Dyson Vacuum Pulsing: Why & How To Solve the Problem

A clogged filter or blockages in the different parts of the vacuum attachments usually cause a pulsing vacuum. To fix the situation, check all vacuum attachments and parts for blockages and replace the filter if necessary.

Dyson is a great brand of vacuum that tends to be very reliable, but even high-quality vacuums experience problems from time to time. If your Dyson vacuum is pulsing, here are the most likely causes.

Fixing your Dyson vacuum can be relatively simple, but diagnosing where the problem is can be the tricky part. This article will address the pulsing issue with Dyson vacuums and how you can fix it.

What Causes the Dyson Vacuum to Pulse?

More often than not, a Dyson vacuum will start pulsing when there’s an issue with the filtration or debris is lodged in one of the internal parts.

As a result, the vacuum cannot operate at full power and will start to pulse. Of course, when a vacuum can’t utilize suction properly, it’s going to have less cleaning efficiency than usual.

On the other hand, the pulsing sound you hear when there’s an issue with the vacuum is actually a safety measure. When the vacuum detects a blockage, it reduces suction power or turns itself off.

A blockage in any part of the vacuum can lead to overheating, damaging some of the internal components over time.

As such, addressing the root cause of a pulsing problem in the Dyson vacuum is important for getting your vacuum back to full power and preventing further damage.

How To Tell When You Have a Suction Issue?

symtoms of malfunctioning Dyson

Of course, the most obvious symptom of a malfunctioning Dyson vacuum is that the suction power is noticeably weaker or oscillates between full strength and poor airflow.

You’ll be able to observe this in the different sounds the vacuum makes and feel the lack of suction power on the attachments.

Dyson also has a feature to let you know the vacuum needs repairs in the form of a blue light blinking near the battery attachment. The blue light may indicate the following:

  • A drained battery
  • Blocked airways
  • Clogged engine filter
  • Unconnected attachments

Once you’ve made sure that the attachments you’re using are firmly installed and that the battery isn’t low, you can safely confirm that there’s an issue with ventilation and airflow that you need to address.

Different Types of Airflow Problems Causing Dyson Vacuum Pulsing

Pulsing in a Dyson can be caused by a number of problems, including the following:

  • Debris in the vacuum rod
  • Blockages in the cleaner attachments
  • Clogged filters
  • Worn out filters
  • Blockages in the vacuum cleaner

How To Fix a Pulsing Dyson Vacuum?

How To Fix a Pulsing Dyson Vacuum

Start with the basics when you’re troubleshooting your Dyson.

Take a look at your power cord to make sure that it’s firmly plugged in and that there’s no damage anywhere along the cord. A damaged power cord can reduce the power supply to the vacuum, causing it to pulse.

Similarly, if the cord has come loose or isn’t plugged in properly, then it’s possible that pressing it in the outlet firmly will fix the issue. It might also be worth experimenting with another outlet to see if the problem persists.

If the pulsing only occurs when you’re using one outlet, then it might be a power supply issue with the outlet itself, a job for a qualified electrician to fix.

Another quick check you can do is with the attachments on your vacuum. Take off all attachments and test whether the pulsing occurs without them.

If so, then the issue may be down to a bad filter or clogged vacuum rod. If not, then you have good reason to suspect that one of your attachments has a blockage.

Check each attachment, using light if necessary, for blockages. If you spot one, you can nudge the attachment to get it loose.

If it’s firmly stuck, you may need to use a drain cleaning rod or any other thin rod-like contraption to remove the blockage. You may dislodge the blockage and use the vacuum’s suction power to extricate the item from the attachment.

If necessary, you can clean the accessories with warm water to clean and remove debris from them. Just make sure to use a stopper to avoid clogging your pipes with anything that comes out of your attachments!

Checking the Vacuum Hose

You can use a similar process to check the vacuum hose. Remove it from the suction inlet cover and straighten it out to check for any debris inside.

Since the vacuum hose is quick and flexible, sometimes you can feel along the length of the hose to check for debris.

