How To Fix A Vacuum Cleaner With No Suction? Troubleshooting and Repair Guide

Helen Skeates
Helen Skeates
26 min read

It’s not uncommon for a vacuum’s suction force to diminish with time. It’s frustrating when this happens and you can’t figure out why.

There is good news, though: many problems have straightforward answers. Unclogging the filter, clearing the airway, and untangling the brush bar are all potential solutions to suction problems. Additionally, you may be able to fix your vacuum at home without having to buy a new one if the part is inexpensive enough.

If you’re convinced you need a new vacuum and live in the UK, have a look at our recommended models.

1. Clean the Vacuum’s Filters

The best place to begin investigating the lack of suction is with the vacuum filter, as it is the most likely culprit.

Vacuums use suction to draw air through filters and trap dust and allergens, but a buildup of debris on the filters can significantly impair their efficiency. There’s a good likelihood that this is the cause if you haven’t cleaned your filters in a while.

The exhaust filter, also known as the motor filter, and the pre filter are two types of filters commonly found in vacuums.

These should be cleaned regularly, but before you do so, you should check with the manufacturer to see if there are any special instructions.

How To Fix A Vacuum Cleaner That's Lost Suction - Which?

When cleaning a vacuum with a washable filter, just rinsing it in water is generally sufficient (check the manual first.) It’s crucial to give the filter at least 24 hours to dry up before using it again after cleaning.

When the filter in a regular vacuum becomes clogged, it must be replaced and cannot be cleaned. Washable filters are less frequent, but it’s always a good idea to double-check with the owner’s manual just in case.

2. Check the Brush Bar Isn’t Tangled or Stuck

Some models of vacuum cleaners include a rotating brush bar in the floorhead. Brush bars are essential for houses with thick carpets or pets because they agitate the carpet fibers, allowing for easier removal of dirt and hair.

Brush bars often get dirty, which can reduce the effectiveness of your vacuum cleaner. The brush bar might become jammed if hair becomes entangled around it.

Cut the long hairs with scissors and carefully remove out the hair and other fluff to restore your brush bar’s smooth rotation. Use gloves if you care about your hands staying clean.

The best vacuums include a detachable brush bar, which allows you to simply remove the bar and trim away any stray hairs using scissors. If you take off the brush bar, you can give it a light washing, but let it dry completely before reattaching it.

3. Unclog the Floorhead

Dust and debris can easily accumulate in the floorhead’s air inlets, as well as the brush bar. Because of how much this can reduce your vacuum’s suction strength, keeping the floorhead clean is essential.

Many cylinder vacuums feature a removable or nonexistent brush bar on the floorhead, making this task easier. If the brush bar can’t be taken out, all you can do is clear out as much debris as you can.

4. Check for Tube Blockages

Another frequent problem is a clogged vacuum hose or tube.

All it takes is for a twig, hair clump, or larger item to get stuck in the tube, then incoming debris will start to build a barrier that quickly increases in size. Blockages can also be caused by sucking up debris when the vacuum is already full. This type of suction loss will increase gradually as the clogging gets worse.

If even a small piece of debris, such as a twig or clump of hair, becomes lodged in the tube, the ensuing debris flow will quickly create a blockage that is difficult to overcome. If the vacuum is full, vacuuming more particles will only add to the clog. Slowly but surely, this type of suction loss will increase as the clogging worsens.

If something even the size of a twig or clump of hair becomes lodged in the tube, the incoming material will begin to construct a barrier that will quickly grow in size. Aspirating particles when the vacuum is already full is another common cause of blockages. As the obstruction worsens, this type of suction loss will also rise.

5. Remember to Empty the Dust Bin or Bag

The suction force of today’s vacuum cleaners is much more consistent as they full up. Even with cutting-edge cyclonic technology, a full bag or dust canister can significantly diminish suction ability.

This is why it’s crucial to empty the vacuum on a frequent basis to keep it functioning well and allowing for optimal cleaning.

When compared to bagless vacuum cleaners, the dust capacity of bagged vacuum cleaners is much higher. You also don’t want to waste bags unnecessarily! However, if you feel the vacuum’s suction weakening, or if the bag is full, you should replace it.

Troubleshooting Other Potential Causes of Suction Loss

Because they can hold more dirt, bagged vacuum cleaners can go longer between emptyings than their bagless counterparts. You also don’t want to use more bags than you need. However, if the vacuum’s suction power begins to weaken or if the bag is full, it’s time to get a new one.

