How to Get Rid of Bad Vacuum Cleaner Odors

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Have you noticed an unpleasant odor emanating from your vacuum? I’ve all been there, and the most important thing is to get rid of it as quickly as possible.

Although vacuum cleaners eliminate filth from your house, they do require some upkeep. If not cleaned on a regular basis, dirt builds, frequently emitting an unpleasant vacuum cleaner odor as you use it.

Fortunately, a stinking vacuum can be made to smell fresh again.

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Why Does My Vacuum Smell Bad?

Understanding where a foul odor arises from is essential for effective removal and prevention. Here are the four basic reasons.


If you have a dog, cat, or another hairy animal, their hair might be the source of the odor. Outside of your vacuum, pet hair and dander are unpleasant, and they will transfer the stench inside.

Pet urine might also contribute to the odor. Although it is rare that you would vacuum your pet’s urine, the liquid can adhere to pet hair and dirt. The mix of dried urine and pet hair, once vacuumed, creates the perfect formula for a needs toy odor.

Burnt Belt

Your vacuum belt might possibly be the source of the problem. The belt is composed of rubber and rotates, allowing the brush to roll and capture hair and debris.

Vacuum brushes should be cleaned on a regular basis. Hair trapped within the bristles may prevent the brush from spinning properly, needing the rubber to be damaged if not properly maintained. The belt might potentially become entangled in the bushes.

Belts that have been stretched and abused emit a distinct burning plastic odor.


Even if you don’t have a pet, you’re not immune to stinky vacuums.

Mold particles have been discovered in vacuum bags and filters. When left unattended, they emit a pungent odor that you may be familiar with.

Mould requires humidity and moisture to thrive. Vacuuming a damp carpet may send these particles into your device, exacerbating the odor.

Dust Build Up

Dust never appears on its own. When you vacuum, more debris comes along for the journey. So, whether you’re capturing dried food or old coffee grounds, they may all contribute to a foul-smelling vacuum.

Allowing too much dirt to collect in your vacuum’s dust bag or dirt bin will eventually harm its performance.

Vacuum, Don't Sweep

How to Remove Bad Vacuum Cleaner Smells

Have you found the source of the foul odor? Here are the quickest and most effective ways to clean your smartphone.

Empty Dust Bag

If your vacuum comes with a dust bag, you may wish to replace it first. This is sometimes enough to bring your device’s scent back on track.

Remove the dirt bin if your gadget came with one. Empty its contents into the garbage and thoroughly wash it with hot water and soap.

To kill possible mildew, I recommend needing a little amount of white vinegar or baking soda. Make certain that every corner and angle has been cleaned.

Replace Filter

Filters become filthy and dirty over time. If your filter is washable, just remove the dirt that has accumulated around it and clean it with cold water. Rinse the filter with clean water until it runs clear.

Even the cleanest-looking filters can collect a significant quantity of dirt. As a result, don’t be shocked if this takes at least five minutes. The filter should then be air-dried for 24 hours before being reinstalled.

If the filter cannot be washed, it may be time to replace it. Vacuum filters should be updated at least once every 12 months in general. It should be examined every six months if it is used often or if you have pets.

Check Brush

The spinning brushes should be cleaned at least once or twice a year, regardless of the type of odor. They may accumulate a considerable quantity of residue on their own and are frequently used to clean carpets and rugs. So, a quick glance under your floor head attachment might be beneficial.

  • Check that your vacuum is disconnected.
  • Remove the brush from the floor head attachment if it is detachable.
  • Carefully cut and remove any hair trapped inside the bristles needing scissors. Take cautious not to sever the bristles themselves.
  • Soap and water should be used to clean the brush. Spray with water and vinegar if it isn’t removed and is tough to reach.
  • Allow the brush to air dry for 24 hours.
  • Only return it once it has completely dried.

Wash Hose

When it comes to stinky gadgets, it’s easy to underestimate the power of the hose. The hose is one of the initial points of contact between dirt and the filter, dust bag, or bin.

Because small particles frequently become lodged within the inner layer of the tube, hoses are also prone to clogging. They can rot and emit a pungent stench over time. Cleaning a house, on the other hand, is a very easy operation.

Place the hose on a flat surface after detaching it.

Use the stick of a broom or another instrument with a comparable shape to remove any remains. Push through until the obstruction is removed. You might even reclaim a misplaced sock.

Fill your sink with 4 inches of hot water.

2 teaspoons bleach and 1 tablespoon normal dish soap Baking soda or vinegar can be used in place of bleach.

Insert the hose into the sink. They are frequently adaptable and should suit most sinks.

Move the tube around to ensure that the water goes through and over the whole length of the tube.

Empty the sink and run the hose under the faucet until water flows out the other end.

The hose should be completely dry before reinstalling it. I recommend hanging it over a shower curtain or in a well-ventilated location for 24 to 48 hours.

Notable Mentions: Vacuums For Tile

How to Prevent Bad Odors In Your Vacuum

How can I give your vacuum a new scent now that it’s clean?

Baking Soda

Baking soda is an old yet well-known treatment that is well-known for its cleaning abilities. Any unwanted odors will be absorbed by this powdered material.

Sprinkle a few tablespoons into the dust bag via the opening. If your gadget comes with a bin, simply sprinkle it over the bin’s walls.

Essential Oils

I recommend needing essential oils for further benefit. Lemongrass and thyme are both recognized to be helpful. They not only make your vacuum smell nice, but they also help to prevent mold.

Fill a 32-ounce spray container halfway with essential oils. Fill it halfway with water and 1 teaspoon baking soda. Spray the inside of the bag or container gently. I don’t want to It the region too much, so a few squirts should be enough and dry fast.


Cinnamon is a fantastic option if you want to utilize a spice from your own kitchen. Fill the dust bag or bin with half a spoonful of powdered cinnamon.

Cinnamon has antimicrobial properties and may inhibit the development of pathogenic microorganisms. It will also provide a lovely scent to your vacuum.


Although professional deodorants are more expensive than home treatments, many people prefer them for their effectiveness. When the air flows through them, they emit a pleasant aroma.

They generally come in a variety of smells, so you may choose your favorite.

One pill (or tablespoon) per bag or bin should be enough.

Regular Cleaning

Cleaning your vacuum should not be optional, whether you use baking soda or a professional deodorant.

Regular maintenance may be the most efficient way to avoid unwanted odors. I recommend cleaning your vacuum thoroughly every three to six months, depending on how frequently you use it. If you have a pet, you should clean it every other month.

Vacuum The Rugs

How to Get Rid of Bad Vacuum Cleaner Odors Bottom Line

Most vacuum cleaners emit an unpleasant stench when used on a regular basis. It is important to investigate the source of this odor in order to effectively eradicate it. You’ll know where to focus your attention after you’ve pinpointed the problem.

When a bad odor is discovered, you need to first clean and neutralize it. Only then will you be able to apply a home or commercial cure to create a pleasant scent.

I hope these tips will assist you in keeping your vacuum clean and smelling fresh. Do any of these treatments pique your interest? I’d love to hear your thoughts and questions in the comments area below!

More Vacuuming Tips

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