Buying a new vacuum cleaner these days can set you back a significant sum of money. With such an upfront investment you will want to ensure that the lifespan of your vacuum cleaner is a long as possible. New vacuum cleaners generally come with only 12 months warranty as standard and after this has expired you will be left to foot the bill for any repairs. Where major parts need replacement, such as the motor, the cost can be nearly as much as a new machine.

Getting your vacuum cleaner serviced regularly can help keep it in excellent working order and extend the life of the motor or at least prevent early failure. This servicing is in addition to routine maintenance that you should carry out yourself in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations (check your manual for this). You should have your vacuum serviced every 12 months.

Often vacuum cleaner retailers provide vacuum cleaner servicing in-house and all the leading manufacturers, e.g. Dyson, Hoover, Electrolux, Miele, Samsung have approved service agents that may be local to you. The cost of servicing should not be excessive and will reduce the risk of major repairs being necessary due to a poorly maintained machine. It would not be recommended to carry out servicing yourself unless you are qualified and experienced. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for people to neglect the servicing of their vacuum cleaner and only consider getting this done when running into difficulties and the machine fails or is running poorly. It is much more effective to act before this occurs and whilst a service will not remove the possibility of a failure, it will render it much more unlikely.

5 Signs that your vacuum is in need of a service!

Although it is recommended to service your vacuum cleaner at least every 12 months, the following are some tell-tale signs that a service may be a priority and is overdue:

  • No power to the vacuum or it keeps cutting out. This could be something as simple as a fuse or loose connection or it could be that the vacuum is overheating causing it to cut out.
  • Loss of suction that does not improve following routine maintenance.
  • Vacuum is louder than normal or making a strange noise, rattle or vibration. Listen to your vacuum cleaner for any noise that is out of the ordinary, which could suggest issues such as bent fan blades or worn bearings.
  • Smells coming from the vacuum even after changing the bag/ filter, particularly burning smells could suggest mechanical or electrical issues that need attention.
  • Vacuum is getting excessively hot (more than normal). May be accompanied by burning smells and again this can be a symptom of motor overheating, which can be caused by a number of things.

Choosing a vacuum cleaner service centre

When looking for somewhere to take your vacuum for a service, we recommend considering or confirming the following:

  • Is the company registered or licensed for the work? Vacuum cleaners are electrical appliances and it is important to choose a company that is a registered electrician to undertake the servicing and repairs.
  • Are the staff suitably qualified and experienced electricians?
  • Are only genuine replacement parts used? Genuine parts are more expensive than generic versions, however enable the best performance from your vacuum.
  • Do they offer a warranty for repairs inclusive of all parts and workmanship? A good service centre will be confident in the quality of the workmanship that they carry out and offer a warranty to cover this, which protects you as the consumer for any errors or defects.
  • Are they authorised to service your manufacture of vacuum? If your vacuum cleaner is under warranty and in need of repair, you will need to take it to an authorised repair centre in order for any under-warranty work to be carried out. However, it is also good to choose a service centre that is authorised/ recommended by your particular manufacturer even if your vacuum's warranty has expired. An authorised service centre indicates that they have been vetted by the manufacturer for qualifications and experience and only use genuine spares and accessories.
  • Understand the charges. Service centres may have a standard charge for servicing or repair, however many places may charge based on the time taken to service/ repair and you should understand what the charge is per hour or part thereof. Usually costs of parts and consumables are additional and you should ask to understand what these costs could be as they vary widely depending on your type and make of vacuum. 
  • How long will it take? Do they have the required spare parts in stock or does anything need to be ordered? Can they supply a loan vacuum whilst they work on yours?

What to look for in a Service?

A good vacuum service centre will have a standard approach to their servicing. You should ask for confirmation about the specific checks and maintenance procedures that they carry out to ensure that the service is thorough and will bring your vacuum back to full working order and optimum performance. Look out for the following checks and procedures:

External Check

  • External damage to housing
  • Damage/ Defects to plug/ socket/ other
  • control knobs operable and secure

Maintenance

  • Bags & Filters replaced
  • Check the belt at its position on the roller brush. The motor drives the belt (along with the vacuum suction). Broken or worn belts require replacement as they may cause the motor to over-rev, since the belt and roller no longer give resistance to the motor. An overworked motor will overheat.
  • Disinfected and deodorised
  • Clean inside and out using high pressure air through motor and interior

Mechanical & Electrical Safety Check

  • Physical defects
  • Filters inlets and exhaust clean and cleared of obstructions
  • hoses checked for leaks and repaired or replaced
  • performance checked
  • internal wiring & fuses checked
  • motor checked including carbon brushes and bearings. Replace if worn
  • Flexible cord checked
    • inner core not exposed
    • anchorage of flexible cord
    • external sheath not damaged
    • no unprotected conductors or visible insulation tape

    Summary

    If you want your vacuum cleaner to reliably perform at its optimum and want to ensure its longevity then an annual service is an inexpensive way of achieving this. A vacuum cleaner service is best conducted by a qualified electrical engineer and only routine maintenance should be conducted at home. During the service the vacuum is pulled apart, inspected and cleaned out thoroughly to remove dust that accumulates in and around the motor and internal filters. Consumable parts are checked for wear and tear or breakages and replaced as necessary to return your vacuum to function as good as a new one.

    Don’t delay and treat your trusty vacuum cleaner to a service today!