My Vacuum Smells Like It’s Burning: What Do I Do?

If your vacuum cleaner smells awful, like it’s burnt, it’s important to figure out the source of the problem as soon as possible.

Often, a burning smell from a vacuum cleaner is caused by a motor that is overheating or a belt that has burned up. This can be dangerous, and in some cases, the motor may even catch on fire.

See what is causing your vacuum cleaner to smell like it’s burning, what is causing the odd smells to come from it.

Vacuum Smells Like It’s Burning!

If your vacuum cleaner smells like it’s burning, then stop using it, unplug it, and try to find where the smell is coming from.

  1. Check the suction and beater bar area to see if the smell is coming from that.
  2. Check the bag and canister area to see if the smell is coming from there.
  3. Check the cord to make sure it’s not melting or damaged.
  4. Place the vacuum cleaner outside your home to make sure the smell is coming from it and not something else in your home.

If the smell is coming from the beater bar and suction area of the head of the vacuum cleaner, then it’s your belt or motor that is burning up.

If the smell is coming from the canister or bag area, it can be the motor as some models have them there or something smelly was sucked into the vacuum cleaner. A clog can also make the motor overwork and start to smell, so keep that in mind.

If the smell is coming from the cord, then it’s damaged and needs to be fixed right now by a professional.

If you removed the vacuum cleaner from your home and the smell is still around after an hour, then it’s not the vacuum cleaner and something else is causing the smell. Get someone else to come in and confirm the smell to make sure your nose is not playing games on you.

New Vacuum Smell =/= Burning

It is not normal for a new vacuum to smell like it’s burning. If your new vacuum smells bad, it needs to be looked at by a vacuum cleaner repair shop.

It’s not uncommon for a new vacuum to have a slight smell because of the materials used in the manufacturing process (the new vacuum smell). This should go away after a few uses, but it also shouldn’t be overpowering or smell like something is burning.

If the burning smell does not go away, or if the vacuum starts smoking, then there is definitely something wrong, and you should stop using it immediately.

Can A Vacuum Cleaner Catch On Fire?

A vacuum cleaner catching fire is not a common event if used and maintain correctly.

However, if the vacuum’s motor overheats or the belt burns up, it can cause a fire.

This is why it’s important to get the vacuum repaired as soon as possible if you notice either of these problems.

It’s also important you service your vacuum cleaner often, change the filters and change wear and tear items when it’s time.

How To Replace Vacuum Cleaner Belt

If it’s the belt of your vacuum cleaner that has burned up, you can easily replace it.

While every vacuum cleaner is different, this video below does a great job of showing you how to change the belt on your vacuum cleaner.

Most vacuum cleaners only need a Phillips head screwdriver and 5 minutes to replace the belt.