What Are Backpack Vacuum Cleaners And How Do They Operate?

Backpack vacuum cleaners are a fantastic invention because they allow you to wear the canister on your back and avoid tripping over the machines or injuring yourself. The canister easily distributes the load of the canister and contained debris across your whole body.

Vacuuming with regular vacuum cleaners can at times be frustrating as you have to deal with it bumping into the walls and furniture, making unsightly scuffs and marks, and it can be a dangerous tripping hazard.

This article describes backpack vacuum cleaners and how they work. Continue reading to gain more insight into the subject matter. We hope that it will be an eye-opener for you regarding all things backpack vacuums.

What Are Backpack Vacuum Cleaners And How Do They Operate?

Backpack vacuums

Backpack vacuum cleaners are typically cylindrical vacuums that are strapped to the user’s back. The vacuums are held securely in place by waist and shoulder straps, allowing for maximum mobility and ease of use.

The units are constructed using two moving parts, which are the switch and the motor. The design decreases the need for frequent repairs and maintenance.

The vacuums are designed with an emphasis on ergonomics since they can be adjusted to rest on the back comfortably.

Backpack vacuum cleaners are usually used in industrial or commercial cleaning because they allow the user to move from one area to another quickly and they quickly clean large surfaces.

The machines are designed to be lightweight and are therefore easy to walk with.

The vacuums are powered by an electric motor with a long cord to assist the user move around. The motor is located at the bottom of the vacuum for a low gravity center to ensure proper stability and balance for the user.

There are also cordless backpack vacuum cleaners that are battery-powered which provide the operator with greater autonomy and mobility.

How Backpack Vacuums Cleaners Operate

Backpack vacuum cleaners have a quiet operation because they have sound dampening equipment. The units also have cooling components that ensure safety and comfort for the person using them. The machines tightly fit the body.

The vacuum cleaners can clean large areas within a short time, such as 7,000 square feet per hour. The machines can clean both soft and hard surfaces. The vacuums are capable of reaching low and high surfaces easily and even areas that are difficult to reach.

The machines can be easily maneuvered around fixtures and furniture in a variety of settings without using multiple machines. The vacuums are able to transition between different floor types and surfaces with ease, such as from carpets to wood flooring.

The units have extension wands that allow them to reach high places with ease. If you have a backpack vacuum, you can clean light fixtures, vents, ceiling fans, and window casings without any hassles.

Cordless backpack vacuum cleaners operate using their rechargeable battery or using mains power while recharging. The autonomy of the cordless version depends on the capacity, type, and age of its battery, adjusted power, and cleaning attachments.

The backpack vacuums that are powered by mains power normally have power cords that are 50-60 feet long. The long power cord allows the user to clean without having to change the mains outlet.

The vacuums that operate on main power do not require onboard batteries, and that makes them lighter and stronger. The machines operate on standard 110/220V, but some models use more specific frequencies and voltages.


Backpack vacuums have lots of benefits, as they improve comfort and enable the cleaner to spend less time cleaning. The vacuums reduce fatigue and have improved safety, which increases the productivity of the person using them.

The vacuum cleaners are quite different from the regular upright, canister, and stick vacuums. Even though all of the vacuums do the same task of cleaning, the design and operation of backpack vacuums make them stand out.

Furthermore, backpack vacuum cleaners can be used to clean both residential and commercial settings, giving them a great advantage. However, there are some that are strictly either for commercial or residential use based on their construction.


Are backpack vacuums worth it?

Backpack vacuum cleaners save you time, especially when you have a lot of cleaning to do because the machines can clean large areas in a short amount of time.

Therefore, if speed is essential to you in your cleaning tasks, then a backpack vacuum is the best for you.

The vacuum cleaners are good for both commercial and residential spaces, although there are some that are just either for residential or commercial use.

The flexible and long wands of the machines make them ideal for cleaning offices, waiting rooms, and under office furniture.

The vacuums save you the trouble of having to lung the machine up the stairs when cleaning stairs or moving to a different floor where there are no escalators.

Having it on your back allows you to move to different floors and clean them with ease.

The machines have no beater bar or belts and therefore require less maintenance. The additional tools that come with the vacuums enable them to clean various areas such as upholstery, overhead vents, and blinds.

What are the top brands of backpack vacuum cleaners on the market?

Hoover: the brand has been revolutionizing home cleaning for over a century and is based in North Carolina.

The company is credited with the invention of the first motorized vacuum cleaner in 1907. It has continued to manufacture durable and reliable products such as the Hoover wind tunnel max.

Atrix: the company has been producing premium filtration since 1981 and manufactures ESD safe vacuums.

It also manufactures patented HEPA and ULPA filters. The company produces great products such as the Atrix VACBPAI ERGO PRO.

