Thread Number: 39327  /  Tag: Recent Vacuum Cleaners from past 20 years
Strangest or worst clog found in vacuum
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Post# 417239   12/14/2019 at 08:21 by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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What is the worst clog or strangest cause of one you've found in a vacuum cleaner?

For me it was a Kenmore Progressive Direct Drive upright. I got it at Habitat for $10. It had a brand new HEPA bag in it, and ran fine when I tested it, but it had a very high pitched sound. I knew there must be a clog, but for the price and its otherwise very good condition, I took it home.

It turned out the hose had a huge clog that went on for several inches. It took a long time to get it out, since 1 it is a stretch hose and 2 the stuff was really packed.

What I finally found was somebody had sucked up a cigarette pen which was causing the clog. There were also bits of crayons and small toys that had gotten stuck. It was a big amount of stuff clogged in there.

My guess is the bag was new because they replaced it to see if that would clear the issue, and when it didn't, they donated it.

Post# 417240 , Reply# 1   12/14/2019 at 08:49 by Hoover300 (Central Kentucky)        

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I have 2. One was a barn find Powerforce bagless that had a wet 4 inch dog fur clog down the white hose. Took me almost an hour and punctured the hose while doing so. Worked great after though. The other is one of those clean air Hoover Preferreds. The swivel hose can't be removed from the body, and there was a 2-3 incher made of fur right above the swivel arm in the stretch hose. That sure was fun.

Post# 417243 , Reply# 2   12/14/2019 at 10:08 by dysonman1 (Rolla, MO)        

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My favorite is about the lady with the Filter Queen who said it stopped sucking up the fluff. And she wanted her money back. When the largest pair of big girl panties were extracted from the hose, she claimed that they were not hers. "No, they do look a little too small for you". She grabbed her Filter Queen and drug it across the parking lot.

Post# 417248 , Reply# 3   12/14/2019 at 10:57 by Tekjunkie28 (Roanoke Va)        

When I met my wife is when I found the worst clog Iíve ever seen. She asked me if I could fix her old vacuum and I said yes sure. Knowing it was a bissel bagless I figured small clog, filter or a broken belt. Well 2 hours later and duct tape I was done. It was clogged solid all the way from the canister to the brush roll. I had to cut the hose to get it all out. There is absolutely no way that that vacuum sucked through all that. It was as if someone took a rod and just packed junk into the hose like a trash compactor. That was 11 years ago and Iíll never forget that.

Post# 417260 , Reply# 4   12/14/2019 at 18:54 by MadMan (Chicago, IL, USA)        

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A trash find Eureka AirSpeed... I kid you not, about 50 hairpins stuck in the first bend right near the nozzle. Pretty obvious why they threw it out.

Then my friend's office vac, some kind of modern Hoover, I forget. It was plugged with only dust, no appreciable amount of hair or other solids. But the ENTIRE nozzle up to, and touching, the brushroll, and maybe 4 or 5 inches up into the hose was just one BIG dust bunny. Honestly, my best guess is that they repeatedly vacuumed wet carpet first, then dry second, caking up the dust. Just a guess though.

Post# 417262 , Reply# 5   12/14/2019 at 20:17 by vacuumman (California)        

I once found a Dyson upright where somebody sucked up a Crayola marker using the hose. Fortunately, it had not formed a true clog yet, but if anybody used the hose after that, the results wouldn't have been pretty.

Post# 417263 , Reply# 6   12/14/2019 at 20:52 by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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One thing I've noticed in most of these replies, is uprights with stretch hoses. To me this causes the issue with all of the crannies in these ribbed hoses. In my case with the Progressive it's much worse because the hose has about 4 bends plus the elbow where it connects to the back of the vacuum. The one at the clip that is meant to keep the machine from falling over when you use the hose is especially sharp.

I also forgot, the machine actually had a second clog. The brushroll had a dryer sheet caught in it in front of the hose opening. So there were not one but two clogs. Surprising all of that happened given for a machine that was about 10 years old it is in quite good shape (very few scratches and all attachments were actually on it, etc).

Post# 417270 , Reply# 7   12/14/2019 at 23:11 by cam2s (Nebraska)        

Found a sock once in the diverter of an upright Sharp. Had to trash that one because the motor overheated and it warped the housing and no longer airtight. The twin energy I just found a few days ago had some kind of plastic bracket jammed in the attachment hose. Had to break it apart with pliers and then pull all the crap that has accumulated out as well. Also found a cat toy in the neck of a Kenmore Progressive canister. I donít remember what machine it was but I remember doing a clean air upright that was almost completely backed up from where the hose fed into the bag chamber down to the brush roll almost.

Post# 417274 , Reply# 8   12/15/2019 at 00:59 by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

At the vac shop-first was a CarpetPro that was in a restaurant-the machine TRUIED to ingest a WHOLE hamburger!The worst mess ever!!Next another from a restaurant-was a Sanitaire that had half of a mouse in the fan chamber-other half clogging the bag intake.

Post# 417275 , Reply# 9   12/15/2019 at 01:56 by gregvacs28 (space coast)        

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Other peoples stories are the best. One just can't make up some of these things.
A "Half a mouse"? lol. so many questions.

