My Dyson Won't Turn On

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Even though the Dyson vacuum changed the industry by offering the first bagless vacuum, you may find that it sometimes won't turn on. This is because the vacuum machine has a thermal safety system inside it that cuts the power when it begins to overheat.

You have to wait at least one hour for it it to cool down when this happens, as the machine won't turn on until its recognizes it is cool enough to not overheat the motor. The vacuum can overheat because there is not a free flow of suction through the machine due to a blockage somewhere. When the Dyson powers off during operation, you should:


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  • remove and examine the foam filter for blockages
  • verify the clear canister is free of blockages
  • check hoses and u-bends to remove blockages
  • clean the foam filter if dirty; you have to wait until the filter dries overnight before using it
  • clean the other filters in the machine, depending on the model, as each is slightly different.

Verify that, after cleaning the filter and reinserting into the machine, all the components fit together correctly before vacuuming. If the bin isn't inserted correctly or you forget to insert the filters, the vacuum will not work correctly and will overheat.


Wash the Filter

Since the mostly likely cause of the machine overheating is blocked or dirty filters, you must remove them and wash them by hand in cold water. To wash the filter in an upright machine:

Step 1

Turn off the machine and unplug it from the wall.


Step 2

Remove the clear dust bin from the machine by depressing the button on the handle that releases it and lift it away from the machine.

Step 3

Detach the top of the bin by pressing the latch on the front of the bin and lift the top back.

Step 4

Reach in to remove the filter. The filter may be flat and round in a plastic case or it may be a cylinder-type filter, depending on the model you have. Some models have both. Remove the foam filter from the plastic cover, if you have that type of filter.


Step 5

Turn on the cold water and let it run from the faucet. Rinse the filter under cold water until all the fine dust is gone. Squeeze the filter gently to massage any dirt and dust from it under the running water. After the water coming from the wrung-out filter is clear, set the filter aside and let it air dry. For models equipped with the round plastic filter cover, rinse the fabric side of the cover in cold water, and then tap it gently to remove excess water and let it air dry. Set the cylinder-type filter horizontally to dry.



Step 6

Remove the second filter, if your machine has one, from the bottom of the machine. Models equipped with a ball device on the bottom have a filter that you can remove by turning the round inset knob counterclockwise to lift the cover from the filter. Lift the filter out and rinse it under cold water, tapping it to remove excess water after it is clean. Let it air dry.

Intermittent Power

When the machine works intermittently -- you could have a broken or faulty power switch. This is easy enough to replace for those handy with tools. To replace the power switch, you'll need to know the serial number to order the correct part for the machine. To save money, you can order the same part for much less than you can get it from the manufacturer from reputable online sites that sell replacement parts.


Serial Number Location

On the upright machine, look for the serial number imprinted on a plate sticker:

  • behind the plastic wand or hose
  • at the bottom of the machine or
  • on the body of the machine behind the clear collection canister.


For canister-type machines, look:

  • between the wheels beneath the machine or
  • on the body of the machine behind the dirt bin.



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