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Dyson Vacuum Won’t Spin

When I encountered my Dyson vacuum’s spinning brush bar suddenly refusing to whirl, frustration was an understatement. It was like prepping for a marathon, only to trip at the starting line. If you’ve found yourself puzzled by a stationary brush bar, wondering if this spells the end for your beloved cleaning companion, you’re not alone. Understanding the cause and the fix can turn this daunting issue into a minor hiccup.

If your Dyson vacuum’s brush bar won’t spin, the most common issue is hair and debris entanglement. Cut away any tangled materials carefully using scissors or a seam ripper, ensuring not to damage the brush bar or bristles. Regularly removing these obstructions can prevent the motor from overheating and maintain optimal performance.

Dyson Vacuum Won't Spin

During my own ordeal, after removing the tangled mess, I discovered another potential culprit: a tripped brush bar reset switch, a safety feature that prevents the motor from damage due to blockages. To resolve this, locate the reset button—usually found on the brush bar head or handle— and press it firmly. This simple step can reactivate the brush bar. It’s akin to resetting a tripped circuit breaker in your home, a quick fix that restores function with minimal effort.

Additionally, a worn-out or damaged drive belt could be why the brush bar has ceased its rotation. Imagine the drive belt as the chain on a bicycle; if it snaps or slips off, the wheels won’t turn, no matter how hard you pedal. In this case, replacing the belt is necessary. Although this task might sound daunting, it’s a manageable fix that requires a basic understanding of your vacuum’s components and access to a replacement part. Ensuring your Dyson is unplugged before attempting any repairs, you can typically access the belt by removing the brush bar cover according to your model’s instructions.

Navigating these common issues can extend the lifespan of your Dyson vacuum, ensuring it remains a reliable cleaning tool. Remember, regular maintenance, such as clearing the brush bar of debris and checking for wear on essential parts like the drive belt, can prevent many of these problems from arising in the first place.

Check if You’re Using the Dyson Vacuum Correctly

Check if You're Using the Dyson Vacuum Correctly

If your Dyson vacuum brush/head is not spinning, maybe you are not using it properly. There could be three reasons why it’s not working. It is possible that:

  • The Dyson vacuum is locked. When the vacuum is not in use, you should lock the vacuum into an upright position. That will cause the vacuum’s motor (that spins the brush bar) to be disengaged. Unlock the handle by pressing the button near the cleaning head using your foot.
  • The vacuum cleaner head is set too low. It would help if you used the right height to clean specific settings. You will not use the same setting you use for cleaning bare floors as you use for cleaning carpets.
  • The cleaner head is not locked correctly. The vacuum’s motor that spins the brush bar will not operate if you do not seal the head correctly. Unplug the vacuum, lay it flat, and push the cleaner head toward the vacuum’s main body until you hear a click.

Dyson Ball Vacuum Brush/Head Not Spinning

Dyson Ball Vacuum Brush/Head Not Spinning

One common problem with a Dyson Ball vacuum is when the brush/head is not spinning. When the brush/head doesn’t spin, the vacuum won’t turn on and will switch off unexpectedly. A Dyson vacuum brush/head that won’t spin can be due to several reasons.


The Dyson vacuum has a safety feature that switches off the vacuum when it overheats. If this happens to you, you should check if the vacuum’s filter is full. If the filter is full, it will affect the ventilation system.

To fix this problem, empty and wash the filter. Check if the vents are clear (no blockage). Let the filter cool down first for at least half an hour.

Broken Power Cord

If your vacuum suddenly switches off after turning it on or does not turn on, check the power cord. A broken power cord can interrupt the vacuum’s performance or cause it to stop functioning entirely. In this case, your best option is to get a new cable for your vacuum.

Dyson Stick Vacuum Brush/Head Not Spinning

Dyson Stick Vacuum Brush/Head Not Spinning

If your Dyson stick vacuum brush/head is not working, perhaps you should check the battery or filters. A blockage could also be a problem because it can cause the vacuum not to spin. While Dyson vacuums are excellent and long-lasting, potential troubles can occur in time.