The worst clog? Found a nice LOOKING canister electric hose for a Hoover Celebrity back in 1985ish .... at Goodwill when they would sell just about anything. Thought I had a super deal. Got it home, connected it to a machine but there was no suction power AT ALL. I tried to work the clog loose but with no luck at all.
Found out later the hose which was made from a several layers of materials, had apparently collapsed on it'self or melted shut about 3' from the end during manufacturing. A stick slid in dislodged nothing. Cutting open the hose revealed the plastic collapse inside.
It looked perfect from outside.
What's even more interesting is a vacuum cleaner store in the area had given the hose to Goodwill to sell. I found this out when I took the hose in to see if they could fix it. She admitted it looked familiar and that they had had it and couldn't figure out what was wrong with it.

Post# 417278 , Reply# 10   12/15/2019 at 03:04 by huskyvacs (Midwestern US)        

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Eureka Corvette Vac. Open the front plate and the entire thing is packed completely solid from the brushroll to the inside handle with loose carpet fibers. Automotive carpet. They actually started expanding and poofing out of the opening as soon as I took the cover off. It had such a strong suction motor I guess it just kept scooping them up but they were just packing inside the vacuum. It got so full that the belt caught some of them on fire, then broke, and then the person tossed it into Goodwill and I bought it.

Post# 417280 , Reply# 11   12/15/2019 at 06:34 by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

Figure the mouse was mangled and chopped in half by the brushroll and fan.What a way for a mouse to go!Both the burger vacuum and mouse vacuum STANK!!!!!Those food places should have used a Bissel push type sweeper or a broom.

Post# 417288 , Reply# 12   12/15/2019 at 14:11 by MadMan (Chicago, IL, USA)        

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Not exactly a vacuum, but the half a mouse story reminds me of a customer's car once. No / very little airflow from the heater vents, blower fan making loud noise. A whole dead squirrel was in the middle fan blade - throwing it off balance and blocking the airflow! Funny that those types of fans are called 'squirrel cage' fans lol. Didn't even stink, it'd been dead for so long.

Post# 417311 , Reply# 13   12/16/2019 at 15:58 by vexorgtr (Sheffield, Ohio)        
Carpet fiber

When we first moved here, we were using a Hoover Tempo Widepath. My Uncle in law was helping with the move, and in not checking the vac at any point, filled the bag to the brim, and then packed the hose full of carpet fibers. It was hard packed, and took a plumbers snake to fix.

Post# 417344 , Reply# 14   12/17/2019 at 15:52 by undertaker67 (ABILENE)        
Dog Hair

Just bought a Rainbow E2 Series off of FB Marketplace, it was extremely clean looking for an older vacuum, got it home dusted it off good and tried to vacuum and noticed the hose must be clogged up, got to digging around trying to get it loose, finally had to take the handle off and shove a pvc pipe all the way thru it and finally got the hairball that had been in there for quite some time out, vacuums like a brand new one now, I'm pretty sure the only reason she sold it so cheap was not knowing it had a clog...

Post# 417345 , Reply# 15   12/17/2019 at 16:38 by gregvacs28 (space coast)        
I did the Carpet fiber once

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With an Electrolux upright 2500. They don't have the automatic feature like an Olympia and just keep going. Carpet fiber doesn't really block airflow, they're just bulky.

I flipped the vacuum over and the suction hole was blocked and it was blocked all the way to the bag.
Simply replaced the bag and it sucked all the fluff in the ducting into the new bag.

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Post# 417346 , Reply# 16   12/17/2019 at 16:46 by gregvacs28 (space coast)        

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years ago unclogged a old style Nutone CV hose for a neighbor.

I could see it where it was clogged because when you plug the hose in and the suction came on, the hose up to the part of the clog would shrink as the suction collapsed it.

I tried gently twisting the hose at the point but no luck. Finally stuck the opposite end of the hose in the wall, went down and turned the vacuum on manually, then sealed the hose to the port with my fingers, and that sucked the junk out in reverse. There was a piece of a bic pen in there.

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Post# 417451 , Reply# 17   12/20/2019 at 05:22 by vacuumdevil (Vacuum Hell )        

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I would say the worst clogg I have found was a dead bird In a TriStar.

The smell of dead things is always unforgettable.

Post# 417549 , Reply# 18   12/24/2019 at 11:55 by crazykirbydude (Lexington, KY)        

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For me, it was several dog toys jammed in an Electrolux hose!

Post# 417565 , Reply# 19   12/24/2019 at 21:30 by edog192 (Lowell, MA)        

Years ago, I had a direct air Dirt Devil Featherlite. I was vacuuming near the couch one day and all of a sudden it made a buzzing noise. I flipped it over, took off the base plate and looked but didnít appear to have a clog. So I took off the nozzle cover and removed the cover to the dirt passage and there I found a velcro strap lodged in the fan.

More recently, I came across a mouse that was in my shop vac. The mouse had climbed up into the hose. When I turned it on, it made a high pitched sound like it was clogged. A few seconds later, the sound went back to normal. I took the lid off and there was a mouse. I set it free afterwards.

Post# 417568 , Reply# 20   12/25/2019 at 00:59 by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

Suppose that mouse didn't like his "ride" in the Shop Vac!

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