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The Best Vacuums for Hardwood Floors and Pets

Pet Hair on hardwood

Keeping your home clean when you have furry friends can be a challenging task. It’s easier to remove fur from hardwood floors than deep carpeting, but they still require regular care. The right vacuum will help you keep up with the challenge by simplifying your routines and doing much of the hard work for you. When shopping for a vacuum, consider its features carefully to make sure you have the best one for the job.

Is a Robot Vacuum Right for You?

Pets and Robot Vacuums

If you need an effortless fix for your dusty, hair-covered floor, a robotic vacuum may offer just what you’re looking for. Modern robot vacuums are a far cry from their older counterparts. These autonomous floor cleaners can handle all types of flooring. In addition to cleaning your hardwood floors, these vacuums will also tackle carpet and tile. Today’s products will learn the layout of your rooms so they can systematically clean a pre-programmed space. When they’re finished, these vacuums will dump dirt into a prescribed spot and return to the charging station to await their next task.

Depending on the product, you may adjust the settings on your robot vacuum manually or simply leave it to transition automatically from one surface to the next. Many of these vacuums will even respond to commands sent via a smartphone app. This feature may allow you to clean the house even while you’re at work.

When you have pets in the home, dealing with hair and dander is a daily occurrence. A robot vacuum is a handy automated solution that will help you keep the floors clean and allergen-free with a minimal amount of effort.

Make Sure the Vacuum Can Handle Hair

Pet Hair

Whether you go robotic or choose a more traditional manual design, it’s important that you pick a vacuum that can handle pet hair. Unless you have a hairless critter in your home, fur is a never-ending problem around the house. Look for products that specifically advertise their pet hair perks. Some highly rated options include the Dyson Ball Animal 2, Shark Navigator Lift-Away Professional Upright NV356E, and Eufy Robovac 11S.

Some specific features to look for when you’re dealing with pet hair include:

  • Special attachments and tools to handle corners, edging, and upholstery
  • Strong suction to pick up dander and hair
  • A bar-free brush that won’t get tangled in fur
  • Maneuverability to get in smaller areas of the home where pets may like to spend their time
  • Portability, particularly in a multi-level home
  • A HEPA filter, especially if you have asthma or allergy sufferers in your home

It’s important to think about all the places pet hair can collect and choose a vacuum that will get to all of it. For a standard vacuum, you may need slim attachments that can slip under the furniture. For a robot vacuum, you’ll want to look for a low-profile design that can sneak beneath the couch. Pet hair can collect nearly anywhere, so look for a vacuum that can get into those places, too.

Can the Vacuum Clean Carpet and Rugs Too?

Pet Hair on Rugs

While your primary concern may be the hardwood floors in your home, you should also think about other surfaces that you may have. If you rugs in some rooms, you’ll want a vacuum that’s up to the task of keeping these spots clean. Even something as minimal as entry rugs will require regular attention if you have pets.

Most vacuums are designed with multiple floor materials in mind. Look for a product that can handle everything you have in your home. Consider the controls and make sure it’s easy to switch the vacuum from a hardwood floor setting to one that’s more appropriate for carpeting. Some robotic vacuums are even designed to sense the difference and make the change for you, so you can enjoy effortless cleaning.

Is the Vacuum Cordless?

Cordless vacuum cleaners are a convenient option for pet owners who want to get into a lot of small corners and crevices. Perhaps your dog likes to hide in the farthest reaches of your closet, where a standard corded vacuum can’t reach. Maybe you want to head outside and vacuum your dog’s backyard sleeping space without hauling an extension cord to the dog house. There are many situations where a cordless vacuum can serve a pet owner well.

There are, however, some limitations to cordless vacuums. A cordless vacuum will typically have a smaller capacity, so you will have to empty the canister more often – even mid-job. These vacuums are limited by their battery life. If the battery can’t keep up with the job, you’ll have to split it up into smaller segments, which could make it more time-consuming. You may find that a cordless vacuum has less suction power as well.

The bottom line is that a cordless vacuum is good if you have a specific need for it, but may not be worth the investment if a more traditional vacuum can get to all of your must-clean areas just as well.

Tips for Keeping Your Hardwood Floors Clean

Keeping your hardwood floors clean is about more than just vacuuming. This is an important part of your cleaning routine, but it’s not the only thing you’ll need to do. Use your vacuum to clean up dust, dirt, and pet hair as the first step in your floor cleaning. Follow this up with a wet mop of the floor to disinfect and clean up more stubborn messes.

To add a simple shine to the floors, polish them with a soft cloth dipped in tea. The tea’s tannic acid brings out the natural gleam in hardwood flooring. With regular care and attention, you can keep your hardwood floors looking beautiful, no matter how much wear and tear they face.

Choosing the right vacuum for hardwood floors and pets will make it faster and easier for you to keep the home clean. Pick the perfect tool for the task and you can help your floors gleam.

See our selection of hardwood floors.