  • The height of the floorhead is incorrect. Some floorheads come in a variety of heights to accommodate surfaces ranging from plush carpeting to hard wood. Carpets require higher settings than hard surfaces do, typically. However, the floorhead will not perform as well if it is mounted too high.
  • Something is letting air out. There won’t be as much suction from the vacuum if air can escape before it reaches the floor tool. Make sure the vacuum’s hose, tools, filter, and canister are all securely fastened.
  • The hose has a hole in it. If the hose has a leak, the suction won’t be as strong. In that instance, a new hose will likely be required.
  • The suction belt has become detached. If the brush roll in your vacuum still won’t spin after you’ve removed trapped hair, the belt may be broken. Belts for upright vacuum cleaners may be easily replaced.

The best vacuum cleaners 2022

These days, even the most basic vacuum cleaners have advanced technological features. You may be startled by the features that modern vacuum cleaners, such as lasers and LCD screens, provide if you haven’t upgraded in a while.

On the other hand, not everything can be solved with technology. Some of the vacuums we’ve researched offer ingenious solutions that make cleaning considerably simpler, such jointed wands or washable filters. So, if you’re having problems with your present appliance, you’ll undoubtedly find a remedy in the list that follows.

You’ll find that most of the best vacuum cleaners on our list don’t require an electrical outlet for operation. Companies are devoting most of their resources to developing better cordless cleaners. The Hoover Upright 300 still managed to impress us enough to earn a recommendation.

Now, most cordless vacuums have the power to clean even large rooms. However, a cordless cleaner with a replaceable, rechargeable lithium-ion battery is a smart idea if you have a larger home. We also suggest getting a spare battery so you’re never left high and dry in the middle of a cleaning session.

Following our top ten list is a guide with information on specifications, features, and terminology to help you narrow down your options. Check out our compilation of the finest inexpensive vacuum cleaners if you’d like to examine other low-priced alternatives.

Shark Anti Hair Wrap IZ201 – Best value cleaner

  • Stretching tool
  • Headlights
  • Mode de stockage
  • Price
  • Batteries’ shelf-life
  • Current status: unavailable in the USA

The Shark IZ201 Anti-Hair Wrap Duo-Clean Cordless Vacuum Cleaner boasts nearly all the features one might want in a vacuum cleaner, with the notable exception of a catchy moniker.

It’s like getting a high-end vacuum cleaner at a fraction of the cost. With its strong suction, bright headlights, and flexible “Flexology” stick, this vacuum cleaner eliminates the need to squat or bend to clean beneath low furniture.

Its characteristics are on pace with the best on the market, albeit a second battery would be handy because its maximum cleaning time is only 40 minutes instead of the 60 minutes offered by competitors.

This is a low-cost cordless that we are delighted to suggest to everyone, regardless of the size of their home, because you can choose a model that comes with an extra battery.

Although it retails at £349, you can likely find it for as little as £249 if you look around.

Halo Capsule – Best design

  • Superb in every way
  • Very light
  • Effective
  • Friendly to the environment
  • Toss out all the extraneous features.
  • Current status: unavailable in the USA

The product is excellent, and the pricing is even more attractive when compared to the most popular names in the industry. Created by an engineer with 20 years of experience in the field, the Capsule vacuum cleaner is completely unique.

It has the power of an upright and several really good design characteristics that set it apart from competitors; it is also cordless, maneuverable, and incredibly light at 2.6kg thanks to its carbon-fibre shell.

Additionally, its specs are more advanced than those of competing products. Once the capsule’s lithium-ion batteries have been charged for three hours, they will allow the device to operate for at least half an hour before losing suction. It may collect 1.6 liters of dust before it needs to be emptied.

Both the environment and your wallet will thank you for sending in your Capsule for maintenance, as spare parts are readily available and the company encourages you to do so.

There are no fancy extras, just reliable cleaning performance. We think it’s a great option for apartments, smaller houses, or as a portable accessory in general.

Dyson V15 Detect – Best Dyson tech

  • Superb tidying up
  • Alterable power source
  • The dust can now be seen clearly thanks to the laser.
  • Expensive
  • Rugs have a negative impact on battery life.
  • Four and a half hours is needed for a full charge.
  • $699.99

In addition to increasing power (from 185AW to 240AW), the newest Dyson vacuum cleaner features cutting-edge technology in the shape of a green laser that highlights dust that is undetectable to the naked eye. Keep in mind that this is only useful on non-carpeted flooring.

Of course, that’s not all of it. You can see how much dirt you’ve sucked up thanks to a piezo sensor that transmits data to an LCD screen detailing the particle size and volume taken. Do you think it’s a bit of a gimmick? Possibly, but it’s hard to put down once you start using it since it makes you feel so accomplished. More helpful data, such as remaining battery life and support options, are also displayed on the screen.

