Fleas are the pain of pet owners and people without pets alike.
You think only when you keep cats and dogs inside that fleas can reside in your house? That cannot be further from the truth.
Fleas are in the wild. Wherever you go outside, you have the chance of being exposed to them without you knowing it.
What to do when fleas are already in your house and causing you troubles? The answer is to clean your residence inside out.
Everyone knows that to get rid of pesticides, you have to start with their hosts to remove them and their eggs.
So go ahead take a thorough shower and give it to your cats or dogs too. We are sure they are as uncomfortable as you are by now.
But that doesn’t stop there. Fleas can hide in your carpets, your mattresses, and your floors. They are in microorganism that you cannot look at them with naked eyes. They may lay eggs and form a population inside your house.
This situation requires a stronger remedy, using the best vacuum for fleas. It will help you remove the threat that you cannot see with bare eyes. They can also reach places that you cannot.
But are the vacuums really that good? And if you decide to buy one, which one should you choose?
Let’s dive in to find out.
How Vacuuming Helps Control Fleas
Many people go for applying chemicals in their house to kill off fleas and their eggs. This method works well if you know how to do it. However, that much chemical might lead to some health problems to you and your family.
Using a good vacuum is a viable solution to help you avoid the unwanted chemical residuals in your home.
Get rid of fleas
A standard flea population is made up of 1-5% mature fleas, 8-10% pupae, around 30% of larvae, and more than half are eggs.
Mature fleas reside on their hosts and lay eggs. The eggs fall off the hosts a few hours later and gather in places where your pets like to frequent.
It’s highly likely that your carpets are housing about 80% of young fleas.
When you vacuum the carpets, a typical machine can remove up to 90% of eggs, 60% of pupae, and 90% of mature ones. The denser the carpets, the less efficient this process is.
Starve the larvae
Do you know that the larvae need both flea faeces and eggs in order to survive?
Yes, you read that right.
If the vacuum cannot suck all the larvae, it can remove most of their food from their habitat: your carpets.
Remove pet hair
Many people once believed that larvae could only eat pet hair and debris. However, this cannot be further from the truth.
We have already talked about what larval diet is and how a vacuum cleaner can help starve them.
However, there is another benefit of vacuuming your carpets.
The debris and pet hair can provide perfect hiding places for these tiny creatures. Removing them means cleaning their shelters, leaving the larvae without any place to hide.
Encourage Cocoon Emergence
Mature fleas are not the hardest to eliminate, their pre-emerged ones are. They can stay inactive inside their cocoons for the maximum of 5 months.
These cocoons are immune to insecticides because they keep themselves in corners and places where the spray cannot reach.
When the premature fleas detect heat and pressure, which indicates that a host is on the cocoons, they quickly emerge and reside on the hosts.
Vacuuming the carpets can have the same effect on the cocoons, giving them the false signal that there is a host nearby and force them to come out.
Prevents The Formation Of Cocoons
Larvae usually live on the carpets and if the carpets are shaken hard enough, the larvae can become a pupa without forming a cocoon.
This process results in short-lived fleas that are easier to be vacuumed up.
Some models are equipped with a beater-bar, which is able to cause enough vibration to force the larvae to develop naked pupae.
Help Spray Penetrate Better
Vacuuming the places you want to use spray on will increase the penetrating power of the chemicals.
While the carpets are vacuumed, the fine fibers are raised up so the spray can have better access to where larvae hide.
Flea Vacuum Buying Guide
Beater bars have bristles that can penetrate the carpet’s fibers at different depths to remove debris better.
Now let’s see how a beater bar can help with flea removal:
Firstly, these bars raise the carpet fibers so if you intend to use the spray, the liquid can reach more places.
Secondly, larvae can develop into naked pupae if they are shaken, a beater bar might cause enough friction to trigger this process.
Finally, this tool can generate pressure and heat to encourage cocoons to emerge.
So when you look for a vacuum that can help kill off fleas, remember to buy one with a beater bar.
Canister and Bags
In flea removal, there is no preference of difference between a bagged or bagless model.
All the premature fleas are dead when being vacuumed.
