Thread Number: 36752  /  Tag: Brand New Vacuum Cleaners
Do you think canister vacuum sales will eventually end in the US?
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Post# 393218   6/14/2018 at 16:33 by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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I was thinking about this last night. It seems these days, at least in my area, all we are seeing in the retail stores are uprights and stick type vacuums. There are few canisters and if there are any, they tend to be bagless and small, and likely straight suction. Go to Walmart, there are two Eureka canisters, both bagless one with a tiny PN. Bed Bath and Beyond, no canisters. Lowes and Home Depot, maybe one straight suction bagless Bissell. Of course Sears has plenty of bagged and bagless canisters, but everyone seems to disregard them these days. That's a shame.

I just wonder if there will be an end of canister sales in the US. I mean, everyone says go to a Miele or Tacony store, but we have none here. There are no longer any vacuum shops. So the average consumer is going to go to the big box store and buy an upright along with the milk and other groceries. They probably won't think "I really want a canister, why aren't there any?" since all that is on display are uprights.

I am assuming that this is why these vacuums are in stores, is this is what people want. But it seems odd that at one time you could buy canisters at the big box stores like Walmart just as easily as uprights. But no longer. Why?

And why is Sears the only retailer that still pushes canisters and vacuums that utilize bags anymore? There must be a reason.

Post# 393221 , Reply# 1   6/14/2018 at 17:49 by broomvac (N/A)        

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I worry even about traditional uprights! It seems carpet is becomes less and less popular, so full-size vacuums appear to be on the decline.

I hate to say it, but a cordless stick vacuum like the Dyson v10 really is the best solution for hard floors. On top of that, people love the convenience and simplicity. Those things are gonna kill upright vacuums.

Post# 393225 , Reply# 2   6/14/2018 at 20:27 by Tseg (World Traveller)        

There is a reason one of those stores you mention is on a path to insolvency. Mass merchants have to follow the data.

Post# 393227 , Reply# 3   6/14/2018 at 21:03 by kenkart (Mocksville, NC)        
Another reason the 1950s

Were so wonderful, canister and tanks outsold uprights many many times over, and like cars and appliances of the era, they didn't all look the same as today, there were wonderful choices, Apex, Lewyt, Westinghouse, AirWay, Electrolux, Kenmore,Eureka,Universal, General Electric, Hamilton Beach, all totally different , all good, all well built out of metal, with beautiful attachments and hoses,Today what do you have..Foreign made plastic machines with horrible cheap attachments and silly clunky hose grips that are awkward and not user sad what has happened to the USA!

Post# 393241 , Reply# 4   6/15/2018 at 00:19 by huskyvacs (Northern Indiana)        

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I've never seen a canister vac in a store since I started collecting in fall 2017. I did one time see one in Aldi though, but that's a knockoff of a European vacuum I am sure.

Post# 393245 , Reply# 5   6/15/2018 at 10:28 by kenkart (Mocksville, NC)        
And when I was a kid

In the 70s they outnumbered uprights 2 or 3 to one!One reason I never have been hooked on uprights, I never saw many growing up.

Post# 393250 , Reply# 6   6/15/2018 at 12:01 by human (Pines of Carolina)        

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I see the same trend at thrift shops. Canisters in great condition sell for practically nothing while beat-up bagless, plasticrap uprights are priced at two or three times as much. About a year and a half ago, I nabbed a beautiful Electrolux Diamond J with a PN5 for $10 and there was a clapped out Bissell or Dirt Devil (can't remember but it was green) next to it for $30. Go figure...

Post# 393257 , Reply# 7   6/15/2018 at 16:26 by Kirbysthebest (Wichita, KS)        
The Pendulum will swing back

As the flooring trends swing. As you watch HG TV you will see the trend towards hard surface floors. A few years ago it was wall-to-wall, but you are seeing area rugs now.

I think as Tom G. mentioned when Tacony introduced the Prima, that Canister sales are not that of uprights. We may see more of the stick type vacs as the Sharks, Dysons and Hoovers take hold. Same with the robo vacs, but I still don't see the demise of the traditional vacuums (canisters or uprights) for awhile.

Post# 393276 , Reply# 8   6/15/2018 at 21:52 by myles_v (Fredericksburg, VA)        

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It's funny you mention Bed Bath and Beyond, I was just there the other day. Mine has a Miele canister and a Bissell canister. They may have also had a Dyson canister but I don't remember exactly. The Bissell had the weird turbine nozzle they sell for hard floors and I don't remember whether the Miele had a power nozzle or not.

