How to Fix a Vacuum That Lost Suction

We’ve all seen ads for vacuum cleaners that lose suction. True, a vacuum cleaner without suction isn’t really good for housekeeping. The advertisements’ approach is to get you to purchase a new, more costly vacuum.

Today I want to help you fix your vacuum. I’ll go through the top five reasons a vacuum lacks suction, as well as to how to fix a vacuum that lost suction.

#1 The Height Is Incorrect

The first and most simple reason a vacuum won’t pick up items off the floor is that the vacuum’s height setting is too high for the kind of floor you’re vacuuming.

To lift or lower a vacuum, it normally has a small dial or lever. It could mean “bare floor” and then have numbers 1 through 5 written on it. The lowest setting on your vacuum is bare floor, which can be used on either tile, wood, or other hard flooring because it seals the vacuum to the floor and allows for the most suction strength.

The closest the dial or lever is to the bare floor setting, the lower your carpet. If your vacuum isn’t running, consider turning it down and the lowest level and see if that solves the problem.

#2 The Bag Is Overflowing

If the vacuum still won’t pick up on a lower environment, the next step is to see if the vacuum’s lack of suction is due to a full vacuum bag or collection canister.

Fortunately, determining the source of your vacuum’s bad output is easy. On the front of a bagless vacuum, as well as the vacuum bag of both upright and canister vacuums, there would be a fill line.

There’s no more space for the dirt and hair to accumulate if it’s above the fill line in any collecting spot.

The vacuum will begin to sound like it’s running, but it won’t be able to suck up the debris on the floor due to a lack of suction strength. Any vacuum suction issues can be resolved by merely emptying the collection canister or replacing the vacuum pack.

If that doesn’t work, you’ll need to inspect the hose. Here’s how to do it:

#3 The hose has been clogged.

If emptying the canister or replacing an over-full vacuum bag didn’t fix the problem, there may have been so much debris trying to get into the vacuum that it clogged the hoses leading to the bag or canister.

You might see a clog of hair if you cut the bag or canister and look into the hole where they stick to the vacuum. If that’s the case, get some tweezers and start picking hair bits out. You should even disconnect the hose from the vacuum and focus on it that way if it doesn’t feel like you’re having anything.

If you have a clog in the middle of the hose that you can’t handle with your fingertips or tweezers, I’ve discovered two methods for removing stubborn clogs.

The first step is to fully cut the hose, take it outside, grip the unclogged end firmly, and turn it as hard as you can. The centrifugal force would drag the clog to the hose’s edge, allowing you to remove it.

A long stick, such as a broom handle, is another way I’ve learned to unclog a vacuum hose. Begin carefully feeding the stick into the vacuum hose. When you reach the clog, start pushing it through the hose until it comes out the other end.

If you use one of these techniques, make sure to do so outdoors and have a trash can handy since the clog can normally emit a cloud of loose dust.

#4 The vacuum isn’t fully airtight

A pump, as the name implies, works by sucking up debris from the floor by forming a vacuum. It can’t pull the stuff up if air is leaving the machine

Whether the vacuum isn’t full of debris and the hoses aren’t clogged, the second most likely explanation for poor performance is that it isn’t airtight. A vacuum, as the name implies, works by sucking up debris and scraps from the floor and forming a vacuum.

It can’t bring the stuff into the bag or canister if air is leaving the device. Although this can seem to be a highly complex problem, the most common causes are simple errors that we make.

The first place to look is at the vacuum’s hose link. You could not have gotten the hose back into the base hole close enough if you took it out to use the connectors. Your vacuum won’t suck up anything from the floor if there’s a space for air to get through the closure.

Be sure all of the items are tightly fastened together. If all seems to be in order, double-check that the vacuum bag is safely secured to the vacuum. It’s possible that the vacuum bag fell off when you didn’t press it on hard enough after mounting it, resulting in no suction.

If you’re still having trouble, you should still use a little duct tape on the bag’s folds to keep it airtight.

#5 The Roller Is Obstructed

If the bag and hoses seem to be in decent working order, the final move is to turn the vacuum over to inspect the roller. If the carpet’s hair or wool is wound around the roller, it won’t be able to spin or brush over it, and it will struggle miserably at picking up dirt.

A sharp pair of scissors will quickly patch a clogged and furry-looking carpet roller. snip through the hair and gunk a little at a time, starting at one end of the roller. When you cut, start dragging the furry mess away from you and dumping it in the garbage. When you’re done, turn the vacuum over and see if it works well on the other side.

If your vacuum is still not running at this stage, you may want to take it to a vacuum repair store. Find out how your make and model are serviced by local repair shops by calling around. Vacuum replacements are mostly cheap, but if you have a more serious issue, it might be more cost-effective to buy a new vacuum.

Before you lug it down to the store, the person on the other end of the line may be able to do some diagnosis over the phone. They can advise you to miss the repairs and buy a new vacuum instead, based on your vacuum and the symptoms it has.


  • Hey there, I’m Kevin, from Colorado! I have been passionate about repairing appliances and electronics for the past 18 years. Modern vacuum cleaners break or malfunction way too often, so I have decided to contribute to and help my online readers with anything related to vacuums repair. I can’t wait to help you get your vacuum cleaner working again!