How to Maintain & Clean Your Central Vac System

vacuum on rug with a pair of white shoes

When something in your house sucks, that’s usually a problem, unless it’s your central vac. If your vacuum hasn’t been keeping up with your pets, kids, dust bunnies and crumbs, it could be a sign that your system needs a deep cleaning. 


Typically, central systems have far more sucking power than a standard vacuum, which means they clean your home more effectively and efficiently. This also leads to less dirt and debris making their way into your air and your home’s duct system. 


Unfortunately, you can’t have your vacuum installer come in and never look at your system again. Like all parts of your home, a built-in vacuum system needs a little love and care every few years. If you overlook it, you risk the system being overloaded with dirt and grime and needing repairs, which can be costly. That’s why it’s always a good idea to complete regular maintenance and cleaning on your system and hoses. 


Maintenance and Regular Cleaning


As far as the health of your central vac system is concerned, the best cure for vacuum woes is prevention. 


As long as you keep up with basic maintenance (like changing bags in your canister and replacing your filters), you won’t need a deep cleaning very often. Most people book a full cleaning alongside their annual furnace and duct cleaning services.


In addition to bags and filters, you’ll want to maintain your vacuum by checking that the exhaust isn’t blocked.




One of the main reasons people call us out specifically for a cleaning is because there’s a blockage in the tubing system that runs behind the walls. In this case, something is cutting off air flow and preventing most or all of the suction. If you have pets, it’s often a large clump of hair that’s caught up somewhere in your internal hose. 


If this is the case, you can diagnose where the blockage might be by testing your central vacuum cleaner at different inlet valves in your home. If there’s suction from one inlet but not from another your blockage is located specifically in that tube. If it’s further back in the system (closer to the canister), you’ll notice the lack of suction at most or all of your inlets.


After this, you can try to remove the blockage yourself. There are two main challenges here: first, it’s difficult to suction out the blockage when you’re having suction issues. As long as the blockage is only in one inlet (and you have two inlets that allow the vacuum hose to reach to both), you might be able to use your own vacuum to clear the blockage. Another option is to use a portable shop vac for this job. 


The second challenge is in unsticking whatever’s jammed up in there. If there’s something that’s really stuck, you’ll likely need a lot more power than what your own vacs can provide. In that case, you’ll typically have to call in a furnace and duct cleaning company. Since we’re equipped with high-powered vacuums and confined-space accessible tools, we’ll be able to get the air flowing through your central vacuum system again. 


Schedule Central Vac Cleaning in Edmonton


We’re an Alberta furnace and duct cleaning company in Edmonton that helps keep your home healthy and clean. You can save money on your regular central vacuum cleaning appointment by booking it alongside other home maintenance and cleaning services, including furnace and duct cleaning, chimney and fireplace cleaning, dryer vent cleaning, and humidifier service. We’re here to make sure your central vacuum system runs as efficiently as our high-powered vacs so you can breathe clean air every day.