A whole house vacuum is a home-wide system that includes special wall sockets in each room. Rather than carrying a free standing vacuum cleaner from room to room, cleaners just need to plug the hose into the socket, and they can vacuum the room. The system also eliminates the need to find bags that fit a particular machine.
The concept behind this vacuum system is simple. A vacuum motor and collection canister is located in the basement or attic of the house, and linked to the wall socket in each room by special pipes. When the hose is plugged in, dirt is sucked through the pipe to to the canister, which can be periodically emptied by the homeowner. There are no dusty vacuum bags to contend with and the canister is reused time after time, saving the homeowner money.
Many people find a whole house vacuum to be extremely convenient, and the wall sockets are typically installed in places that will allow the hose to reach all corners of the room. Using this type of vacuum may also be good for the health, since the dirt and dust is immediately removed from the room rather than being carted around in a free standing machine that could release some dirt back into the air.
A whole house vacuum system also adds to the value of a house in many cases. Many potential homeowners consider these systems to be an upgrade, and some even look specifically for homes that have one installed. Because the suction is typically greater than that of a stand alone vacuum cleaner, it may ensure a longer life for those items needing to be vacuumed. As such, it may help protect carpeting, drapes, and furnishings.
In many cases, a whole house vacuum is not as noisy as a portable vacuum. Because it's quieter, it may be possible to vacuum without waking family members or disturbing their favorite music and television programs. This is because the motor for most systems is located in the basement or attic, away from the rooms in which the family spends most of their time.
This type of vacuum system can be quite expensive to install, since piping to each room must be added. Those who own a whole house vacuum system often say that it's well worth the cost, and that the investment pays for itself.