If there’s anything blocking it, you may be able to turn the vacuum on and squeeze the area being blocked to dislodge anything there and suction it into the vacuum’s dust collector.

You can, of course, use a pipe snake to remove the blockage if necessary.

Replacing the Filter

Another important maintenance effort, replacing your filter not only improves the efficiency of your vacuum, but also prevents blockages from building up.

The purpose of a filter is to prevent particulate matter from passing through, but over time, when the fins of a filter get too clogged with dust and debris, it won’t allow anything through.

Generally, you’ll notice this problem when your Dyson seems significantly less powerful than before, but it can cause pulsing, too.

Even if your filter doesn’t get clogged, it’s only good for a few weeks of use, and when the fins start to wear down, they’re not doing their job of blocking and capturing dirt.

Replacing your filter is just a plain old common sense move to keep your vacuum operating at peak efficiency. If you don’t, the following problems may arise:

In addition to these effects caused by reduced efficiency, a lacking air filters can also make the Dyson vacuum work harder, resulting in a significantly reduced battery life.

Cleaning Dyson Filters

Cleaning your Dyson filters should be the first step when your vacuum starts pulsing. The dust particles can easily be taken out by shaking the vacuum.

Make sure to rinse the filters with cold water even if they look clean.

How Often to Clean and Replace Filters?

You should replace your Dyson filter once every 12 months to prevent bad odors and poor performance from your vacuum.

You should also regularly clean your filter using tap water, letting it dry for 24 hours afterward.

How To Replace a Dyson Filter?

Replacing your filter is incredibly simple. Just follow the steps below:

  1. Unplug your Dyson vacuum from power source.
  2. Pull out the pre-filter at the top of the dust container.
  3. Insert the new pre-filter.
  4. Unscrew the post-filter on the back of your Dyson.
  5. Put on the new post-filter.

And just like that, your filters should be good to go.

Why Won’t My Cordless Dyson Stay On?

When a cordless Dyson vacuum is not charged enough, it switches off automatically. You should instantly put your Dyson to charge using the Dyson charging cord.

Your Dyson cordless vacuum will start flashing, which shows your Dyson is charging. The Dyson Vacuum battery takes around an hour to get fully charged.

Your Dyson vacuum cleaner can also turn off when its bin is full, so ensure cleaning the bin if it’s full.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is my Dyson vacuum pulsating?

Your Dyson vacuum starts pulsing when there is a problem in the air duct, causing air circulation problems. In most cases, we found fine dust clogged in the filters.

Why is my Dyson pulsing on and off?

According to Dyson, the pulsing and stuttering sound is a feature provided in their vacuum cleaners to let the user know there is an issue with the motor or airflow.

Why is my Dyson v7 pulsing?

Dyson V7 generally starts pulsing when it has dirty filters or some tangled hair. You can easily fix this problem by removing the filters and rinsing them in cold water. Also, make sure to look for tangled hair and take that out.

Why Is My Dyson V10 Pulsing?

Generally, Dyson V10 starts pulsing when there is a dirty filter or the dirt bin is full. This can be fixed easily with a regular cleaning habit of its filters. Sometimes, the Dyson V10 also starts pulsing on and off when it is in “Max Mode,” usually caused due to low battery.

Final Thoughts

A number of problems can occur with a Dyson vacuum, but none is more frustrating than a misbehaving vacuum that pulses on and off.

Thankfully, with a few quick checks, you can sort this problem out yourself. After checking for power supply issues, check for blockages in the rod and attachments. If there’s nothing, consider replacing your air filters for the best results.

If your Dyson vacuum has stopped charging, read our troubleshooting guide on Why is My Dyson Vacuum Not Charging?

Robbert Randy

Robbert is an expert in vacuums. He graduated from the University of Applied Science with a degree in Commercial Economics in 2019. He tests and provide troubleshooting tips to vacuum users on his website. He don’t do this for profit–he simply want to research the best models out there and share his findings.

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