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Encyclopedia > Vacuum cleaner
Regular canister vacuum cleaner for home use.
Regular canister vacuum cleaner for home use.

A vacuum cleaner (in colloquial British English also hoover[1]) is a device that uses an air pump to create a partial vacuum to suck up dust and dirt, usually from carpeted floors, but also from tiled floors and other smooth surfaces. Most homes with carpeted floors in developed countries possess a domestic vacuum cleaner for cleaning. The dirt is collected by a filtering system or a cyclone for later disposal. Download high resolution version (459x1281, 45 KB)Vacuum cleaner. ... Download high resolution version (459x1281, 45 KB)Vacuum cleaner. ... British English (BrE, BE, en-GB) is the broad term used to distinguish the forms of the English language used in the United Kingdom from forms used elsewhere in the Anglophone world. ... An electrically driven pump (electropump) for waterworks near the Hengsteysee, Germany. ... Look up Vacuum in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Look up suck in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Look up dust in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... A carpet is any loom-woven, felted textile or grass floor covering. ... A Cyclone Separator Cyclonic separation is a method of removing particulates from an air (or gas) stream without the use of filters. ...

Contents

History of the Vacuum Cleaner

Ives W. McGaffey

The first manually-powered cleaner using vacuum principles was the "Whirlwind", invented in Chicago in 1868 by Ives W. McGaffey. The machine was lightweight and compact, but was difficult to operate because of the need to turn a hand crank at the same time as pushing it across the floor. McGaffey obtained a patent for his device on June 5, 1869, and enlisted the help of The American Carpet Cleaning Co. of Boston to market it to the public. It was sold for $25, a high price in those days. It is hard to determine how successful the Whirlwind was, as most of them were sold in Chicago and Boston, and it is likely that many were lost in the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. Only two are known to have survived, one of which can be found in the Hoover Historical Center. McGaffey was but one of many 19th-century inventors in the United States and Europe who devised manual vacuum cleaners. The first patent for an electrically driven "carpet sweeper and dust gatherer" was granted to Corinne Dufour of Savannah, Georgia in December 1900. Year 1868 (MDCCCLXVIII) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian Calendar (or a leap year starting on Monday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... Artists rendering of the fire, by John R Chapin, originally printed in Harpers Weekly The Great Chicago Fire was a conflagration that burned from Sunday October 8 to early Tuesday October 10, 1871, killing hundreds and destroying about four square miles in Chicago, Illinois. ... Efforts to use suction to remove dirt from carpets began in the second half of the 19th century, when patents were granted to inventors in the United States, England, France, and elsewhere. ...


H. Cecil Booth

The first powered cleaner employing a vacuum was patented and produced by Hubert Cecil Booth in 1901. He noticed a device used in trains that blew dust off the chairs, and thought it would be much more useful to have one that sucked dust. He tested the idea by laying a handkerchief on the seat of a dinner chair, putting his mouth to the handkerchief, and then trying to suck up as much dust as he could onto the handkerchief. Upon seeing the dust and dirt collected on the underside of the handkerchief he realized the idea could work. Booth created a large device, known as Puffing Billy, driven first by an oil engine, and later by an electric motor. It was drawn by peasants and parked outside the building to be cleaned. Booth never achieved great success with his invention. Hubert Cecil Booth was born in Gloucester, England on the 4th of July 1871 and died at Purley, Surrey, England on the 18th of January 1955. ...


Walter Griffiths

In 1905 "Griffith's Improved Vacuum Apparatus for Removing Dust from Carpets" was another manually operated cleaner, patented by Walter Griffiths Manufacturer, Birmingham, England. It was portable, easy to store, and powered by "any one person (such as the ordinary domestic servant)", who would have the task of compressing a bellows-like contraption to suck up dust through a removable, flexible pipe, to which a variety of shaped nozzles could be attached. This was arguably the first domestic vacuum-cleaning device to resemble the modern vacuum cleaner. Birmingham (pron. ... For other uses, see England (disambiguation). ...


David T. Kenney

Nine patents granted to the New Jersey inventor David T. Kenney between 1903 and 1913 established the foundation for the American vacuum cleaner industry. Membership in the Vacuum Cleaner Manufacturers' Association, formed in 1919, was limited to licensees under his patents. David T. Kenney (APRIL 3, 1866 - MAY 26?, 1922) The inventor Kenney’s nine patents, granted between 1903 and 1913, applicable to both machine-driven and manual vacuum cleaners, dominated the vacuum cleaner industry in the United States until the 1920s. ...


