Thread Number: 18707
Bissell Powerforce Turbo
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Post# 205782   11/3/2012 at 22:56 (2,713 days old) by daknx1994 (Southern Indiana)        

Hey everyone! I just aquired a Bissell Powerforce Turbo from one of my cousins. I gave her a plain Bissell powerforce bagless and she asked me if i could fix the turbo for her. When i got it i first cleaned it up and out and then turned it on. The lightbulb started to flicker and it was emitting a little smoke. I took it apart and the motor smelled like smoke, (at first i thought it might have been dust from their house) and i realized it was the motor. I was wondering if there is any way to salvage this or what might be the problem so i can try to fix it.

The reason being is i like this kind of Bissell (next to the powerforce bagged. These being the only 2 vacuums from them that i like.) I like the feel and look of it. Anyways i will provide a link for a pic to show you which model i am describing.

Thanks in advance for any help!:)


Post# 205786 , Reply# 1   11/4/2012 at 00:17 (2,713 days old) by madabouthoovers ()        

if its smoking, then thats usually either the carbon brushes are worn down to the springs, or the motor has started arcing due to being overheated. Arcing means that the armature has shorted out internally in its windings and the commutator is badly sparking between the carbon brushes. Normally brushes can be replaced if you can get them, but once the motor starts arcing thats the end of the motor - terminal.
Remove the motor from the housing and run it out of the machine, check the commutator for excessive blue sparks - if its arcing, you will get quite a light show, and a hell of a bad smell of burning. If its the carbons, this arcing wont be evident, but you should be able to remove the brushes to check them.

Being a bagless model, its more than likely it got clogged up and the motor has overheated - this happens a lot, and means a new motor will be needed - but check what I said above, just to check if the motor has indeed begun arcing.

Post# 205787 , Reply# 2   11/4/2012 at 00:25 (2,713 days old) by daknx1994 (Southern Indiana)        

thanks this is my first time truly repairing a machine. What does the brushes and the commutator and the armature look like so i no what im looking at?

Post# 205790 , Reply# 3   11/4/2012 at 01:06 (2,713 days old) by madabouthoovers ()        

If you look at a vacuum motor, it will have a fancase at 1 end, and at the other end, will be the carbon brushes, and commutator. The commutator is the circular bronze coloured ring inside the end of the motor casing - it will consist of many small segments, each connected to a winding on the armature. The motor consists of an outer field winding, and inside this, spins the shaft that connects to the fan in the fancase. Onto this shaft, is built a section of many windings and metal, in a circular shape so it can spin round inside the outer field coils - this is called the armature. At the end of the shaft, after the armature is the commutator, as described earlier. After the commutator will be the end bearings and the end of the housing cage. Pressed up to the commutator at right angles to it, and on opposite sides will be 2 carbon brush holders, each holding a spring loaded rectangular piece of carbon called brushes. These brushes are like an eraser, and are constantly in pressure contact with the commutator while it spins round, rubbing on it. They eventually after many hours of use wear right down and have to be replaced. The arcing I described earlier will occur between these brushes across the commutator surface, if the armature is shorting out.

Take a look on wikipedia about how a motor works - the AC brushed type of motor.
Its quite complicated, but all a motor is is essentially a series of magnets and coils.

Post# 205791 , Reply# 4   11/4/2012 at 01:14 (2,713 days old) by daknx1994 (Southern Indiana)        

Thank you so much im sure i can comprehend that after i get some sleep lol (insomniac to the extreme) thanks again i truly appreicate that.

Post# 205792 , Reply# 5   11/4/2012 at 01:17 (2,713 days old) by madabouthoovers ()        

Here is a diagram showing a motor with its various parts - (not your particular motor btw)

Post# 205794 , Reply# 6   11/4/2012 at 01:28 (2,713 days old) by madabouthoovers ()        

This is what most vacuum motor brushes look like in their holders, when removed from the motor, the carbons are the black/grey parts, they should not be worn down to reveal the pressure springs:

Post# 205796 , Reply# 7   11/4/2012 at 01:46 (2,713 days old) by madabouthoovers ()        

This is a video of what severe arcing in a motor looks like, I have had Dyson motors doing this, and it really does stink and smoke:

CLICK HERE TO GO TO madabouthoovers's LINK

Post# 205851 , Reply# 8   11/4/2012 at 17:12 (2,712 days old) by daknx1994 (Southern Indiana)        

thanks again i dont think mine is arching as i didnt see any sparks or anything like in that video just some smoke im about to do more work on it now.

Post# 205857 , Reply# 9   11/4/2012 at 19:09 (2,712 days old) by madabouthoovers ()        

I See - well you need to get the cover off and check where the smoke is coming from - if its a dual motor model (main motor for suction and second motor for brushroll) check both motors, as it may be the brushroll motor thats smoking. If the drivebelt is worn or stretched, or the brushroll is not revolving freely, then this can cause friction of the belt on the motor spindle and make a burning rubber smell with some smoke. eventually the belt will burn through.

Post# 205872 , Reply# 10   11/4/2012 at 21:28 (2,712 days old) by daknx1994 (Southern Indiana)        

hey i checked it the brushes were fine there was still a good length on them. Took it outside (was afraid of what it would do) got her turned on and i saw some arching. I will toss the motor and keep the parts as they are still usable. Thanks again for all the help

Post# 205875 , Reply# 11   11/4/2012 at 23:23 (2,712 days old) by madabouthoovers ()        

Sadly thats the fate of lots of bagless cleaners that dont get the filters cleaned properly and regularly enough, lack of airflow through the motor, causes the windings to overheat and ruins the motor - if yours was indeed arcing pronounced ark-ing then its game over unless you can get another motor. As I said, many Dysons I have come across had loads of carbon brush life left, but were arcing and making smoke and terrible smell - each one had been run with blocked pre-motor filters due to neglect.

Post# 205882 , Reply# 12   11/5/2012 at 01:54 (2,712 days old) by jmurray01 (Scotland)        

jmurray01's profile picture
Too right Steve, I don't think I've ever seen a bagless cleaner which hasn't shown signs of being clogged or having been clogged at some point.

Even if the clog was removed and the motor returned to seemingly normal working order, there will probably be some damage there waiting to just give way.

Once again, bagged is best...

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