Spring cleaning season is just around the corner. Of course, until then, you’ve got mud from the snow tracking through your house, and kids dragging in snow-drenched backpacks. If your house is anything like normal, you’ve got to have a sturdy, user-friendly vacuum cleaner handy.

Maybe you’ve had a good one for a while, but now it’s on its last legs. Or maybe you’re new to home ownership. Either way, you’re looking for a little assistance in finding the right vacuum for your place.

Here’s a how to, and review on one of our top choices for a vacuum cleaner.

How to Buy a Vacuum Cleaner

You’d think it would be pretty simple to just go into a store, point at the coolest looking vacuum cleaner and call it good. But there’s more to vacuums than just the question of whether or not it has a long enough cord. Here are the best tips for understanding and finding the right vacuum for your needs.

1. Consider the Users

If you live alone, this one is pretty obvious. You get a vacuum that’s a weight that’s easy for you to handle for your vacuuming chores. But if you’ve got kids that help out with chores, an elderly mother-in-law who likes to pitch in, or anyone else with specific physical needs, remember that you might need a lighter weight, shorter, or easier to manage model than the standard upright.

2. Consider Your Floor Type(s)

Vacuums have qualities that work well for different types of surfaces and floors. If you’ve got a lot of hardwood floors, look for a vacuum that specializes in this use. Wall-to-wall carpet everywhere? That’s a different model. If you have both carpet and wood, find a combination vacuum that covers all terrains.

3. Think About the Stairs

If you’re vacuuming stairs, make sure you’re getting a vacuum that comes with attachments that will help with this chore. Some may sell these attachments separately, so that could be an option as well.

4. Remember your Family’s Allergies

Not all vacuums are created equal when it comes to allergen collection. Some are great for dust, but not so much for sucking up that film of pet hair on the couch. Look at the specifications and abilities if you’ve got either strong dust allergies or pets that shed a lot.

An Amazing Vacuum, the Dyson DC59

This fantastic machine comes in two models, the Animal, and the Motorhead. Here’s our review on these amazing models, and why you should consider getting one for your home.

The Dyson DC59 Animal

This sweet little cordless vacuum is perfect for someone looking for a light-weight, easy to care for vacuum cleaner. We love cordless vacuums because they work anywhere in the home.

The Dyson DC59 Animal is particularly great for cleaning curtains and drapes, carpet and hardwood in tight corners — it comes with awesome attachments — and is light enough that anyone in the family can use it. We’d still recommend older kids and grown-ups do the curtains, but it’s easy enough for ten year olds to use cleaning up their own room, or getting at those pesky stairs. This great little machine functions as both an upright and a hand-held vacuum.

The Dyson DC59 Animal is perfect for a home with either hardwood floors or carpets, and has a pretty wide head, so it won’t take as long to clean as other handhelds might.

The Dyson DC59 Motorhead

The Dyson DC59 Motorhead is a step up from the Dyson DC59 Animal. It costs a little bit more, but that’s because of the additional functions and features. This handy, lightweight vacuum is built around the handheld concept of the vacuum, like the Animal is, and comes with a few additional attachments that the Dyson DC59 Animal is missing. These include a tool designed specifically for pet owners that sucks up that pet hair like nobody’s business. This amazing little vacuum can pick up the tiniest of dust particles, and is especially fantastic for anyone with dust mite allergies.

Both the Animal and the Motorhead use trigger actions to start, as well as to empty the dust reservoir. This makes for easier start and stops than the traditional pedal start, and makes for a quicker, less messy emptying of the canister. Both are beautifully designed with bright colors in the purple/pink family, and are easy on the eyes as they are on your hardwood floors.

Overall, we’d recommend the Dyson DC59 Animal or Motorhead for anyone who needs a lightweight, easy to care for vacuum that sucks up dust bunnies in tight spaces. They’re both great models for the whole family to use for stairs, cleaning drapes, and on either hardwood or carpeted floors. The cordless feature makes this vacuum perfect for any room, including cars and stairs where outlets might not be available.