6 People On Reddit With Super-Old Vacuum Cleaners, Still Going Strong (Plus the Modern Versions You Can Buy Today)

published Jun 3, 2019
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Having to repair (or replace!) your vacuum cleaner time after time is no fun. That’s why it pays to know which models are actually worth the investment ahead of time.

The commenters at Reddit know all about the importance of buying quality appliances up front. They started the Buy it For Life subreddit where users can brag about their most solid purchases and hand-me-downs, including old-school vacuums that still work great after decades of use.

We gathered the most highly recommended retro vacuums from the subreddit—plus the newer on-the-market models of each—so you know which brands and models readers believe will stand the test of time.

Credit: Everett Collection/Shutterstock

From a 1930’s upright vacuum to a handheld style from the 80’s, here are six super-old vacuum cleaners that just won’t quit:

1. Electrolux Z25 Cylinder Vacuum Cleaner from 1934

Believe it or not, Reddit user macnerd93 bought a cylinder vacuum cleaner from 1934 that’s still going strong: “Had this vacuum a few years now, bought it from an online store which sold random domestic appliances. I bought it more for its Art Deco design elements than anything else, but it does actually still work and suction is reasonable. I run it from an RCD plug just in case, rather than directly plugging it in to the mains.”

Electrolux is no longer manufacturing vacuums—at least not the original Swedish home appliance brand; they’ve transferred the trademark between different subsidiaries and distributors. You might get lucky and score a vintage one on eBay. Or you can try a model from Eureka or Sanitaire—both share some connection to the original 1930’s Electrolux company and are still manufacturing. You’ll just have to wait to see if it’s a lifer.

2. Black + Decker Handheld Vacuum from the 1980s

According to Reddit user Darth_Canadian_, the nearly 40-year-old Black + Decker handheld vacuum they inherited from their mom still works way better than any newer model: “It’s quite light for how powerful it is actually; really easy to empty it out too. Much rather use this than the Dyson because the brush rotor on this thing can rip most things out the carpet without damaging it.”

Get your hands on a more up-to-date version of this petite powerhouse for just 50 bucks on Amazon.

3. Kirby Vacuum from the late 1950’s

If you ask Reddit user donduc, the 1950’s produced superior home appliances, particularly this Kirby-brand vacuum: “My Dad inherited this from his uncle in 2002, he then gave it to me for my apartment. Research suggests it is a model 516 made between 1956 and 1957. It is the only vacuum I own and does everything I need it to since I still have the hose with attachments and a floor buffer. Only things replaced are the cord and the headlight bulb.”

Lucky for us, you can source a refurbished model of this beloved Kirby vacuum cleaner on Walmart, complete with a carpet shampooing head and refrigerator-coil-cleaning attachment.

4. Hoover Concept One from 1978

According to reddit user chalupabatman643, the Hoover Concept One from 1978 is the only vacuum they’ll ever need: “This bad boy weighs about thirty pounds and will suck up and shred to bits anything that questions it’s authority. It cleans like no other vacuum I’ve used and I’ve had quite a few Dysons, Sharks, more modern Hoover’s and a Kirby. I’ve never had to clean the rollers (other vacs accumulate hair, gross) or do any maintenance aside from bag changes. On top of that it’s self-propelled and auto adjusting to different carpet types!”

Do yourself a favor and grab a newer version of this tried-and-true Hoover for just $120 on Amazon. It’s still bagged, which vacuum experts seem to prefer overall.

5. Filter Queen Vacuum from the Early 1970’s

Forget your fancy new vacuum, Reddit user ppadge says their grandmother’s Filter Queen vacuum from the early 70’s still gets the job done: “My grandma still uses this everyday . . . most modern day appliances usually can’t make it past 5 or so years.”

Turns out you can score the 90th anniversary edition of this classic Filter Queen Vacuum on Amazon—but it’ll cost you about $3,400 (with a 5-year warranty). Or try your luck on eBay. No wonder this older style is still going strong—they are truly built to last.

6. Philips HR6242 from 1979

Talk about a gift that keeps on giving. Reddit user well_done_man says this vintage Philips HR6242 was a wedding present gifted to their mother in 1979 that she still uses daily: “She’s kind of attached to it now. It has been here longer than me.”

Unfortunately, Philips-brand vacuums aren’t as easy to come by these days, but with a little digging, you can find some online.