James Murray Spangler

In 1904, James Murray Spangler, a janitor in Canton, Ohio invented an electric vacuum cleaner from a fan, a box, and a pillowcase. In addition to suction, Spangler's design incorporated a rotating brush to loosen debris. His vacuum sold under the name 'Model O' with a price of about $60. 1904 (MCMIV) was a leap year starting on a Friday (see link for calendar). ... A janitor is a person who takes care of a building, such as a school, office building, or apartment block. ... Canton is a city in Stark County, Ohio, United States. ...


Hoover

Spangler patented his rotating-brush design 1908, and eventually sold the idea to his cousin's husband's "Hoover Harness and Leather Goods Factory." In the United States, Hoover remains one of the leading manufacturers of household goods, including cleaners; and Hoover became very wealthy from the invention. Their first produced vacuum was the 'Model O'. It was hand built with numbers less than 20. There only 2 known Model O's in existence. 1908 (MCMVIII) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar). ... Hoover Company logo, originally designed by Henry Dreyfuss The Hoover Company is an American floor care manufacturer based in North Canton, Ohio. ...


Hoover is also notable for an extremely unusual vacuum cleaner, the Hoover Constellation, which is a canister type but lacks wheels. Instead, the vacuum cleaner floats on its exhaust, operating as a hovercraft. Introduced in 1952, they are quite collectible today, and are easily identified by the spherical shape of the canister. They tended to be loud, had relatively poor cleaning power, and could not float over carpets. But they remain a very interesting machine; restored, they work well in homes with lots of hardwood floors. A Hovercraft, or Air-Cushion Vehicle (ACV), is an amphibious vehicle or craft, designed to travel over any sufficiently smooth surface - land or water - supported by a cushion of slowly moving, low-pressure air, ejected downwards against the surface close below it. ...

In 1959 an updated Constellation with a stationary handle replaced the previous model and was made until 1980. These Constellations route all of the exhaust under the vacuum using a different airfoil. The updated design is rather quiet even by modern standards particularly on carpet as it muffles the sound. These models float on carpet or bare floor. They are worth more to collectors than the older version. Image File history File links Broom_icon. ...


Hoover has now re-released an updated version of this later model Constellation in the US (model # S3341 in Pearl White and # S3345 in stainless steel). Changes include a HEPA filtration bag, a 12 amp motor, a suction turbine powered rotating brush floor head, and a redesigned version of the handle which was a beautiful design but tended to break. HEPA (IPA: ) is a type of air filter. ...


The 5.2 amp motor on older US units provides respectable suction but they all lack a motorized brush head. Therefore they generally work better on hard floors or short pile rugs. Old units take Hoover type J paper bags but the slightly smaller type S allergen filtration bags can be easily trimmed to fit the retaining notches on the old vacuums. The most highly collectible colors are pink and turquoise. Replacement motors are still available from Hoover US for some models.


Hoover made another hovering vacuum cleaner model called the Celebrity in the late sixties or early seventies. It has a flatted "flying saucer" shape. Hoover added wheels to it make it a conventional canister model after a brief run as a hovering vacuum. It uses type H bags.


Post-World War II

For many years after their introduction, vacuum cleaners remained a luxury item; but after World War II they became common among the rising middle classes. They tend to be more common in Western countries because, in some parts of the world, wall-to-wall carpeting is uncommon and homes have tile or hardwood floors, which are easily swept, wiped, or mopped. Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... The middle class (or middle classes) comprises a social group once defined by exception as an intermediate social class between the nobility and the peasantry. ... A carpet is any loom-woven, felted textile or grass floor covering. ... Mission, or barrel, roof tiles A tile is a manufactured piece of hard-wearing material such as ceramic, stone, porcelain, metal or even glass. ... Parquetry floor. ...

Cyclonic vacuum cleaners use centrifugal force to separate dust and particles from the air flowing through the cylindrical collection vessel.Photo of Dyson DC07 upright model.
Cyclonic vacuum cleaners use centrifugal force to separate dust and particles from the air flowing through the cylindrical collection vessel.

Photo of Dyson DC07 upright model.

