Why Do Vacuum Cleaners Lose Suction?(Guide)

Why Do Vacuum Cleaners Lose Suction?

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Why Do Vacuum Cleaners Lose Suction?

Since their invention in the early 20th century, vacuum cleaners have made tremendous strides in suction power and the overall types and number of functions it now performs.

Some variants are now used to collect solid dust and are handy in sucking liquids as well.

All the same, a typical vacuum cleaner is meant to suck debris and dust particles from different surfaces.

Fundamentally, a powered motor rotates a fan, creating a suction motion for collect dust from surfaces. But why do vacuum cleaners lose suction?

Loss of suction is a result of constriction on the way air is taken, Motor is faulty,rotating brush is clogged and faulty filter. When the filters are blocked, suction is affected, and this may call for replacement or cleaning.

Do I Need To Change The Vacuum Filter To Avoid Loss Of Suction?

Yes, and here are some reasons why this is important. Many reasons maintain people’s love for vacuum cleaners.

First, vacuum cleaners are handy in cleaning the carpet, cleaning upholstered furniture, ensuring that rugs remain clean, cleaning our mattresses, and many other tasks.

Even though these appliances do much cleaning, we scarcely consider cleaning them and consequently make them less efficient in their work.

Additionally, failure to clean out vacuum cleaners significantly shortens their useful life.

Therefore, it’s essential to ensure that we either change or ensure that the filter of our vacuum cleaner is clean at all times.

Professional vacuum repairmen earn lots of money from bagless vacuums(Amazon Link).

Sadly, a big percentage of these repairs are related to owners not cleaning the filter or doing it the wrong way.

Why Do Vacuum Cleaners Lose Suction?

When the filter is clogged up, the vacuum motor will be overworked, and it will not take long before you experience motor burnout.

When the motor gets burned out, it will call for a replacement, which will definitely cost a lot of money.

Surprisingly, I have found myself paying little attention to my vacuum cleaner but at the same time desire to use it to clean my house.

Perhaps, this is the same thing that happens with you. Particularly, many people do not remember the vacuum filter.

However, those who remember the filter will rarely get time to change it or clean it.

Other people will simply take the filter out and then try to knock the dust off by tapping it in the trash. Unfortunately, this does not get anywhere near effective filter cleaning. 

When cleaning a vacuum cleaner, you want to be in a place in your home where dirt and dust can be tolerated, like the garage.

Grab your vacuum cleaner and the pleats of the filter. Ensure that you are gentle with the nozzle to avoid damaging it. Pay particular attention to the coating of the filter.

Clean the pre-filter screens as well as the post-filter screens. This cleaning should be done using your shop vac.

Since some vacuum cleaners have washable fitters, it is advisable to use gentle water pressure to spray the filter.

Do I Need To Clean My Filter Every Month?

No. You do not have to clean the filter that frequently. Indeed, a cleanup exercise after every three months will suffice.

However, if there is extremely high traffic in your home, you will find yourself using the vacuum cleaner too frequently, and this might mean that you should be cleaning it more regularly.

It’s important to remember that even a modestly dirty filter significantly affects your vacuum cleaner’s suction power.

On the other hand, if your filter is pleated, it means it’s not washable, and you should replace it once a year.

Therefore, if you are like me and want to use your vacuum cleaner for a long time, and I bet you do,

You want to ensure that you go beyond simply emptying the yuck-full canister is not enough as you want to clean it periodically thoroughly. 

Will a faulty motor make my vacuum cleaner lose suction?

The role of the electric motor in a vacuum cleaner is to rotate the fan.

Once the fan is kicked into the rotation, suction is created, and this is what is relied on by the application to collect dust from various surfaces.

Yes! When a motor gets faulty, this may not only lead to loss of suction for your vacuum cleaner, but your appliance might fail to switch on.

It’s easy to identify a faulty motor. What you need to do is to listen to your appliance. As you listen, there might be two possible cases.

You might notice that your vacuum cleaner(Amazon Link) makes odd ‘clank- clank’ (sounds off-key), or it’s louder than it usually is.

These two symptoms might suggest that the motor is faulty.

On the other hand, the motor may also smoke. Unfortunately for those who are fond of DIY projects, motors are not easily classifiable as do-it-yourself jobs.

You need to know that if the motor is faulty, you might have to replace the vacuum cleaner.

I would also wish to point out that a motor may appear faulty due to the noise it’s making as it runs.

There is a time I almost concluded that my motor was faulty due to the noise emanating from the vacuum cleaner.

On consulting a vacuum repairman, we found that the blades attached to the motor were the cause of the noise.

They had loosened up and were making too much noise, with reduced suction power.

Why Do Vacuum Cleaners Lose Suction?

It’s good to point out that bag vacuum cleaners’ motor uses a fan blade (spinning plastic) to achieve suction.

As dirt and debris are conveyed through the blades into the bag, one of the blades might be broken.

This would make the motor vibrate and lose suction. This case does not require a complete vacuum cleaner replacement since you will only need to replace the fan blade.