Post# 393293 , Reply# 9   6/16/2018 at 02:41 by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

It would seem with the trends toward hard floors canister vacuums would be doing better.To get a GOOD canister machine you have to go to a vac shop or buy one from a DTD salesman.I use both.Kirby for the carpets-canisters for anything else.Also with central vacuums-sales of these seem to be doing better.Perfect hard floor vacuum!And Royal should bring back their metal upright that was straight suction only for hard flooring.Gym and dance floor users liked those.

Post# 393319 , Reply# 10   6/16/2018 at 12:07 by kenkart (Mocksville, NC)        
A straight suction Royal

Was a great machine for glued down carpet!

Post# 393332 , Reply# 11   6/16/2018 at 14:52 by relhall (Baton Rouge, Louisiana)        

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I see buyers that are simply not educated about the best way to clean their floors (though maybe I should have just stopped at "clean") and most of us are a little lazy in one area or another.

It used to be, if you had hard floors so you got a canister/tank. Those with carpet/rugs needed an upright for deep cleaning. Powerheads on canisters have helped them do carpet/rugs better, and many uprights got the option for a "hard floor setting" so consumers are left to figure out which they prefer. Uprights win.
A lot of people with carpet struggle to get that powerhead and hose and big ole thing on wheels around with any sort of finesse, so the banging and cussing ensues. Training can help, but it is what it is, so uprights win.

Almost any upright on bare floors will leave dirt behind. Just because the belt stops turning the brush and you're dragging that upright all over the house does not mean that you are cleaning your bare floors. Still, uprights win.

Often consumers are just looking for easier and cheaper ways to get jobs done, not better; and not all of us like to ask for help when it comes to making decisions so we go back to what we know (or what someone we know tells us) and the upright wins.

One of the first questions I ask shoppers is “what types of flooring do you have” and the response is almost always “well, carpet!” because they had no intention of using the vacuum on bare floors. Perhaps a big factor in declining canister sales is that brooms are cheaper (refer to my first line again).

The younger crowd will soon have fond memories of the old days when you actually got to plug a vacuum into the wall, then push and pull it by yourself. Good marketing is amazing!

For me, it’s all about having the right tool for the job. On the other hand, I did use a hammer to remove a screw earlier but only because it was already in my hand. I swear I do at least have a screwdriver around here somewhere (refer to my first line again) ~

Post# 393347 , Reply# 12   6/16/2018 at 17:16 by bikerray (Middle Earth)        

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Don't forget that a lot of people don't vacuum hard floors because they use Swiffers (which don't biodegrade).

Post# 393371 , Reply# 13   6/17/2018 at 09:08 by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        

I'm a canister only person, I have no uprights nor do I want any although I have to admit, I was quite impressed at the vacuum convention this weekend with the Sebo Felix, but it still has the issues that I don't like with uprights. Canisters are simply more flexible. It is much easier to get under things and to clean in tight places, and with a power nozzle a canister will clean carpet as good as an upright. I have lots of hard wood floors with some area rugs, with a canister switching from floor cleaning to above the floor cleaning is as easy as switching attachments. Some uprights have attachments as well but try pulling an upright around while cleaning above the floor, most of them will tip over.
Canisters are indeed hard to find in stores these days, and some of that is related to how stores have changed. During the 50's, 60's and 70's, you had department stores, not discount stores like Walmart, there is a difference. I'm talking about stores like Sears which is still around somewhat, famous bar, styx, etc. That's where you bought decent quality canister machines.
Hans is right, the 50's was the decade of the canister, that is by far my favorite decade in the vacuum museum.
Bed Bath and Beyond does still sell Miele canisters I think, but if you want a good selection of canisters, you will have to buy it on line or go to a vac shop. Fortunately there are several ways to get the cleaning ability of a canister cleaner. You can use a pull around machine, I'm putting canisters and tanks in the same category here because they clean the same way, you can also use a central vacuum or use a backpack. All of them will give you the flexibility that a canister is known for. As far as brands, I would suggest Miele, Sebo, Riccar or Simplicity, or the Numatic Henry machines. Aerus is still around as well and their machines are good, you can get Electrolux canisters used at good prices. The Electrolux Ultra One is also a great machine.