Dyson uses long-lasting lithium-ion batteries, but the vacuum performance may suffer if the battery is worn out. Even if you charged the battery to full or place it correctly on the charging dock, it won’t be able to go back to its former glory. Dyson vacuums come with a 2-year initial guarantee that includes the battery, so you don’t have to buy a new battery unless you have passed the warranty period.


The vacuum will not turn on if there is too much dust on the filters. You can avoid this problem by cleaning the filters regularly if you clean a lot or on heavily soiled floors. Optionally, do this at least once every three months if the vacuum does not accumulate too much dust. When your vacuum filters are clean, your vacuum will not smell funny, either.

To clean your Dyson stick vacuum, unplug the vacuum to avoid the risk of getting electrocuted. Empty and clean the dust canister. You can use a damp microfiber cloth to clean the dust canister’s inside.

Don’t use any detergent to wash out the dust canister because chemicals can make the material sticky. You should also avoid cleaning any part of the cyclones of your Dyson filter using water. Make sure the dust canister is perfectly dry to prevent dampness that could lead to molding.

To clean the vacuum filter:

  1. Rinse it with water.
  2. Do not use detergent or chemicals for washing.
  3. Use only cold water to remove any dust or debris and then dry the filter.


Your vacuum may stop running if there’s a slight blockage. Dyson vacuums have a system that automatically shuts off the vacuum if there is any blockage. To avoid a jam, make sure your vacuum is always clean.

Dyson Handheld Vacuum Brush/Head Not Spinning

Dyson Handheld Vacuum Brush/Head Not Spinning

Dyson vacuums have a brush with angled bristles that sweep and force dust into the hose. This mechanism happens when the motor inside the vacuum cleaner’s head assembly moves the brush. However, there are instances where the vacuum brush/head won’t spin — maybe the vacuum is locked, or the cleaner head is set too low or not sealed properly.

If none of these causes contribute to why your Dyson handheld vacuum brush/head is not spinning, then one potential reason is there is too much hair or debris clogging the vacuum brush. You can solve this problem by unplugging the vacuum cleaner and laying it on the floor to help you access the brush bar. You will find a red retaining ring in the brush bar’s upper part.

Remove the ring by holding the side and twist it toward you. Remove the brush bar and turn the two locking screws on the base of the vacuum head. Then, pull out the brush bar assembly.

You can use a Phillips screwdriver or a coin to unscrew the four screws that attach the brush to the brush bar assembly. Let the vacuum stand upright and let it dry. Then, attach the brush to the brush bar assembly, and screw it tightly.

Your vacuum should function properly now, but if it doesn’t, you may want to check if the belt is loose or broken. If the vacuum has a single bar that extends across the assembly, that means a single belt on one side is controlling the bar, which will eventually wear out. To make the brush spin again, you need to replace the belt.

Dyson Vacuum Won’t Spin on a Carpet

Dyson Vacuum Won't Spin on a Carpet

Vacuuming a carpet requires more energy than vacuuming on a bare floor. If your vacuum lacks power, it won’t be able to spin correctly on a carpet. If a Dyson vacuum lacks sucking performance, that means it requires cleaning.

Perhaps your Dyson vacuum won’t spin on the carpet because the vacuum cleaner head is too low. You may want to adjust the height then. If this doesn’t method doesn’t work either, there is another trick you could try.

If the vacuum doesn’t work on a thick carpet, you could try using a rubber band and strap it on one side of the vacuum. The rubber band will help air to flow through by lifting the bottom plate on one side. If this doesn’t work either, you might want to check everything else, like the battery or if the vacuum is overheating.

Final Thoughts

Dyson vacuums are well-known for their smart design, suction power, and portability. When a Dyson vacuum won’t spin, it may be facing issues related to the brush/head. The vacuum requires regular cleaning if heavily used for collecting dust and debris. Otherwise, it will jam or won’t work at all.

One big culprit of why the vacuum won’t spin is the clogging of hair and debris. Users will have to unscrew the vacuum parts to untangle and remove whatever that’s clogging the vacuum. Sometimes the battery is the problem, of which it gets worn out and requires changing.

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ReadyToDIY is the owner of this article. This post was published on January 27, 2021.

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