About 5% of adults can survive this process but they are likely to be damaged beyond healing to acquire a host ever again.
The more power a vacuum cleaner has the more effective it is in removing fleas and other debris.
Of course, more suction power means more money you have to pay to get that cleaner.
Base Plate Height
How high a vacuum base plate is can determine whether the vacuum cleaner can reach its optimal suction?
The best base plate should be adjustable according to the floor type it is dealing with.
But what this plate has to do with killing off fleas?
Here’s the answer:
Carpets are not the sole habitat of fleas. They can also reside in tiles, rugs, and hardwoods.
You will want the best base plate so that you can adjust its height to suit different surfaces.
Pet Hair Vacuum
People with flea problem usually share their homes with at least a pet.
Debris and pet hair can be ideal shelters for larvae. A vacuum cleaner that is suitable for pet hair can help you get rid of these unwanted hiding places.
Flea eggs fall off from their hosts so wherever hosts go, the eggs can fall there. However, as they tend to avoid places with light, these eggs can be under some hard-to-get-to places, the couch for example.
A vacuum cleaner with good maneuverability can help you access these places with ease.
Flea eggs are so small that they can be anywhere, from hardwood cracks to carpets. In short, the eggs might be anywhere in your house by now.
With a decent range of hose attachments for different surfaces, you can reach every nook and cranny possible in your house.
Top 5 Best Vacuum For Fleas
1. Dyson DC41 Animal Complete Upright Vacuum Cleaner
Dyson is known for their ball-like cleaners and this Dyson DC41 Animal is one of the best in the range.
With a vacuum cleaner like this, you can easily swivel the head to reach any place you want without much of maneuverability.
The feature we like the most in this model is the active base plate.
The word active indicates that the cleaner has a detector of floor types and set the height accordingly.
It spares you of extra work to do so that you can focus on finding flea’s potential hiding places.
This one is a bagless cleaner.
However, as we said above, the vacuum process is sure to kill off and damage most of the flea population so you don’t have to worry about any fleas are left alive inside the cleaner.
There is more.
The bagless vacuum will save you a ton of money in the long run as bags are usually purchased separately.
Bags are not so expensive that you have to care about the expenses for them. However, if this sum adds up over time, you will have a quite large amount.
The DC41 has a decent collection of accessories.
Some of the most useful in our opinion are:
- A wand that can be extended and a four-foot hose. These two are suitable for corners, stairs, and baseboards.
- A 35-foot cord that supports quick cleaning of multiple rooms.
With all of these good features, this Dyson is not only the best vacuum for fleas, but it is also one of the best in general.
The DC41 is not without downsides.
The wand is extendable, that’s great, but the handle is far from comfortable.
Removing the catch that helps keep the vacuum in the upright position is also hard.
We wish there were some buttons to do this automatically but there are not. Doing the manual way and you will feel like you are about to break the vacuum.
- Long Cord.
- The active base plate that can adjust the height automatically.
- Long warranty.
- The head can be swiveled to reach more places.
- Uncomfortable handle.
- No button to switch to another position.
2. Shark Navigator Lift-Away Professional NV356E
This Shark Navigator is useful on bare floors and carpets.
For such a lightweight vacuum cleaner, it packs a surprisingly powerful force. This model has a built-in HEPA filter, which means dust and debris are trapped inside more effectively.
All of these features combine to great effect making sure no flea can escape this machine.
Another thing we are keen on in this model is the lift-away feature.
The canister can be separated from the body of the cleaner just by the press of a button.
This helps users reach to more nooks and crannies in their house while the cleaner is still in action.
That’s not all.
This Shark Navigator is equipped with a pet power brush. A tool specially designed to get rid of pet hair.
As you may know from our previous analysis, pet hair contributes largely to the development of fleas. So no pet hair lying around means fewer places for larvae to hide.
Another feature that we highly regard is the brush roll on and off the setting.
This function makes switching back and forth from bare floor to carpets easier than ever.
This brush is the most useful on surfaces with fine fibers like carpets. However, on bare floors, it had better turn off.
