Viewmont Vacuums Blog

Spring Allergies

Joe Carter - Thursday, April 05, 2012
Our check list to help you through the allergy season 
  • Keep your windows and doors closed.
  • Use a HEPA air cleaner to keep the air inside your home free from airborne allergens.
  • Vacuum carpets and wash bed linen at least every week.  
  • Take a shower and change your clothes after being outside.  
  • Try to avoid the morning's high pollen counts by limiting your time outdoors between 5 and 10 am.  

Christmas giving

Joe Carter - Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Christmas 2011 -- Birth of a New Tradition As the holidays approach, the giant Asian factories are kicking into high gear to provide Americans with monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods -- merchandise that has been produced at the expense of American labor. This year will be different. This year Americans will give the gift of genuine concern for other Americans. There is no longer an excuse that, at gift giving time, nothing can be found that is produced by American hands. Yes there is! It's time to think outside the box, people. Who says a gift needs to fit in a shirt box, wrapped in Chinese produced wrapping paper?

Everyone -- yes EVERYONE gets their hair cut. How about gift certificates from your local American hair salon or barber?  Gym membership? It's appropriate for all ages who are thinking about some health improvement. Who wouldn't appreciate getting their car detailed? Small, American owned detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a book of gift certificates. Support your local vacuum shop by getting your vacuum serviced, or a gift certificate for a vacuum service for somebody on your list that can't afford it. or if you need a new vacuum cleaner, purchase a new Riccar vacuum cleaner that's made in the USA.  There are a bazillion owner-run restaurants -- all offering gift certificates. And, if your intended isn't the fancy eatery sort, what about a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint. Remember, folks this isn't about big National chains -- this is about supporting your home town Americans with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open. How many people couldn't use an oil change for their car, truck or motorcycle, done at a shop run by the American working guy?Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom? Mom would LOVE the services of a local cleaning lady for a day. My computer could use a tune-up, and I KNOW I can find some young guy who is struggling to get his repair business up and running.OK, you were looking for something more personal. Local crafts people spin their own wool and knit them into scarves. They make jewelry, and pottery and beautiful wooden boxes. Plan your holiday outings at local, owner operated restaurants and leave your server a nice tip. And, how about going out to see a play or ballet at your hometown theatre. Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands.Honestly, people, do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand Chinese lights for the house? When you buy a five dollar string of light, about fifty cents stays in the community. If you have those kinds of bucks to burn, leave the mailman, trash guy or babysitter a nice BIG tip. You see, Christmas is no longer about draining American pockets so that Chinacan build another glittering city. Christmas is now about caring about us, encouraging American small businesses to keep plugging away to follow their dreams. And, when we care about other Americans, we care about our communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we couldn't imagine. THIS is the new American Christmas tradition. This is a revolution of caring about each other, and isn't that what Christmas is about?

Frieze Carpet

Joe Carter - Monday, October 31, 2011

Do you own Frieze carpet ? Are you having trouble vacuuming it? You're not the only one. It's a very popular type of carpeting now, but people are finding out the hard way ( after they already had it installed ) that their vacuum cleaner will not work on it. Frieze is a long nap, almost a shag carpet, for those of you that don't know what it is. A regular vacuum cleaner with a brushroll, and floating head can't deal with the thick, long nap. There are a hand full of vacs that will work. A true height adjustable nozzle and a circuit breaker system, rather than a rubber belt driven machine will perform much better. Miele has just introduced the new S-6 Jasper that has an exceptionally well designed floor tool for Frieze carpet. Come see for yourself, and stop kicking yourself for buying that carpet. There are solutions.


Joe Carter - Wednesday, February 23, 2011
This is a very interesting article about dust that was published in Time Magazine.

