best vacuum berber carpet

Best Vacuum for Berber Carpet

Maybe you bought a new Berber carpet and want to know the best way to clean it.

Or, maybe you learned the hard way that every vacuum doesn’t work for Berber (hopefully not).

Berber is the most recognizable of all carpet styles, and sometimes the only style people know other than “plain old carpet.”

But what is Berber? If you go way back, Berber was a tribe in Africa. And this isn’t just a random fact. This ancient tribe created a specific weave for rugs. This weave was so popular that it was named after the tribe, and you still find it in carpet today.  Now that Berber is much more common, you can take its unique weave for granite. But it never goes out of style.

The loop style of Berber can make it a durable carpet. This is why you’ll sometimes see looped carpets in commercial buildings and schools. But there’s one thing Berber doesn’t hold up well against: vacuums.

And that’s the point of this article. How can you vacuum your Berber to get it the cleanest without ruining it?

Here’s a preview of my top 3 vacuums for Berber:

  1. Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Animal (best overall – click here for price on Amazon)
  2. Miele Complete C3 Marin (best high-end – click here for price on Amazon)
  3. Hoover T-Series Windtunnel (best budget – click here for price on Amazon)

Captain’s notice! When I recommend a vacuum, there is a link to a product page (usually on Amazon). I may receive a small commission if you purchase after clicking it. I receive the same small flat percentage with any vacuum, so it does not change what I recommend or what you pay. All reviews are 100% unbiased.

Best overall, best high-end, and best budget vacuums for Berber

We know certain features make vacuums stand out: suction power, ability to pick up different things (dust, animal hair, long hair, food crumbs, etc) easy to maneuver, easy to empty and perform maintenance, useful tools, and adaptive features such as a controllable brush roll and vacuum height.

The last part is important for anyone’s vacuum but critical for Berber owner’s. This is where my vacuum research started. If the vacuum isn’t adaptive, it was thrown out. If it was, it was in consideration for the best vacuum for Berber.

The way I rate vacuums is I have an ongoing list of vacuums, and how I feel about them in multiple categories. These reviews come from a mix of experience from carpet cleaning, reviews (in-person and online) of what people like and don’t like, and my personal experience using the vacuums. I’ve tested more vacuums than any sane person should. With that said, here are the vacuums I think are best for you and your Berber carpet:

Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Animal (best overall): I love this vacuum so much that all of the vacuums I’ve tried, this is my go-to vacuum in my own home. It’s suction power and overall ability to pick up dust and debris is only comparable with the best of the best vacuums. And for as powerful of a motor as it has, it has “minor” unique features that make it easy to maneuver including the ball, support back wheel when getting under objects, and a simple to remove and empty canister. The only negative I can come up with is the brush bar isn’t the easiest to clean of vacuums I tested, and it’s not lightweight so not the easiest to go upstairs. Here’s why it stands out:

Miele Complete C3 Marin (best high-end): There’s no denying you’ll pay a premium for the Miele Marin, but it’s my winner for luxury vacuum. Like any luxury, the extra you pay doesn’t correlate perfectly with performance (eg it may be double the cost of the Dyson above but not double the performance) but you pay for fine details. There are no details spared: auto-height adjustment, LED front light, change of bag indicator light, etc. This is the Lexus of vacuums. I don’t see anything not to like about this vacuum other than if you dislike canisters or the price tag. Here’s why it stands out:

  • excellent suction
  • excellent pet hair removal
  • no-details-spared features: auto-height adjustment, LED light, change of bag indicator, footswitch controls
  • 6 speeds to customize to your floor
  • can turn of beater bar
  • excellent air filter
  • easy to use telescopic wand for versatility for high up and other difficult to reach areas
  • Click here to check out more info and the latest price on Amazon

Hoover T-series Windtunnel (best budget): I always recommend considering our vacuum a decade-long investment, and in that case, a $500 vacuum is only $4/month. Well worth it in my opinion. But sometimes you just don’t have the money right now to throw down on a vacuum. If that’s the case, I really like this vacuum by Hoover. It doesn’t compete with the best vacuums in suction, but it definitely outperforms the vacuums in its price category. Here’s what stands out:

Berber carpets and vacuum snags

You may have noticed one feature listed in every vacuum was a beater bar that turns off. That’s because of this:

Snag in Berber carpet from a vacuum

Those beautiful loops designed by an ancient African tribe can get snagged by vacuums. The problem is the beater bar. Depending on the design of the beater bar and the height of it, the bristles can grip one of the loops and rip it. There are ways to repair ripped loops, but it’s definitely a headache. Not to mention, once it rips it can continue to unravel like a loose thread on your close. So don’t pull at it!

So what’s the fix? In order of least to most effective:

  • hope it doesn’t happen and vacuum as is
  • raise your vacuum height slightly
  • turn off the beater bar

While the first may sound like a joke, many people vacuum their Berber carpet with the beater bar on the vacuum with no problem. In fact, that picture came from a test carpet. Although it clearly ended up snagging, this was after many tests.

My rule of thumb is I would turn off the vacuum the majority of the time. If you want to do an occasional clean with the beater bar on, go for it. Just know there is some risk of a snag. The second you get a snag, stop the vacuum and repair the snag. And consider that your test, I wouldn’t use the beater bar (or raise the height) because otherwise it will almost definitely happen again.

Captain’s parting words!

Having a vacuum you love takes a lot of headache and pain out of your life.

For Berber, loving your vacuum means it does two things: cleans your carpet but also doesn’t snag it. These 3 vacuums all should do an excellent job depending on your needs.

Any questions on vacuums and Berber carpet? Let me know in the comments below.

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The house I moved into already had berber. As I recall it was lighter in color. It seems now to be darker.. I take good care of my carpet and have runners in high traffic areas. Does the light color berber darken with age?

Amber Faver

I’m having a headache with Berber Carpet. I was trying to solve it and still have no fixes. Thank you for sharing this article. [link removed]