A vacuum with a broken belt will not adequately clean the carpet.

How to Change Belts on Bissell Vacuum Cleaners

by Emrah Oruc

With young children crawling or running around the house, having a functioning, efficient vacuum cleaner is paramount. Kids spend a lot of time with their hands and faces either on or near floor, so carpets must be kept clean of dust and dirt. Even small objects such as bits of paper, string, small beads and buttons can be choking hazards, so frequent vacuuming is a must. Bissell offers many styles and models of vacuum cleaner. Most use a spinning brush to agitate the carpet and loosen dirt so it can be sucked up off of the carpet. The brush is turned by a belt, connected to the motor. If the belt breaks, the brush will not turn. When that happens to your Bissell, the brush is easily replaced with just a screwdriver.

Unplug the electrical cord from the wall socket.

Turn the vacuum upside-down so you are looking at the rotating brush.

Remove the four screws securing the plastic brush cover with a Phillips head screwdriver. On larger models that do not use screws, lift the tab located near the left wheel, then unlatch the three latches across the front of the brush cover. Remove the brush cover.

Lift the rotating brush up and pull it out of the belt. Pull the belt off of the motor pulley.

Install one end of the new belt on to the motor pulley, and the other end over the rotating brush. Be sure the belt is situated in the smooth part of the brush, between the bristles.

Keep tension on the belt and lower the brush into position. Be sure the rollers on each end of the brush fit into the slots in the vacuum head. Turn the brush by hand several times to verify that the belt runs straight.

Reinstall the brush cover. Latch or screw the cover to secure it.

Items you will need

  • Phillips head screwdriver


  • If you smell burning rubber while the vacuum is operating, it is an indication that the belt is worn and slipping on the brush or motor pulley, and needs immediate replacement.


  • Keep children away while you perform this repair procedure. The screws you remove are small and easily swallowed by curious kids.

About the Author

Emrah Oruc is a general contractor, freelance writer and former race-car mechanic who has written professionally since 2000. He has been published in "The Family Handyman" magazine and has experience as a consultant developing and delivering end-user training. Oruc holds a Bachelor of Arts in political science and a minor in economics from the University of Delaware.

Photo Credits

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