Why is My Cordless Vacuum Cleaner Not Working

If your cordless vacuum won’t switch on, charge, or pick up dirt, there are a few things you can do to get it working again. The most common reason why a cordless vacuum stops working is the battery. But, a tangled brush roll, faulty charger, clogged vacuum filter, or full dust container can lead to a loss of your vac’s cleaning power.

Cordless Vacuum TroubleshootingA vacuum cleaner is an essential household power tool to tackle many cleaning tasks. Cordless vacuums have an advantage over corded models because you can clean anywhere without worrying about a power outlet. But because there is a battery, charging dock, and electrical adapter, there are more things to troubleshoot if it loses suction power.

What are the quick fixes to get your cordless vacuum cleaner working again? How can you find out why the vac isn’t working as it should? This article looks at the common issues that can affect a cordless vacuum cleaner’s performance.

Common Problems Affecting Cordless Vacuum Cleaners

Knowing how a cordless vacuum cleaner works is key to fixing a vac that doesn’t work. Typically, problems with cordless vacs are related to battery issues, dust collection, or filtration. The battery needs a stable power source to charge. But a clogged filter, full dust canister, or tangled brush roller will affect the vac’s performance.

Another issue common to many cordless vacuum cleaners is their small dust container. Even top cordless models such as Dyson and Miele have limited capacity in the dirt cup. This means that battery-powered stick vacs and handhelds can’t store large amounts of dirt, and they get blocked faster.

Troubleshooting Reasons Why a Cordless Vacuum Isn’t Working

Let’s look in detail at finding out why your cordless vacuum cleaner has a loss of suction or fails to power up.

Check the Cordless Vacuum Cleaner Battery

A top brand cordless vacuum typically has a lithium-Ion battery. Unfortunately, while the battery life is acceptable in new cordless vacs, battery life diminishes over time. According to Consumer Reports, battery power decreases significantly over time. Also, 15 percent of users report a dead battery—especially on cheaper cordless models—within five years.

Rechargeable batteries have a limited life expectancy. Thankfully, most manufacturers supply replacement cordless vacuum batteries. So if you’ve been using the cordless vac for a few years, it may be time to replace the battery to bring your vacuum back to life.

However, if the vac fails to power up after charging the battery, you could have a dead battery. You may be able to get a replacement if the new cordless vacuum is under guarantee. Otherwise, you’ll need to buy a new battery.

Faulty Power Supply

If your cordless vac isn’t performing as expected, check the power supply. The lack of power to the battery could be due to the charging dock, adapter, electrical outlet. Try plugging the appliance into the charging dock. Here are a few ways to troubleshoot the power supply:

  • Is there a battery indicator light or other signals to show the unit is charging?
  • Try charging the vacuum at another power outlet.
  • Does the battery seem to be charging, but the appliance fails to switch on?
  • If the charging lights don’t come on, could you have a defective charging cable?

If you notice the above issues, then it may be necessary to get the charging dock repaired.

Check the Brush Head for Blockages

Cleaning Cordless VacuumExamine the spinning brush bar to see if there are any blockages. Often, clumps of hair, fibers, pet hair, and fluff can get trapped in the brush tool. With some cordless vacuums, this can happen pretty regularly. The dirt blockage can mean that the suction power seems weaker. Or, because the vacuum motor has to work harder, the battery power could drain faster.

To resolve an issue of a dust blockage, carefully cut or remove the entanglement on the roller. Some of the best cordless vacuum units have a removable brush bar, making cleaning the brush head easier.

Remember that any blockage in airflow could mean your vacuum won’t work. Some cordless stick vacuums, such as Dyson models, require constant airflow to work correctly.

Inspect the Filters to Improve Vacuum Performance

A common vacuum cleaner ailment is clogged or blocked filters. A clogged-up filter affects airflow and affects suction power. Also, if the cordless vacuum suddenly stops working, it could be a thermal cut-out caused by dirty filters and poor airflow.

Most cordless stick vacuums and handheld models have a motor filter to prevent dust during vacuuming from getting into the air. There may also be an allergen or HEPA filter to remove dust mites from the air. It’s necessary to clean the filter at least monthly to ensure the vacuum doesn’t stop working in the middle of cleaning.

Some top brand cordless vacuum cleaners have a warning LED “check filter” light to tell you when there is a possible filter blockage.

Look at the Dust Container if the Cordless Vacuum Cleaner Has Stopped Working

A common reason for a cordless vacuum to shut down is that the dust bin is full. Corded stick vacuums and cordless models have a small dust capacity. Typically, it’s best if you empty the dirt receptacle once it is one-third full. If the dirt chamber gets more than half full, the vacuum will lose suction power.

It’s good to remember that a full dust container means that the vacuum motor works harder. This can stop a cordless vacuum from working for two reasons:

  • The battery drains faster
  • The vacuum overheats and cuts out

Suppose the vacuum stops working because it overheated. In that case, you should allow at least 1-2 minutes of cooling time before switching the appliance on again.

If the dust canister looks full, then the time to empty it is long overdue.

How to Prevent Common Problems with a Cordless Vacuum Cleaner

Basic vacuum cleaner maintenance can extend the life of your unit. Regularly charging the batteries, cleaning filters, and emptying the dust bin help prevent faults from occurring and ensure your cordless vacuum continues working like new.

Here are some handy tips on preventing your cordless vacuum cleaner from breaking down.

Clean the floor head and brush bar: After each clean, inspect the brush roller for tangled hair, debris, and other blockages.

Clean filters regularly: Follow the maker’s suggestions on keeping filters clean. For example, a washable filter needs cleaning by running it under a faucet. Paper filters need regularly replacing, so the unit doesn’t overheat. If you have pets at home, you may need to change filters more often to keep the vacuum working efficiently.

Empty the dust bin: An advantage of a cordless stick vacuum is that it has a bagless dust receptacle. This allows you to empty the unit after every clean without incurring extra costs.

Look after batteries: Cordless vacuums depend on excellent battery power to clean a house in one go. To ensure that your vacuum doesn’t stop working during a cleaning job, keep it connected to the docking station. Also, try not to drain the battery completely. So, as soon as the battery light comes on, put the cordless vac on charge.

Cordless Vacuum Cleaners Not Working — In Conclusion

Typically, it’s straightforward to determine why a cordless stick vacuum, a handheld vacuum, or battery-powered upright vacuum has stopped working. The most common reasons are related to the battery charge or battery life. However, blockages can also result in a cordless vac not working. Nevertheless, if you keep the vacuum charged and regularly clean the dust cup and filters, it should work for many years to keep your house clean.