If you want a vacuum you can easily from one house or apartment to the next, the best options on the market are Miele canisters and Dyson uprights. But if you’re settled in a home and want the best cleaning power, you’re going to get it from a central vacuum. Beyond the additional power and reliability compared to portable vacuums, they also offer unparalleled convenience; hoses are available to cover every room of your home without needing to drag a vacuum behind you.
But to make the most of a whole house vacuum, you’re going to need a good unit on one end of your piping and a good vacuum head on the other. For the vacuuming unit, we recommend options like the Prolux CV12000 and DuoVac Air 10. When it comes to cleaning heads, we recommend electric power heads with varied carpet height adjustments; these will give you the capability to clean everything between bare floors and high-pile carpets when well-designed.
We recently reviewed what we consider the best powered central vacuum head on the market, the Wessel Werk EBK 360. Today we’ll review the CenTec CT20QD QuietDrive Powerhead and compare it to the EBK 360 as well as the NuTone CT600 it replaces to see how much value it offers. Our recommendation would be to buy the EBK 360 for maximum cleaning power and the flexibility to clean plush and soft carpets, and to stick with the CT20QD if you were perfectly happy with the CT600 and just want an updated version with lights. Our full review is below, and you can buy the CT20QD here.
Pros, cons, and key features of the CenTec CT20QD QuietDrive Powerhead
The CenTec CT20QD QuietDrive Powerhead is an electric power head brush. Per CenTec, it’s an upgraded version of the CT20DXQD and a direct replacement of the discontinued NuTone CT600 Powerhead. It features a 4-position manual adjustment for carpet height via a foot lever. The levels are Hi, Med, Low, and Extra Low, and a view screen allows you to confirm the current level visually while vacuuming.
The Extra Low level is designed for bare floors while the Low, Med, and Hi levels are for low, medium, and high-pile carpets respectively. The CT20QD features a foot lever to release the cleaning wand, large rear wheels for easy navigation, a wrap-around bumper to avoid damaging furniture and baseboards, a red reset button for motor issues, a wooden roller brush for reliability, and a built-in headlight for greater visibility beneath sofas and bedding. The cleaning path is 14 inches wide.
How does the CenTec CT20QD compare to the NuTone CT600 and Wessel Werk EBK 360?
Aside from the color and overall shape of the machines, there are no functional differences between the CT20QD and the CT600; the CT20QD is designed to directly replace the CT600 and both machines are described as identical. Our observations of both cleaning heads line up with the marketing; both clean exactly the same way; the CT20QD just has a more futuristic look to it. Either cleaning head will be compatible with most central vacuums on the market, including NuTone, Aggressor, DuoVac, MD, Beam, VacuMaid, Hayden, Air Vac, CycloVac, and Canavac, as long as you use a wand and hose set compatible with the cleaning head and vacuum unit.
The differences are much more significant when we compare the CT20QD to the Wessel Werk EBK 360. While both cleaning heads performed equally well on bare floors and low-pile carpets, we felt the EBK 360 pulled ahead the thicker the carpet pile became. It did a more thorough job on medium-pile carpets, it left high-pile carpets visibly cleaner with fewer passes, and it was far more capable by the time we got to plush and soft-pile carpets, which the CT20QD felt sluggish when moving through.
We think the additional height adjustability of the EBK 360 in conjunction with a more powerful motor and more effective brush design made the difference. We also liked how the EBK 360 came with a wand by default in addition to the cleaning head, as well as how easy it was to buy the EBK 360 with either a direct connect hose kit or a pigtail connect hose kit. As with the NuTec and CenTec, the Wessel Werk will work with just about any unit on the market as long as you use the compatible connection (i.e., a direct connect or pigtail as needed).
How well does the CT20QD clean bare floors and low-, medium-, and high-pile carpets?
As we noted above, the CT20QD will do a perfectly fine job when it comes to cleaning bare floors and low-pile carpets. If you don’t compare it to the EBK 360, it does fine as well on medium- and high-pile carpets; we only felt it was lacking when a.) we compared it to the EBK 360 side by side and b.) when we asked it to clean soft carpets, which it cleaned but did so reluctantly. However, it won’t have any trouble with any bare floor on the market; hardwood, engineered wood, vinyl, laminate, ceramic tiles, porcelain tiles, brick, marble, bamboo, and concrete will all be within your reach. When it comes to carpets, residential and commercial carpets like Saxonies, berbers, cut and loops, and friezes will all be within your reach.
Why buy the CT20QD?
In conclusion, if you want a central vacuum cleaning head, the best on the market is still going to be the Wessel Werk EBK 360. However, if you don’t have soft carpets or simply want the closest direct replacement to the NuTone CT600 on the market, the CenTec CT20QD will do a perfectly fine job when paired with most central vacuums. We’d just strongly recommend upgrading to the EBK 360 due to the significant power boost it offers on most carpet piles while costing only a few dollars more than the CT20QD.
You can buy the Wessel Werk EBK 360 power nozzle and wand here on Amazon or buy the CenTec CT20QD here instead. You can also buy the EBK 360 with a 30-35 foot direct connect hose kit here or buy it with a 30-35 foot pigtail hose kit here.
Canadians can buy the Wessel Werk EBK 360 power nozzle and wand here or buy a CT20QD equivalent, the CenTec CT14DXQD, here instead. You can also buy the EBK 360 with a 35 foot direct connect hose and accessory tool kit here.
If you find our research on PMC helpful, you can follow our efforts to keep maniacally reviewing home cleaning tools by shopping through our links above. We promise to keep fighting the good fight against every horror children, animals, and grown, yet messy humans can inflict upon a clean home.