I just tested regular central vac and Hide a Hose system

gopackApril 11, 2008

I went to 2 homes today to test out a regular traditional central vacuum system and to test the Hide a Hose system. The first system was in a person's home that my builder built. She loves her central vac system. It was very nice. But her tubing was 25 feet long and it tended to coil on the floor and would get in my way. It was kind of annoying to me. It was kind of a hassle to have to move it from one outlet to another. The tubing seemed to have a mind of its own.

The second home had the Hide a Hose system. It is where the tubing gets sucked back into the wall pipes when you are done vacuuming. The tubing is much lighter than the tradtional system because there are no electric wires in it. It also lays down on the floor and does not coil onto itself like the regular tubing does. Since it is stored in the pipes in the wall, it doesn't try to get into a coil. When I vacuumed with this system, the hose was super easy to manipulate, and it really didn't seem to get in the way, like the other tubing did.

There are benefits to both systems and I am just relating my experiences with both systems. If anyone has a question about the Hide a Hose, I can try to answer it for you. I am no expert - just found a local dealer here in the DFW area and was able to do a real live test with it.

I am going with the Hide a Hose system based on how easy it was to use and the fact that I don't have to put the tubing away when I am done. I know that would drive me nuts and I would end up not using it.


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Ginny - I have the hide-a-hose in my new house and I really like it. I had the regular in my old house and I rarely put the hose away, plus you still need a fair amount of space to put it away. Since this house is smaller with less storage I didn't want to worry about finding a spot for it either.

As for hoses they each have their benefits. I liked the metal fittings better on my old hose than the plastic on the hide-a-hose. It lasted forever (This hose was from 1984 and still like new with multiple use during the week).I'm not sure how well the plastic one on hide-a-hose will hold. I do like that it is lighter than the old hose, but I guess that comes at the above price.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2008 at 5:26PM
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One other thing is that the Hide a Hose does not use any electrical wiring in their hoses. (I kept saying tubing in my first point, but I meant hoses.) This is a plus because it makes the hoses light weight and easy to move around. It might be a negative because you cannot use an electric powered brush attachment for the carpets. You get an air powered turbo brush attachment with the Hide a Hose system. Some people say it does not do as well on carpeting as the electric power brushes. I hope I am not disappointed with this aspect but we will only have carpeting upstairs.


    Bookmark   April 11, 2008 at 6:02PM
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thanks for posting your review. i really appreciate it since i'm about to look into the vac systems. thanks again!

    Bookmark   April 11, 2008 at 9:01PM
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I have a conventional Vacu-Flo system in this house and absolutely love it. Our new house will have a Vacu-Flo with Hide-a-Hose. In six years I've had absolutely no problems with my Vacu-Flo -- but I'm looking forward to no more wrestling matches hanging up the hose!

    Bookmark   April 12, 2008 at 8:24AM
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Yes, the 'snake' IS a hassle. We need someone to re-think that traditional hose system for those of us who built before the Hide-a-Hose was available! My DH will help with vacuuming, but he refuses to 'hang up the snake'.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2008 at 3:04PM
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According to the dealer I am working with, the vacuum system needs to have enough suction power to suck the hose back into the tubes. So they really recommend a true cyclonic. Not sure if that is necessary or not but the Hide a Hose system has an exclusive deal with Vacu flo and VAcu Maid and some other commercial systems. So you can't buy a Hide a Hose system and attach it to just any central vac system. Also, the tubing has to be the right size and the right design for this all to work. In fact, the 90 degree turns in the tubing are called sweep turns, or something like that so they are not too sharp of a turn for the hose.

But I imagine someone will design an adaptable hide a hose type system one day that will work with just about any central vac system.

I didn't realize how popular central vac systems were!!


    Bookmark   April 12, 2008 at 6:13PM
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Gopack mentioned the fact that you can't get a power brush with the HideAHose system, it is air propelled.

Has anyone verified if the HAH air propelled brush can clean carpet well?

Also, Any suggestions for Central Vac dealers in Houston?


    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 1:37AM
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I've only had the air-propelled. In my last house I had the outlets for the electrical, but never bought the equipment to use it as only 1/3 of the house had carpet. In the previous house it was mainly carpet and the air-propelled did just find with 2 dogs.

I use the air-propelled on the rugs now and it does good too (no carpet anymore).

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 9:31AM
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Mine is only air-propelled, too. We have hardwood and tile throughout and low-pile orientals. One room has high-pile; I have a separate attachment (w/beater brush) for that room. We have a Westie. (Westies don't shed, but this one is from a Rescue -- a puppy mill dog -- and he DOES.) The rugs get clean!

