Thread Number: 14591
A story involving some vacuum cleaners or something like that.
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Post# 154403   10/7/2011 at 00:20 (4,525 days old) by Red_October ()        

The other day I found myself in a bit of a pickle. For Sound Reasons Unimportant To The Story, I needed to clean thoroughly. This involved quite a bit of vacuuming with a hose, so I used the Hoover Portable that I've been using lately, until I ran into a bit of a problem. The Hoover Portable, for those not familiar with it, is a nifty if flawed unit; squat and square, it has internally stored tools and a hose that can either be coiled up inside the unit or brought out one side for use; it is indeed quite compact and handy, but it's not particularly good, to be honest. There is no powered brush and the floor tool relies on Hoover's red rubber teeth gimmick, which means that there are, as near as makes no difference, "none" left. The hose is unusually thin and has a 90-degrees bend at the end, which means that it clogs up all the time. The usual remedy to this is to put the hose on the blower port and either put the other end in the trash can or in the suction port. However the suction port is plastic, and the hose end is also plastic, but the chassis, into which the blower port is incorporated, is metal. After the damn thing clogged up on the thousandth cigarette end that my horrendous former room-mate left everywhere (Don't get me wrong; I smoke too; in fact I'm so enthusiastic about it that I have an ashtray at every possible place you could be smoking. The thing is he was such an oaf that he never bother to use the damn things, or empty them when they were full, so the ends ended up scattered to the four winds), in attaching the hose to the blower port, I sheer off one of the little plastic teeth that locks the hose in place. There were only two to begin with, so what was a tentative hold as best went entirely away just like that.

I still had cleaning to do. Now understand a moment that my collection consists mostly of uprights. I do have some cannisters, but my best one, a Royal "Pony" (I hate that name for it but that's what I've always heard it called and I don't know the model number offhand), is currently out-of-service. My options were actually rather slim: An Electrolux so old it has runners instead of wheels, a GE Swivel-Top, and a Kenmore that looks like it's lived through a nuclear apocalypse. Not having a full set of attachments for the Electrolux and unable to remember for the life of me if it actually ran or not, and the Swivel-Top being, well, a Swivel-Top, I decided to see if the Kenmore would fire up. It did. It's attachments were also all stored on top of it, so that meant I didn't have to dig them up.

I noticed a few things.
-All of my power nozzles for Kemmores (none of which are actually for this machine; I have a green one of the right type; two later Kenmores and a Eureka) are all frozen up solid no thanks to the water I got in the basement last year.
-The Vacuum itself is immensely powerful. In fact it is the most powerful cannister by far I have used in recent memory. (Naturally excluding shop-vacs, etc.) The crevice tool is a very effective design. It eats up cigarette ends and for whatever reason seems to work much better than seemingly every other one on earth. It's a sort of "Duck's-Foot" design. I can take a picture of it specifically if enough people haven't seen one before.
-It works very well for being in amazingly poor shape. It's got whatever bag it's had in it for however long I've had it; the Magicord is broken (I don't remember if it's been removed or not), the dusting brush is missing, the hose is cracking, and I couldn't use a power nozzle ("Powermate!"), the plug looks like it belongs on a 1930s model, but it works so well nonetheless. The "Floor & Wall" brush works great on hard floors and carpets, and of course you can clean walls with it too! (LOL)

I do have a few questions about it, though, since I'm not knowledgeable about this unit in the slightest except that my grandmother had a similar one once and didn't like it because it didn't "Deep-Clean", whatever that meant in her mind. It also had a hilariously short hose which has convinced me that it is the reason that my family doesn't like cannister vacuums. My example suffers no such problem.
-Can the cracks in the hose be arrested or repaired, or are replacement hoses available? Are bags even still available?
-What year is this thing from?
-Does anyone have a picture of the dusting brush? I suspect that ebay will be my only source for one and I'd like to find the correct one since it fits in a specific space.
-I know this is unlikely, but is a replacement hose for my Hoover portable available? If not, is there a repair for the end?