Can I Increase My Vacuum Cleaner Suction?

Yes. With a bit of knowledge and the right apparatus, it’s easy to increase your vacuum cleaner suction.

When your vacuum cleaner continues to work, it begins to rave-up, and its suction feature is not as active as before.  

Nothing can be more frustrating than a vacuum cleaner that leaves debris on your floor or carpet while cleaning.

This is a pertinent problem faced by many homes. If your vacuum cleaner has ever developed this problem, it’s possible that you have tried to seek a solution from the internet.

You might have also considered replacing it as well. Unfortunately, buying a new vacuum cleaner may not permanently solve your problem.

The only solution is first to know why and how your vacuum cleaner loses suction power.

So, if you want to increase the suction power of your vacuum cleaner, you should empty the Bag.

This is a very important procedure to get some more suction power into your vacuum cleaner.

It’s a wise idea to check if the bag is filled up regularly. Since there is a fill line at the front of bagless vacuums, focus on this line.

If your vacuum cleaner has a canister, the fill-line is on the vacuum bag.

At times, there might be hair and dirt that fills up beyond the fill line; this means that your vacuum cleaner does not have enough room for collecting more stuff.

This calls for the bag to be emptied. Remember that the line is your primary focus, and you need to empty the bag even when the bag is not filled up.

Do not rely on the sounds that your vacuum might continue to make, implying that everything is okay since this is not an indication that your vacuum’s suction is fine.

Can An Improper Setting Impair My Vacuum’s Suction Power?

Yes. It’s critical to use the correct setting. While emptying the bag is a good idea to ensure that your vacuum cleaner’s suction is at optimal levels, it’s scarcely all you need to do.

In addition to emptying the bag, you require correct settings as well.

Funnily, very few users know about this, although it’s indicated in the user manual that every new vacuum cleaner comes with.

You know how rare it is for you to read a user’s manual for any device you buy if it’s not extremely expensive! Well, poor vacuum suction can also result if you use the wrong height settings.

For instance, the requirement when vacuuming wooden floors, tiled floors, or hard flooring materials is not to use higher settings.

This is because vacuum cleaners have the strongest suction when placed closest to the floor.

It’s advisable to go with the “bare floor” setting at all times as it’s the surest way to ensure that you are safe.

Will My Vacuum Cleaner Lose Suction Power If It Is Not Airtight?

Yes. First, let me explain how it works for a canister vacuum cleaner.

With this type of cleaners, the airflow emanates at the hose tip while it starts at the base opening in an upright vacuum cleaner.

Apart from these two places, there is no other opening through which the vacuum cleaner should let in air.

If there are other openings through which air is being let in, the vacuuming is significantly affected.

If the hose or any other attachments are not tightly fit, they might be avenues through which air escapes.

If you notice there are places through which air is escaping, find a way of tightening them so that the machine is maintained airtight.

This is very critical, and it might require that you turn your vacuum cleaner upside down to ensure that you carefully inspect all the openings that lead up into your vacuum body.

I have checked this many times and found that papers and hair find a way of jamming the path. I have removed these many times, and you should not hesitate to do the same.

Indeed, you can even go a step further by removing the rotating brush, as this will give you better access to the opening.

Can A Dirty Rotating Brush Cause My Vacuum Cleaner To Lose Suction?

Yes. When the rotating brush fails to turn on, you will most likely experience a loss of suction in your vacuum cleaner.

The main function that the rotating brush does is sweeping dirt and debris and exposing them to the vacuum’s airflow suction.

Ideally, the cleaner’s work of picking up trash is made easier by the brush.

The relevance of this is that the cleaner will find it very hard to operate normally (there won’t be any suction) if the brush fails to spin.

Additionally, if the brush spins but not as it’s supposed to, suction will be reduced, resulting in a sympathetic loss of cleaning power.

One of the reasons why the rotating brush fails to rotate or rotates at reduced speed is dirt. This is an easy thing to fix.

Indeed, you will need to remove the rotating brush and then clean it well.

As long as the rotating brush is adequately cleaned, it will most certainly rotate as it should, allowing the machine to operate at optimal suction power.

However, let me mention that there is another thing that comes into play with regard to the rotating brush. This brush has a drive belt that may also wear out and cause the brush to drag.

Why Do Vacuum Cleaners Lose Suction?

When this happens, there is a lack of adequate gyration and propelling, and this might be the cause of poor suction power.


Several reasons may cause your vacuum cleaner to lose suction. It’s important to ensure that the filter is clean or replaced if it can’t be cleaned.

On the other hand, it’s needful to ensure that the rotating brush rotates as it should since a hindrance to its rotation will record a sympathetic decrease in cleaning power.

It’s possible to improve the suction power of your vacuum cleaner by following simple maintenance procedures.

When you do this, you will enjoy more years using the vacuum cleaner at optimal performance levels.


Hi! I' am Tyron. I faced many questions from customers about different products, and there was hardly any help on the internet. After learning all the things about these products as a manager the hard way, I decided to start a blog and help other people.

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