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 11:49AM
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Thank you for sharing your opinion as I also had these comparison questions.
Can anyone recommend a 'Hide a Hose' dealer in SW Louisiana?

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 12:37PM
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I think everyone on this site that recommends a HIde a Hose system should get a cut of the pie from Hide a Hose!!

I might ask my dealer to give me a break since mine will be the first one he installs in our neck of the woods. It will be great advertising for him via my builder.


    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 7:18PM
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I just got an estimate from our South Central PA Hide-a-Hose dealer and wanted to ask someone knowledgeable about the need for what he calls a Garage inlet and Garage Care Kit. I told the guy I wasn't interested in having anything in the garage, but he included it in the estimate. Is this just an inlet for the garage and the attachments that go with it? And can you guys tell me what a turbocat is? I'm assuming the "power" head?


    Bookmark   April 28, 2008 at 3:19PM
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Just got back from trying out the just installed Hide-a-Hose, and it works very well indeed! I'd assumed that it would be silent, but the air rushing through the attachments whistles to various degrees, depending on what's attached; the turbocat is *relatively* loud due to that. It's certainly not as loud as any regular vacuum, but I still won't be able to sneak up on the dog & vacuum him!

Yes, sdionnemoore, the turbocat is the rotating brush, for carpets and rugs. We also have a garage inlet & car care kit, and it's a regular outlet (not Hide-a-Hose) with a regular hose & attachments. Sorry, I didn't pay much attention to those, but if you're interested I can post about them tomorrow. DH is seriously pleased to have this set-up, for garage & contents cleaning, not to mention car interiors.

One of the nicest things is that every piece of the system is very heavily built; none of the flimsy attachments & tubes I'm used to with conventional vacs.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2008 at 4:27PM
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Thanks so much for that information, happykate. I looked over some information on other central vac systems and saw some prices as low as $799 for the system. Granted, it's not a HAH, but it makes me wonder if my estimate is extreme. My estimate came in at $2925.00. It includes:

1-566Q Unit
2-HAH Inlets
1_VacPac Accessory Kit
1-Garage Inlet
1-Garage Care Kit
Installation, Start-Up Demonstration & Life+3 Warranty

Does that $$ sound right? The house is 3300 sq ft including garage, though I'm not sure if that matters at all other than an idea for the amount of materials the installer would need.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2008 at 9:44PM
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sdionnemoore, that's just about what mine cost, with exactly the same list: 2 HAH inlets, 1 vac pan, etc. However, I think that my motor was different, and I'll check tomorrow. I know that the motor has to be more than normally powerful for the HAH to function properly; I think that mine is sized for a 12000 s.f. house, and we're just at 2500. Again, I'll check tomorrow.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2008 at 10:33PM
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I'm using the Hide-A-Hose system in our house and couldn't imagine using as standard system that you have to carry the hose from room to room ever again. We are using a Cyclovac Central Vacuum Bagged powered unit and it has more power than any of the bagless cyclonic units that we looked at, and much cleaner to empty and maintain.

We are also using an electric powerhead on our Hide-A-Hose system. The powerhead has it's own 30 foot cord that we plug in, so we are managing both the hose and an extra power-cord. It sounds awkward at first, however it is really no more trouble than using the hose alone, and I think it does a great job on our thicker carpets.

Our system cost was $3500.00 installed with one outlet and the Cyclovac electrified powerhead. I can't recommend this system enough.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2010 at 1:33PM
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Just wanted to share my experiences w/ Hide-A-Hose. I too have had a standard central vacuum system in my previous home. I did not care for the 30' hose always being out because I was too lazy to put it away.

I had the HAH system installed in my new home; it was an existing home (not new construction) w/ one valve upstairs and one on the 1st floor. A Vacuflo 566Q power unit, 2 35' hoses, a Vroom in my kitchen as well as a Turbocat air driven power head make up my system...

I can say the system works perfect and the larger-then-necessary 566Q power unit (566Q is rated for homes up to 8k sq ft & mine is less then 2k) has more then enough suction-power for my air driven power head. I would not even consider going back to a standard central vacuum system; the additional cost of the HAH system was worth every penny!

FYI, my system cost about $3300 if I remember correctly; about $1100 more then the quote I got for a standard Vacuflo system...

    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 3:00PM
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My builder installed a HAH system in our house and I don't like it at all. The longer hoses mean it has to be dragged around more corners that get damaged. Also, when you pull the hose out you're left with a 50 pile of hose on the floor so you can't begin there. You have to carry your 50 feet of hose to the farthest end and kick the hose back as you go. I much prefer the standard Central Vac with shorter hoses. Also, pulling the hoses out of the wall can be back breaking. Many of the parts had to be replaced, apparently they were defective. It's not fun and was a mistake.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2015 at 9:49AM
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