Glossary of Terms


When a vacuum cleaner is started, it creates a vacuum or an area of low pressure. Outside air rushes in to fill this vacuum. This rush of air or AIRFLOW is controlled and directed for maximum cleaning efficiency.

Air Watts

Represents the air power delivered by the power unit at various orifice sizes. The calculation is: Air Watts = Water lift X CFM/ 8.5 Maximum Air Watts is used by many in the vacuum industry to measure the amount of air power available to power air-driven power nozzles.


Represents the amount of electrical current consumed by the motor during use. Ampere is to electricity, as gallon is to water; a measure of quantity.


A common unit of the measure of air moved by the vacuum fans.

Electric Power Nozzle

Power head that cleans your carpet with an electrically driven motor that rotates the roller to loosen embedded dust and debris enabling the suction to capture the dirt and discard it into the dirt container.


The fan is the combination of blades that spin around to create the airflow to produce the vacuuming action. Units with two fans are called two-stage motors and units with three fans are called three-stage motors.


A common plastic polymer. The same material is used for both vacuum PVC pipe and plumbing PVC pipe.

Sealed Suction

Measures the maximum suction generated by the motor without airflow.


This indicates the number of sets of fan blades in a vacuum motor. Each fan - set of blades - increases the vacuum, or speed at which air is drawn through the system. The first fan starts air movement; the second increases it, and if there is a third fan it increases airflow still more. Thus the greater the number of fans the more powerful the vacuum.


The actual vacuum or water lift created by the fans in the vacuum motor.

Turbine (Pneumatic) Brushes

Air driven head that cleans carpet by using the powerful suction of a central vacuum which rotates the roller to loosen dust and debris enabling the suction to capture the dirt and discard it into the dirt container.

Vacuum Inches of Water

See Water Lift

Voltage (Volts)

A measure of the electrical potential employed by a vacuum motor.

Water Lift

A classic measure of vacuum suction. The height to which water can be raised by a vacuum motor.


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