If members of your family suffer from allergies or asthma, one of the best ways to help control symptoms is with a vacuum cleaner. Any old vacuum won't do, though; it has to be made to trap dust particles and prevent them from getting back into the air you breathe. A low-emission vacuum cleaner is a necessity for a healthy home.
When you vacuum, some of what gets sucked up will inevitably make its way back into the air. Vacuums rated for low emissions make sure less dust and fewer small particles are released. Independent testing organizations like Consumer Reports have information about a number of vacuums and which types are the best in terms of catching and trapping particles.
Certain vacuum cleaner qualities will mean better performance. HEPA filters can trap dust, and tightly constructed machines keep everything inside from getting out. Just because a vacuum has a HEPA filter doesn't mean it will perform best, though; poorly made machines will still allow dust to escape. Make sure you look at both aspects when making your decision.
What do you need it for?
Some vacuum cleaners perform best on carpets, and some on hard floors. Certain models have more powerful hose suction and a variety of tools to really get inside furniture and small corners or clean drapes and upholstery. Make sure you choose a vacuum that will do exactly what you need it to. Don't buy one that's rated well for carpets if your home is all wood flooring. Some people have more than one vacuum cleaner type to better target specific cleaning jobs.
Bag vs. bagless
While bagless vacuums may cost less and reduce waste, they are also harder to clean and can easily allow dust back into your home. If you do buy a bagless vacuum, make sure you'll be able to empty it outside, or at least wear a dust mask while doing so.
Other important vacuum cleaner features include strong airflow to the hose attachment, pile (carpet) height adjustment and an ON / OFF brush switch. Considering each of these aspects can help you determine the best vacuum for your health from pretty much any of the popular brands.