Cordless Vacuums: How Do They Work?

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a person cleaning a living room using a cordless vacuum

As the name suggests, cordless vacuums do not require a cord to function, which means that they can be used anywhere without being tethered to an electrical outlet. But how exactly do cordless vacuums work?

Well, unlike traditional corded vacuums that rely on a power cord to draw electricity from an outlet, cordless vacuums use rechargeable batteries to power their motors. These batteries are typically lithium-ion, which are known for their high energy density and long-lasting charge. When the vacuum is turned on, the battery sends power to the motor, which spins the brush roll and creates suction to pick up dirt and debris from floors and carpets.

While the basic mechanics of cordless vacuums are relatively simple, there are many different types and models available on the market today. Some cordless vacuums are designed to be lightweight and portable, while others are more powerful and can be used to clean larger areas. Additionally, some cordless vacuums come with a variety of attachments and accessories to help clean different surfaces and hard-to-reach areas. By understanding how cordless vacuums work, you can choose the right model for your cleaning needs and enjoy the benefits of cord-free cleaning.

Key Takeaways
  • Cordless vacuums use rechargeable batteries, mainly lithium-ion, to power their motors. This design offers portability and ease of use anywhere, without needing an electrical outlet.
  • The efficiency and lifespan of cordless vacuums depend primarily on their battery and motor technologies. Lithium-ion batteries combined with brushless motors deliver optimal performance and durability.
  • Motor strength determines suction, while filters like HEPA ensure clean air by trapping fine particles.
  • Lightweight with varied attachments, cordless vacuums offer versatility. Dustbin sizes and noise levels differ among models.

Battery and Motor

A person using a cordless vacuum cleaner in a living room.

When it comes to cordless vacuums, the battery and motor are two of the most important components. Without a good battery and motor, the vacuum won’t be able to perform well or run for very long. In this section, I’ll discuss the battery and motor technologies used in cordless vacuums.

Battery Technology

Most cordless vacuums use lithium-ion batteries, which are known for their high energy density, long lifespan, and low self-discharge rate. Lithium-ion batteries are also lightweight and recharge quickly, making them ideal for use in cordless vacuums.

Some cordless vacuums use nickel-cadmium (NiCad) batteries, which are less expensive than lithium-ion batteries but have a lower energy density and a shorter lifespan. NiCad batteries also have a higher self-discharge rate and are more prone to memory effect, which can reduce their overall lifespan.

Another type of battery used in cordless vacuums is nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) batteries. NiMH batteries have a higher energy density than NiCad batteries but a lower energy density than lithium-ion batteries. They also have a shorter lifespan than lithium-ion batteries and are more prone to memory effect than lithium-ion batteries.

Motor Technology

The motor in a cordless vacuum is responsible for creating suction and powering the brushroll. Most cordless vacuums use either a brushed or brushless motor.

Brushed motors have been around for a long time and are less expensive than brushless motors. However, they are less efficient and have a shorter lifespan than brushless motors. Brushed motors also tend to produce more heat and noise than brushless motors.

Brushless motors, on the other hand, are more efficient and have a longer lifespan than brushed motors. They also produce less heat and noise than brushed motors. However, they are more expensive than brushed motors.

Overall, the battery and motor are two of the most important components in a cordless vacuum. Lithium-ion batteries and brushless motors are generally considered to be the best options for cordless vacuums, as they offer the best combination of performance, efficiency, and lifespan.

Suction and Filtration

When it comes to cordless vacuums, suction and filtration are two essential components that work together to ensure effective cleaning. In this section, I will explain how suction power and filtration systems work in cordless vacuums.

Suction Power

Cordless vacuums use a motor to create suction that pulls in air and dirt. The motor is powered by a rechargeable battery, which is why cordless vacuums are portable and convenient to use. The suction power of a cordless vacuum is measured in air watts (AW) and is an indication of the vacuum’s ability to pick up dirt and debris.

The suction power of a cordless vacuum depends on the strength of the motor and the design of the vacuum’s airflow system. Some cordless vacuums have a direct-drive cleaner head that increases the suction power by driving the bristles deeper into the carpet. Others have a digital motor that spins at a high speed to generate more suction power.

Filtration System

The filtration system in a cordless vacuum is responsible for trapping dirt and dust particles and preventing them from being released back into the air. Cordless vacuums use different types of filters, including foam, HEPA, and cyclonic filters.

Foam filters are washable and reusable, but they are not as effective at trapping small particles as HEPA filters. HEPA filters are made of fine mesh and can trap 99.97% of particles as small as 0.3 microns. Cyclonic filters use centrifugal force to separate dirt and dust from the air, and they are effective at trapping larger particles.

Some cordless vacuums have a multi-stage filtration system that includes a pre-motor filter, a post-motor filter, and a cyclonic filter. The pre-motor filter traps larger particles, while the post-motor filter and cyclonic filter trap smaller particles. This type of filtration system ensures that the air released by the vacuum is clean and free of allergens and pollutants.

Design and Features

Cordless vacuum cleaners are designed to be lightweight and flexible, making them easy to maneuver around furniture and tight spaces. They are also generally quieter than their corded counterparts, making them ideal for use in apartments or other shared living spaces.

Brushes and Attachments

Cordless vacuums come with a variety of brushes and attachments to help you clean different surfaces and areas. Some models have motorized brush rolls for deep cleaning carpets, while others have soft brush attachments for more delicate surfaces like hardwood floors or upholstery. Crevice tools and dusting brushes are also common attachments, allowing you to clean tight spaces and delicate surfaces with ease.

Dustbin and Capacity

Cordless vacuums typically have smaller dustbins than their corded counterparts, but they are still large enough to handle most cleaning tasks. Some models have removable dustbins that can be emptied with the push of a button, while others require you to remove the entire canister to empty it. It is important to consider the capacity of the dustbin when choosing a cordless vacuum, especially if you have a large home or pets that shed a lot.

Noise Level

Cordless vacuums are generally quieter than corded models, but noise levels can still vary between different brands and models. Some cordless vacuums have noise-reducing features like insulated motors or sound-dampening materials, while others may be louder due to their more powerful motors. It is important to consider the noise level of a cordless vacuum if you have young children, pets, or live in an apartment or shared living space.

Final Thoughts

Cordless vacuums, fueled primarily by efficient lithium-ion batteries, have revolutionized household cleaning. Free from cords, they promise easy maneuvering and space-to-space versatility.

Their motors, especially the brushless ones, ensure strong suction, while advanced filtration systems, like the HEPA, capture nearly 99.97% of microscopic particles. Despite being lightweight with diverse attachments for every nook and cranny, users should note variations in dustbin capacity and noise levels across models.

Dive into the cord-free cleaning era and find a model tailored to your needs!