If you have a shark, you probably already encountered the “shark-vacuum-brush-not-spinning” issue.
As a happy owner of a Shark Navigator Lift Away, I’m well aware of this problem.
And if you don’t have a second vacuum cleaner (no judgment here) on hand, you’ll need to get it fixed quickly.
To be honest, I haven’t experienced all the possible reasons for this problem with my Shark Navigator since it may vary depending on Shark vacuums model.
However, to make things easier for you, I’ve done some research and listed all the possible issues and solutions.
Whether you own a Shark Rotator, DuoClean, Shark Apex, or Navigator LiftAway, this guide will surely be of help. If not, I suggest contacting Shark company directly as there may be a problem with your specific model.
Shark Vacuum Roller Brush Not Spinning: Possible Reasons and Troubleshooting Tips
Reason 1: Brush Roll Switch Not Turned On
If your Shark vacuum has a floor selector switch to activate the brush roll, check if it’s turned on in the right position.
The right position depends on Shark vacuum models:
- Some models have an “I” of “II”,
- Others have a “carpet” or “hard floors” setting.
It’s usually located at the base of the top handle located or directly on the top handle as you can see from the visuals below:
To make the Shark vacuum brush roll spin, set the switch to “II” or “Carpet”. This starts the brush roller spinning, ready for cleaning carpets and area rugs.
The “I” and “Hard Floor” settings just use suction on its own, which is suitable for cleaning bare floors.
- Slide the selector to the right option: “II” or “Carpet”.
- Recline the vacuum handle
- The Shark vacuum brush will automatically come on.
Reason 2: Vacuum Locked in the Wrong Position
The upright position locks the brush roll. So if your Shark vacuum is in the upright position, the brush roll won’t spin.
What’s a bit misleading is that the brush roll indicator light still shows green. This indicates that your vacuum cleaner doesn’t have any technical issues. That’s good news but it won’t rotate.
Reason 3: High Pile or Thick Carpets Vacuumed With the Wrong Setting
If you vacuum high pile or thick carpets and you notice that the brush roll is not rotating, you probably used the wrong setting: either too much suction or hard floor/carpet low pile setting.
In such a case, you may have stalled the brush motor and the brush roll indicator repeatedly turns red.
These settings are usually located at the front of the top handle:
- If the vacuum has a thick carpet setting, use it. If not, turn the suction control down to the minimum setting.
- Switch the power on.
- Recline the handle to activate your Shark roller brush.
Reason 4: Blockage in The Brush or Hose
Another reason for the brush not to spin is if there’s a blockage in the brush bar or hose.
When this happens, the vacuum cleaner automatically shuts down to prevent damage on the belt. Then the indicator light of the brush illuminates red.
- Switch off and unplug the vacuum cleaner.
- Check the hose and brush roll for any blockages, like tangled hair or clumps of large debris. Remove anything you find.
- If necessary, clean the Shark vacuum brush and hose to avoid damage to the belt.
- You can also clean the hose using cold water and a wire hanger to remove clumps.
- Wait 24 hours for any washable parts to dry, and then simply reconnect the pieces before turning the vacuum back on.
Reason 5: Damage to the Belt
In the worst scenarios, the belt may be worn or broken.
And since vacuum belts work to spin the vacuum’s brush roller, a broken or damaged belt will make the brush stop spinning.
If your vacuum sounds different from normal, then this is a sign that the belt is wearing down.
Reason 6: Connection Issue
Sometimes the red lights won’t be illuminated. Instead, there will be no light at all.
If this happens, you probably have a connection issue between the main unit, the wand and the nozzle head.
Alternatively, the lights may be flashing. This means that the brush roll garage is not completely closed.
This includes all the separate components as well as ensuring the roller brush compartment is closed.
Reason 7: Full Dust Cup or Clogged Lint Screen
When the dust cup hits the max level or the lint screen is clogged, the brush roll will stop spinning.
The vacuum cleaner can’t vacuum more than its capacity. So to prevent it from overfilling, it simply stops rotating.
- Remove the dust cup from your Shark vacuum and use the release button to empty it into your trash can.
- Gently brush the lint screen to remove any debris from it.
- Replace both parts before using your vacuum.
Reason 8: Overheated Motor
Since Shark vacuum cleaners are equipped with a motor-protective thermostat, the vacuum will cut out if the motor starts to overheat.
This is most likely to happen when the brush is jammed.
As a measure of security and to prevent serious damage, the vacuum will turn off or the brush roll indicator light will flash red.
- Turn the vacuum off and unplug it
- Empty the dust cup
- With the dust cup still off, clean the filters according to the user guide.
- Inspect the vacuum roller brush for any blockages. Remove any pet hair or carpet fibers
- Leave the vacuum to cool for at least 45 minutes
- Plug in the vacuum and turn it on.
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Finally! I have been looking for tips on why my new shark canister brush won’t spin on the carpet. The carpet is new, has a low pile and is thick. I get the vacuum home take it out of the box and set it up and turn it on. All is well until I try to vacuum the carpet. It stops and the red light comes on. I am thinking maybe this vacuum won’t work on my thick carpet? I then go on line looking for advice and everything just talks about unclogging, cleaning, etc. But none of the articles mention getting the settings just right until I come across your article. I follow your instructions and I try again and it now seems to work fine, I was thinking I would have to take it back to the store. Thank you for your advice on getting the settings right on my new shark canister vacuum.
Thanks for your nice feedback on my article.
I’m so glad I was able to help you!
Have a nice day
My green light comes on for a second when i switch it from bare floor to high carpet. The green light shut off and then I just here are going through it I checked the connections the brush everything and then it works the next day so I don’t understand please help
Thanks for your comment. I’m sorry to hear you’re having trouble with your Shark vacuum cleaner.
To help you, can you tell me what is your model?
So, I’ve tried everything suggested but still not spinning
Thanks for your comment and for taking the time to read my article.
Could you tell me what’s your Shark vacuum cleaner model?
Hi! I have the Shark Duo Ion cordless vacuum and my brush stopped spinning while vacuuming carpet. I cleaned the brush, emptied the lint, etc. The green light is flashing and the brush still isn’t working. I’ve tried about everything… I’d love some help please. 🙏💜
It looks like you have a blockage in your handheld vacuum.
Try the following: remove the ION Power Pack and check for any blockages. Remove the blockages and then reconnect your vacuum.
If the light turns green, you successfully cleared the blockage.
Let me know if it worked out!
I have a lift away,the roller has stopped working,no roller light on ive took it apart no blockages anywhere,just washed all the washable filters but they weren’t that bad as I do them often,any ideas please
Thanks for your comment! If I understand well the situation, you may have a connection issue. Have you checked that all the parts are properly attached?
Let me know!
My shark hoover brushes rotate on setting 1- tiles when it shouldn’t, but don’t rotate on normal carpet setting – very frustrating
I’m so sorry to hear you have issues with your Shark brushes! I guess you set the brush roll on carpet mode?
Have had my Shark for about three weeks. The brush roller works on bare floor, but will not clean my carpet. Have done all the trouble shooting, with 2 service video calls, to no avail. Set for II,(carpet), lowest suction, but roller stops and red light comes on, either right away, or after 15 or 20 seconds. Ready to send it back.