Vacuum cleaners working on the cyclone principle became popular in the 1990s, although some companies (notably Filter Queen) have been making vacuum cleaners with cyclonic action since 1928. Modern cyclonic cleaners were adapted from industrial cyclonic separators by British designer James Dyson in 1985. He launched his cyclone cleaner first in Japan in the 1980s at a cost of about US$1,800 and later the Dyson DC01 upright in the UK in 1995 for £200. It was expected that people would not buy a vacuum cleaner at twice the price of a normal cleaner, but it later became the most popular cleaner in the UK. Download high resolution version (1144x1570, 312 KB) Dyson vacuum cleaner, model DC07. ... Download high resolution version (1144x1570, 312 KB) Dyson vacuum cleaner, model DC07. ... Centrifugal force (from Latin centrum centre and fugere to flee) is a term which may refer to two different forces which are related to rotation. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... A Cyclone Separator Cyclonic separation is a method of removing particulates from an air (or gas) stream without the use of filters. ... For the band, see 1990s (band). ... Sir James Dyson (born Cromer, Norfolk, England, 2 May 1947) is a British industrial designer. ... The United States dollar is the official currency of the United States. ... The Dyson DC01 The DC01 was the first product made by Dyson for use in a normal household. ... “GBP” redirects here. ...


Cyclonic cleaners do not use bags: instead, the dust collects in a detachable, cylindrical collection vessel. Air and dust are blown at high speed into the collection vessel at a direction tangential to the vessel wall, creating a vortex. The dust particles and other debris move to the outside of the vessel by centrifugal force, where they fall because of gravity, and clean air from the center of the vortex is expelled from the machine after passing through a number of successively finer filters at the top of the container. The first filter is intended to trap particles which could damage the subsequent filters that remove fine dust particles. The filters must regularly be cleaned or replaced to ensure that the machine continues to perform efficiently. Since Dyson, several other companies have introduced cyclone models, including Hoover, and the cheapest model is no more expensive than a conventional cleaner. Centrifugal force (from Latin centrum centre and fugere to flee) is a term which may refer to two different forces which are related to rotation. ...


In early 2000 several companies developed robotic "vacuum" cleaners. Some examples are Roomba, Robomaxx, Trilobite and FloorBot. These machines propel themselves in patterns across a floor, cleaning surface dust and debris into their dustbin. They usually can navigate around furniture and find their recharging stations. Most robotic "vacuum" cleaners are designed for home use, although there are more capable models for operation in offices, hotels, hospitals, etc. Some such as the Roomba are equipped with an impeller motor to create an actual vacuum.[2][3] By the end of 2003 about 570,000 units were sold worldwide.[citation needed] First generation Roomba Roomba is a robotic vacuum cleaner made and sold by iRobot. ... Robomaxx is a robotic vacuum cleaner. ... The Electrolux Trilobite is a domestic robot vacuum cleaner manufactured by the Swedish corporation Electrolux. ... A dustbin is a container used to store refuse which can be made out of metal or plastic¹. Other names include trash can, garbage can and trash bin. ... Year 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


In 2004 a British company released Airider, a hovering vacuum cleaner that floats on a cushion of air. It is claimed to be light weight and easier to maneuver (compared to using wheels), although it is not the first vacuum cleaner to do this - the Hoover Constellation predated it by at least 35 years. Year 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


How it works

A vacuum's suction is caused by a difference in air pressure. A pump reduces the pressure inside the tube. Atmospheric pressure then pushes the air through the carpet and into the tube, and so the dust is literally pushed into the bag.


Configurations

Vacuum cleaner configurations:

  • Upright vacuum cleaners have the pump mounted directly above the suction intake, with the bag mounted on the handle, which rises to about waist height. Upright designs usually employ mechanical beaters, often rotating brushes, to help disturb dust to be vacuumed up. There are two types of upright vacuums. On a single-motor upright, the beater brush is driven by the vacuum motor via belt, while on a dual motor upright, the vacuum and beater brush are driven by separate motors. The dual motor upright is very common in commercial uprights.
  • Canister (or cylinder) designs have the motor and bag in a separate canister unit (usually mounted on wheels) connected to the vacuum head by a flexible hose. Although upright units have been tested as more effective (mainly because of the beaters), the lighter, more maneuverable heads of canister models are popular. Some upmarket canister models have "power heads", which contain the same sort of mechanical beaters as in upright units, although such beaters are driven by a separate electric motor.
  • Wet vacs or wet/dry vacuums—a specialized form of the canister vacuum—can be used to clean up wet or liquid spills. They commonly can accommodate both wet and dry soilage; some are also equipped with a switch or exhaust port for reversing the airflow, a useful function for everything from clearing a clogged hose to blowing dust into a corner for easy collection.

