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JLeslie's avatar

Should I clean my vacuum or buy a new one?

Asked by JLeslie (63083points) April 10th, 2022 from iPhone

My vacuum is a decent quality Bissell brand vacuum cleaner, but it started making more noise and seems to be blowing some dust out. I could try taking it apart and cleaning the whole thing up and buy new filters. Or, I could just get a new one.

What do you think? The new ones similar to mine are up in the $200’s. The cheaper ones might be sufficient though. I’ve had this vacuum for about 9 years.

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22 Answers

HP's avatar

You should first simply remove and replace the old filter. Both the increased noise and visible dust are signs of a clogged filter.

Jeruba's avatar

At a little over $10 per year, you’ve probably already got your money’s worth. How much are your time and effort worth for a solution that might or might not work? (I’m assuming that “taking it apart” means more than just changing the filter.)

On the other hand, don’t throw the old vac away until you’re sure a new one measures up.

janbb's avatar

Easy enough to clean it out and replace the filter. That’s usually SOP with a vacuum cleaner.

chyna's avatar

Have you never cleaned it? I clean mine at least once every 3 months.
So I would try cleaning and getting a new filter first before buying a new sweeper.

filmfann's avatar

A good vacuum runs about $400.
If I was buying a new one, I’d be looking at a Dyson. That’s the best one I’ve had.

JLeslie's avatar

I watched a YouTube video and took the vacuum outside and took it apart and cleaned it pretty well. I didn’t wash all the parts with soap and water, which I guess would be a super duper cleaning. I need a new hepa filter, that can’t be cleaned well.

I tried it, and still nosier than it should be, but didn’t seem to be kicking back dust.

My husband has cleaned it before, I don’t know how well, but I’m pretty sure we don’t do it often enough.

chyna's avatar

I get that it’s noisy, but is it sucking well?

JLeslie's avatar

It’s sucking well. Even better now that I cleaned it.

I mention the noise, because I think something must be wrong with it. It suddenly became noisier about a year ago. I’ve been thinking about getting a new one, but just haven’t done it.

chyna's avatar

If the noise is bad, I would get another one. It’s bad enough to have to sweep, but if it’s noisy, it’s not worth listening to.

LuckyGuy's avatar

If you’ve cleaned it and it works there is no pressure to get a new one immediately. You can take your time and replace it when you find a good deal somewhere.
When you do get the replacement you can put the old one in the garage for really dirty jobs like cleaning out your car, or vacuuming the porch.

JLeslie's avatar

Good idea about keeping it for dirty jobs if I do get a new one. I might do that. I actually have a shop vac, but still it might come in handy.

For now, I’ve decided to buy a new Hepa filter and I’m actually going to go ahead and wash the foam filter today to give it it’s best shot at being clean. I noticed on the Bissell website that foam filter is no longer available for replacement.

Edit: maybe I should confirm with Bissell the foam is washable.

jca2's avatar

you might find a comparable filter on Amazon for way less.

JLeslie's avatar

@jca2 The last time I bought a knockoff filter it didn’t fit great. I’d rather buy the real deal this time even if it’s more expensive.

SnipSnip's avatar

Bissells have an exhaust filter. Be sure you have found it and cleaned it before doing anything else.

YARNLADY's avatar

I would be worried about the noise. If there something wrong with the motor, it could start a fire.

HP's avatar

Noise is a rather vague description. I assume that you’re telling us the noise is about some failing with the motor. I’m wondering if your machine features a belt driven roller brush for “beating” the carpet. If so, the belt must certainly need replacing by now.

smudges's avatar

I took mine completely apart and washed everything in the tub except the motor. Sounds like you’ve washed it well already. If you’ve replaced what you can, and washed what you can’t, it should work decently. I would keep using it while keeping an ear out for changes in the noise. If it still has suction and isn’t blowing dirt, you should be ok for a while longer, and as someone mentioned, watch for sales.

I also wash my floor fans regularly. One cheap little rotating fan lasted about 10 years.

RocketGuy's avatar

@LuckyGuy – I did exactly the same with my old vacuum => garage vac.

@JLeslie – maybe the increased noise is due to the motor bearings or brush bearings wearing out. If it works well enough, I would keep using it until it craps out.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@RocketGuy The large shop vac is in the barn for cleaning grass from the mower belts and pulleys.
The small shop vac is in the garage for car stuff
The old Panasonic vacuum is in the basement near my workbench, grinder and drill press.
The new Panasonic is upstairs and only used for vacuuming the house.
They all work.

When people ask me “Do you have…?”, the answer is always “Yes. I have extra.”

LuckyGuy's avatar

I just remembered, there is one more. I keep a Dustbuster rechargeable hand vacuum near the wood burning stove in the living room. It is stored under the wood rack a safe distance from the stove.

RocketGuy's avatar

@LuckyGuy – your property must be really clean! All you need now is a Roomba to automate floor cleaning.

LuckyGuy's avatar

If something moved in my place in the middle of the night, there’d be bullet holes in it in the morning.

Darn! Another $300 down the drain!

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