Vacuum Cleaner Brush Rolls

Brush rolls are fitted in the vacuum for carpet cleaning. They are mainly made of plastic, wood, or metal cylinders that rotate at high speed. The beater bar invented by the Hoover Company is a rubber or plastic strip mounted on the brush roll and a row of bristles. Manufacturers have advanced from a beater bar and from one row of bristles to two.

Brush Roll Types

Sanitaire replacement brushesModern brush rolls are mostly made of wood or plastic with bristles positioned inside the brush roll itself. Some brush rolls are made of aluminum or wood. These brush strips are replaceable and can be cleaned when the bristles have hair stuck in them. There are various sizes and shapes for brush rolls, with some as round cylinders and others shaped differently to enhance airflow.

How Brush Rolls Work

Vacuums specifically made for carpet cleaning jobs have revolving brush rolls that revolve at a high speed of up to 6,500 rolls per minute. A belt that runs to the brush rolls from the motor drives the roll to revolve.  An upright vacuum has a dedicated motor, while a canister vacuum has a suction motor. As the brush rolls, it loosens the stubborn dirt stuck in between the fibers and drives it towards the suction motor, which then sucks it into the dust bag or canister.

Electricity vs. Air

Canister vacuums are mainly powered by air-driven turbine nozzles and electric motor nozzles. The electric motor is the best since it increases the system's cleaning power. However, the turbine depends on the airflow to drive the brush roll, so vacuums that use them have a reduced suction power.

When to Replace the Brush Roll

For an effective cleaning session, you need good and firm bristles. When your brush roll bristles wear out, you should immediately replace the brush roll to maintain clean carpets. Worn-out bristles may have split ends and lose their stiffness to become soft and ineffective.

A noisy vacuum cleaner and belts wearing out quickly could mean the bristles are tangled with pet fur or carpet fiber or worn out. The best thing is to replace the brush roll. When replacing the brush roll, consider replacing the belt as well.

Brush Roll Replacement

The brush roll combs off loose fiber and fur from the carpet surface. Always make sure the brush roll is tangle-free for effective carpet brushing. Regularly check the bristles. When they are too short to touch a piece of wood at the bottom plate, consider replacing the brush roll.

 Sanitaire vacuum rollerReplacing a brush roll is not as complicated as many may think. Whether it is the anodized aluminum spiral brush or the chromed steel tubular brush, you can follow the procedure below to change it:

1.   Remove the cap cover from the rubber end.

2.   Loosen the nut and remove the cap at the end.

3.   Remove the bearing retainer.

4.   Push the shaft out through the other end.

5.   Using pliers, pull out the worn brush strips.

6.   Beginning with the rounded end, slide in the new brush strips, each in its place. Make sure they fit in their rightful slots.

7.   Fix the new shaft.

8.   Ensure that the bearing retainer is in line with the brush strip from both sides of the brush roll.

9.   Fasten the locknut.

10.   Align the slots and secure the rubber end cap cover against the end cap.         

Brush Roll Tips

For your vacuum cleaner’s best performance, adjust it to the best level by turning the maximum setting on the dial, switching on your vacuum, and releasing the handle. If your vacuum has a self-propel mechanism, do not forget to switch it off. Start turning the dial to the lower side, one setting at a time, until the brush humming becomes softer and lower.

Once the humming pitch drops, be assured that it is the right setting for the particular surface. If the brush is higher than it should be, it will not reach the carpet, while being lower means inefficient airflow.

How to Get New Brush Rolls

It is important to service your vacuum regularly. Sturdy, tangle-free bristles guarantee you a clean carpet. Do not forget to check the state of the bristles periodically. If you found out that the brush roll needs replacement, contact Think Vacuums and buy yours.

References and Resources

Using a vacuum brush roller

Household vacuums