Post# 393380 , Reply# 14   6/17/2018 at 11:58 by completenutt (West Hollywood, California)        
Picture this...

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Canisters make better subjects to photograph!

  Photos...       <              >      Photo 1 of 9         View Full Size
Post# 393480 , Reply# 15   6/18/2018 at 15:46 by daknx1994 (Southern Indiana)        

As Kirbysthebest said, there is a swinging pendulum. I do not think you are going to have to worry about traditional vacuums disappearing anytime soon. Wall to wall carpet was so popular for so long and now your getting more people going to hard floors of some type. But there will still be people who prefer carpet. Also as mentioned earlier, I see families with hard floors and then they cover the whole floor in area rugs. What's the point of a hard floor then? I myself like to have hard floors in the kitchen, bathrooms, and dining area. Everything else would be carpet. There are many reasons for this but that would be better for another thread. However to each their own.

Post# 394892 , Reply# 16   7/14/2018 at 09:02 by jp10558 (Southern Tier, NY, USA)        

I don't know about ending, but I agree with everyone that there's a large number of people who just don't know what they're doing for any given task. I never used to think of using a vacuum on hard floors because ... a vacuum is an upright, and it just doesn't work right on a hard floor.

So when I put in laminate and ripped out the carpeting (pets and carpets are a no-no I now firmly believe)... I was sweeping. A lot. Most people don't even sweep right - they just sort of faffed around with a broom, then sort of got some of what they "swept up" into a dustpan, and eventually near the garbage. Oh, it's better than nothing, but when you've got pet hair, dirt, and dust, it really was a difficult task to sweep up decently, get the piles left alone by people and pets long enough to try and get into a dustpan and then dump into the garbage and not have hair clumps escape... I missed a lot.

Then I looked back into vacuums again because of the Sebo D4 (youtube), and decided to try my Oreck IronMan cannister with the combi tool on the hard floor. We used to never use it because what good was it? It didn't have a brushroller, and the "turbo brush" was a joke. On carpet it's ... not worth trying - that's why we have the XL21. But on hard floors and area rugs? It's just the thing. The only problem is the small bags (and high pitched whine), but it doesn't try and eat the area rugs, and cleans them well and it's great for pet hair and everything on the hard floors.

I make one pass with the vacuum and I'm done. No going back to catch things people knocked out of the pile. No re-sweeping to try and get into the dustpan. Oh, and it loves grabbing the pet hair clumps vs the brooms where that was a big PITA.

I really wish I'd realized the use of the canister for hard floors several years ago, but it really never occurred to me. We thought the Iron Man (canister) was for cars and cleaning out certain types of filters or cobwebs - but never for floor cleaning. How wrong I was.

Post# 394894 , Reply# 17   7/14/2018 at 09:29 by gottahaveahoove (Pittston, Pennsylvania, 18640)        
The two bathrooms at my place are tile

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the kitchen is tile and oak. All of the other rooms are oak, except for one bedroom and the big staircase, which are carpeted.
Yes, the Hoover Convertibles are used regularly, and there are Chinese rugs in the house, too.
But, nothing makes all of the hard surfaces perfectly clean better than a nice canister with the perfect floor brush.
There's always a Hoover canister at the ready for this need.
Just my opinion here.

Post# 394898 , Reply# 18   7/14/2018 at 09:44 by Luxkid1980 (Richmond, Virginia)        

Since many consumers nowadays have hard floors, they can get by with a cheap stick vacuum to get the job done. No one needs an expensive Dyson to vacuum hard floors; a cheap vacuum will suffice. But then, the cheap vacuums do not excel at cleaning carpets or area rugs for consumers that have mixed flooring types. So, those consumers need something a little better so they usually get a cheap plastivac with on board attachments which have mediocre performance. I think space is a big consideration too. Uprights generally take up less space and they can be easily maneuvered around the house. I actually like bagged canisters a lot and feel they are very versatile. Bagless canisters; not so much. I don’t want to have to clean a filter on a vacuum and I don’t want to see all the dirt swirling around inside a clear tank that ends up looking like crap after a few uses. Bagless isn’t better; regardless of what manufacturers try to tell you! :)

Post# 394905 , Reply# 19   7/14/2018 at 10:31 by gottahaveahoove (Pittston, Pennsylvania, 18640)        
I agree,

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