Are you worried that your vacuum might be causing damage to your hardwood floor? Or just have questions about how to most effectively tackle dust and crumbs while you vacuum? You're far from alone, our customers ask us these questions all the time.


The fact is that not every vacuum or vacuum head is appropriate for cleaning your hardwood floors - some can actually damage the finish over time! On the other hand, many vacuum cleaners and floor heads are rated for wood flooring, or both floors and carpets. So as long as you are careful, your vacuum will be your most valuable tool for keeping your whole home clean.


Here are our five tips to keep your hardwood floors dust, dirt, and damage-free!


1. Evolve Beyond Your Broom and Dustpan


Are you still rocking a broom and dustpan for your regular floor cleaning? Trust us - vacuuming is the better way.


When you sweep it's so easy to miss spots, not to mention that the act of sweeping dust and dirt kicks dust up into the air and pushes dirt in hard to reach places. Then when you mop, all that leftover dust will turn into mucky grime. Vacuuming is much faster than sweeping as well.


Modern vacuums not only allow you to get dust and dirt out of hard to reach places using a crevice tool but are great at minimizing airborne dust using HEPA or micro-allergen exhaust air filters so you're not spreading it all over your home - particularly handy when dealing with pet hair. Save your broom and dustpan for when you need to clean up large debris like broken glass - otherwise, a vacuum is the way to go.


If you're looking for an alternative to a vacuum for quick and effective dusting, you can also look to a microfiber dust mop such as the e-Cloth Deep Clean Microfiber Mop.


2. Do Not Use a Beater Bar - Period


A beater bar, or brush roll, is a fast-rotating roll of nylon bristles that is designed to dig into your rugs and pile carpeting to excavate all the buried dirt. While this is great for cleaning carpets, these vacuum heads can absolutely destroy the finish on your hardwood floor. You also need to consider the wheels on your vacuum, as they can also damage your finish unless made of quality material - this is particularly true of heavy upright vacuum cleaners. 


That being said, there are plenty of vacuum models and vacuum attachments that are specially designed to clean your hardwood floor safely. Canister vacuums outperform upright style vacuums on hard flooring surfaces. This is because canister vacuums come with tools specifically designed to clean hard flooring. The floor brushes are shallow and flat enabling the tool to hug the ground. 


If you're using a vacuum model with switchable vacuum heads, the best attachment to vacuum hard flooring is a dusting head with soft bristles, such as natural horsehair.


3. Make Sure Your Hardwood Floor Vacuum Has Strong Suction Power


Not all vacuum motors are the same, and choosing a model with strong suction is key. Sometimes we all miss dust here and there as we vacuum, but higher suction means you're far more likely to attract dust as you navigate your home. It also makes it much more likely that you can attract dust out of nooks and crannies.

4. Be Careful When Transitioning From Carpet or Rug to Hardwood


When doing a full vacuum of your home, you'll want to make sure that when you're switching from carpet to your hardwood that you change your vacuum settings.


Some vacuums have the option to turn off the beater bar, and you'll want to ensure you toggle it when you're switching surfaces - but make sure that you read reviews as some cheaper upright models can still damage your floor as the bristles will still rub against the floor. Look for models that have a beater bar toggle that actually raises the bar so it does not come into contact with the floor. 


Canister vacuums and stick vacuums are our favorites when it comes to vacuuming your hardwood floors, and you can see some of our favorite models below. As mentioned above, make sure you remove your beater brush attachment when yo're done with your carpets and switch to a soft fiber cleaning head for hardwood floors.


5. Be Sure to Mop Occasionally as Well


You should be vacuuming your floor at least once a week to make sure that any dirt doesn't rub against your floor and cause damage to your finish. This regular cleaning regimen will keep your floors looking clean, but over time you may find that it is beginning to lose its luster or that scuffs are appearing on the finish. That's why it's also important to mop at least once every few weeks as well!


A good mop using a hardwood floor cleaner will help restore the original luster of your flooring and help repair the finish. If you want your deep cleaning to be as painless as possible, take your mop game to the next level with an oscillating mop like Nellie's Wow Mop that buffs and removes dirt and grime with little effort - even your kids or grandma can do it!


Our List of Best Vacuums For Hardwood Floors


Our store has been providing excellent customer service since 1978. We know your hardwood flooring is one of your greatest investments, and are committed to providing you with the right tools to keep your home clean without worry.


Here are some of our favorite vacuum models for vacuuming your hardwood floors:



SEBO Airbelt E2 Turbo Canister Vacuum Cleaner 91620AM


The SEBO Airbelt E2 Turbo Canister is ideal for all hard flooring and low pile carpeting. This canister comes with two flooring attachments: one hard flooring attachment and one turbo carpeting attachment. The parquet hard flooring attachment is ideal for all hard flooring surfaces, with bristles of varying lengths. The turbo carpeting attachment contains a spinning brush roll and will clean low pile carpeting up to a medium pile that will not require a height adjustment. This model is an air-driven model and is therefore lightweight.


This model has a 25-foot cord, onboard tool storage, Hospital grade filtration, a large capacity bag, and automatic cord rewind. This model is our recommended choice (as it comes standard) for users with hard flooring, and of low pile up to a lower medium height carpeting. As this model is air driven, it is a very lightweight option.



Miele Complete C3 Calima SGFE0 Canister Vacuum



The Calima is perfect for users with mostly hard flooring and low-medium pile carpeting/area rugs.


This air-driven model is ideal on all hard flooring and low-medium pile carpeting/area rugs. This model comes standard with HEPA filtration and is completely sealed making it ideal for allergy and asthma sufferers. The Calima's two different flooring attachments can clean a variety of flooring. The carpeting floor head contains a spinning brush roll, ideal for getting a deep clean on your carpeting and area rugs. The hard flooring head simultaneously dusts and vacuums all hard flooring surfaces.