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It sounds like the handle release lever is bad if the unit will not stand up. It's common when those units get a little older. It is unlikely you'll need the rear handle assembly (the part with the filter housing) but it does happen. Inspect the latch on the handle assembly to make sure it's not too worn to know for sure. Chances are, the handle release lever is just spent. Here's the part you're looking for:
As long as you're into it the belts and roller are always a great investment. Replacing them will make it clean like new again. I'll include the links for those parts as well.
Make sure the replacement belt was the right one/size. Make sure the self propelled is on at the handle. If you replaced the flat belt and it still pushes hard the most common problem is a broken power drive cable or actuator arm. Put the handle down and move the power drive handle forward and backward. If it moves freely watch by the headlight for the cable to move the actuator at the base. If the cable is in tact it should move the actuator. If it is broken the actuator will not move. If the actuator is broken the piece of plastic holding the cable will let the cable slide or it may be broken off completely. Replace whichever is broken. If the cable system is ok and the belt is correct you may have a bad powerdrive assembly. I will include links to correct replacement parts.
Does the screeching come from the motor area or the brush/belt area?
If it's from the motor. Turn it off. It needs repair. If it's from the brush/belt area, most likely your belt is either slipping or rubbing on something. Do you have an owner's manual? If you do, and the noise come from the belts, take the belt(s) off and check them for wear, stretching, anything imbedded in them. Be sure to clean all debris out of the area. and reassemble. If still noisy, the belt may be slipping and needs to be replaced. Here's a site where you can view the parts breakdown and order parts: http://www.vacpartswarehouse.com/Bissell-Healthy-Home-Models-5770-5990-6100-6405-s/600.htm
Hope this helps. If it does, I'd appreciate a vote. Thanks,
Healthy Home Bagless upright vacuum cleaner replacement belt. Genuine Bissell part number 203-1329 or 2031329. Fits All Bissell Healthy Home, and Heavy Duty models including; 5770, 5770-5, 5770-8, 5770-P, 5990, 6100, 6405, 50C9. Belt contains the following code MS 3M-243-12 written on the outside.