Thursday, June 07, 2012

7 Of 30: Two Common Vacuum Cleaner Issues

I have worked in the industry now for 7 years or so. Sometimes people take their vacuums in for repair when they could easily diagnose and fix it at home. Here are some very basic things to look for..

My Vacuum is just not picking up as good as it did when I first got it.

This is probably the most common complaint. It's also the vaguest. However, 95% of the time the answer is the belt. All vacuums need a belt to drive the brushroll. Sometimes they need two belts if they have a self-propel feature or any other moving parts. Like any rubber material, over time it becomes stretched out and in need of replacement.
Changing the belt is almost never as hard as it seems. First thing to do is look through the manual. This will usually give you a general idea, but not much more. Stop, and look at how to get access to where the belt is, and then look carefully. It usually only has one way it could possibly go on. If you are successful you will save yourself some money.

Other things it might be..
* An obstruction to the airflow.
* A filter that is clogged and/or in need of changing.
* A full bag.
* A seal that is worn or not seated properly.

My Vacuum is spitting things out instead of sucking things up.

This one should be obvious but even this is often overlooked. You have an obstruction (Paper, sock, scarf, pet hair, etc.) in the air flow of the vacuum.
A Vacuum system is much like plumbing. If there is something in the tubing that won't allow things around it then it will cause dirt and debris to exit out the only way it can. You can affirm this, at least in the bagged vacuums, by seeing if the bag puffs out like a balloon when you turn on the machine.
So, before you panic and think this is not something you can tackle. Start at the source. A high percentage of the time you will find the obstruction at the base of the vacuum where the dirt first enters the smaller tube. If I don't find the problem there, I check the opposite end where the dirt finally enters the container or bag.
If the obstruction is not there, then you simply must follow the maze. You can't plunge it like a toilet, But you can narrow it down and use a flexible long skinny device to poke around with. Sometimes that alone will dislodge it.

There is your quickie vacuum cleaner 101 lesson. It may just be filler because I didn't have any good topics today for a blog. OR it might actually be beneficial to someone, which would be even better. 





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