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How to Vacuum Stairs: 11 Steps to Follow

How to Vacuum Stairs: 11 Steps to Follow

Stairs are tough buggers with a shape that doesn’t match up to the average vacuum cleaner. Cleaning them, it can take a little bit of a different technique to get it done. The best way to vacuum stairs is what we’re here to dig into.

To learn how to vacuum stairs in your home, here are the moves you need to make to safely and efficiently vacuum stairs.

1. Lightweight vacuum

Before we delve into how to tackle stairs, you need the right tool. Although any high quality vacuum works, if you have a lightweight and compact vacuum, this cuts down on weight and bulk. Upright vacuum cleaners typically aren’t suitable for a job like this. If possible, choose a canister vacuum which is easier to move with.

2. Large attachment

If you want to learn how to vacuum stairs, you want to start with the edges and corners. To do this, you will have to remove the large attachment at the end of your vacuum cleaner. The smaller nozzle works better to get into the nooks and crannies.

3. Take away anything large

If there are big clumps of dog hair or trash on the stairs, remove them. This is an easy step to take and it’ll save you from having anything get caught in your vacuum. Any large scraps or debris is not worth messing with. By hand, pick up anything which could clog your vacuum.

4. Start and go step by step

Now you can get started, going up stair by stair. Work your way up and work the vacuum nozzle around each and every step. Be sure to press it right into the corners as this is the most common place for dust and debris to settle.

Depending on whether you have wooden stairs or carpeted stairs, you’ll need to find the right type of vacuum cleaner that does the jobs. Some wood flooring might be easier to clean than certain types of carpeting, and vice versa. As you’ll find, in no time, your stairs are going to look on their way to brand new.

5. Now a full vacuum!

After you’ve done the stairs’ with the smaller nozzle along the edges, return to the bottom of the stairs. You’re going to want to replace the vacuum attachment with its regular piece.

Now vacuum the stairs one by one, running the attachment back and forth over each step. Unlike before, you’re now going to cover the whole of the area and take care of the larger surfaces untouched by addressing the edges and corners.

6. Work the vertical

Don’t forget that when going up the stairs, you want to turn the attachment upside down and vacuum the vertical part of the step. Remember that you want it upside down. Move it up and down. Cover every inch, and work your way up by tackling the horizontal and the vertical.

7. Check the stairs

Once you’ve reached the top stairs, you’re done. Stand back and give everything a good look. Did you miss any areas? If so, you can give them a quick touch-up before you walk away. Vacuuming the stairs isn’t difficult but there is an art and a science to them.

8. Don’t ignore it

Vacuuming the house feels like a very accomplished activity as you look into your canister and see the reward of your hard work. The stairs is extra work, it is. We can’t lie. It’s worth it though. Don’t procrastinate or say you’ll do it another day. You don’t want a guest to come into your home, see how beautiful everything is, and then walk down the hall, turn on the light, and see ugly stairs covered in stains, smudges, pet hair, and debris.

9. Be careful

If you have decided to vacuum the stairs with a big, bulky piece of equipment, you will unfortunately run into more hazards. Be careful not to pull the vacuum onto you going down, to get caught up in the wire, or to hurt yourself in any way.

You wouldn’t believe how many vacuumers have got caught with the vacuum coming down on their foot or getting tied up in wire trying to get down the stairs. For this reason, we always say to use a lightweight canister.

10. A high quality vacuum

Like we said, we cannot emphasize the quality of the vacuum enough. You shouldn’t have to take your vacuum and go over the stairs up and down again and again. Once over should be enough.

At the end of the day, your staircase should take no more than 5 minutes to get done. You’ll feel much more accomplished having done the stairs with your vacuum. You won’t feel ashamed anymore of them and you’ll feel like a proper housekeeper of sorts.

11. There’s stuff hiding

Just like there’s allergens and microscopic dust lodged in the carpet of your living room, the same’s on your stairs and it’s just waiting to be collected. Suit up, get your attachments ready, have the right vacuum, and give it a go.

You’ll see a huge difference in everything from air quality to how you feel about your home. It’s all in you! Up and down in 5 minutes or less.

Momma Bird

Contrary to popular speculation, the author behind The Momma Bird is not of avian extraction, but she's simply a stay-at-home mother living a quiet life in the Canadian prairies. Now that all her lovely little birds have left her nest, Momma Bird has a lot of free time to write, muse, and reflect on life.

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