How To Clean A Shark Vacuum: 5 Simple Steps

By Gladys K. Connelly Updated October 17, 2021

Bring your Shark vacuum cleaner back to life with a deep clean

How To Clean A Shark Vacuum: 5 Simple Steps

Has your Shark vacuum cleaner lost its suction? Is it smelling odd? When was the last time you cleaned it? A dirty or clogged vacuum can cause a lot of problems when you’re cleaning.

But, don’t stress! There are some easy tips you can use to efficiently clean your Shark vacuum so that it doesn’t lose suction power. With the right method and maintenance tips, you can easily clean your vacuum to keep it running efficiently and increase its lifespan.

With our step-by-step guide on how to clean a Shark vacuum, your cleaner can feel like a new vacuum again. And you can get back to enjoying all the benefits of Shark vacuums.

How Do I Clean My Shark Vacuum?

  • Disconnect your shark cleaner from the power outlet.
  • Remove and empty the dust cup. Wipe clean with a dry cloth.
  • Remove the handle of your vacuum and check each section for blockages.
  • Wash the filters, the brush-roller and bristles and let air dry for up to 24 hours.
  • Unclog the hose using a wire hanger or stick. Reassemble your vacuum.
Table of Contents

How To Clean A Shark Vacuum

How Often Should You Clean A Shark Vacuum Cleaner?

According to Shark’s support, you should clean your vacuum cleaner “as needed” (1). Therefore, how often you need to clean a Shark vacuum depends on how often you use it.

But, to help you out, there are some signs for when to clean your cleaner. For a good idea of how often to clean a shark vacuum, do so when:


We recommend you deep clean your vacuum at least every 3 months.

We also recommend that you clean the brushes and filters once a month if they’re very dirty. And empty the dust canister after each use as well as clean it once a week.

How To Maintain & Clean My Shark Vacuum?

These cleaning methods can apply to all Shark vacuums, including Shark Navigator Lift-Away, Shark Rotator, or Shark DuoClean. The recommendations and cleaning process for these shark models are the same.

However, accessing or activating different parts of the vacuum may differ for each model. For example detaching the bin, filters, rotating brush head, or hose.

So make sure you check the owner’s manual to find out how to properly access these parts of your vacuum.

Empty the Dust Cup

Before you empty the dust canister, make sure your Shark vacuum is turned off and disconnected from the power outlet.

Then, press the release button to remove your dirt canister. Hold it over your trash can while removing it so that dust doesn’t spill into your floor.

Press the latch to open the dust cup and empty the dirt and dust into your trash bag. Remove all of the dust and dirt build-ups inside of your cup.


Shark doesn’t recommend using any liquid or soapy water to clean the dust cup. But, once it’s empty, you can wipe it out with a dry cloth. Also, do not put your dirt canister in a dishwasher, this could cause damage.

Check For Blockages

Next, check for any blockages. If you think there may be a blockage in your vacuum, take it apart and check for any obstructions in each section.

For an upright model, remove the handle and turn the vacuum on to see if there is any suction. If not, there may be a blockage in the handle or hose.

With a stick vacuum, look through the wand to see if there is anything lodged in the pipe.

Finally, check the arm of your floorhead or floor nozzle where you connect the wand.

Wash the Filters

Depending on the model of your Shark vacuum, you may have HEPA filters or additional filters. The HEPA filter may be foam rubber filters, or felt filters. Make sure you check the instruction booklet for your model to find out how to access your Shark vacuum filter.

For both felt or foam filters, first, tap off any loose dirt or debris. Then, rinse them under a tap using only clean cold or warm water. Rinse off all dust and dirt from the foam or felt filters until the water runs clear.

Allow your shark vacuum filters to completely air dry before you replace them back into the vacuum.


Do not use detergents or warm soapy water to clean your hepa filter. The solution can get stuck in the microfibers and can ruin the filters. Also don’t dry the shark vacuum filter in a tumble dryer, microwave, or near an open flame.

Clean the Brushes

Depending on your Shark model, there are two types of brush-rolls. You may have a vacuum head with one brush-roll or DuoClean floorhead.

1. Cleaning DuoClean Floorheads

DuoClean floorheads have both a bristle brush-roll and a soft brush front roller.

To clean the bristles, remove the cover according to your user manual. Remove any debris, dirt, or blockages on the bristles.

To clean the soft front roller brush, tap off any loose debris or pet hair. You can use a dry towel to wipe away any debris caught in the teeth behind the brush roll.

You can use clean water to wash away any stubborn dirt. But, make sure you remove excess water and let it completely dry for at least 24 hours before you replace it.

2. Cleaning Floorheads With One Brush-Roll

First, detach the floorhead from your vacuum.

Some shark vacuum models have a base section that’s removable for access to the brush roll. So check your instruction manual to find out how to access your brush roll.

Then, remove any debris from the bristles. You can use scissors within the brush-roll groove to cut any string, hair, or debris that may be wrapped around the brush roll.

3. Sanitize Shark Brushes

If you want to sanitize your brush roll or your soft front roller, you can use a mixture of water and vinegar.

White vinegar is used as a household cleaning agent. It’s made from acetic acid and can be used to remove bacteria and mold, as well as mineral deposits (2). It’s also an odor absorber. So it acts as a natural deodorizer too.

If your brush is removable and you want an even deeper clean, you can add baking soda. Baking soda is a natural good cleaning mineral abrasive. Mineral abrasives can be used to clean surfaces by creating friction that lifts off stubborn food or debris build-up (3).

Make sure you wash and rinse your brushes completely.

Lastly, let them dry for at least 12 to 24 hours before replacing your brush roller or soft front roller.

Clean the Hose

Remember to turn your cleaner off and disconnect from the power outlet before you detach the hose.

After detaching your hose completely from the vacuum, inspect the inside of it for blockages. Lay the hose flat and check all openings for clogs or clumps. You can also use a flashlight to help you see any obstructions inside of your hose.

Use a wire hanger, broomstick handle, or any other stick that fits the length of your entire vacuum hose to remove the clogs.

If there is a lot of dirt and clogs in your vacuum hose, we recommend that you clean it with water. Place your hose in your sink and wash it out thoroughly with cold water.

If you want to sanitize your hose, you can use the same mixture of baking soda and vinegar that you used on your brushes. Mix the two ingredients together with some water and pour it through your hose.

Don’t forget to wash and rinse your hose completely when you finish.

Lastly, let it air dry completely for at least 12 to 24 hours before reattaching it to your cleaner. And reassemble your vacuum properly before turning it back on.

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Enjoy a Cleaner Clean!

A dirty vacuum can lead to bad odors, inefficient cleaning, and difficulties with your vacuum. If you don’t clean your vacuum regularly, you can end up with a lot of problems down the line. For example, suction or cleaning loss.

But, now you don’t have to worry! You can easily enjoy a clean Shark vacuum to avoid losing any suction power or dealing with unpleasant odor.

Regularly inspect your vacuum for blockages and debris. Clean out your dirt container and felt or foam filter as often as you can. And make sure you clean your hose and brushes or sanitize them using vinegar and baking soda!

With these tips, you can easily stay on top of your cleaning sessions with a well-running and clean shark vacuum!

Let us know in the comments below if you have any questions! Or, share this article with a friend.

About the Author

Gladys K. Connelly

As a HouseKeeping Technical Writer, Gladys actively enjoys writing guides and tips about housekeeping for Thehousewire's audience. She's a housekeeping specialist with just shy of 9 years' experience to boast. That, combined with seven years prior experience in teaching, helps her create content that is both captivating and insightful.

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