Backpack vacuum cleaners have been used for a number of years for office and commercial cleaning jobs. They are extremely convenient for the working personnel to clean with because they do not have to be trailed behind like a typical canister vacuum. They are also not as clunky as upright vacuum cleaners and the canister can usually hold more dirt and debris.
In recent years, homeowners have demanded commercial quality in a backpack vacuum for home use. While I havent necessarily found these types of vacuums specifically for residential and personal use, there are some commercial models that seem to provide extremely powerful performance at a decent price point.
What are the features to consider on these mobile canister vacuum units? There are several areas that I personally consider when purchasing one.
First is the cord length. I like the cord length to be 50 feet or so. This allows plenty of movement throughout your home without having to stop every 15 feet to unplug and replug into a different electrical outlet.
Second is the Capacity of the unit. 5-6 quarts of capacity is decent for backpack vacuum cleaners. There are models with larger capacity, but they cost a lot more. You want enough capacity to get all the pet hair, cookie crumbs and paper clips that in your whole house without having to empty the canister after every room. I find that I often can do my house and both of my cars in one fell swoop with a 6 quart capacity chamber with no issues.
A third consideration is the filtration. For home use, I prefer HEPA filtration although in backpack vacuums, these tend to cost more also. If you can get the micro cloth bags or micro filtration bags, it usually is enough to suit most needs. Severe allergy sufferers have to look at other options and may need to spend more money to upgrade to the HEPA filtration systems and bags.
Finally, for home users, I suggest finding a quiet model. Around or slightly under 70dB is pretty decent for backpack vacuum cleaners and generally is tolerable enough to be able to use it your home or small business regularly without too much trouble. Nothing is perfect, but its relatively quiet compared to some older models or cheaper louder motors.
One thing youll notice is that I didnt specifically mention wattage or horse power of the motors on backpack vacuums. This is because as I mentioned in the outset, I have personally seen most of the backpack versions of vacuum cleaners being made for janitorial services and commercial settings. This means that they almost all are well sized to handle any workload that a typical household can throw at them.
Really you wont do wrong focusing on getting one of these vacuums from a specialty store online who can guide you in some of the other finer points of the models such as vacuum accessories, bagless vacuum cleaner models, and extra long hoses and such. These arent necessary, but sure make having these vacuums a lot more enjoyable to use every few days or week at your residence. Hoover and Pro-Team vacuums are a few vendors that Ive found just doing a quick search that seem to have several different models and types of vacuums available for the home owner.