How to measure suction power of vacuum

When you invest in a vacuum, you expect it to ease the work of cleaning your home and get rid of all the debris in your carpets and floor. While all vacuums can do this, the performance of every vacuum cleaner varies based on its design.

One of the factors that affect the performance of your vacuum is the suction power. And in this blog post, I’ll be teaching you how to measure suction power of vacuum.

Wear your nerdy cape because this may get a little bumpy (I got you, though).

What Is Suction Power? 

vacuum Suction Power

Before we get to the nitty-gritty of how to measure the suction power of your vacuum, you must understand what it is. I have to go back to what a vacuum does to define the suction power.

The whole purpose of a vacuum is to suck in all the particles on your floor, furniture, or carpet and put them inside its compartment. Now, to accomplish this, the cleaning motor requires enough power to create the maximum difference between the inside and outside of the cleaner. This power is what is called suction power.

How to Measure the Suction Power of Your Vacuum

There are several proven ways of measuring the suction power of your vacuum cleaner.

Here are the most common methods:

1. Sealed Suction 

This is an easy test that you can perform at home to determine the suction power of your vacuum cleaner. You’ll need a tube, a container, and a vacuum cleaner for this test.

Fill in the container with water, place the tube inside and seal the container. Attach the vacuum cleaner to the setup and power it on. The level at which the water rises in the tube indicates the vacuum cleaner’s suction power.

A vacuum’s suction power is considered strong if the water rises over 90 inches and above.

2. Pascals 

Since the suction power produces pressure, it can be measured using pascal.

1 Pascal is equivalent to 1-newton force per square meter area (N/M^2). The standard measure of a good vacuum suction power is 20kPa, which translates to 2 tons of force per square meter.

3. Watts 

This is another common way of measuring the suction power of a vacuum cleaner. However, it’s important to note that the suction power of a vacuum is different from the power watts of the entire vacuum.

Most vacuums have a power of 40-2500 watts. However, for a vacuum cleaner with a total power of 1600 watts, the suction power is approximately 370 watts – the remaining power goes to other elements of the vacuum cleaner.

4. Amps 

Unlike pascals, amps are a little bit common in the vacuum world. It’s the most used unit to measure the suction power. Like the vacuum’s watts, the total amps and the suction power are different. The vacuum amp ranges between 4-12 amps.

If understanding the suction power in watts is easier for you, you can convert the amps to watts using the following formula.


Every state has a different volt range, so you may consider searching your country’s volts on the internet.

If you’re in the USA, the volt is 120V

5. Airflow 

There is a direct relationship between a vacuum’s suction power and airflow. This measurement is commonly referred to as cubic feet per minute (CFM). It simply means that air volume is replaced in cubic feet per minute in the vacuum.

In general, a vacuum with good suction power measures 100 CFM or more.

Final Words 

Vacuum suction power significantly affects the performance of your vacuum cleaner. Cleaners with poor suction power do more damage than good because they spill debris over instead of sucking it in. A vacuum’s suction power is influenced by a number of things, and a variety of factors come into account when you want to find and fix a vacuum cleaner leak.

Before buying a vacuum cleaner, ensure you check its suction power. Many manufacturers will include the measurements in the description box.

I’m curious, do you usually check the suction power of a vacuum cleaner before buying it? And do you have any other tips on how to measure suction power of vacuum? Tell us in the comment section.

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