be dragging it behind you, it’s imperative to choose something you can comfortably handle.
If you need to clean up and down lots of stairways, a canister might not be the best fit.
Bag or Bagless Cleaner?
Commercial vacuums come in 2 broad categories, bagged and bagless.
- HEPA-Filtration: Most bagged commercial vacuums come with a HEPA filter. These filters trap 99.97% of all airborne allergens and contaminants
- Great For Allergy Sufferers: The bag itself acts as a filter wicking away all the debris you might find in a commercial, which helps clean and keeps those sensitivities at bay
- Easy Maintenance: All you need to do with bagged vacs is to switch out the bag when it’s somewhere near ¾ full, and that’s about the extent of your routine maintenance. This is ideal for commercial purposes
- Hygiene: Because all the debris is safely contained inside the airtight bag, you won’t be exposed to any dust shooting into your face as when emptying a bagless
- Suction: With a more direct path of suction, most bagged commercial vacuums pack a hefty punch
- Expense of Bags: The serious downside with this type of vacuum is the ongoing cost of replacement bags. Make sure you think of this expense in advance and also check that the bags you need are readily available
- Hassle of Changing Bags: While you will need to change the bags, this is no more trouble than emptying a bagless and you’ll make a lot less mess
- Drop in Performance as Bag Fills: Some vacuums see a significant dip in performance as the bag starts to fill. Change them regularly before they get overfilled for best results
Related Post: Best Bagged Vacuum Cleaner
- Easy To Empty: Most bagless vacs have a push-button emptying mechanism sparing you too much blowback
- Eco-Friendly: Since you’re doing away with the constant need for paper bags, you can do your part for the environment by using bagless vacs for your cleaning business
- Monitor For Emptying Fuss-Free: The majority of bagless cleaners have a transparent window allowing you to keep an eye on how full the bag is getting
- A Cheaper Option Upfront: Most bagless commercial vacuums are cheaper in the first place. When you think about the cost of bags over the long-term, you’ll come to realize you can save some serious money with this option
- Simple to Maintain Filters: All you need to do is dump the debris from your filter. Replace it when necessary and you’re good to go.
Related Post: Best Bagless Vacuum Cleaner
- Mounting Cost of Filters: You might avoid needing to buy bags, but most bagless models go through filters at quite a rate. So, bear this cost and hassle in mind
- Mess of Emptying: Some bagless vacuums are clumsy to empty, exposing you to a range of allergens and contaminants as you clean up. Check that the model you’re thinking of has an effective mechanism in place
Top Things To Consider Before Buying
We’ll now break down 5 general categories worth thinking about before you commit to purchasing the best commercial vacuum cleaner.
Rather than looking for the model most packed with features, think instead about what makes sense for the type of cleaning you do.
In a commercial setting, it’s crucial to consider the weight of the unit as well as ergonomics.
According to the nature of the spaces you’ll be cleaning, think about whether a corded or cordless model would work best.
Extras like anti-scuff wheels and furniture guards are well worth looking for if you don’t want to leave any damage behind when you’re done cleaning.
Suction should be the determining factor in a commercial vacuum cleaner. As such, look for power in line with the type of cleaning you’ll be carrying out.
Type of Debris
You should take into account the kind of dirt and debris you’ll be cleaning up.
Most of the regular commercial vacuums deal exclusively with dry waste. If you need to work with wet messes, look for a wet/dry vacuum rather than risking clogging up one not designed for dealing with liquid waste.
If you’re working with particularly fine particles, a HEPA filter makes certain that all those tiny pathogens are spirited safely out of the atmosphere.
As for areas with a ton of strands and messes, we highly recommend getting a vacuum for long human hair.
Even in the home, the weight of the commercial vacuum needs to be given some thought.
The weight factor is a prime concern if cleaners will be using a commercial vacuum for lengthy periods day-in and day-out.
There’s no magic number here, but think about who will use the cleaner and how much weight they can comfortably handle.
Canisters are a popular choice for commercial vacuum cleaners. However, it’s critical you think about the weight of the canister and whether or not you will need to carry it up or downstairs.
Getting the weight issue right is the difference between a job well done and a tired worker becoming less and less efficient.
Unless you need to clean delicate rugs, the more power the better with a commercial vacuum cleaner.
Related Article: Vacuum For Wool Carpets
All the models we review have more than enough power, even for very demanding cleaning situations.
While solid suction is a fundamental part of a great commercial unit, if you’re focusing on hard floors, you’ll need to make sure you can disable the brushroll.
If you search exclusively for vacuums suitable for commercial cleaning, all the models you encounter should be more than powerful enough for purpose.
Whatever environment you’re cleaning, an effective multi-stage filtration system is central to all good vacuums.
As mentioned, HEPA-filtration is the optimum approach to getting even the tiniest particles of dust and pathogens out of the air.
If you buy a bagless vacuum cleaner, you’re likely to need to replace the filters more frequently. So, make sure you take this ongoing expense into account.
Look for a model where the filter is durable and easy to clean. If you do, you’ll spend more time earning and less on routine maintenance.
Related Post: Vacuum Cleaner Filters
Frequently Asked Questions
Do they have quiet commercial vacuums?
A: Since many professional cleaners need to work in areas without causing undue disturbance, many commercial vacuums are surprisingly quiet.
Some come with Hush Mode, allowing you to lower the power slightly and reduce noise pollution. Several of the models we review have this great option.
Where is the best place to buy them?
A: Only you can decide whether you prefer to buy your vacuum online or in a store.
The main advantage to buying in a physical store is that you’ll have the opportunity to try the vacuum for yourself and to see how it feels in your hand.
Buying online, on the other hand, is normally the source of the very best deals. If you’re driven by the bottom line – and who isn’t? – checking out some of the many options for buying online is likely to get you a bargain.
Cord or cordless?
A: Again, no right or wrong answer here.
Think about the logistics of the places you’ll be cleaning.
Cordless vacuum cleaners have slightly less power but compensate for the total freedom you’ll enjoy when cleaning. That said, run times are limited and charging can take a while. As such, you might get more downtime than you’d like in a commercial clean-up.
A corded commercial vacuum delivers much more power. Most commercially-inclined models come packing generous cords, so you shouldn’t feel too restricted.
Think about what works best for you and choose accordingly.
If you have a cleaning business of any nature, it’s wise to invest in a commercial vacuum expressly designed for that purpose.
Look for a model with a capable, dependable motor and strong suction. Think about weight and make sure it will be light enough for the user to wear for as long as necessary.
If you opt for a cordless vac, be certain to investigate run times to make sure you won’t get caught short mid-clean.
Don’t overlook the importance of a reliable and thorough filtration system. With it, you should be set to clean all day long without your commercial vacuum letting you down.
The Oreck Commercial XL is the strongest overall performer for the way in which it gives you all the suction you need on multiple surfaces in a supremely light 8-pound package. We hope you enjoyed reading our best commercial vacuum guide for 2019.
Sources and Resources
- Vacuum Cleaners – Healthy Indoor Air – University of Illinois Extension
- HEPA Vacuum certified asthma & allergy friendly by AAFA