Handheld vacuums can vacuum wet and dry. (depending on which vacuum)

  • Back-pack vacs are commonly used for commercial cleaning: they allow the user to move rapidly about a large area. They are essentially canister vacuum cleaners, except that straps are used to carry the canister unit on the user's back.
  • Built-in or central vacuum cleaners move the suction motor and bag to a central location in the building and provide vacuum inlets at strategic places throughout the building: only the hose and pickup head need be carried from room to room; and the hose is commonly 8 m (25 ft) long, allowing a large range of movement without changing vacuum inlets. Plastic piping connects the vacuum outlets to the central unit. The vacuum head may either be unpowered or have beaters operated by an electric motor or air-driven motor. The dirt bag in a central vacuum system is usually so large that emptying or changing needs to be done less often, perhaps once per year. The central unit usually stays in "stand-by", and is turned on by a flick on the handle of the hose. Such a unit also produces greater suction than common vacuum cleaners, because a larger fan and more powerful motor can be used when they are not required to be portable. Another benefit of a central vacuum system is that unlike a standard vacuum cleaner, which blows some of the dirt collected back into the room being cleaned (no matter how efficient its filtration), a central vacuum removes all the dirt collected to the central unit. Since this central unit is usually located outside the living area, no dust is recirculated back into the room being cleaned. In addition, because of the remote location of the motor unit, there is less noise in the room being cleaned than with a standard vacuum cleaner.
Robotic vacuum cleaners operate autonomously.Photo of iRobot Roomba Discovery model.
Robotic vacuum cleaners operate autonomously.

Photo of iRobot Roomba Discovery model.
  • Robotic vacuum cleaners move autonomously, usually in a mostly chaotic pattern ('random bounce'). Some come back to a docking station to charge their batteries, and a few are able to empty their dust containers into the dock as well.
  • Small hand-held vacuum cleaners, either battery-operated or electric, are also popular for cleaning up smaller spills.
  • Drum vacuums are used in industrial applications. With such a configuration, a vacuum "head" sits atop of an industrial drum, using it as the waste or recovery container. Electric and Compressed Air powered models are common. Compressed air vacuums utilize the venturi effect.

Most vacuum cleaners are supplied with various specialized attachments, tools, brushes and extension wands to allow them to reach otherwise inaccessible places or to be used for cleaning a variety of surfaces. ‹ The template below (Unit of length) is being considered for deletion. ... A foot (plural: feet or foot;[1] symbol or abbreviation: ft or, sometimes, ′ – a prime) is a unit of length, in a number of different systems, including English units, Imperial units, and United States customary units. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 635 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (1600 × 1510 pixel, file size: 379 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) File historyClick on a date/time to view the file as it appeared at that time. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 635 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (1600 × 1510 pixel, file size: 379 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) File historyClick on a date/time to view the file as it appeared at that time. ... For other uses, see robot (disambiguation). ... This article is about the robot company. ... First generation Roomba Roomba is a robotic vacuum cleaner made and sold by iRobot. ... A Venturi meter is shown in a diagram, the pressure in 1 conditions is higher than 2, and the relationship between the fluid speed in 2 and 1 respectively, is the same as for pressure. ...


Vacuum cleaner specifications

The performance of a vacuum cleaner can be measured by several parameters:

  • airflow, in cubic feet per minute (CFM or ft³/min) or litres per second (l/s)
  • air speed, in miles per hour (mph) or metres per second (m/s)
  • suction, vacuum, or water lift, in inches of water or pascals (Pa)

The suction is the maximum pressure difference that the pump can create. For example, a typical domestic model has a suction of about negative 20 kPa. This means that it can lower the pressure inside the hose from normal atmospheric pressure (about 100 kPa) by 20 kPa. The higher the suction rating, the more powerful the cleaner. One inch of water is equivalent to about 249 Pa; hence, the typical suction is 80 inches of water. It has been suggested that Thousand Cubic Feet be merged into this article or section. ... The litre or liter (see spelling differences) is a unit of volume. ... Look up second in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... “Miles” redirects here. ... An inch (plural: inches; symbol or abbreviation: in or, sometimes, ″ - a double prime) is the name of a unit of length in a number of different systems, including English units, Imperial units, and United States customary units. ... The pascal (symbol: Pa) is the SI derived unit of pressure or stress (also: Youngs modulus and tensile strength). ...