It's hard to get too worked up about dust. Yes, it's a nuisance, but it's hardly one that causes us much anxiety - and our language itself suggests as much. We call those clumps of the stuff under the bed dust bunnies, after all, not, say, dust vermin.
But there's a higher ick factor to dust than you might think. And there's a science to how it gets around - a science that David Layton and Paloma Beamer, professors of environmental policy at the University of Arizona, are exploring.
Layton and Beamer, whose latest study has been accepted for autumn publication in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, knew a lot about their subject even before they set to work. Historically, everyone from chemists to homemakers has tried to figure out just what dust is made of, and the Arizona researchers drew their preliminary data mostly from two studies of household dust conducted in the Netherlands and the U.S. The American survey in particular was a big one, covering six Midwestern states. Layton and Beamer also included a localized study in Sacramento, Calif., that focused particularly on lead contamination. What all those surveys showed was decidedly unappetizing.
The specific dust mix in any household differs according to climate, age of the house and the number of people who live in it - not to mention the occupants' cooking, cleaning and smoking habits. But nearly everywhere, dust consists of some combination of shed bits of human skin, animal fur, decomposing insects, food debris, lint and organic fibers from clothes, bedding and other fabrics, tracked-in soil, soot, particulate matter from smoking and cooking, and, disturbingly, lead, arsenic and even DDT.
"There are more [components]," Beamer says. "Dust is a hodgepodge of all sorts of things. It would probably be impossible to make a list of all the possible items."
But dust's ingredient label is not the whole story, since all of those flecks and bits behave very differently and present different levels of health risk. To investigate those factors more closely, Layton and Beamer developed a computer algorithm that looked at the size, source and toxicity of dust particles as well as how easily they enter the house, if they ever exit and, if so, by what route. That information, by extension, can provide at least a rough sense of the dust load in your own home.
As a very general rule, the majority of household dust - about 60% - comes from outside, through windows, doors, vents and, significantly, on the soles of your shoes. Smaller dust particles - from 28 to 49 microns, or thousandths of a millimeter - tend to stay on your shoes. The rest is shaken off inside. A higher share of the dust that floats in on the air gets deposited, but again, there's a lot that determines how much any one home will get.
"Here in Arizona," says Beamer, "where we leave our windows open most of the year and have an arid climate, we would probably have a higher ratio." Industrial centers or sooty cities have plenty of dust too, though for different reasons.
There's not much to fret about in simple particles of dirt or organic materials such as pollen (although they can trigger allergies), but lead, arsenic and DDT can be a more serious matter. About one-third of the arsenic in the atmosphere comes from natural sources - volcanoes principally. The rest comes from mining, smelting, burning fossil fuels and other industrial processes. Even in relatively low concentrations, arsenic is not without risk, especially to small children who play on the floor and routinely transfer things from their hands to their mouths. The same is true for lead, which comes less from wall paint - the source most people would expect - than from auto exhaust, smelting and soil deposits. "Lead loading on floors is a key determinant of blood-lead levels in children," Layton and Beamer wrote in their paper.
The fact that DDT is still in house dust is a surprise to most people, since the pesticide was banned in the U.S. in 1972. But a house is a little like a living organism: once it absorbs a contaminant, it may never purge it completely. "Dust in our homes," says Beamer, "especially deep dust in our carpets and furniture, is a conglomerate of substances over the life of the home and can provide a historical record of chemicals that have entered it."
The mess that originates within the home is a lot easier to measure and control. The more people who live there, the more skin that's going to be shed, the more pets, the more animal fur. And, as Mom always warned, the more you walk around the house while eating, the more food debris you'll drop on the floor - which also attracts more insects that will die, decompose and add their own special zest to your dust. Cook smoke and tobacco smoke, which are the most obvious contributors when they're being produced, actually make only a small contribution to what winds up on floors and surfaces. The tiny size of the particles makes them likelier to rise and adhere to other surfaces or simply remain in the air than to settle.
It goes without saying that your home will never be dust-free, but there are ways to reduce your own dust loading - and it's important that you try. Dust mites, which feed on shed skin, produce allergens that are known triggers for people suffering from asthma. Same goes for cockroach dust, especially in cities. No one needs much convincing about the wisdom of getting rid of arsenic, and the good news is that about 80% of it can be removed simply by cleaning floor dust regularly.
None of this means that dust poses a clear and present danger or that you need to take any extraordinary measures. Just clean regularly, don't smoke, eat at the table - and try not to freak out. Dust bunnies are still only bunnies; you may just want fewer of them.