The most noticeable issue in this vacuum cleaner is how noisy it is. We heard an annoying high pitch whine that is noisier than any other models on this list.
- Reasonable price.
- Good suction.
- The parts are easy to assemble.
- The dirt cup is easy to clean.
- HEPA filter.
- 30-foot long power cord.
- Quick switching between carpet setting and bare floor setting..
- Beater bar.
- Pet hair turbo brush..
- Short Hose.
- Can fall over easily.
3. Eureka Mighty Mite Pet Lover Bagged Canister Vacuum Cleaner, 3684F
This Eureka is the most lightweight vacuum cleaner on this list. That’s why we love it so much.
Its mobility is also the best, making moving the cleaner around an easy task.
The canister body and the head of the vacuum are separated by a long hose, which means you can hover it anywhere you like without the canister getting in the way.
This feature comes in handy when fleas and their larvae are strewn in your house and get to every small corner.
Although this model is a bagged version, the Eureka has a built-in HEPA filter, which helps prolong the life of the bags. However, when the bags are worn out, you have to buy replacements.
Fortunately, these bags are reusable, which means you can use them over and over again depend on how often you use the cleaner.
Aside from being a suitable model for homes with fleas, the Eureka Mighty Mite can also clean curtains and upholstery well.
In fact, it’s easiest when dealing with curtains on this list.
- Have attachments for cleaning pet hair.
- Long cord.
- HEPA filter.
- Good on curtains but not on carpets.
- Users have to buy new bags when the current one shows signs of wearing out.
4. Hoover T-Series WindTunnel Pet Rewind Bagless Upright Vacuum UH70210
We want to give Hoover a big shout out for being the most user-friendly vacuum cleaner we have ever tested.
It is bagless, so you don’t have to worry about buying replacements. Its collection of accessories is impressive, which means it can handle most surfaces you will ever need it to.
Pet owners have a reason to love this Hoover T-Series too. Its pet hair removal tool is unparalleled.
Even if the hair is embedded in the furniture, it can suck them out with ease.
An automatic cord return is also a plus.
This feature might sound minor to count as an advantage but imagine when you are done the vacuuming and have to coil or hand wind the cord and you will understand what we mean.
As with the Shark Navigator, this Hoover T-Series let you be in control of turning the brush roll on or off.
With the brush rolling, this vacuum cleaner is suitable for carpets while if you turn it off, it can handle bare floor well.
The manufacturer also adds some lights to let users know when the canister needs to be emptied.
Always check the light to make sure that you don’t squeeze more dust in when the canister is full. Another light will tell you when you need to change the filter.
One thing that we are not so keen on this model is the short hose and wand. They are even shorter than many cheaper models.
- A pedal to turn brush roll on or off.
- Auto cord rewind.
- Lights for filters and canister.
- Cannot self-propel.
- Short wand and hose.
5. Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Handheld Vacuum, Corded, 33A1
If you are on the lookout for a small and portable vacuum cleaner, the Bissell Pet Hair Eraser fits the bill.
While this model cannot be used to clean a full floor, it can handle stairs, car interiors, and upholstery well.
As the name indicates, this Bissell is especially handy in removing pet hair around your house and cars, which destroys the hiding places of fleas and their larvae.
It’s handy and portable but it doesn’t mean it’s weak. Its suction is quite intense compared to its size.
The HEPA filtration and this much force make sure that nothing can escape once picked up by this machine.
Because this Bissell is smaller so it’s also more lightweight. This is the only model on this list that doesn’t make us feel like carrying a dumbbell around the house.
As with other bagless models, this one does not require changing bag.
Its only drawback is that it does not have brush roll so its ability to clean carpets is not as good as other models.
However, when we used it on a carpeted stair, it still ran well.
- HEPA filter.
- Cannot cover a full floor.
- Does not have a brush roll.
All of the vacuum cleaners above are suitable for removing fleas. The one with more features will come at a higher price and vice versa.
So the key to land the best model is to know exactly what you want so that you don’t waste money on features that you don’t need.
What do you think about our reviews? Do you have your own experience with any of these? Tell us down below.