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Central Vacuum Motor Replacement - A Some-What True Story

It is not uncommon for do-it-yourselfers to replace the motors in their central vacuum systems. The job is not very difficult and there are online companies that offer free tech support for those wanting to tackle this job. However, be prepared for the boost in suction when you install the new motor. The following story comes from a customer email and is reprinted with his permission...

"Recently, I ordered a new motor for my central vacuum system. When it arrived, I eagerly opened the box. The motor was beautiful and I immediately ran to my garage in anticipation of having my vacuum back up and running. I carefully lifted the new motor from its packing and admired its gleaming fresh paint. My hands quivered with childish excitement as I slowly lowered it into the vacuum housing and dropped it in place.

Hmm, now how did those wires attach again? "Perhaps you should have made a diagram", my wife said over my shoulder. My stern look told her that her comments were not needed and she walked off with a shrug.

I was pretty sure the green one went to the... Wait, maybe it was the black one, or was it the red one? So many wires! What the heck, they are probably all the same anyway and it doesn't make any difference.

Oh, how I love to vacuum! I could almost hear the whir of the big motor and see all that dirt getting zipped off into oblivion as I made ready for the final assembly. I quickly snapped the wires into place and attached the unit back to the wall. Once all the hoses were firmly reattached, I was ready for the big moment.

That's when it happened.

I plugged the unit back in and, well, I guess I must have had some wired messed up. The motor jumped into action, but this time it was not the same. I did not hear the usual low hum or whir. No, this was something more akin to a hurricane! What started as a low rumble soon became like thunder! The motor roared and the entire house shook!

Without warning, I saw dirt from across the garage begin to get sucked toward the wall port! There wasn't even a hose attached, but it did not seem to matter! Soon, boxes were sliding across the floor! Rakes and mops were flying off the wall and being sucked to the little vacuum opening! I tried in vain to shut the machine off, but it was no use.

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