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How To Empty, Clean, And Take Apart A Shark Vacuum Cleaner

I would be lost without my Shark Vacuum. People tell you there is no going back once you have used one and with two kids and two dogs who love to make a mess I can wholeheartedly agree with that.

The model that I have is the Shark DuoClean Lift-Away and it is fantastic. One of the things Shark is known for is that they say their vacuums never lose suction. This is true, but only if you show them a little TLC.

If you clean your shark vacuum then it can give you a lifetime of use. I like to give mine a clean once a month, but some might say that is a little excessive and every couple of months would be fine. Anyway, keep on reading and I will share with you how to clean a Shark vacuum.

How To Know When Your Shark Vacuum Needs Cleaning

A Shark vacuum like most others has some telltale signs for when things are getting a little clogged up. The most common way to know is if the suction is not right and it is leaving dirt behind on the floor.

Also if it is making odd sounds that it did not make before and if the air it is pumping out smells weird. If yours is doing any of these things it is time to give it a clean!

How To Clean A Shark Vacuum

I think it is best to clean it in three stages, the rotating brush, the canister, and the filters. I would say that these cleaning methods will work for all Shark vacuums.

Cleaning The Rotating Brush

It is crazy the things that can get stuck in here. If you have pets then more than likely it will be pet hair.

  • Step 1: Make sure your vacuum is off (look I know it is common sense, but I have to say it) and turn it over. You may want to put it on a garbage bag or do it outside if you are worried about the mess.
  • Step 2: Look for anything that is stuck in the rotating brush. Old bits of food, Lego, pet hair and other such things. Sometimes it is easier to get a pair of scissors and cut out the pet hair than untangle it.
  • Step 3: Once I have removed all the debris that I can see I like to use a small brush and give the rotating brush a gentle scrub to remove the last little bits of debris that I may have missed.

The Shark Duoclean range, including the Powered Lift-Away, Rocket Ultra-Light, IONFlex Cordless, Apex, and the Lift-Away Speed, all feature an easy-to-clean brush roll system.

This involves removing the top panel, or ‘garage’, which is located on the vacuum head. Once the panel is removed, the DuoClean brush roll can be removed.

Any hair or dirt can be removed, and there is even a hair removal tool that is included and is found under the panel. The soft roller brush can also be ejected and cleaned.

The short instructional video above from Shark will show you how to take the bottom off a Shark vacuum and guide you through the process.

Cleaning The Canister

Cleaning the canister is not the grossest part of this job like you may think it is! This is actually very easy to do.

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  • Step 1: Remove the canister from your Shark vacuum and empty all of the garbage. Some people do this and leave it at that and never have an issue.
  • Step 2: I am a bit excessive so I like to get a baby wipe and clean as much of the inside of the canister as I can. It takes a couple of minutes if that and then you just need to leave it to fully dry.

Cleaning The Filters

When it comes to filters the main ones that make a Shark vacuum cleaner so good are the HEPA filters. These are what keep all the nasty dust and allergens inside the vacuum.

If your vacuum smells a bit funky, the filters need cleaning. These instructions will work for HEPA filters and also the regular standard kind.

One extra thing I want to say is that when it comes to the regular filters (not the HEPA ones) some Shark vacuum models have felt and others use rubber filters.

Felt filters are much more delicate and Shark does not actually recommend that you wash them so do so at your own risk. If you do, make sure you are very gentle.

  • Step 1: Remove all of the filters. Now, this is nice and easy to do, but make sure you make a mental note of where each one goes this makes putting them back much easier. What I did when I first got the vacuum I have now is take a picture on my phone.
  • Step 2: I am not going to lie, these things are gross! Before you start the cleaning process. Give them a little tap over the garbage can to shake off as much dust as you can. This will make your cleaning much easier and less disgusting.
  • Step 3: Using mildly warm water give the filters a rinse. The HEPA filters and the other filters of the vacuum should be cleaned the same way. Be gentle and just give them a little squeeze or rub to get all the dust out. You can use some mild washing detergent if you want, but I would advise using a tiny amount. Keep rinsing until the water coming out of them is clear.
  • Step 4: Now this is very, very important. Leave all of your filters out to dry. You will find that the plastic based one dry very quickly, but the others can take a very long time, especially the HEPA filters. Even if they are just a little bit damp, do not put them back in the vacuum cleaner.
  • Step 5: Once they are fully dried you can put them back in the vacuum cleaner and you are ready to go! The HEPA filters can wear out over time (a very long time) so make sure you get replacement ones if the vacuum still smells odd even after a good cleaning.

Your Shark vacuum gives you so much and it asks for so little in return. People make the mistake of thinking that just because Shark says their vacuums never lose suction that they do not have to do anything to make that so.

Cleaning a vacuum is not a pleasant experience, but it is not hard at all. In all honesty, I would say the whole drying of the filters takes longer than the actual cleaning process. If your Shark has not been performing the way it usually does, giving it a good clean will really bring it back to life.

Now that you know how to clean a Shark vacuum there is no excuse for you not to give it a good clean every once and a while.

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I'm obsessed with cleaning (maybe to an unhealthy degree) and want to share all of my best tips and hacks with you.

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