Miele vacuums are generally known to be pretty durable and reliable appliances, but as is the case with any electrical appliance, there’s always the chance that it will inexplicably stop working. This can happen even if you haven’t damaged or abused your vacuum cleaner in any way, and you may be at a loss as to why your vacuum is suddenly failing to turn on.
In the case of Miele vacuums, the most common cause of this problem is a faulty cord reel. However, it could also be an issue with the vacuum’s motor, there could be a blockage in the vacuum somewhere that is preventing it from turning on, or there may be a problem with the electrical path within the vacuum or the power source it’s connected to.
In this article, we’ll be addressing all of the issues that can potentially prevent your vacuum cleaner from turning on and showing you how to solve these issues.
Bad Cord Reel
Issues with the cord reel are by far the most common problem with Miele vacuum cleaners. For those who don’t know, the cord reel is what the cord wraps around when it is retracted into the vacuum. In Miele vacuums, the electrical connectors between the power cord and the rest of the vacuum are actually a part of the cord reel itself.
The cord reel sits on a spindle, which allows it to rotate freely. Over time, however, the reel starts developing play on the spindle and begins moving from side to side. When this happens, the connectors between the cord reel and the rest of the vacuum cleaner become separated.
With the connectors separated, power won’t be able to consistently flow through the vacuum. Your vacuum may still run in this state, but it will likely run intermittently, cutting in and out without warning.
In most cases, replacing the cord reel is the easiest solution to this problem, but you can potentially fix your cord reel without replacing anything if you’re handy enough.
How to Fix:
To fix or replace your cord reel, you’ll have to access it first, which means partially disassembling your vacuum. Depending on the model you have, you’ll need either a Phillips head screwdriver or a Torx T20 screwdriver.
- Start by removing the hose from the vacuum cleaner, and then open up the vacuum to remove the bag and the exhaust filter.
- You’ll then need to remove the lid entirely from the vacuum, which you can do by carefully prying the lid arms out from where they are fixed.
- Next, remove the speed control box, which is done by unscrewing one screw and releasing two clips.
- With the speed control box removed, you can now unscrew the plastic body of the vacuum cleaner from its base to expose the motor and cord reel.
- With the cord reel finally out in the open, disconnect any wires hooked up to it and remove the screw that holds it in place.
- When you’ve completely disconnected the reel from the vacuum, you should be able to just lift it right out.
- Once you have the old cord reel out, you can replace it with a new one, or you can try a little DIY repair if you feel up for it.
Since the problem is caused by the cord reel shifting along the spindle it’s on, you can try installing a makeshift spacer on the spindle to force the electrical connectors together.
Hose washers, metal washers, or anything suitable that you have lying around your home can potentially be used for this purpose. If you’re not comfortable with this kind of jury-rigging, however, it’s definitely easier to just replace your old cord reel with a new one.
Bad Suction Motor
The suction motor is, as the name implies, the motor that creates the suction force within your vacuum. It does so by powering a fan that pulls air through the vacuum tube and into the bag.
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If the motor has indeed gone bad, there is, unfortunately, no way to actually fix it, and you’ll have to have the defective motor replaced with a new one in order to solve the issue. This is a big job, and if it seems too daunting for you, don’t feel bad about getting a professional to handle it.
How to Fix:
If you are confident enough to try and replace your vacuum’s motor on your own, follow the same steps as you’d take to remove the cord reel. Remove the hose and lid from the vacuum cleaner, then unscrew the body of the vacuum from its base.
- Once you have the motor exposed, carefully lift it out of its housing and remove the foam padding around it.
- The motor will be connected to a few wires, but don’t disconnect them just yet; first, note how each of the wires connects to the motor, as you’ll need to reconnect the new motor in the same way.
- Once you’ve connected the new motor to the wires, wrap it up with the foam padding, reinstall the motor in its housing, and reassemble the rest of the vacuum cleaner.
- If you’ve done everything correctly, your vacuum should now be working normally.
