Business has been cleaning up for 22 years
What started as a vacuum repair business in a Georgetown backyard has evolved during the course of 22 years into a destination for vacuums and indoor allergy relief.
After returning home from military and civil service in South Korea in 1992, Troy Lee Neely purchased the business that would become Georgetown Vacuum and Allergy Relief Center.
As the new owner, Troy Lee decided to open a storefront on Austin Avenue.
When I opened the store, I did it for the repairs, he said. It worked out real good for the first two or three months, [but] then people wanted to buy vacuums because theirs werent worth fixing.
Troy Lee expanded the operation to offer vacuum sales and has since moved the business four times to accommodate its growing demand.
Along with his family, including his wife, Kathie, and son, Troy Dean, Troy Lee runs the shop and offers customers a one-stop shop for new and refurbished vacuum cleaners and vacuum accessories. The business also offers vacuum filters and janitorial supplies such as carpet shampoos.
Along with standard upright and handheld vacuums, the Neelys offer central vacuums, which are built into a houses walls and feature connections throughout the structure into which a hose can be plugged to serve as the vacuum.
It has a hide-a-hose [in the wall] and a floor vacuum, Troy Dean said. They have 1 1/2 times the suction of most vacuums and cut allergens down by 60 percent in your home.
The central vacuum also offers an automatic dustpan feature that allows a person to sweep dust and debris into a wall vent with a broom.
Other indoor allergyreducing products, including Green Screen air conditioner filters designed to limit allergens in the air, are available as well.
I can tell when I need a new Green Screen, Troy Dean said, adding that he uses them in his own home. If I put a regular filter in, my allergies act up. The difference is night and day.
Each Georgetown Vacuum employee is educated on each product and service available in the shop to help guide customers to the vacuum best suited to their needs, Troy Dean said.
Well teach you about the vacuum and how to maintain it, he said. You get a good knowledge of what youre buying.
Scott MacMillan sold his first vacuum at Georgetown Vacuum and Allergy Relief Center at 5 years old. Kathie Neely said he was playing with it in the store and a customer was so impressed by what he knew about the machine she bought it. Now at age 17, MacMillan works as a part-time sales associate.
I was always interested in vacuums for no particular reason, he said. My mom brought me in because we needed a vacuum, and it was a bigger array of vacuums than Id ever seen. It was kind of a playground for me.
MacMillans fascination with the machines has resulted in a collection of about 300 vacuums.
A sample of vacuums from his collection are on display at the store, including a 1969 Hoover Convertible upright signed by members of the Hoover family.
I get rid of some [of the newer ones] I refurbish [so] we can provide used vacuums for people, he said.
MacMillan said there are several things people should consider when purchasing a vacuum, including:
The type of flooring the machine will be used to clean
The number of pets or amount of fur that can influence how often a customer vacuums
The amount of filtration needed, especially for customers with allergy issues
How often a machine will need maintenance; some vacuums require frequent upkeep or replacement of parts such as filters, belts and bags
Georgetown Vacuum and Allergy Relief Center, 3010 Williams Drive, Ste. 138
Hours: Mon.Fri. 10 a.m.5:30 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m.2 p.m.