Fixes – another vacuum cleaner

This Kogan vacuum cleaner was brought to me with the complaint that, when it was new, it worked fine. However, now that it is a few months old it will not pick up anything.

Even though the dust container had been emptied and the machine appeared clear with no obstructions in any of the flexible tubes, still it did not work. The machine had been bought online and the owner was disappointed and considering getting a replacement.

Would I have a look at it first though?

I took the machine and examined the more obvious things such as the flexi tubes before I switched it on. As soon as the motor came on I heard a sort of POP sound and the motor sounded a bit laboured. After listening to this once or twice I determined that there is a blockage and the POP is either something being sucked into, and closing, an airway or a safety by-pass feature to stop the machine from overheating too quickly.

After removing the dust container I looked into the blue uptake tube and found it was blocked. I removed the filter assembly from the container and took the fine dust filter off the top of that.

Looking down into the filter unit I could see that the filter head was also very blocked.

After picking out a lot of the material blocking the pipe and the head of the assembly I could see the latches that hold the top of the assembly to the uptake pipe. It works like a bayonet light bulb fitting and with a gentle twist I separated the two parts of the filter assembly.

It was fairly easy to then clear the tube but the head was a bit more work using long-nose pliers and a wire hook I gently worked the blockage loose until I could shake all the rubbish out.

I tipped all the material that was trapped in the two parts of the filter assembly out onto a sheet of newspaper. An explanation of what was found is in the captions on the photographs but, to reiterate:

Small sections of what appear to be some kind of rigid plastic straw were found in the vortex assembly (the filter assembly head). Some of these had become trapped ACROSS the airflow path. Once that happened any slightly large dirt – such as cotton cleaning pads and bits of paper lodged against them then larger bits of dust and debris (and hair) also packed onto this until eventually, rather like a beaver dam, the air stream through the filter was completely blocked and no more suction would take place.

What is more commonly found, rather than these STRAWS is hair pins and paper clips – they perform the same blocking function in a vacuum cleaner. It is better to pick up any such items BEFORE vacuuming. This includes balled up pieces of paper and larger lumps of cottonwool.

I then opened the sweeper brush compartment and removed bits of thread and hair from the brushes themselves and from the ends where they could impede the rotation of the brushes.

Once cleaned and reassembled the vacuum worked AS NEW.

If YOUR vacuum cleaner is giving problems – and you are on the Sunshine Coast – let me have a look before you dispose of it and buy a new one. It could save you $$$$!