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How Does a Rainbow Vacuum Work?

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The Rainbow Vacuum, a unique cleaning system that has been in operation since 1929, has a reputation for being one of the most efficient and versatile vacuum cleaners on the market. But what sets it apart from other vacuums? How does it work, and what benefits does it offer? In this comprehensive guide, we’ll dive deep into the workings of a Rainbow Vacuum and explore its unique features.


A Rainbow Vacuum works by using a unique water-based filtration system. Instead of a bag or a canister, it uses a water reservoir to capture and trap dirt, dust, and odors. The vacuum then returns naturally clean, water-washed air back into your home. This system, combined with a versatile set of attachments and features, allows the Rainbow Vacuum to effectively clean a variety of surfaces and handle both wet and dry messes.

The Basics: What is a Rainbow Vacuum?

A Rainbow Vacuum is a vacuum cleaner that uses a water-based filtration system as its primary method of capturing dirt and dust. Manufactured by Rexair, a company that has been in the business since 1929, the Rainbow Vacuum is a bagless canister vacuum. It captures dirt and odors in a water reservoir, returning only naturally clean, water-washed air to your home environment.

Unique Features: What Makes the Rainbow Vacuum Stand Out?

The Rainbow Vacuum sets itself apart from other vacuum cleaners with its unique features and capabilities:

  1. Water-based filtration system: The Rainbow Vacuum uses water as its primary filtration medium, trapping dirt and odors and returning only naturally clean, water-washed air to your home environment.
  2. Versatility: The Rainbow Vacuum comes with a wide assortment of cleaning attachments and optional accessories, allowing it to clean various surfaces, including windowsills, shelves, tables, lampshades, upholstery, carpets, rugs, cushions, and under furniture.
  3. Wet and dry pickup: The vacuum is designed to handle both wet and dry messes, effectively cleaning up liquids, dust, dirt, and debris.
  4. Air purifying mode: The Rainbow Vacuum can also be used as an air purifier, improving the air quality in your home.
  5. Pet hair and stair cleaning: The vacuum is effective at removing pet hair and cleaning stairs.
  6. Carpet shampooing: The Rainbow Vacuum has a carpet shampoo functionality, allowing it to deep clean carpets.
  7. Certifications: The vacuum is a certified air cleaner and is certified asthma and allergy-friendly, ensuring a healthier home environment.
  8. Durability and warranty: The Rainbow Vacuum is built to last and comes with an industry-leading warranty, supported by Rexair LLC and local Independent Authorized Rainbow Distributors.

The Rainbow Vacuum’s Power Nozzle: An In-Depth Look

The Rainbow Vacuum’s power nozzle functions by using a powerful revolving brush to lift and groom every fiber of your carpet, effectively removing dirt, pet hair, and crumbs. The brush roll is made of stainless steel with replaceable brush strips, ensuring durability and easy maintenance. The power nozzle also features an adjustable air vent system, which helps redirect airflow when a thicker carpet restricts air movement from the bottom. Vents are opened from the top to maintain airflow for maximum cleaning performance.

Maintenance and Cleaning: Keeping Your Rainbow Vacuum in Top Shape

To maintain and clean a Rainbow Vacuum, follow these steps:

  1. Remove residual dirt: After each use, clean the intake hole and the area under the vacuum with a wet paper towel or a rag. This will prevent dirt accumulation and make it easier to clean next time.
  2. Clean the water basin: Empty the basin and wash it with warm soapy water. Rinse thoroughly and air dry. Regular cleaning of the water basin is crucial for maintaining the vacuum’s performance and preventing unpleasant odors and bacterial growth.
  3. Clean the separator: The separator should be cleaned at least once every three months or after ten deep cleanings. Use the Rainbow separator brush to remove the holding nut and clean the separator properly.
  4. Clean the power nozzle: The power nozzle may need occasional cleaning to remove debris and maintain its efficiency.
  5. Proper storage: Do not store the Rainbow Vacuum outdoors or under extreme conditions. Store it in a cool, dry place to prolong its lifespan.
  6. Check and replace filters: Regularly check the HEPA filter and replace it as needed to maintain the vacuum’s efficiency.
  7. Clean attachments: Clean the vacuum’s attachments, such as brushes and tools, to prevent clogging and maintain their effectiveness.


While the Rainbow Vacuum may have a higher price point compared to other vacuum cleaners, its unique water-based filtration system, versatility, and durability make it a worthwhile investment for many homeowners. By understanding how this vacuum works and how to maintain it properly, you can ensure that your Rainbow Vacuum continues to operate efficiently and lasts for many years.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should I replace the water in my Rainbow Vacuum?

You should replace the water in your Rainbow Vacuum after each use. This ensures that the vacuum operates at its optimum performance and prevents the accumulation of dirt and bacteria in the water basin.

Can I use my Rainbow Vacuum without water?

No, you cannot use your Rainbow Vacuum without water. The water-based filtration system is a key component of the vacuum’s operation. Running the vacuum without water could potentially damage the machine.

Where can I buy replacement parts for my Rainbow Vacuum?

Replacement parts for the Rainbow Vacuum can be purchased from authorized Rainbow Vacuum distributors or directly from the manufacturer’s website.

Is the Rainbow Vacuum suitable for people with allergies?

Yes, the Rainbow Vacuum is suitable for people with allergies. The vacuum is certified asthma and allergy-friendly, and its water-based filtration system effectively captures and contains allergens and dust, improving the air quality in your home.

Can I use any type of soap to clean the water basin?

It is recommended to use a mild detergent or dish soap to clean the water basin of your Rainbow Vacuum. Avoid using harsh or abrasive cleaners, as they can potentially damage the basin.

How often should I clean the separator?

The separator should be cleaned at least once every three months or after ten deep cleanings. Regular cleaning of the separator is crucial to maintain the vacuum’s performance.

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