Does anyone know why my vacuum smells so bad?


My bagless vacuum is about 1 year old. We change our HEPA filter and the round filter under the dirt trap, clean the washable sponge as instructed. Recently, all of a sudden the machine smells really bad like a dead body is inside the machine. Anyone with a solution?


  1. Most vacuum cleaners have a rotating brush that is powered by a rubber ring connecting it to the motor. If the rotating brush gets jammed, the ring will continue to turn, rubbing against the brush. This creates a lot of friction, heating up the rubber ring. When rubber burns, it smells really bad. If your rotating brush is not rotating, or rotating too slowly, then the rubber ring is burning.

    I hope this helps.

  2. If you pick up a stink-bug (swarming this time of year in the mid-atlantic and NE), dead mouse (reaching under radiators or beds, for instance) or other critter, that would cause a stink pretty quickly. And permeate your filters even if you clean the cup.

    Re-clean everything, and clean the hose and cup as well. Baking soda and some of the smell-killer sprays will help with the hose.

  3. I was going to say change the bag, but okay, that’s not it. But a vacuum cleaner has other parts that can retain specks of stuff, and whatever is decaying can be there instead.


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