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How to Clean a Dyson Ball Vacuum (Filters, Canister & More)

Written by Kaylee Barber |

how to clean dyson ball vacuum

Is your Dyson Ball vacuum suffering from lost suction power? Here’s a how to clean a Dyson Ball vacuum and restore its previous performance.

If your Dyson Ball has started to lose suction power, or the thermal cut-off keeps causing it to stop working, then a blockage or grime build-up could be the problem. The solution is usually simple: a deep clean!

In this article, we’ll go through a step-by-step process for cleaning your Dyson Ball vacuum. This guide will use the Ball Animal 2 as an example, but the process will be similar for any upright Dyson Ball.

Tip: As we want this article to be universal to Dyson Ball vacuums, we’ve left out instructions for assembling/disassembling that vary depending on the model. Check your vacuum’s instruction manual to find out how to perform these steps if you’re not sure.

Step 1: Check the Main Suction Tubes for Blockages

Before you begin cleaning your Dyson vacuum, make sure the machine is switched off and unplugged. You’ll be disassembling parts of the vacuum, so it’s important that there’s no risk of an electric shock.

The first step is to remove the canister and check the main suction tubes for any blockages. A clog or blockage on either the entrance or exit tube from the canister can greatly affect suction power, so this is an important location to check.

There are generally three places you can check once the dust canister has been removed:

  • The entrance vent to the dust canister.
  • The tube that exits the dust canister.
  • A third tube that’s often hidden behind a transparent hatch.

Step 2: Check the Brush Roll for Blockages

One of the most common places for a blockage or tangle is the brush roll.

Start by removing the floorhead from the main vacuum, then flip the two tabs to remove the bottom plate. This will give you easy access to the entire brush roll.

Next, use a pair of scissors to cut away any hair of string that’s become caught around the brush roll. While every vacuum will have some pet hair caught around the brush roll, this step is particularly important if you have pets or people in your household have long hair.

Finally, check that there’s not a blockage at the entrance to the main suction tube. Then reassemble the floorhead and reattach it to the vacuum cleaner.

Tip: Make sure that the brush roll spins freely. If it doesn’t, there could be a blockage behind the brush.

Step 3: Clean the Dust Canister

To clean the dust canister, you first want to remove the cyclones so that you can give it a deep clean. You do this by pressing down on the latch at the top of the cyclone, then using a button on the side of the canister to release the cyclones.

Once you have separated the dust canister, you should only use a damp cloth to clean inside. Dyson instructs that you shouldn’t use any detergents or air fresheners for the canister.

When you’ve finished cleaning the canister, take a look at the cyclones.

There is a thin mesh that goes around the cyclones that can often get clogged with fluff. If this is the case, use a soft, damp cloth to gently remove it to restore suction.

Make sure the canister and cyclones are fully dry before you reassemble the vacuum cleaner.

Important: The cyclones should never be immersed in water or even run under a tap. Only use a damp cloth to clean them.

Step 4: Check the Hose and Wand for Clogs

Remove the wand, then visually inspect it for blockages.

Next, take a look at the hose to see if there are any blockages. If you can remove the hose, then you could also try (gently) pushing the end of a broomstick through to see if there are any clogs deeper in the hose.

If you don’t want to remove the hose, then you can visually expand it section by section while looking for darker clogs inside or breaks in the hose.

Step 5: Wash Both the Filters

The Dyson Ball series typically has two washable filters. It’s important to make sure these are both unclogged, otherwise the amount of air flowing through the vacuum is greatly reduced.

  • The first filter is located at the top of the cyclones. You can remove it by detaching the dust canister, then pressing a latch to access the tubular filter. Rinse it in cold water until it runs clear, squeeze out excess liquid, then allow it to fully dry.
  • The second filter is located inside the ball itself. To access it, you’ll need to lie the vacuum on its back and unscrew the side of the ball. The filter is actually two parts – a foam ring and an outer shell – and you should separate these to wash separately. Again, you can rinse the filter with cold water, but do not squeeze dry this filter.

As a general rule, Dyson recommends cleaning both filters on the Ball Animal 2 at least once each month.

You should always allow the filters to try for at least 24 hours before you put them back into the vacuum cleaner. A wet filter will clog faster, may allow bacteria to grow, and risks water being sucked into the vacuum’s motor.

Important: Both the filters on the Dyson Ball Animal 2 are washable, but this may not be the case for other models. Make sure you check the manual before washing a filter.

Don’t Overfill the Dust Canister!

Dyson vacuums are designed not to lose suction as the canister fills up. However, this is only the case if the vacuum isn’t overfilled. Make sure you empty your Dyson Ball vacuum regularly and never fill beyond the “MAX” line.


Cleaning a Dyson Ball vacuum isn’t difficult, but it’s essential for making sure your vac maintains suction. Even a partial clog can cause suction loss or the motor to cut out, so it’s important to find any potential blockages and fix them.

Do you have any questions about cleaning a Dyson Ball vacuum? Or do you think we’ve missed a step? Please let us know in the comments section below.

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