How to Use a Vacuum Cleaner. Vacuum cleaners are one of the most convenient appliances of our modern times. Without them, cleaning basic wall-to-wall carpeting would be nearly impossible. Older vacuums were heavy and expensive but newer technologies have enabled the creation of much lighter and more compact versions. The smaller vacuums are also less expensive than their older predecessors are, which makes it much easier for everyone to have a good one.

Step 1

Examine the area of the vacuum where it deposits dirt. In older vacuums, this is a bag. In new ones it is often a removable and reusable canister. If the bag is full, you need to change it; if it is a reusable container it should be emptied as often as possible. If the deposit area is full the vacuum won't be able to pick up dirt effectively.

Step 2

Check the vacuum's height. Most vacuums have an adjustable indicator for carpets of various lengths. If your vacuum has one, make sure it is set to the appropriate length for your carpet. If it is set too high it won't have enough suction and if it is set to low it won't have enough airflow.

Step 3

Move all of the smaller items out of the vacuum's way. Even if you don't plan to move the furniture when you vacuum, such as ottomans and coffee tables, you can remove the smaller items easily.

Step 4

Turn the vacuum on and push the vacuum forward and backwards over your carpet, in slow, even strokes. If you move the vacuum too quickly it won't pick up dirt as well.

Step 5

Use the vacuum's attachments such as the simple hose with exchangeable ends, to clean corners and under the edges of furniture. Most vacuums have a series of attachments for these sorts of jobs. It is a good idea to do this extra bit of cleaning so the normal airflow of your room doesn't push unwanted dirt into your newly cleaned areas.