Question about Vacuums

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After being used to **** up quite a bit of flood water on basement carpet, the motor races and nothing seems to work.

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  • Hank Borkovitz Jul 05, 2010

    We have a Bissel QuickSteamer. Please make your advice specific to this product. It does not have a rotating brush or belt to drive it.

    After picking up a lot of clean water due to a failure of a sump pump it quit working. The motor just races.

  • Hank Borkovitz Jul 05, 2010




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First, you'll need to take apart your vacuum cleaner. Vacuums come in two types: the upright vacuum and the canister vacuum. With the upright vacuum, you push the entire thing around to clean. The canister vacuum sits in one spot and you simply move the hose. To take apart an upright vacuum, unplug the vacuum and remove the screws from the handle. Take off the handle and the hose if yours has one. Remove the screws from the bottom and lift off the top cover of the vacuum. For a canister vacuum, unplug it and take off the hose, dust bag and the filter. Simply remove the screws and lift off the lid. If the filter is dirty, make sure to replace it before reassembling the vacuum.

The beater bar is the casing in the front of the vacuum that has the brush inside of it. After taking off the clips at the ends of the beater bar, you should be able to move the drive belt and take the beater bar out. Open it up and see if the brush looks worn down. If it is, replace it. If there is any hair or other debris tangled around it, cut it loose with scissors. This debris can keep it from turning properly and may fix your problem. Reinstall the piece and the drive belt and see if it works.

Another common problem is the drive belt of the vacuum cleaner. To remove the drive belt, you'll only need to remove one of the clips from the beater bar and loosen the drive belt until it is free of the beater bar and the motor. If it looks worn, cracked, or broken, buy a new drive belt. Install it around the beater bar and the motor like the original was before you took it out. Note that the new drive belt will not have been stretched out yet and may look like it's a different size than the old, stretched drive belt.

Finally, inspect the attachments of the vacuum before trying it. Use a stick or a long, thin pole to push any objects out of the hose attachments. Wash and thoroughly dry the various hoses and attachments to clear them of dirt and debris. Make sure they are completely dry before using the vacuum to prevent getting shocked. Once the vacuum is reassembled, do a short test run. If you're still having a problem sucking up dirt or getting the attachments to work properly, call a professional to fix it. If it is cheaper, you may want to buy a new one instead.
Take care.

Posted on Jul 05, 2010

  • Hank Borkovitz Jul 05, 2010

    Have you specific information to the Bissel Quicksteamer? It has no belt for its fixed non-rotating brush!



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