central vacs


I just moved into a new house with a central vac system. I haven't had any experience with them. there are no attachements, ie. hose. I need advice on choosing parts. The house is @3500 sq ft, 3 level with at least 2 hose outlets on each level. Thanksin advance .Frank
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FrankOOOOO wrote:

my dad has a system, they say a regular sweeper is more convenient than dragging the hose assembly around......
its nice the exhaust goes outdoors though.
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I find the central vac has more power. The hose is big and bulky but I don't find it much worse than a regular vacuum.
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Hmm.
Not sure I know all the ins and outs of central vacs. One thing we did before ordering is measure from where the outlets were to the farthest point we needed to vacuum. I believe the hoses commonly come in either 35ft or 40ft lengths.
You will want to find out what length hose you need. Use a rope or something to figure that out.
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FrankOOOOO wrote:

I have used a central vac for 32 years in this house. I think the most important thing is having an electrical beater brush for carpeting. That means you have to get AC power to the end of the hose. There are hoses with power going through the hose. I have AC outlets next to each central vac inlet. Also, check hose lengths to make sure you can reach all areas where you want to use the vacuum.
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wrote:

Check out:
http://builtinvacuum.com/products_home.html
Good info, and they have all the parts you are likely to need. I've bought from them and received good service.
HTH,
Paul
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FrankOOOOO wrote:

I put one in my last home and when I had my current home built I made sure one was put in from the start.
First take a look and see what brand you have and what model the power unit is. Then go to a dealer that handles that brand. They can help guild you to what may work best for you.
Your needs may be quite different than mine. For example I have almost 100% carpet. I live in the midwest. If you live in the northeast you likely have mostly hardwood. The different power heads with more or less power may work better with some tools than others.
Good Luck.
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Joseph Meehan

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Judging by my own experience, you will soon get tired of lugging a 30 or 40 foot coiled hose around the house. Infinitely harder than pulling an electric cord.
We abandoned our built-in and reverted to a powerful upright (with a rotating brush) for carpets and a canister style for all hard floors. Maybe, that's what the previous owners of your house did.
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Walter
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Walter R. wrote:

thats what my dad and step mom said.......
hose harder than pushing a regular sweeperm they upgraded to a power drive model.
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We invested in a pair of Oreck light-weight vacuums. One for upstairs, the other for down. Also a small canister vacuum for odd jobs. Can't beat them. We live at the DE Atlantic shore, and have a dog that tracks in sand a lot. Got to get him to wipe his paws better....
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My neighbor had a pair of Orecks. She finally got a good vac and is much happier.
Bob
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We use an upright for carpets and the built-in for everything else. Nice thing about the built-in is that it quiet and a lot less weight to haul around.
sq ft, 3 level with at

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Jeff wrote:

I would suspect the hoses got 'lost' or discarded.
Both our daughters have built in vacs in their homes built during the last 10 to 20 years. It was the in-thing some years back. But neither seem to use them at all now.
The problem seems to be the excessive size weight and length of the hoses.
They also have one or two outlets per level; but the length of hose needed to reach the far end of a room on any level is excessive and bulky. Stowing the hose is more difficult than putting away a stand up model. Even if an outlet is in passageway right outside it requires at lest a 20 foot hose to adequately get to the other side of a bedroom, around the bed and into, say, a closet.
Another problem is that the main canisters of their built in systems are located downstairs and changing the vacuum bag is a dusty business! With a portable it's quite easy to step outside, summer or winter onto deck or front step and change the bag out there.
It's wonder they don't build so that the canister could be accessed from the yard/garage or attached storage, a couple of times year so as to remove the dirt and change out the bag outside the shell of the house. If we ever installed one, think we'd look at that idea.
You may be able to buy, cheaper than brand specific hoses and brush attachments etc., a new or used an upright etc. depending on the type of flooring and upholstered furniture you need to clean. IMO an upright needs less bending down than a canister and may be easier to stow away in a closet etc.
We are using a 40+ year old Eureka, quite worn. The only problem is to still find the bags for it! Got another old Eureka hung up somewhere in case it ever blows its motor or requires a replacement part.
BTW would a built in vac. canister be powerful enough to act as a sawdust collector for a home workshop? I've occasionally seen them for sale locally.
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terry wrote: ...

Not except for the lightest duty of sanding small chips is my estimation. Seems I recall a discussion on rec.woodworking a while back??? Maybe a google group search there might uncover it.
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dpb wrote:

Thanks for idea. Terry.
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I actually got rid of my shop vac 20 some years ago and use the central vac for all thing including my "shop". I don't have a big wood shop, but I do have a table saw and other power hand tools. I did buy a little 1 gallon wet/dry vac for ultra portable use. I do have a modified carpet cleaner that connect to the central vac (for suction) and use it to wet clean the carpets. It has much more suction than the original motor/fan unit, which now resided on a shelf .... next step, the trash.
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Better off buying a Kenmore wet/dry vac. The kind with a horseshoe shaped bag.
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If they left you the tank, hope it has a bag. The bagless are hard to empty without making a mess.
You need a powerhead for carpets. Our first one was made by Eureaka. It was noisy. Then we bought a very expensive Stealth made in Europe. Very quiet but bristles were not long enuf for short nap carpet to do a good job. Sold that on ebay and bought a Hoover head which is the same head they use on top of the line vacuum clearners. It is called their windtunnel model. Looks cheaply made but has held up fine for 4 years. Just change belt and roller of bristles every year. I would highly recommend the hose set and windtunnel head from Hoover. You can buy it on line for about $350 if I remember correctly. Make sure you get the right hose type.
sq ft, 3 level with at

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Art wrote:

I have had two. One without a replaceable filter and it was very easy and clean to clean. It was a Sears unit that was no longer available when I had my new home built. ( I never did find out who made it ) and the one I have now has a filter, but also no bag. It is not as good, but not bad. I only need to bother with it about three times a year so I don't worry much about it.

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