Clean Tu Casa Blog 

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Published On
March 27, 2023

How to Clean a Vacuum Cleaner: A Step-by-Step Guide

Written By
Osi Egwuogu

Vacuum cleaners are a godsend when it comes to keeping our homes clean. They suck up all the dust and dirt we don't want in our living spaces and have many health benefits. But if your favorite cleaning appliance seems to be acting up, it might just be time to learn how to clean a vacuum.

Like any other appliance, vacuum cleaners require regular cleaning to keep them functioning optimally. With spring here and pollen everywhere, your vacuum may be working overtime and needing some TLC. In this article, we'll guide you through the process of cleaning your vacuum cleaner. For our best recommended vacuum and steam mops, check this post. 

Importance of Cleaning Your Vacuum Periodically

vacuum dismantled

Cleaning your vacuum might seem tedious, but it's important to do it regularly. When you don't clean your vacuum, it can get clogged with dirt and debris, which can cause it to lose suction power. This can make it harder for you to clean your home effectively. Additionally, if you have allergies or asthma, an unclean vacuum can circulate dust and allergens, which can harm your health.

Supplies You’ll Need to Clean a Vacuum

  • Screwdriver (if your vacuum has screws)
  • Clean, dry cloth
  • Cleaning brush or toothbrush
  • Mild soap or cleaning solution
  • Water
  • New vacuum bag (if your vacuum uses bags)
  • New filters (if your filters are not washable or need to be replaced)
  • Scissors (for cutting tangled hairs around the brush roll)
  • Trash bag (for disposing of dirt from the canister or bag)
  • Rubber gloves (to protect your hands while cleaning)
  • Nose mask (to keep you from inhaling dust from the vacuum)

Step-by-step Guide on How to Clean A Vacuum

Step 1: Unplug the Vacuum and Remove Attachments

This is pretty obvious, but we won’t skip it all the same. Before you start cleaning your vacuum, unplug it from the power source and remove any attachments, such as the brush roll, hose, and filters. This will make it easier for you to clean every nook and cranny of the vacuum.

Step 2: Empty the Dirt Canister or Replace the Bag

vacuum storage being released into the waste

If your vacuum has a dirt canister, empty it into a trash bag. Afterward, you should clean the vacuum canister in warm, soapy water. For vacuum cleaners with bags, you can either replace the bag with a new one, or empty the bag then wash it. Some reusable bags are machine-washable, while others need to be hand-washed in soapy water. Ensure to check the manufacturer’s instructions beforehand to avoid mistakes.

Step 3: Clean the Filters

Filters play a crucial role in trapping dust and other particles that can harm your health. Remove the vacuum filters and clean them with water and mild soap, or cleaning solution. If your filters are not washable, replace them with new ones. If they are washable, be sure to rinse them thoroughly and let them air dry completely before reinstalling them. This is the best way to clean a vacuum filter because a damp filter wouldn’t function effectively. 

Step 4: Clean the Brush Roll

cleaning internal pieces of the vaccum

The brush roll can accumulate hair and debris over time, affecting its performance. To clean it, use a small cleaning brush or toothbrush to remove any tangled hairs or debris. Use scissors to cut any hairs wrapped around the brush if necessary.

Step 5: Clean the Hose and Attachments

The hose and attachments can also get clogged with dirt, affecting their performance. Use a cleaning brush or toothbrush to remove anything that may be clogging them. For stubborn dirt, use mild soap or cleaning solution to clean them thoroughly. You can add a small amount of bleach to the solution to disinfect the vacuum hose.

Step 6: Wipe Down the Vacuum's Exterior

Dust can accumulate on the exterior of your vacuum, making it look grimy. Wipe down the exterior of the vacuum with a clean, dry cloth to remove any dust or dirt.

Step 7: Reassemble the Vacuum

Once all the components are clean and dry, reassemble the vacuum. Make sure you replace any worn-out parts or filters. It's also a good idea to check if the vacuum's brush roll is spinning correctly and if the suction power is back to normal.

Step 8: Test the Vacuum

Plug in the vacuum and turn it on to test if it's working correctly. If you notice any issues with the suction power or the brush roll, repeat the cleaning process or consider taking the vacuum to a professional for repair. 

How Often Should You Clean Your Vacuum?

opening the vacuum storage

The frequency of vacuum cleaning depends on how often you use it and the type of debris it picks up. In general, it's recommended that you clean your vacuum after every use, if possible. However, if you use your vacuum less frequently, you can clean it every few weeks or once a month.

If you have pets or people in your home with allergies or respiratory issues, cleaning your vacuum regularly is even more important. Pet hair, dander, and allergens can accumulate quickly, so it's recommended that you clean your vacuum after every use or at least once a week.

Ultimately, the best way to determine how often you should clean your vacuum is to follow the manufacturer's recommendations and pay attention to its performance. If you notice a decreased suction power or the brush roll is not spinning correctly, it may be time to clean your vacuum.


Cleaning your vacuum may seem daunting, but it's an essential part of maintaining its performance and longevity. By following this step-by-step guide, you can ensure that your vacuum continues to work efficiently and effectively, keeping your home clean and healthy. Remember to clean your vacuum regularly, especially if you use it frequently or have pets. Talking about pets, check out our post on cleaning tips for pet owners.

Happy cleaning!

Clean Tu Casa is the team to call for any cleaning service in Atlanta. We offer Atlanta residential cleaning services and corporate cleaning services. We provide commercial cleaning services in Marietta,  Buckhead, and Brookhaven areas. Whether you want a one-time, weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly cleaning, simply reach out to us for your free quote today.

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