I have posted a picture of the Kenmore in question. I have had it for years but this is the first time I used it seriously.

Post# 154407 , Reply# 1   10/7/2011 at 02:20 (4,525 days old) by BrianKirbyClass (Eudora Kansas)        

briankirbyclass's profile picture
From what i know about Hoover Portables and Kenmore's, No there are no hoses avalible for either one as far as brand new. However, both of your machines are NOT totally unheard of and not all that rare. Replacment hoses and attachments for these models are often found on E-Bay, or if there is a local vac shop in your area that has been in business for a long time, they may have a spare hanging around. Many times E-Bay sellers will be selling the whole machine with a good hose or attachments, so often times with older machines like this, its wise to just buy the whole machine in order to get just the part(s) you need.
As far as repairing the hose or the hose ends, forget it,,would be better to check E-Bay, or a local vac shop that may have a spare.
As far as bags, yes, i believe bags are still avalible for both Hoover Portables, and Kenmores if this this vintage. There again, E-Bay or an older vac shop in your area would be a good place to look.
As for the age of your Kenmore,,its from the late 1970s - very early 80s,,made by Whirlpool.
There are also wholesale vaccuum cleaner parts avalible online, and possibly E-Bay,,they would be a good place to check for parts and attachments for older machines. Be aware however that in this day and age, the parts that are avalible may be "TO FIT" the older vac models, and may not be exact replicas.
Hope this helps!

Post# 154408 , Reply# 2   10/7/2011 at 02:32 (4,525 days old) by BrianKirbyClass (Eudora Kansas)        

briankirbyclass's profile picture
BTW, i agree with you that the Hoover Portable was a back breaker to actually clean house with, and not very effective as far as deep cleaning. Great for hard floors or furniture tho. I use mine for cleaning out the car, and just keep it standing on end like a suitcase.
I cant imagine cleaning a large home, with stairs, and thick wall to wall carpet with a Hoover Portable, dragging that heavy machine around, and no carpet beating action.
They are handy for cleaning out a car,or garage, and you are so right, the hose can get clogged easily. Of course no vacuum cleaner manufacturer recommends picking up cigarette butts with a vacuum cleaner,,not just for the potential fire hazzard, but also that the butts can and will often clog up the hose.
Vacuuming cigarette butts will also cause the exhaust of most vacuums to have a terrible odor.
One of my Aunts had a Hoover Portable back in the late 1960s,,,she called it the "Beast",,and hated using it. Said it got caught up on every piece of furniture and doorway possible.
She eventially traded it for a GE Swivel Top and liked it much better.

Post# 154417 , Reply# 3   10/7/2011 at 07:34 (4,524 days old) by massagemiracle ()        

I think this is the hoover hose you might need

CLICK HERE TO GO TO massagemiracle's LINK on eBay

Post# 154419 , Reply# 4   10/7/2011 at 07:40 (4,524 days old) by massagemiracle ()        

Go to, they have alot of replacement parts for all older vacuums.  I was refered to them by kirbykid35 and they have replacement parts for my eureka canned hams that I thought I would never find again. And they have replacement parts for your Kenmore and Hoover both.

Post# 154434 , Reply# 5   10/7/2011 at 13:35 (4,524 days old) by Red_October ()        

Above website returns a manufacturer of military fortifications. A quick Google shows us that is the place in question, and they indeed appear to have parts for Hoover portables. I am pleasantly surprised. I'll use the ol' duct tape on the Kenmore's hose until I can order a new one, and I'll have to see if I can resurrect any of my power nozzles.

While we're on the subject, does anyone have a good timeline or history of Kenmore vacuums? I am really only familiar with this type, and have passing knowledge of the earlier, square ones. Their uprights especially seem to be quite rare.

Post# 154436 , Reply# 6   10/7/2011 at 13:59 (4,524 days old) by vintagekitchen ()        
power nozzle..

