Vacuums are an important part of our cleaning routine. They’re truly amazing tools, and they do wonders for our carpets, rugs, and floors.
Since they’re probably one of our most expensive cleaning investments, knowing how to properly take care of vacuums can insure that we’re extending the life of our vacuums and enabling it to run on peak performance. The better our vacuums run, the cleaner our floors; and the longer our vacuums last, the more money we save.
Let’s look at how a little bit of TLC and observation can help our vacuums perform at their best.
What Can I do to Extend the Life of my Vacuum Cleaner?
Before you begin working or tinkering with your vacuum in any capacity, it’s important to remember that you unplug your vacuum. Never work on your vacuum while it’s plugged in.
*don’t vacuum up objects too large for your vacuum: be mindful of what you’re vacuuming up off of your floor; be vigilant. Watch the carpets as you vacuum. Are there objects you can vacuum up that might clog or destroy your vacuum? Remove any large clumps or debris that might be difficult for your vacuum to handle.
*change the belt: this depends on whether or not your vacuum has a belt. Some modern models don’t have belts any more (such as a few Shark models). If your vacuum uses a belt, read the manual for your model, and change the belt as often as is recommended. A belt that is stretched or torn won’t turn the brush roll efficiently.
*frequently empty the canister (or bag): whether your vacuum uses the traditional bag or a canister, be sure to change it (or empty it) frequently. If the bag or canister is too full, the vacuum cannot continue to fill it with the dirt, dust, hair, or debris that it is pulling up from the floor.
*clean and change the vacuum filters: maintaining the vacuum’s filters is incredibly important. Air moves through the air filter every time the vacuum is turned on. Regularly pull dust off of the filter, and replace the filter as needed. If you use the vacuum lightly, then it won’t need changed as often; but if your vacuum sees heavy use, then it might need to be changed every six months.
*clean the brush roll regularly: long hair and string is pulled up by the vacuum in every cleaning. These strands get wrapped around the roll. Once the bristles fill up with hair and strands, it can be difficult for the vacuum to clean the floor the way it’s meant to. About once a month, clean the brush roll. Some brush rolls can be spun manually (if turned off), and some can be taken out. After unplugging your vacuum remove the brush roll (if possible), and take a pair of scissors and carefully cut away the hair down the length of the brush roll. Pull the hair from the bristles and toss away. Be careful not to cut the bristles.
*adjust the brush roll settings: whenever you’re vacuuming, you want to double check that the brush roll settings are appropriate for the type of floor you’re cleaning. These settings can range from adjusting the height of the brush roller to suit the thickness of the carpet, or turning off the brush roller for hardwood floors. Running the brush roller on a hard floor can damage the brush roller and the surface of the floor.
*observe the performance of your vacuum: this encompasses a great deal many things. How well it’s running; how it sounds when running; whether or not it’s picking up dirt the way it’s meant to, etc. A little bit of careful observation can go a long way in maintaining your vacuum. It can be as simple as knowing the appropriate way your vacuum motor is supposed to sound (on carpet and hard floors). A change in the sound of the motor can indicate multiple things: is it clogged? Is the motor over heating? Is the brush roll spinning the way it’s meant to? Being this in tuned to your vacuum’s appropriate functionality can prevent your vacuum from burning out.