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  • Writer's pictureSWA Team

Safety Tips: Backpack Vacuuming

Updated: Jun 5

Whether it is keeping your home or office clean, vacuuming plays a major role in the process. After all the other surfaces have been cleaned comes the finishing touch of floor cleaning, which includes all the dust and debris that have been cleaned off other surfaces. There are several types of vacuums such as handheld, upright, canister, backpack, etc. As a facilities manager or supervisor, it is important to have some product safety tips to provide to your janitorial staff to prevent injuries and increase efficiency. SWA will be introducing a series of safety tip blogs for the various equipment in the janitorial industry.

Today we will start with the safety guide for proper usage for backpack vacuums:

Do it safely

  1. Put on PPE (personal protection equipment) – gloves and safety glasses

  2. Inspect all electrical cords and plugs

  3. Place caution signs to designate your work zone to prevent tripping hazards

Check the equipment

  1. Check the bag. A backpack with a full bag may overheat causing damage to the unit and discomfort to the user

  2. Ensure that the filter is clean

Getting prepared

  1. Put the backpack on and adjust the straps

  2. Attach the hose depending right or left-hand usage

  3. Make sure the weight of the vacuum rests on hip area

  4. Plug in power cord and caution signs over and around the cord as needed for injury prevention

  5. Be cautious of the backpack while moving around to avoid damage to surrounding furniture, walls, and causing mess to light weight objects that may be blown off table tops such as paper

Safety Measures

  1. When vacuuming lower areas, bend knees instead of bending over to avoid back strain

  2. Use a side-to-side motion when using the wand to lessen the fatigue occurrences


  1. Vacuum under trash cans, desks, chairs, and tables

  2. Vacuum edges, corners, and traffic areas

  3. Use various attachments as needed for increased efficiency

Post vacuuming

  1. Upon completion of vacuuming, remove all caution signs

  2. Unplug the backpack. Note: unplug by the plug, do not pull on the cord

  3. Wind the cord from the vacuum towards the plug

  4. Inspect your work area and make sure everything is back in place

  5. Clean/change filters and cloth bag weekly

When using the backpack vacuum, it is crucial to take the proper measures to protect yourself and the equipment, especially when it comes to making sure the weight is placed correctly and proper movements.

Stay tuned for more safety tips from SWA in the future blogs to come. If you would like product recommendations or if you would like to consider outsourcing your office cleaning, you can contact us to schedule a complementary site visit here or email (or



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