How to fix a vacuum cleaner with no suction – Chicago Tribune

When utilizing the High Torque head in Auto mode, the battery only lasts for roughly 20 minutes before needing to be recharged. Adding a second battery to the already expensive V15 Detect is the only way to fix this issue, but it will increase the price significantly.

Samsung Jet 90 – Most versatile cleaner

  • Very light
  • Powerful
  • Simple and easy to use
  • Fantastic cleaning tools
  • Throwaway trash can
  • Considering the size of the charging dock, some clearance is required.
  • $649

We highly recommend this vacuum cleaner as a general-purpose option. That’s the whole package. In addition to that, there is other material. It also has a mop attachment that, contrary to popular belief, does an excellent job. Lightweight, ergonomic, and with an extended battery life, it can handle any cleaning task you can throw at it.

The Jet 90 may persuade those with larger houses to reconsider their initial judgment that a cordless vacuum is not a good fit. When set to its weakest level, it still provides a thorough cleaning. If you run out of juice before you’re done, you can always put in a fresh battery (sold separately) and keep playing.

Minimalists should go elsewhere for a vacuum cleaner. However, if you do find a place to keep the stand and the various attachments, you will be richly rewarded by its usefulness and adaptability.

Dyson Omni-glide – Best for hard floors

  • Manoeuvrable
  • Intuitive operation
  • Light
  • Slim
  • Low battery life
  • Little, clogged trash can
  • The Handle Is Slipping
  • $399.99

This vacuum cleaner for hard floors is exceptionally well made. Its maneuverability reduces the physical effort required to clean.

Yet this is no ordinary vacuum; it is a professional vacuum. The little container and the casters that give the Omni-glide its spectacular moves are not appropriate if you have a pet with long, fluffy hair, such as a large, fluffy dog.

Nonetheless, we endorse it if you live in an urban dwelling or are in the market for a second vacuum to use in the kitchen.

Hoover Upright 300 – Best corded cleaner

  • Manoeuvrable
  • Portable
  • Compact and clever portable design
  • It is necessary to manually wind the cord.
  • A challenge to move under sofas and other pieces of furniture
  • Current status: unavailable in the USA

As manufacturers shift their focus to cordless vacuum cleaners, only a select few models with cords are included in this roundup. But not Hoover, which has included swivel steering and other convenient features in the design of this compact vacuum.

If you’re upgrading from a cordless vacuum, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the powerful suction this model provides. Also, it boasts a bagless design and a removable, washable H13 HEPA filter, just like the top-tier cordless vacuums.

Hoover has also taken measures to reduce the cord’s visibility and inconvenience. It’s nearly 8 meters long, so you won’t have to unplug it as often to transfer it to a more convenient outlet. We would have liked an automatic retracting chord, but you’ll still have to manually wind it.

Miele TriFlex HX1 (Dog & Cat) – Best upright cleaner replacement

  • Simple and easy to use
  • The best there is
  • Versatile
  • Price
  • What it’s like to carry around
  • Proper accoutrements
  • $699

If you have a large home and are searching for a cordless vacuum cleaner, this one is a great alternative. However, we suggest purchasing a second battery or upgrading to the Pro version, which already has two batteries.

The TriFlex appears to be a well-made device that will serve its owner well for many years. However, it is heavier than the V11 and the Samsung Jet 90. This is not an issue while using the TriFlex in its Comfort mode, which is where it shines and where it easily outperforms the competition (and, in fact, hands-off). It’s heavier than most other stick vacuums and can stand on its own, so it offers all the benefits of a traditional upright cleaner without the cumbersome connection.

However, it’s a little heavier than other stick/handheld cleaners in its Range and Compact settings. However, the TriFlex is our top pick if you’re in the market for a new upright vacuum that can also clean your upholstery, blinds, and curtains.

Dyson Cyclone V10 – Best value Dyson

  • Powerful
  • Excellent price for a Dyson.
  • Relative to the competition, it’s still very hefty
  • From $499.99

The Cyclone V10 is without a doubt an excellent cordless vacuum cleaner. With its three power levels, plethora of attachments, and sleek design (which allows for things like wall installation), it more than justifies its high price.

While the battery life of an hour (less on higher settings) may not be sufficient to clean a large home from top to bottom, and the added weight may prove problematic if you do so, for the vast majority of users, this will be more than sufficient.

Keep with the Animal model and avoid the temptation to overpay for the luxuries that come with the Absolute and Total Clean editions.

