Get the most from your vacuum accessories.

By Real Simple
Updated September 09, 2016
Johnny Miller

Your vacuum isn’t just made for the floors or carpets. This versatile cleaning powerhouse can be used for a variety of household chores, which means you don’t need a closet full of cleaning gadgets to tidy your home. In fact, the right accessories can help you clean anything from mattresses to refrigerator coils and air vents. Use them to do more work for you, with less elbow grease and effort on your part. Most vacuums come with a standard attachment (like an extension wand or upholstery tool) that will help you get to those hard-to-reach spots, or smaller nooks where crumbs and debris get trapped. Here, we show you how each one works and where it can be used.

In addition to the basic attachments, there are a few you’ll want to purchase separately, depending on your cleaning needs. Can’t get dust off your ceiling fan without having to climb to the top of a ladder? There’s a fan blade duster that makes it easy to reach that high spot without risking a fall. If you’re having trouble maneuvering your normal hose attachment around nooks of light fixtures and car-door compartments, invest in a multi-angle brush that will also keep the dust off your blinds and crown molding.

With this information, you can clean more efficiently with just your vacuum. See below for your guide to different vacuum attachments, along with some pro cleaning tips.