Vacuum cleaners have one job, and most do it well. But a broken roller belt will instantly cripple your vacuum and render your roller inoperable. Instead of spending money on a repair service (or a new vacuum), you can fix it yourself on the cheap. Here's how.
Picture: Charles & Hudson
If your vacuum suddenly sounds different and no longer picks up things it should, take a peek underneath while it's on and see if the brush roller is spinning. If it's not, then you likely have a broken roller belt. You may even be able to see a broken belt flopping around if you look close enough.
Once you've confirmed the belt is broken, replacing it is much easier than you think. Jot down your vacuum manufacturer and model number and search for it plus "vacuum belt" on Amazon. You can usually find a replacement belt for most major manufacturers, such as Hoover, Oreck, Eureka, Bissell and Dirt Devil. If Amazon doesn't have your belt, then go directly to a manufacturer's website and search for replacement parts. If the manufacturer doesn't sell direct to the public, they will tell you where to buy it.
To install the new belt, remove the bottom plate on your vacuum. There will be screws holding the plate on and possibly another plate that holds the roller brush in. Pull the brush out and take the time to clean it and remove all hair and string.
Pull out the old belt and install the new belt by first wrapping it around the spindle that is attached to the motor and then work it back around the roller brush end. It should be a snug fit but not too tight that the belt won't rotate.
Reattach the bottom plate then turn on your vacuum. Hopefully the belt starts spinning and you are back in action with the satisfaction you saved some money and fix it yourself.