How to Deodorize Vacuum Cleaners – 4 Quick Steps

How to deodorize vacuum cleaners

If you don’t want any foul smell in your home, then you must know the basic steps on how to deodorize vacuum cleaners. Some vacuum smell like dog hair while some smell like feet, but how do you get rid of this smell?

Pet urine can also add strong foul odor to your vacuum. Although you don’t vacuum pet urine directly, the liquid can get stuck to the dust and pet hair while they are sucked into the vacuum.

Mold particles can be found in vacuum filters and bags. If left unattended, they produce that strong smell you might have known for some time. Mold requires moisture and humidity to grow.

A vacuum’s belt can also result in a bad smell. The belt is built up of rubber and its rotation allows the brush to roll, capturing hair and other dirt.

Vacuum brushes should be cleaned frequently. If the brushes are not properly maintained, hair which get stuck within the bristles may stop the brush from rotating rightly, damaging the rubber.

The combination of dust and other pieces of debris can cause your vacuum to stink. Letting your vacuum to accumulate much dust will eventually have an effect on the health of your vacuum.

Read: How to Deodorize Wood Floor

How To Deodorize Vacuum Cleaners

Empty Dust Bin or Bag

A vacuum that comes with a dust bin should be removed; empty its contents into the garbage and wash it with soap and water.

Make sure every angle and corner is washed. Try to replace the vacuum’s bag once in a while.

Clean or Replace The Vacuum’s Filter

Filters get dusty and dirty. If your filter is washable, remove the dust around and rinse it under cold water. Rinse the filter until it is neat.

If you doubt the efficacy of water, prepare a natural solution by mixing soap and warm water together, then carefully wash and rinse the filter. Allow the filter to dry for 24 hours before placing it back.

If you think it is not washable, replace it. Generally, filters are to be replaced at least once in a year. A vacuum used heavily should be replaced every six months.

Read: How to clean a vacuum filter

Clean The Rotating Brushes

Rotating brushes are to be cleaned at least once in twelve months. Brushes often used for cleaning carpet and rugs tend to get clogged up without notice. It could be a bit of fur and hair that get stuck to the attachments.

Make sure your vacuum is unplugged. If the brush is removable, remove it from the head attachment.

Then, use a tiny scissors to cut through any fibers or hair stuck within the bristles. Clean the brush with water and soap and let the power attachment dry out completely before you place it back.

Wash The Hose

The hose is one of the first area dirt passes through before getting to the dust bag and filter.

Small particles usually get stuck within the inner layer of the tube, so hoses are likely to get blocked. Gradually, the dirt decay and produce a strong smell.

Remove the hose and place it on a flat surface. Use the sticks of a broom or another similar tool to take away any remnants. Push through until the hose is unblocked.

Pour about three liters of hot water, two tablespoons of bleach or baking soda and one tablespoon of dish soap into your sink. Then, place the hose in the sink; it should be able to enter the sink since hoses are flexible.

Ensure you move the tube around to make water run through the whole tube. Place the hose under the tap till the water flows through the other end.

Allow the hose to dry, drying hours should be up to 48 hours and the hose can be hanged in a well-ventilated area or over a shower curtain.

Read: How to Clean Vacuum Hose

How to Prevent Bad Odors

Now that you have a neat vacuum, in and out, you have to add a pleasant scent to your vacuum.

This will help the air that your vacuum pushes into your home smell better when you use the vacuum. These are the materials you can apply for a nice scent:

Baking Soda

This is a popular remedy; it is well-known for its cleaning power. Baking soda will absorb any unpleasant smell.

Sprinkle up to three teaspoons into the hole of the dust bag and sprinkle it over the walls of the dust bin if your vacuum does not have a dust bag.

Essential Oils

Lemongrass or thyme are best known for their extra benefits. Add about three drops of essential oil, water and one teaspoon of baking soda to a 32-ounce spray bottle.

Spray gently few squirts into the bag or bin. Do not spray too much as this will moisten the area. Essential oils would make your vacuum smell nice and would also help to fight mold.


Cinnamon is antibacterial and could minimize the growth of unwanted spores. It also gives your vacuum a pleasant scent. Pour half of a tablespoon into the dust bin or bag.

Maintaining Regular Cleaning

Regular maintenance has an effect on your vacuum as regards preventing bad odors. How often you clean your floor depends on how often you use it.

Generally, cleaning your vacuum should be done every three to six months but if you own a pet, you should clean the floor every month.

Read: How to deodorize subfloor


That is all on how to deodorize vacuum cleaners; it’s that simple. When a bad smell is detected, you will first need to clean, then neutralize the smell.

That said, you can go ahead to use a home or commercial remedy to spread a pleasant fragrance. However, if the smell persists, call a technician or buy a new cleaner.

Have you experienced a bad smell in your vacuum before? How did you tackle it?

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