What Maintenance is Required After Investing in a Central Vacuum System?

A central vacuum system is almost indispensable to any American household. And, as useful as this high-powered system is in cleaning a home, it needs its very own maintenance and cleaning schedule as well.

Rolled Up Vacuum and Tube on Hardwood Floor - Gary's Vacuflo Maintenance for Central Vaccum System

While this vacuum system significantly surpasses the vacuum you used to lug around and requires less upkeep, just like any machine, it too needs attention to perform optimally.

We’ll help you here with a list of some basic maintenance practices to follow for your central vacuum system, ideally performed by a professional central vacuum service in your area.

Motor units

A central vacuum system is built around an electric motor unit installed in the home, usually the garage or basement. These motor units should be checked periodically to avoid any malfunctions or issues. Typically, problems with motor units are a rarity, but if the system is facing problems like sporadic outages or just not turning on, then contact a central vacuum service to get the units serviced by a professional.


The belt is a critical part of the central vacuum system as the friction it generates powers your brush rolls. In the absence of this friction, you could see problems like overheating of the motor, a burning smell, and inefficient cleaning overall. Belt checks and maintenance require unscrewing the vacuum system, a task that should be performed by professional central vacuum services.

Motor Brushes

Motor brushes conduct electricity in the motor. They are typically 3/4 inch long. If the length was reduced to 3/16 inch then it is time to replace the brush assembly. This usually happens every three to four years. The other reasons why a motor brush may malfunction is due to dust build-up or bad bearings. In all cases related to the motor brushes, professional service assistance is recommended.

Changing the Dust Bag

A central vacuum system is a powerful machine, capable of some pretty heavy duty cleaning. A frequent cause of low efficiency is usually a clogged or choked dust bag. Dust pouches or bags in the machines should ideally be emptied out thoroughly once every 3 to 4 months, depending on the frequency of usage. The paper filters should be washed regularly and changed every few months, while the cloth filters should be replaced every 5 years. In case of a foam filter, these can be removed, washed, and air-dried thoroughly.

Hoses and Hoseheads

Vacuum hoses perform the task of sucking up debris of a variety of sizes and materials. Regular cleaning of hoseheads prevents dirt buildup. Hoses should be checked for wear and tear or any other structural damage. Since the hoses are dragged across the floor, they are susceptible to such damage, and a sleeve usually helps in this regard. When not in use, hoses should be coiled carefully and mounted on a wall. It is recommended to coil it 4 to 5 times at a maximum.


Attachments to hoses need to be carefully removed and stored when not in use. If stored still attached to the hose, they can cause a fracture due to the imbalanced weight. Regular cleanups and checks help in keeping attachments unclogged and performing well.

Carpet brushes usually spin freely at a high rate and should be attached properly to prevent any imbalances. Brushes deal with a variety of debris, which can cause them to get clogged and inefficient over time. Inspect them carefully and unclog any stubborn debris with sharp objects like a blade or knife, if required. Be very careful so as to not harm your brushes while doing so. If the brushes are flattened, soft, or look worn out, it is probably time to replace them.


Electric cords can get frayed and easily damaged. In fact, this is one of the most common service problems as per professional central vacuum services. They should be checked regularly to prevent any electric shorts and replaced at once in case of any such issue.

Inlet and Pipe System

A house system usually involves the addition of three to four inlets per floor. Inlets usually have a system where particles beyond a certain size are prevented from entering the pump and motor. The particles can, therefore, be identified and removed at this point.

Inlets can, however, get worn out or have parts missing over time. At this point, the entire inlet has to be replaced. However, these are not particularly expensive and are easy to install using a guide or by a professional. There are also multiple color and size options available with inlets either opening up or down.

Pipes in a household system typically last for the lifetime of the central vacuum. However, they can accumulate black carbon dust over time. This can be easily managed by wiping the pipes using a damp cloth and soap. It is also recommended to cleanse the interior of a piping system at least once every year. A variety of debris can clog these pipes and removal results in better suction and also deodorizes the system.

Basic Troubleshooting For Your System

In addition to the above, professional central vacuum services can provide you with a handy troubleshooting guide for any basic issues related to power flow, suction, and voltage. Regular maintenance could extend the life of your central vacuum systems by many years and hiring professionals to perform central vacuum services is the ideal way to go about this.

Reach out to the nearest professional services, such as us at Gary’s Vacuflo, for a worry-free cleaning experience. Look for a company that will provide a comprehensive check of your system rather than solely focusing on the issue at hand. Gary’s, for example, provides a 20-point service inspection to ensure your central vacuum is always providing exceptional performance.


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