Hoover H-Free 500 – Most compact cleaner

  • Inexpensive
  • Light
  • Compact
  • Low battery life
  • Taking forever to charge
  • Throwaway trash can
  • Unfortunately, this product is currently unavailable in the United States.

The Hoover H-Free 500 is a respectable option for a budget stick vacuum. As for its size, it is miniscule; it folds up like a transformer and weighs next to nothing.

The modular design allows for a variety of cleaning configurations, much like competing products. We were impressed by its adaptability and its decent power.

However, the turbo mode will only give you eight minutes of cleaning and, with an average of 25 minutes overall, you’ll need to be organised about charging. This, combined with a small dustbin, means it’s more suited to flats and small homes. You might want to consider an Energy model, which comes with an extra battery.

Proscenic P11 – Luxury features, budget price

  • However, the turbo mode will only give you eight minutes of cleaning and, with an average of 25 minutes overall, you’ll need to be organised about charging. This, combined with a small dustbin, means it’s more suited to flats and small homes. You might want to consider an Energy model, which comes with an extra battery.
  • However, the turbo mode will only give you eight minutes of cleaning and, with an average of 25 minutes overall, you’ll need to be organised about charging. This, along with a compact dustbin, means it’s more suitable to flats and small residences. You might wish to choose an Energy model, which comes with an extra battery.
  • You’ll need to be prepared in terms of charging, as the average runtime is only 25 minutes, and the turbo mode only gives you eight minutes of cleaning. These features, along with the compact size of the trash can, make it ideal for smaller dwellings like apartments. You should think about getting the Energy version, which has a second battery.
  • Very light
  • The construction isn’t the most solid.
  • $299

The Proscenic P11 isn’t for everyone, but if you’re an apartment dweller with few possessions on a hard floor as opposed to carpet, and don’t have a big shaggy dog, it might be a good choice.

The P11 has a lot of high-end features, including LED headlights, a touchscreen that displays battery life, two charging options, a swappable battery and a mop attachment. And as a handheld cleaner, it’s lightweight and simple to operate.

The P11 has a lot of high-end features, including LED headlights, a touchscreen that displays battery life, two charging options, a swappable battery and a mop attachment. And as a handheld cleaner, it’s lightweight and simple to operate.

How we test our vacuum cleaners

LED headlights, a touchscreen showing battery life, two charging choices, a swappable battery, and a mop attachment are just some of the high-end amenities found on the P11. It’s convenient because it’s lightweight and simple to operate as a handheld cleaner.

We agree that this is the best way to learn about the benefits and drawbacks of each design.

Then, we evaluate each vacuum cleaner based on its features and capabilities, and give it an overall score that we hope will give you an idea of how well it performs, where it stands in the market, and how much simpler your life will be thanks to it.

What to look out for when you’re buying

The Halo Capsule, the lightest cordless vacuum cleaner we’ve tested, weighs 2.6 kilograms (5.6 pounds), but anything weighing less than three kilograms (6.6 pounds) is likely to be comfortable to operate.

The top lithium-ion cordless cleaners claim to run for up to an hour on a single charge. To clarify, we’re talking about the most basic setting here, without any motorized extras. We’re talking half an hour at most if you put it to medium. You should expect your battery to die in about 5-6 minutes if you use it at its maximum capacity.

How to Fix a Vacuum Cleaner if it has lost suction - Ideas by Mr Right

The latest and greatest in cordless cleaning technology, from companies like Dyson, Samsung, and Miele, have lithium-ion batteries that are removable and charge in their own docking stations. If you have a second battery on hand, you can immediately double the amount of time you spend cleaning.

Bag or bagless? Bagless is characteristic of most high-end vacuum cleaners now. There is no doubt that this option is preferable from a sustainability standpoint. If you have a severe allergy to dust, however, it is recommended that you choose a vacuum that uses bags.

Bag or bagless? Bagless is characteristic of most high-end vacuum cleaners now. There is no doubt that this option is preferable from a sustainability standpoint. If you have a severe allergy to dust, however, it is recommended that you choose a vacuum that uses bags.

If you don’t mind me asking, would you rather have a bag or not? Bagless is characteristic of most high-end vacuum cleaners presently. If you care about the planet, this is the option you should pick. However, if you have a severe allergy to dust, a bagged vacuum cleaner is your best bet.

The High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter is now considered mandatory equipment for every respectable vacuum cleaner. High efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters are required to remove 99.97% of particles 3 microns in size or bigger from the air. Human hair is between 50 and 70 microns in thickness. Keep in mind that even if your vacuum has a HEPA filter and doesn’t need bags, you will still be releasing dust into the environment every time you empty it.