ProTeam: the company is a subsidiary of Emerson, an international company that combines engineering and technology for the benefit of its customers.

The ProForce® 1200XP Upright Vacuum w/On-Board Tools is its most popular product.

Power-Flite: the company was founded in 1967 as a distributor of vacuum cleaner parts. Its aggressive nature and rapid growth have become its trademark.

The company has been a leader in the floor care business for over half a century.

What makes backpack vacuum cleaners special?

The purpose of a backpack vacuum is to assist you in cleaning efficiently and quickly. However, there are certain aspects that make backpack vacuum cleaners special.

The machines can be used both in homes and commercial settings. Initially, they were only used in business places such as hotels and gyms.

The vacuums can clean various surfaces and they are quite durable since most of them are used in commercial settings.

The vacuum cleaners are worn on the back, which gives the user greater cleaning mobility. All that is held in the hand is the cleaning wand and not the entire vacuum cleaner.

There is no need to lift the vacuum with your hand up the stairs, and you do not have to worry about the vacuum falling down the stairs since it will be on your back the whole time.

Most backpack vacuum cleaners have an extra-long cord of around 50 feet, which is twice the length of the power cord of regular vacuum cleaners. The cord is removable and can be plugged at any length.

The vacuums lift dirt directly into the dirt container instead of agitating and stirring it up, then releasing it back into your home environment.

The machines are made with commercial cleaning in mind and therefore have powerful motors. The motors create great suction since the cleaning point is further away from the motor.

The suction travels from the canister worn on the back through the hose and wand onto the floor tool.

What are the types of backpack vacuums?

There are various types of backpack vacuum cleaners and they include the following:

Corded: this type of backpack vacuum is the most common since many of the vacuums are used in commercial settings. Therefore, they need to be reliable and run for hours at a time.

The cord on the backpack cleaner is usually long, allowing the operator to clean large areas without constantly changing power outlets.

Bagged: this is the type of backpack vacuum cleaner that many people used while growing up. All the debris and dirt collected by the machine is stored in a bag that is attached to the canister inside.

When the bag is full and needs changing, you will have to remove it and throw the whole thing in the trash can, which is an option that is less environmentally friendly.

Cordless: a cordless backpack vacuum provides you with free reign as you do not have to constantly plugin and unplug the vacuum when cleaning a large area.

However, the disadvantage of this kind of backpack vacuum cleaner is power limitation, since it runs on battery and has a pre-determined runtime.

That means that you may need to recharge the battery before finishing your cleaning when power runs out in the middle of your cleaning.

Bagless: since these types of vacuums have no dirtbag, it means that the debris and dirt collected by them are held directly inside the canister.

When the canister is full, you will have to open the top to directly empty the continents into the trash can.

While the option is an environmentally friendly one, it tends to be messier as much of the dirt can escape back into the air and your hand may get dirty while emptying the canister.

What are the biggest backpack vacuum buying mistakes that people make?

Choosing a high wattage vacuum: Most people choose a backpack vacuum with a higher wattage, thinking that it means that the machine has a high suction.

Wattage only relates to the power that the motor of a vacuum uses, not the suction power delivered to the floor tool.

Not inquiring about the duty rating: There are backpack vacuums designed to last for hours while being used continually. They are also durable even with heavy use.

However, there are others that last for only half an hour at a time. Therefore, get one that fits your needs.

Buying machine wired electrical cord is wired to it: Most of the vacuums have cords hard-wired into them. That is not a problem but when cord damage occurs it will inconvenience you and you will have to incur costs for an electrician to rewire a new cord.

Therefore, it is better to choose a unit whose cord plugs directly into the side. If there is any cord damage, you will only have to swap leads and put on the new cord.

Purchasing a machine that uses expensive and hard to get parts and accessories: Avoid buying expensive machines that are not easy to get or replace parts because it can be frustrating. Therefore, ensure that you buy your backpack vacuum from reputable outlets who stock all parts.

Forgetting to electrically test and tag your vacuum: The testing and tagging is required only for backpack vacuums that are used in commercial settings. The vacuums require more than one test and tag. The service is provided by all professional suppliers of the vacuum cleaners.

What is the pricing of backpack vacuum cleaners?

Below $200: backpack vacuums in this price range only perform the most basic of functions. The vacuums in are also typically more compact and have smaller motors. The machines are ideal for occasional household cleaning tasks.

$200 to $400: this is the price range where most backpack vacuums can be found. That includes a wide range of commercial and household backpack vacuums with various accessories. The vacuums are also of a broad range of sizes.

$400 and above: the vacuums at this price are engineered solely for commercial purposes, and the sizes of their motors, cords, and extension wands are designed for industrial usage.

The machines are powerful and have canisters with large capacities.

What Are Backpack Vacuum Cleaners And How Do They Operate?