It was a business started almost a year before its co-founder graduated from Homer-Center High School, on July 3, 2012.
Almost 11 years later, Evan Strittmatter and his mother, Cindy Konkol Strittmatter, will say goodbye to Indiana Vac, 1875 Philadelphia St., White Township, on June 21, as the business had grown into Pittsburgh and Butler, and away from Indiana.
“After several years of declining sales and community support, the tough decision was made to close the Indiana Vac store,” the Strittmatters posted on Facebook earlier this week. “We would like to thank all of our loyal customers for their support over the years. You are the customers that made the decision to buy quality over quantity, and made the decision to support a local business as opposed to funding another house for a billionaire. We cannot thank you enough.”
The Strittmatters were involved in their home county. Evan Strittmatter was chairman of the Indiana-Armstrong Builders Association Home Show, which marked its 43rd edition earlier this year at the Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex.
Meanwhile, there was an expansion over the years that pulled the Strittmatters out of the Indiana market.
“As many of you know,” the Strittmatters posted on Facebook, “Indiana Vac entered the Pittsburgh central vacuum market in 2015 and through hard work and dedication to customer satisfaction, Evan, Cindy and their team have built Pittsburgh Central Vacuum into the largest central vacuum installation company in Western Pennsylvania.”
It involved successful networking.
“Pittsburgh Central Vacuum has also formed strategic partnerships with top custom home builders and low-voltage integrators that have allowed them to be incorporated into more homes than ever before,” said the post on the Indiana Vac Facebook page, a site with 556 followers. “Pittsburgh Central Vacuum has also expanded into the commercial and industrial markets which has fully embraced the power, convenience and safety of central vacuums in commercial buildings like hair salons/barber shops, veterinarian centers and production facilities.”
Then, in January of this year, the Strittmatters took over Keystone Vacuum, formerly known as Sweeper City, at 156 Point Plaza, near the juncture of state Routes 356 and 68 in the Homeacre-Lyndora area of suburban Butler.
“This location is much closer to the bulk of the central vacuum work, and with over 4,000 square feet of prime retail space, it has become a showroom, office and warehouse for the central vacuum business, in addition to being a thriving portable vacuum store,” the Strittmatter family members posted. “The Butler Community has embraced us with open arms and their vigor to shop local has been a reinvigorating experience for us.”
Meanwhile, with regrets, the Strittmatters are closing up shop on the edge of the Philadelphia Street business district.
“Indiana Vac will still be repairing vacuums and carpet cleaners until June 16, with all repairs needing to be picked up by the final day of business, June 21,” said the post on the Indiana Vac Facebook page. “During that time, we may be running limited hours as our team prepares the inventory to be moved to the Butler location (156 Point Plaza), so if you’re traveling in from out of town, please call ahead to ensure we’re still operating under normal business hours.”
After the last of those business hours, Indiana Vac patrons will be able to utilize a new hardware store soon opening at 631 Philadelphia St., in the heart of downtown Indiana.
“Because we wanted to take care of our clients that have supported us over the years, we were lucky enough to begin a partnership with the new Upstreet Ace Hardware that will be opening soon,” the Strittmatters said. “Upon meeting with Katie and Matthew (Jackson) at Upstreet, we quickly realized that their desire to deliver first class customer service and sell the most innovative and quality products made our decision to hand off the Riccar and SEBO Dealerships to them an easy one.”
It will continue a tradition where, as Evan Strittmatter said some years back, “we specialize in quality vacuums that will last years, not months, and if a customer has questions they call us, not an 800 number.”
As for the Pittsburgh and Butler locations, they posted: “For our Keystone Vacuum and Pittsburgh Central Vacuum customers, business will continue as normal. All phone numbers, services and locations will remain the same and unchanged. Since PCV grew out of Indiana Vac, we have a lot of overlapping customers and we want to make it perfectly clear that we will be maintaining ALL installation and repair services to our central vacuum and Keystone Clients.”
In conclusion, the Strittmatters posted, “if you need to contact us for any purchase records or additional information, call the store at (724) 349-8565 and be sure to like our new page for Keystone Vacuum and Pittsburgh Central Vacuum to keep up with everything Cindy and Evan are up to!”
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