Pet Odors

Joe Carter - Tuesday, December 14, 2010
 Does your vacuum cleaner stink ? Most households have some type of odor issue associated with their vacuum cleaner. If you have indoor pets, yours can be quite severe. There are a lot of products on the market that are targeted to the pet owner to help mask some of these odors, but you should beware of almost all of the powder types. Brands such as "Love my Carpet" and "Carpet Fresh" are the absolute worst possible thing you can do to solve this issue. They not only cake up in the carpet and cause terrible damage to the carpet and pad, but they destroy vacuum cleaners as well. Also, using those products will void your vacuum cleaner warranty.
 The best, most effective way to eliminate odors from your vacuum is an active charcoal filter. There are a handful of quality vacuum cleaners equipped with these. Some come with the filter already installed, and some offer it as an option. Miele has the highest rating for dust free capacity, and has a full line of S2 and S5 canisters that have active HEPA filters, and they now have a new S7 upright "Cat & Dog" machine that comes with an active charcoal filter installed. Riccar , Sebo, and Lindhaus also have several offerings with charcoal filters too.
 One side note to consider when shopping for a new vacuum; Just because a machine says "Animal" or "Pets" does not mean it has any provision for pet odors. In fact, most big box store brands, such as Bissell, Hoover, and Dyson, have machines labeled for pets; but are absolutely no different than their non pet labeled product, other than the color. It's all just a marketing plan to peak your attention, since you own a pet. Bagless cleaners have the least amount of filtration, and no provision for odor control.
 The second best way to deal with an odor problem, if you don't have a machine that will accept a charcoal filter, is to use some sort of fragrance to mask the odors. Viewmont Vacuums carries several different brands, and a multitude of different fragrances to suit your taste. And these products won't harm your machine or your carpet.
 Don't forget to have your vacuum serviced regularly and have the filters changed to maintain peak performance and odor free,clean air.

Dry Cleaning carpet

Joe Carter - Tuesday, November 02, 2010
 Dry cleaning is one of the best choices for cleaning your carpet. Most people are familiar with the extraction method, or as it's commonly called, steam cleaning. It's a good way to get carpets clean, but it does have its drawbacks. When you use the extraction method, you are dispensing hot water and detergent into the carpet, scrubbing it, and vacuuming it back up. While this does a pretty good job on most types of carpet, you do have the hazard of not being able to get all the water back up. If too much moisture remains, the carpet and pad can mildew. Another negative to this method is not being able to walk on the carpet for several hours until it's completely dry. If walked on when wet, it will press the carpet down, and won't stand up correctly after it's dry. The biggest drawback to steam cleaning by far, though, is having to move furniture. You have to clean wall to wall for the carpet to look right after cleaning is completed, so all the furniture has to be moved out of the room. This can be quite inconvenient.
 With dry cleaning, you only have to clean the dirty parts of the carpet. That is typically the traffic lanes. Because the carpet doesn't get saturated, it doesn't change the fabric of the carpet, so you don't have to worry about the carpet not matching the parts under furniture. After all, there's no dirt under the furniture anyway; why should you go to the trouble to move it and clean it?
 There is no wait time with dry cleaning either. You can clean it and walk on it at the same time. It does take 3 or 4 hours usually to completely finish the process of the powder, but while it's on the carpet, doing its thing, it is completely safe to walk on, and pets and children are not in danger, because it's non toxic.
 So, for a simple, affordable, easy way to clean your carpets yourself, come check out the variety of products Viewmont Vacuums offers for dry cleaning.
 We have machines for sale or rental, and we carry Lindhaus, Pure Power; Sebo, Duo powder; and now Riccar, Carpet Keeper products, and we can recommend which one is right for your needs.
 We do also sell, service, and repair all brands of carpet extractors ( steam cleaners ), and can recommend which ones are good choices if you prefer to wet clean.

Zone Heaters

Joe Carter - Monday, October 11, 2010

Zone Heaters are a somewhat new idea. They have actually been around for many years, but they have only caught on recently because more people are trying to reduce their energy expense. Zone Heaters are a very effective way to reduce your power bill. If you live primarily in one or two rooms of your home, such as the living room or den, and spend a good bit more time in that room than all the others, you're a perfect candidate for a zone heater.
 A zone heater is a small portable heater that is cost effective to operate, and looks like an end table that can be matched to your type of furniture. It has a thermostat that can be set for a comfortable temperature that will maintain a cozy environment for the room you're in and you can turn down the thermostat in the rest of the house. That's how you save money. The portion of your home that's not being used can be set at, say, 65 degrees, and the zone heater set to 68 to 70, and your comfort level increases while your power bill decreases.
There are many choices in the zone heater market today. Be very careful when choosing one for your home. Most are made in China and are poorly constructed. Even some of those claim , " Amish built cabinet". The cabinet may last a lifetime, but the working parts, inside most likely won't last more than a couple of years at best, and most are not repairable, and are immpossible to get parts for. It's better to pay a little more and get an American made heater.
 There are 2 very good choices that are made in the USA.. SunAire is one of the original manufacturers that has been around longer than the others, and it's made in Arkansas by a family owned company.
 Riccar is another company that  makes top quality vacuum cleaners and now also makes one of the best zone heaters. It's called the Summer Breeze. They use a metal heat exchanger insted of bulbs like the others, and their machine has a 10 year warranty on the heater core. You can watch the video for a better understanding of it's operation by clicking this link.
Riccar heaters offer two finishes, oak or cherry, and these are solid wood cabinets, not veneered.
Viewmont Vacuums offers SunAire and Riccar zone heaters, and we are running them on sale right now until October 31st


