Thread Number: 21747
Hoover 1178 DAM light comes on but motor doesn't
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Post# 243291   8/1/2013 at 18:23 (1,538 days old) by atmangb ()        

Hi, I have a Hoover DAM 1178 that was running until today (have had it 40 years!). The check bag light comes on immediately, but the motor does not run. I took the hose off and checked for blockages, there are none. Also, I think the motor would come on anyway so it must be a motor problem. This has happened a couple times before today, but the motor would start running again afterward, so maybe a short? Does anyone know if there might be a different typical problem causing this, or no way to know?

The new vacs I've used are not as good as this old one, so I'd like to find out if it's possible to repair.

Also, can anyone recommend a very good new machine to buy. I've used a Dirt Devil that beats up the carpet and doesn't clean on bare floors (scatters dirt on bare floors rather than sucking it up, brush is too stiff and bad on carpet, etc.)


Post# 243294 , Reply# 1   8/1/2013 at 18:32 (1,538 days old) by vegassucks ()        

What is you budget and flooring type?

Post# 243296 , Reply# 2   8/1/2013 at 18:37 (1,538 days old) by Vinvac (Dubuque IA)        

vinvac's profile picture
Take you Hoover DAM to a good vacuum repair shop. That motor should be totally repairable.

You are right, there are not many new vacuums on the market built to last like your Hoover.

Post# 243361 , Reply# 3   8/2/2013 at 16:31 (1,537 days old) by HooverCelebrity ()        

Sounds like the carbon brushes in the motor may be wearing out, or have worn out. When that happens, the motor can work intermittently or just not work at all. There is still power going to the cleaner -- which is why the headlight/bag check light is still working.

I'm with Morgan -- find an old-school vacuum store willing to do the repair. Good vacuum, worth repairing if there's not really anything else wrong with it.

Post# 243640 , Reply# 4   8/4/2013 at 06:57 (1,535 days old) by DaveTranter (Central England, U.K.)        
Motor Brushes

My money is on worn out brushes, too.... Give it a good slap while powered up.. Any sign of motor life is pretty much positive proof.....

All best

Dave T

Post# 244091 , Reply# 5   8/6/2013 at 14:07 (1,533 days old) by atmangb ()        

Hi everybody, thanks for the replies, VERY helpful.

I looked for a vacuum repair shop in my town, but at first could not find a single one. Today I googled again and found a shop. I called and the repair person sounds really knowledgable and said it also sounds like the carbon brushes; she is looking to make sure she has the parts, which she thinks she does, and will call me back. I am so glad I found you all here.

I used my Dirt Devil upright in the meantime, but it beat up my old carpet, before I got new, so badly that I hate to use it on my new cut pile carpet and have not been able to find a new vacuum cleaner that has soft bristles on the brush roller like my old Hoover.

Post# 244119 , Reply# 6   8/6/2013 at 15:17 (1,533 days old) by jade_angel (Newport News, VA)        
Replacement for the Dirt Devil

If you're looking to stick with an upright, you might look at some of the Riccar ultralight units. They're a little expensive, but you'll be getting what you pay for.

If you're not averse to canisters, and to second-hand machines, look on eBay for a Filter Queen or a TriStar (preferably a CXL). Both are pretty hard to beat.

Post# 245432 , Reply# 7   8/12/2013 at 20:39 (1,527 days old) by atmangb ()        

the local appliance shop finally called me back and said they could not get the part--the carbon brushes for the motor, drat, lol

thanks for your comments, jade angel I looked into Riccar and Miele, but don't have any authorized dealers anywhere near me for service and for the models I need the price is beyond my means. Though almost bought a Miele Twister anyway, but the online sales person even told me it would be far too heavy for me.

Looks like now I'll be buying a Panasonic canister model for features and light weight, a big come down from my Hoover..oh, well

Post# 245457 , Reply# 8   8/12/2013 at 23:57 (1,526 days old) by kirbykid (this user is not allowed to sell anything on Vacuumland)        

WAIT!!!! If you bring the motor to a motor repair shop they can make motor brushes for it. Thats what im doing with my hoover model 27

Post# 245503 , Reply# 9   8/13/2013 at 11:19 (1,526 days old) by atmangb ()        

thanks, kirby kid. I don't know of any motor repair place in my small town other than the appliance people who didn't offer to make any motor brushes. I've spent HOURS trying to find a a good new cleaner that's well built, somewhat afforable and has an authorized dealer near me. Looks like it isn't gonna happen, drat...

so happy you all can do all these things yourselves! :)

Post# 245519 , Reply# 10   8/13/2013 at 13:38 (1,526 days old) by jfalberti (Visalia, CA)        
I did a web search

jfalberti's profile picture

and found Hesco's web site.  Hesco sells a set of carbon brushes that will work in the Dial-A-Matic.  I've included a link to their page.  Funny thing is , that the brushes they sell also fit the Hoover Convertible, and the Kirby Classic.  If that is true, then a new set of brushes for your DAM is as close as your nearest Kirby office.  Good luck!




Post# 245677 , Reply# 11   8/14/2013 at 13:44 (1,525 days old) by atmangb ()        

wow, jfalberti, that is cool, and online it costs $1.09 ! No kirby dealer near me.

question, you all have talked about the carbon brushes being bad, in the plural as if it needs more than one carbon brush??

so how many would I need, or is it really just one?


Post# 245681 , Reply# 12   8/14/2013 at 14:04 (1,525 days old) by kirbykid (this user is not allowed to sell anything on Vacuumland)        

You need 2

Post# 246696 , Reply# 13   8/20/2013 at 12:01 (1,519 days old) by atmangb ()        

thanks kirbykid

I also found a youtube that shows how to put them in, but I'm not that mechanical. But my local repair place said if I get the parts she would put them in for me. This is terrific.

One thing, she said sometimes the plastic motor case cracks when you take it off, when the vacuum is that old. Does anyone know about that, or if that part could be replaced, too, if that happened?

Post# 246746 , Reply# 14   8/20/2013 at 17:20 (1,519 days old) by kirby505 (Arizona)        

Look on, they can get a new motor casing if need be.

Post# 379608 , Reply# 15   10/12/2017 at 11:31 by Gj3476 (Dallas,TX)        

gj3476's profile picture
Hello, I have a dial a matic model 1149 that I got from eBay back in august and the problem is that the vacuum doesn't turn on. Anybody know?

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