Why Is My Vacuum Cleaner Smoking?

(Last Updated On: October 4, 2022)

A smoking vacuum cleaner can be a very concerning sight. When a modern household appliance is smoking, it usually means something has gone wrong and the unit needs to be serviced. The question is, what caused your vacuum cleaner to smoke? There are many reasons why a vacuum could be smoking.

A normal amount of smoke from a vacuum cleaner is usually caused by dust burning off the motor’s electrical insulation. This may cause a slight burning smell, but it will not create a dangerous situation with your vacuum. It also helps to keep the area ventilated until the smell dissipates.

Reasons why vacuum cleaners may be smoking

Wearing down of internal components

If your vacuum cleaner has started smoking more than usual, an internal component could be wearing down or breaking down due to age or misuse. For example, if you regularly suck up long hairs or stringy objects like celery stalks, these strands can wrap around the roller brush and prevent it from turning. If this happens too often, the belt that turns the roller brush can break and affect how well your vacuum performs. When this happens there is a visible burning smell and your vacuum cleaner will start smoking.

Clogs causing motor to overheat

Another reason why a vacuum cleaner could be smoking is if the motor is overheating due to clogs in the hose or the filter being full of dust. When there are too many objects stuck inside of these components, it can prevent enough airflow from getting through to cool down the motor. This often causes the motor to overheat, which leads to smoke coming out of your household appliance. It’s important not to attempt to fix this on your own because doing so may cause damage that won’t be covered under warranty. This issue should be addressed by a professional who can safely clean out any clogs without damaging sensitive parts of your device.

Damaged or defective internal components

If the internal components are severely damaged it can cause your vacuum cleaner to smoke. This is very dangerous because it could lead to a fire starting. If this happens, turn off the unit and wait for everything inside of it to cool down before attempting to use it again. Once it has cooled down, contact the companies customer service line for assistance or have an authorized representative come out and fix your device properly so that this does not happen again in the future.

How to prevent a vacuum cleaner smoking?

Fortunately, there are many ways to prevent your vacuum cleaner from smoking.

These are:

  • Keeping your brush roller clean
  • Removing any hair and other objects that can cause blockages
  • Checking your filters often and changing them if needed
  • Emptying your dust bins after every use
  • Using only manufacturer approved attachments
  • Taking extra caution not to overuse the vacuum and overheat internal components

Having your vacuum cleaner serviced on a regular basis can also help reduce the chance of it smoking by maintaining it in proper working order. A professional cleaning will also increase the life span of your machine. This is an ideal way to save money on replacement units because your vacuum will last longer.

By being aware of what can cause your vacuum cleaner to smoke, it is possible to quickly determine the solution and fix the problem without having costly repairs performed. By making regular changes in how you use your vacuum, you are likely to avoid many of the most common causes of smoking.

How do I vacuum regularly without it smoking?

To avoid pushing vacuum cleaners to the point of smoking, it’s recommended you don’t overuse your vacuum.

First of all stick with a known brand. Use a Dyson Vacuum cleaner or a Shark vacuum, these have a strong vacuum belt that lasts longer.

On top of this you’ll need maintenance on your brush roller and vacuum belt to keep the vacuum from smoking.

A Shark vacuum belt should last for several years before requiring maintenance. If your vacuum cleaner belt starts producing smoke and you smell burnt rubber, turn off your vacuum imeddiately.

Look to replace the belt before turning the vacuum on again. A broken roller belt is an easy fix.

If your vacuum suddenly sounds like it’s eating an entire tree, then you probably have a faulty brush roller. To replace a broken brush roller, order a replacement from the manufacturer and use any guide on Youtube, as it’s a easily replacement.

How do I figure out why my vacuum smells?

The number one reason is your vacuum’s belt. A broken belt will produce a burnt rubber smell.

The second would be dirt or debris blockages inside your vacuum hose.

The third will be your brush roll. This again may produce smoke and a burning smell, alongside a loud noise.

This could be due to too much hair caught in the brush or because the electric motor is no longer able to spin the beater bar, due to overuse or too much strain.

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