Blocked Air Flow
On occasion, things can sometimes get stuck within your vacuum’s hose as you vacuum them up. If these pieces of debris end up trapping other debris that gets sucked up into your vacuum, it can potentially block the whole thing up, restricting the airflow through the vacuum.
Your vacuum may still run with a blocked tube, but it won’t actually be able to vacuum up anything. Such a blockage may even prevent your vacuum from starting to begin with.
How to Fix:
Fixing this problem is pretty simple; just find where the blockage is inside your vacuum and remove it. Blockages can occur in the vacuum hose as well as the suction head and the filters, so make sure to check all of these places.
Electrical Path Issues
Obviously if the motor fails in your vacuum cleaner it will fail to run, but there are plenty of other electrical components in your vacuum that can have the same result if they fail. Your vacuum contains a few circuits and at least one fuse within its electrical path.
Circuits can fail because of mechanical damage, excessively high/low temperatures, and exposure to inordinately high amounts of current. The fuse in your vacuum cleaner is most likely a thermal fuse, which is designed to blow if the vacuum’s motor gets too hot.
How to Fix:
If you have some experience working with electronics, you can use a multimeter to test the circuits and fuses inside your vacuum cleaner. It’s a good idea to begin with the circuits closest to the cord reel, and then from there work your way towards the motor.
- If the problem is a blown fuse, then you may be able to replace it with a new one, as fuses are cheap to buy and easy to install.
- If the problem lies elsewhere in your vacuum’s electrical path, however, it may be a more difficult and costly fix.
No Power Getting to the Vacuum
You should also consider the possibility that power isn’t getting to your vacuum to begin with. There could be a problem with the outlet you plugged the vacuum into, or you may have inadvertently tripped a circuit breaker without realizing it.
How to Fix:
This may seem obvious, but the first thing you should do is check to see if your vacuum cleaner is actually plugged in. It’s not uncommon to forget to plug your vacuum in or to plug it in only partway without realizing it, so don’t feel embarrassed if that’s the case.
If your vacuum cleaner is definitely plugged in but it isn’t working, try testing the outlet by plugging another device into it. If the new device works normally, the problem is with your vacuum cleaner, but if it doesn’t then the outlet is to blame.
It’s possible that something within the outlet itself has caused it to stop working, but you may have also tripped the circuit breaker connected to that outlet.
Vacuum cleaners can sometimes trip AFCI circuit breakers, so check your breaker box to find out for sure. If the outlet you’ve plugged the vacuum into is connected to a switch, make sure that the switch is in the “on” position.
Brush Roll Is Clogged
Some vacuum cleaners have a brush roll in the suction head that spins to lift up dirt and debris from carpeting. If your vacuum has such a brush roll that has become clogged with dirt and hair, this can sometimes prevent the vacuum from being able to turn on.
How to Fix:
Luckily, solving this issue is pretty easy. You just need to remove the brush roll from the suction head and clear away any debris tangled around it. You may need to remove a cover from the suction head to get at the brush roll, but you can do this easily with a screwdriver.
- Next, get a pair of scissors and cut away the debris around the brush roll.
- Chances are that the spinning of the brush roll has made the debris extremely tangled, and you probably won’t have much luck trying to just pull it off.
- Scissors will make the job way easier, but be careful not to snip off any of the bristles on the brush roll.
Once you’ve removed all the debris from the brush roll, put it back in the suction head and see if that solves your problem.
Motor Is Overheating
If your vacuum cleaner is able to start but keeps shutting itself off within minutes, that’s a sign that your motor could be overheating. This can happen because of blockages in the vacuum; if the airflow is restricted, then the motor has to work harder to generate the same amount of suction, which makes it overheat.
How to Fix:
Inspect your vacuum cleaner for any blockages, and remove any that you find. You should also empty your vacuum bag if it’s more than three-quarters of the way full, and make sure that the exhaust filter is clean.
Once you’ve removed any obstructions from inside your vacuum, give it some time to cool down; about half an hour is fine. When the vacuum is cool again, test it out and see how it runs. If after all this it still doesn’t work, it’s probably time to seek the help of a professional service technician.