Joe Carter - Monday, September 13, 2010
Have you noticed the increase in warranty promotion ? Mass merchants have pushed warranties for many years, but in recent times it seems they are increasing the advertising on the warranties, instead of telling you how great the product is.
 Even car companies are now telling you how great the warranty is instead of how great the car is. One of them is even offering to let you bring the car back in 30 days if you're not satisfied ! It seems to me that if the product is manufactured to be as good as it can be, there is not much need to have a lengthy warranty. If there is a small chance for a defect, it will usually show up in the first year of use anyway.
 The way I see it, the retailers that heavily promote buying a longer warranty, are essentially selling the warranty instead of selling the cheap vacuum that is warrantied. They know it was designed to only last one year, so they want to make more profit on selling the extended warranty, and they want to appease you by giving you a replacement for free. Personally I would rather purchase a vacuum cleaner that doesn't fail, than a vacuum cleaner with a replacement guaranty. Does it make since to buy a vacuum that you know will fail in one year, and buy the extended warranty to cover yourself, so it will be replaced ? Why not buy a vacuum that will do a better job, and won't fail ?
 I'm not what you would consider an environmentalist, but even I can see, that it makes more since to purchase a vacuum cleaner that will last more than a year or two. Even if you get it replaced for free, what happens next year when the free one fails ? Now you've put 2 dead vacs in the landfill ! If you purchase wisely, you can go 10, 15, 20 years or more before you have to discard a vacuum cleaner.
 Support your local vacuum store, and do yourself a favor, by purchasing a quality vacuum cleaner that will do a better job, and last longer. It will be money well spent, and if you are concerned about the environment, you'll be helping there too.

Airflow , Suction , and Filtration

Joe Carter - Friday, September 03, 2010
Dyson vacuums started their advertising campaign with the idea that their vacuum cleaner never loses suction. While that sounds good, and was clever marketing, it has little relevance to how well a vacuum cleaner performs. There are 3 important factors in a vacuum cleaner's performance. Suction power; airflow; and filtration. Of these three, airflow is the most important in actually picking up dirt. You have to move a high volume of air to pick up deep down, embedded dirt from carpets.
 While it's true that you have to have strong suction to get good airflow, you don't necessarily get good airflow just because the suction is good. That's where filtration comes in. If you have ever used a shopvac, you know that they have gobs of suction and good airflow but because they are intended for shop applications and outdoor use, they have terrible filtration abilities. In other words they spew dust. If you increase the filtration ability that a vacuum cleaner has you will in turn degrade the amount of airflow. The perfect balance is when you can achieve the highest airflow and the best filtration at the same time with minimal loss of either. This is why a bagless vacuum cleaner is not usually a good choice. They don't have a high quality bag to catch the bulk of the dirt, so the filter has to do the job of a bag and filter too. This causes them to clog prematurely and blow dust around the filter instead of through it. The result is a very dusty, messy cleaner that performs poorly. That is why companies like Miele have put so much time into developing their high quality, AirClean bags. They filter most of the particles out so that the HEPA filter can do the job it was intended to do, which is filtering microscopic particles. This allows the machine to have peak airflow and peak filtration without compromise. Come check out our full line of Miele, Lindhaus, Sebo, and Riccar at Viewmont Vacuums.

Vacuum Cleaner Maintenance

Joe Carter - Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Have You had your vacuum cleaner serviced in a while ? It's a good idea to have a vacuum cleaner serviced annually. Most vacuum cleaners need periodic, preventive maintenance to work at their optimum performance. Bagless vacuums are especially prone to need more attention than a bag type vacuum: Because they don't filter as well without a bag, excess dust and debris accumulates in them . Strings and hair clog brushrolls, and can cause bearings to cease and melt. Excess dust and dander that aren't kept cleaned out of internal parts can cause wear on the motor. Motor mounts get out of adjustment, and screws vibrate loose. Belts need changing, and HEPA filters are supposed to be changed on regular intervals too.
 If you bring your vacuum in to Viewmont vacuums to have it serviced , we will take care of all of these issues and while inspecting it, we will assess how much life is left in the cleaner, and what you can expect out of it in the future. We can also send you a reminder for it's next annual check up, so you can keep your machine in tip top running order, and make it last as long as possible, to keep your home healthy and clean. We can also, usually spot anything you may be doing that is hazardous to the life of your vacuum cleaner, and give recommendations for future purchases that will benefit your needs.

Recent Posts