Floor care appliances are indispensible time-savers. They also make a big contribution to cleanliness and home hygiene. Used intermittently, for relatively short periods, they do not represent a big proportion of home energy usage. However, energy labelling is being extended to include vacuum cleaners. The power of the vacuum cleaner is often a selling point — but for power you can also read energy-usage. So a 2kW vacuum cleaner actually uses as much electricity as a typical two bar electric fire.
With the move to energy labelling there is likely to be an increase in innovation as machines are made more efficient. Some already sell, at least partly, on their energy-efficiency with several models using less than a kW of electricity, with at least similar performance to more powerful models. Others offer several settings so you can choose a lower power setting. It is worth shopping around especially if you are a frequent vacuumer.