You would be amazed how many times you can save a power nozzle just by taking off the cover, adding some WD-40, and wiggling parts until it starts turning freely again. Ive had some I thught were total goners saved that way.

Post# 154437 , Reply# 7   10/7/2011 at 14:08 (4,524 days old) by 1926700 ()        
well on the Kenmore uprights.....

there were alot of uprights in the last 70 years or so.......the ones that i know about are frome the mid 60's and 70's...and they also seemed to be the most popular amungst consumers. i really seems that the uprights in the 30's and 40's did not take off very well for some reason. as Brian has said in a earlier post Kenmore vacuums were always private labeld machines....and there were a few select companies that made the diffrent Kenmore models.....just like Montgomery ward used Eureka for there machines and JCPenney used Hoover, Kenmore has used a frew diffrent companies thought the was said that in the late 50's and very earley 60's they used BeeVac or other wise known as Birtman Electric. wich were basic metal convertible type uprights. then when the mid 60's rolled around and Hoover introduced the Dial.A.Matic wich was the FIRST clean air upright, whirlpool made a awnser to the DAM called the Duo Power. and to my knowledge that was only sold through Sears under the Kenmore name. and in 1965 66 67 and 68 and 69 there were only a couple machines of wich was a land mark of its own....and that was a compact upright wich was produced by Whirpool and owned by a small corperation called Oreck....and that was also produced under the actuall whirlpool name.....called the Whorlpool CVR. and the Duo Power itself went though a lot of changes in the 70's, it was made self propelled (to compete with the powerdrive DAM), headlights ere added corwinders, deluxe hight ADJ's..and they ran clear up to the very earley 80's, then a new machine was introduced in the ealey 70's and it was made by a company called roybi, and this was of the most well known and well was a soft bag machine called the twin fan, these were made clear up to the earley 90's....there were so many color and features added that there are more versions of that machine that we know about, that machine was also made for Singer as the Powermaster or the Singer System....and there were some other kenmore odd ball private lables that were made....then in the 90's the machines were mostley panasnic machines....and by that time most of us knew what was sold....

Post# 154442 , Reply# 8   10/7/2011 at 14:12 (4,524 days old) by 1926700 ()        

this was one of the first duo power uprights.....and aslo a Whirlpool CVR machine on the same page..

Post# 154446 , Reply# 9   10/7/2011 at 14:15 (4,524 days old) by 1926700 ()        

things started to change....and also note that the CVR was then a hard bodied machine....

Post# 154447 , Reply# 10   10/7/2011 at 14:17 (4,524 days old) by 1926700 ()        

there is a twin fan!!!!!!....

Post# 154448 , Reply# 11   10/7/2011 at 14:18 (4,524 days old) by 1926700 ()        

the self propelled Duo power

Post# 154449 , Reply# 12   10/7/2011 at 14:21 (4,524 days old) by 1926700 ()        

now a commercial upright was added

Post# 154450 , Reply# 13   10/7/2011 at 14:24 (4,524 days old) by 1926700 ()        

a odd ball privat lable....a black kenmore Extra wide sweep, was also prduced in a cream and light brown as a Whirlpool Power Clean

Post# 154452 , Reply# 14   10/7/2011 at 14:31 (4,524 days old) by 1926700 ()        
around 1992 or 1993

the panasonic profromance a twin motor clean air machine....was also the Panasonic Ultra Pro, wich was yellow and black and was a commercial machine

Post# 154453 , Reply# 15   10/7/2011 at 14:34 (4,524 days old) by 1926700 ()        
Power Center....

the hard bag was the Singer or Bissel Powergroom, and the soft bag was another version of the Comercial the Panasonic Utra Pro

Post# 154639 , Reply# 16   10/9/2011 at 08:30 (4,522 days old) by kenmore81 (Warwick, RI)        

kenmore81's profile picture

My favorite Kenmores. I think ebay would be an option for the hose, but they don't show up often. As far as bags I think sells them still but they are high priced. Ebay has bags for both vacuums all the time. I think I need to get some to.

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