How to Deep Clean a Vacuum

How to Deep Clean a Vacuum

Your vacuum works hard to keep your floors clean, but do you know how to clean your vacuum as it needs? Just like any other appliance, your vacuum occasionally needs some TLC to keep it running in top shape. Keeping your vacuum clean and performing routine maintenance like regularly changing your vacuum filter or replacing your vacuum bag can keep your vacuum working like new for years.

How often should you clean your vacuum?

Most vacuums should be deep cleaned at least every 12-18 months, but their routine maintenance needs vary depending on what brand and style of vacuum you have. Regardless of what vacuum you have though, all that dirt and grime your vacuum picks up will slowly accumulate buildup throughout the machine. Over time this will cause a vacuum to not work as well and eventually could cause it to malfunction.

Letting your vacuum become clogged with accumulated particles will inevitably decrease the lifespan of your vacuum. As the inside of your vacuum becomes more and more cluttered with buildup, bearings and machinery have to work harder to maintain a normal level of function. Under constant strain, overheating, an oil leak, or other major problem will probably end up costing you a new vacuum much sooner than you should've needed one.

How do I deep clean and disinfect my vacuum?

To make sure that your vacuum is as clean as the day you got it isn't too hard of a task, and shouldn't take more than an hour at most. We'll walk you through the steps to clean each general type of machine, but before you begin make sure to read through your owner's manual. Every vacuum is a little different.

Whenever possible, you should clean your vacuum in an open, well-ventilated space or outdoors due to the high amounts of dust that you'll be exposed to. A dust mask and gloves should be worn because it's going to get a little messy.

How to Clean Your Vacuum

We'll address the specifics of how to clean a bag or filter housing below, but let's start with general vacuum cleaning and maintenance that should apply to pretty much any model. Your owner's manual can give you more specifics on your model if you have any problems following the steps below.

  1. Remove the baseplate of the floor blush according to the manufacturer's instructions. This usually isn't too difficult and is designed to be done with just your hands or simple tools. In many models, the brush itself can be removed after the baseplate comes off.
  2. Cut any threats or hair away from the brush. Be careful not to damage the bristles themselves while removing them, however. If these are scratched or develop burrs, they could potentially harm your carpet as you use your vacuum.
  3. Use a small brush, like a grout brush or toothbrush, to remove debris from the brush. Often the worst of the accumulation won't be visible until you've gotten into it, so make sure to check every nook and cranny.
  4. While your vacuum is open, check the belt. Checking your belt for signs of wear can be the most effective way to prolong the life of your motor. Make sure to replace it if it's starting to look worn at all.
  5. Before putting it back together, wipe everything down with a soft, microfiber cloth. Alternatively, you can use a can of compressed air to make sure that any lingering debris is clear before you reassemble your vacuum.
  6. Put everything back together, and enjoy your clean vacuum.

How to Clean a Bagless Vacuum

You're probably familiar with how to empty the canister on your bagless vacuum, but we're going to go a step further. Your documentation that came with your vacuum should indicate whether the canister can get wet or not. If it can, soak it in warm soapy water until it can be rinsed clean and air-dried. If your canister isn't supposed to get wet, you can get in there with compressed air and a soft microfiber cloth to get it nice and clean. Don't forget to clean the outside, hinges, latches, and filter junctions, as these can commonly be where buildup occurs and starts to affect the rest of your vacuum.

Check your filters as well. Most bagless vacuums will have more than one filter. One is a permanent part of the vacuum and the other is a replaceable HEPA filter. Clean the permanent filter according to manufacturer instructions-- most will simply require rinsing and air drying. If your HEPA filter needs replacing, now is a good time to do that as well.

How to Clean a Vacuum With a Bag

Cleaning the bag assembly on a bagged vacuum is very similar to cleaning a bagless vacuum. Once you've removed the bag itself, there will be a cleanable, permanent filter that you'll need to clean according to manufacturer recommendations. When cleaning the inside of the bag compartment, pay special attention to the tube where the vacuum feeds into the bag, as it is one of the most likely spots that dust and grime will start to build up.

When should I change my vacuum filter?

Just like the rest of your vacuum, your filter doesn't just go from clean to dirty in one day. Bagless vacuums can be far more efficient than traditional vacuums, but the downside is that failure to maintain a clean filter can do critical damage to your machine, as well as wreak havoc on the air quality in your home.

For vacuums with disposable filters, most will last 6-12 months, but each model should list specific guidelines in its owner manual. Like we discussed above regarding your whole vacuum, letting a filter get too dirty before changing it out can decrease the efficiency of your vacuum and commonly cause it to overwork itself. Changing out a dirty filter usually has a huge effect on how well your vacuum works and massively increases the air quality in your home, especially if you're using allergen filters.

Can you empty and reuse vacuum bags?

Trying to empty and reuse vacuum bags can be tempting, especially when you forgot to order another 30-pack of Premium HEPA Cloth Vacuum Bags before your last one is filled up. Unfortunately, there are a couple of reasons why this isn't a good idea for the health of your household or your vacuum.

Your vacuum bag doesn't just fill up with neat and tidy dust that leaves nothing behind. Once you empty out that vacuum bag, there are still particles clinging inside that have often worked their way well into the fabric or paper of the bag itself. This could eventually lead to odors and generally gross stuff inside your bag, but it's also not good for your vacuum to run with a bag that's starting off already dirty. Keeping your vacuum working right is far more important than saving some pocket change by reusing a dirty bag.

Keep Your Vacuum Healthy with Veva

Cleaning your vacuum is an easy way to make sure that it keeps running smoothly for a long time. Just like any other machine, your vacuum needs to be maintained to keep performing, and after cleaning up so many of your messes, it sometimes needs some cleaning itself. New vacuums are expensive, and cleanliness, routine filter changes, and bag changes are essential to making sure that you get your money's worth out of your vacuum.

Here at Veva, we're devoted to providing you with high-quality vacuum filters and bags at a fantastic price to improve the air quality in your home and help you get the most value out of your vacuum. Visit our blog for more tips and tricks, or contact us today with any questions.


Contributing Writer: Jordan Roberts

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