The power consumption of a cleaner, in watts, is often the only figure stated. Many North American vacuum manufacturers only give the current in amperes (e.g. "12 amps"[1]) and the consumer is left to multiply that by the line voltage of 120 volts to get the power ratings in volt amperes (not quite the same as watts for AC current, see AC voltages). The power does not indicate the effectiveness of the cleaner, only how much electricity it consumes. The amount of this power that is converted into airflow at the end of the cleaning hose is sometimes stated, and is measured in air watts: the units are simply watts; "air" is used to clarify that this is output power, not input electrical power. This is calculated using the formula: For other uses, see Watt (disambiguation). ... Current can be measured by a galvanometer, via the deflection of a magnetic needle in the magnetic field created by the current. ... A volt-ampere in electrical terms, means the amount of power in an alternating current circuit equal to a current of one ampere at an emf of one volt. ... City lights viewed in a motion blurred exposure. ...

cleaning power (air watts) = airflow (CFM) × suction (inches of water) / 8.5
= airflow (m³/s) × suction (Pa)

Air watts measured at the vacuum's motor can differ by as much as 50% (depending on the type of vacuum) from the air watts measured at the end of the hose. This is most noted in Central Vacuums.


Some smaller vacuum cleaners are light-weight, portable, and rechargeable, instead of using AC power. Portable communications devices refer to hand-held or wearable devices. ... Rechargeable batteries are batteries that can be restored to full charge by the application of electrical energy. ... Usually hidden to the unaided eye, the blinking of (non-incandescent) lighting powered by AC mains is revealed in this motion-blurred long exposure of city lights. ...


Electric mop

Some vacuum cleaners include an electric mop in the same machine: for a dry and a later wet clean. A mop in a bucket with a wringer. ...


See also

Look up vacuum cleaner in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Wiktionary (a portmanteau of wiki and dictionary) is a multilingual, Web-based project to create a free content dictionary, available in over 150 languages. ... Home appliances are electrical/mechanical appliances which accomplish some household functions, such as cooking or cleaning. ... A mop in a bucket with a wringer. ... First generation Roomba Roomba is a robotic vacuum cleaner made and sold by iRobot. ...

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
Vacuum cleaner

Image File history File links Commons-logo. ...

References

  • The origin of the vacuum cleaner - H. Cecil Booth, Transactions of the Newcomen Society, 1934–1935, Volume 15.
  • Vacuum Cleaners - Energy Use - MTP

Footnotes

  1. ^ In Britain Hoover has become so associated with vacuum cleaners as to become a genericized trademark. The word "hoover" (without initial capitalization) is often used as a generic term for "vacuum cleaner". Hoover is also used as a verb, as in "I've just hoovered the carpet".
  2. ^ Roomba diagnostic tests procedure. Accessed 2007-06-24.
  3. ^ Jack Perdue. Reassembling my Roomba. March 21, 2006. Accessed 2007-06-24.

YOUR MOM!!! A genericized trademark, generic trade mark, generic descriptor, or proprietary eponym, is a trademark or brand name which has become the colloquial or generic description for a particular class of product or service. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Vacuum Cleaner - MSN Encarta (172 words)
Vacuum Cleaner, electrical appliance in common use for cleaning furniture, floors, rugs, and carpets by suction.
Generally, vacuum cleaners are of two types: the vertical type, which is light and moves over the surfaces to be cleaned, and the canister, or tank, type, which trails a long hose with a nozzle that can be moved over the area to be cleaned.
Most vacuum cleaners have a variety of attachments that can be used to clean different types of surfaces, such as window sills and thick rugs and carpets; some are also equipped to polish floors and shampoo rugs.
Vacuum cleaner - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (2706 words)
A vacuum cleaner is a device that uses an air pump to create a partial vacuum to suck up dust and dirt, usually from carpeted floors, but also from tiled floors and other smooth surfaces.
Instead, the vacuum cleaner floats on its exhaust, operating as a hovercraft.
Vacuum cleaners working on the cyclone principle became popular in the 1990s, although some companies (notably Filter Queen) have been making similarly-designed vacuum cleaners since at least the 1960s.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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