How to Fix a Vacuum Cleaner Belt

What You'll Need
New vacuum cleaner belt

If your vacuum cleaner fails to pick up dust and debris, it may be because the belt beneath the rotating brush is not working properly. Follow these 5 steps to diagnose a broken vacuum cleaner belt and make your own repairs.

Step 1 – Find the Right Place to Work

Small screws from your vacuum cleaner can easily get lost in the nap of a carpet. The best way to avoid misplacing an important component is to work with your vacuum on a table or a hardwood floor.

Step 2 – Make Preparations

Be sure your vacuum cleaner is unplugged. Just turning off its switch is not enough as you can still become injured from getting your hands in a turning vacuum belt or brush roller. You can easily and accidentally turn on one of these switches. With the vacuum turn off, lay it out flat on the floor in a position that will allow you to see the bottom of the vacuum.

Step 3 – Test the Vacuum Cleaner Belt

The belt that is slipped over the vacuum's brush roller and the drive shaft that turns the belt, will be taut if it is not broken. If you tug on a broken belt it will normally come loose and will allow you to pull it away from the vacuum cleaner. If the belt is severed, you'll be able to remove it from the vacuum without having to remove the plate that covers part of the belt.

Step 4 – Remove a Broken Belt

To remove your old belt, unscrew the screws securing the plate to the bottom of the vacuum cleaner. With the plate now removed, find the broken belt and remove it from the vacuum cleaner. If you have a spare belt, measure it against the old belt to ensure that it is the right size. If you need to purchase a new belt, take the used one, along with the vacuum cleaner's name and model number, and find a hardware store or vacuum cleaner repair and supply shop where you can buy a new belt.

Step 5 – Attach Your New Belt

Before inserting your new belt, examine the vacuum's brush roller for hair, carpet threads, or rubber bands that might have become wound about the roller. Remove the roller by giving it a strong tug, then take off any of the threads or other debris on it, and slip the new belt over the roller, then insert the roller back into the clips that keep it attached to the vacuum. Place the other end of the belt on the vacuum's drive shaft, re-attach the plate, and your vacuum is now ready to do its work.