Keep in mind that the bin capacity of modern cordless cleaners is much smaller than that of traditional cylinder or upright cleaners, so you will have to stop cleaning more often to dump the trash. In comparison to its rivals, the Dyson V11 cordless’s 0.76 L of storage space is a significant improvement above the 0.5 L offered by certain models. The new Dyson Outsize is a staggering 1.7 liters.

Manufacturers may be secretive about suction for practical reasons; it is difficult to measure. When the motor is far from the vacuum head, more energy is required to achieve the same level of suction. Both W (not particularly precise) and AW (air) Watts will be used to express power output (better but controversial). Both the standard Dyson V11 and the larger V11 Outsize have powerful motors (185 and 220AW, respectively).

Various models of the same product may be available from the same manufacturer, but each may have a unique selection of included accessories. Those Dyson products that include the word “Animal” in their model names feature a specialized cleaning head designed to efficiently remove pet hair. The equivalent cordless from Miele is known as the “Dog & Cat.” However, Dyson’s ‘Absolute’ cleaners will feature a full complement of attachments right out of the box (minus the pet hair cleaning head). This Miele product is equivalent to the Pro from another manufacturer.

The official website of the manufacturer is usually the best place to get any specialized add-ons you may need.

How to Use a Vacuum Cleaner

Vaccum Cleaner Operation Procedures. Vacuum cleaners are among the most helpful home gadgets available today. It would be quite difficult to maintain clean wall-to-wall carpeting without them. Newer technology have allowed the development of vacuum cleaners that are far lighter and more compact than their bulky forebears. As an added bonus, the tiny vacuums are far more affordable than their larger ancestors.

Step 1

Check the dirt-depositing port on the vacuum. This is the bag that collects dust and debris in conventional vacuums. In modern ones, the canister is usually detachable and reused. In the event that the bag is full, a replacement should be obtained; if it is a reusable container, it should be emptied as frequently as feasible. The vacuum won’t work as well to collect dust if the deposit area is already full.

Step 2

Be sure to measure the height of the vacuum before using it. Most vacuums contain a carpet length indication that can be adjusted to accommodate rugs of varying sizes. Ensure that the carpet attachment, if your vacuum has one, is adjusted to the correct length. If the setting is too high, there won’t be enough suction, and if it’s too low, there won’t be enough airflow.

Step 3

Please clear a path for the vacuum cleaner by removing all small objects. Smaller objects can be easily removed even if you don’t intend to move larger pieces of furniture like ottomans and coffee tables when vacuuming.

Step 4

Start the vacuum and move it slowly and steadily back and forth across the carpet. Dirt won’t be sucked up as well if you’re scurrying around with the vacuum cleaner.

Step 5

To clean in tight spaces and in between furniture, utilize the vacuum’s accessories, such as the hose’s interchangeable attachments. Most vacuum cleaners come with a variety of tools specifically designed for such tasks. This extra effort will ensure that dust and other particles are not blown into previously cleaned regions by the room’s natural air currents.


What is vacuum cleaner and its uses?

Electric vacuum cleaners are able to extract dust and other microscopic particles from a wide variety of surfaces. The debris and dust are collected by the cleaner’s internal dust bag or cyclone.

Does vacuum cleaner remove hair?

If you have a vacuum with good suction, picking up hair won’t be too much of a pain, and turning off the brush roll will save things from getting tangled up.

Where do you put a vacuum cleaner?

Your shoe rack, coat closet, or the rack where you keep your other cleaning supplies are all suitable locations for your portable vacuum and its attachments. As long as the area is dry, you can even keep it under the sink. Hang it up in the garage on a pegboard or a tool rack.

Can vacuum cleaner be used for mopping?

A recent study found that replacing dust mopping with vacuuming significantly decreased the need for burnishing. Using a vacuum to pick up dirt and dust before you mop makes the mopping process faster and more efficient. Rathey warns, “Any leftover dust and dirt will turn into mud once it rains.”

Is vacuum cleaner safe?

However, recent studies have shown that certain models of vacuum cleaners may actually contribute to the problem rather than solving it. Some models of vacuums actually spew tiny dust particles and bacteria into the air, which can then aggravate asthma and allergy sufferers.


If your vacuum loses suction, that doesn’t necessarily indicate it’s time to get a new one. By according to the aforementioned guidelines, you should be able to return your vacuum to its peak performance. If the situation is more serious, a vacuum repair service will be able to find and install the necessary replacement parts for you.

However, there are circumstances in which a vacuum cannot be fixed. Read on for an in-depth analysis of the finest sweeping machines available right now.

Helen Skeates

Helen Skeates

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