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  Top » Catalog » Central Vacuums » How to Choose a Central Vacuum Power Unit
How to Choose a Central Vacuum Power Unit by The Vac Tech

Choosing a Central Vacuum Power Unit

Written by the Vac Tech

Jacksonville, Florida

CENTRAL VACUUM PIPING HAS BEEN STANDARD FOR 30 YEARS AND CAN BE CONNECTED TO ANY BRAND OF POWER UNIT. MOST UNITS USE 110 ac VOLTS

It may surprise you to know but Central Vacuum power units by design are very simple and are very similar from brand to brand. In fact, the best ones are all built the same! You have a housing, preferably metal, with

a) a motor for suction,

b) a plastic bucket for the dirt

c) a filter to separate the two.

The filter should be permanent and self cleaning with the filter material being Gore Tex type. This design allows for no loss of air flow as the dirt receptacle fills. Sustained air flow is the secret to central vacuums working at peak efficiency. Always pick a unit with a motor large enough for your homeís square footage. Since most central vacuum motors are made by one company, motor quality does not vary from brand to brand. Some manufacturers may use a two fan 'high performance' motor for larger homes, while others will use a three fan motor that operates at a lower speed resulting in longer motor life.

WHAT YOU DONíT WANT are power units that use paper bags (except for H-P Element models), foam filters, a filter screen (that must be cleaned by hand) or no filter. These will cause a loss in air flow as they fill, deteriorate or clog. And no one wants to stick their hand in a vacuum cleaner to clean off a nasty filter screen, yuck.

WHAT YOU DO WANT.

1) Permanent self cleaning filter, preferabley made of Gore Tex type material.

2) Built-In Utility Inlet (attach hose directly to power unit).

3) Manual on/off switch.

4) Adequate motor size.

5) Exhaustible motor design for living area installs.

6) Opposite side intake option for easy installation. This is helpful when replacing an existing unit.

7) Buy locally for warranty service.

With central vacuums, the selling dealer is responsible for warranty repair.

WHAT YOU MAY WANT.

1) Quiet running power units.

2) Antimicrobial dirt container.

3) Paper bag option if using a paper bag is a must.

The H-P Element bagged models have solved the problem of air flow loss as the paper bags fills.

For central vacuum power units the simple design is the best. You want a can that sucks and does not loose air flow as the can fills. The Beam and H-P Element fit this description. Of the two brands, we recommend the H-P Element over the Beam because of it's superior engineering and attention to quality. It is also made in the USA. H-P Products has been is business since 1945 and is a company dedicated to the manufacture of central vacuums. Their recent inovations in inverted filter and disposable bag technology makes them an industry leader. I believe you get what you pay for, BUT, central vacuums do not need bells and whistles that raises the cost. Unlike Beam, with H-P Products you get no bells and whistles, just solid engineering.

Sincerely,

Randy kelly

The Vac Tech (since 1966)

Jacksonville, Florida

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