A popular option for homeowners looking to save a lot of money is to replace their central vacuum motor instead of swapping out the entire vacuum unit. This instructional article guides you through the process and provides tips and tricks to make it as easy as possible. The difficulty level is "easy-medium" and should not take more than one hour to perform.


  1. Be sure no power is going to the vacuum unit by unplugging the cord from the wall or turning off the house circuit breaker.
  2. UNITS THAT EMPTY FROM THE BOTTOM: The motors are in the top section of the vacuum tank. To get to the motor remove the top lid of the unit.
  3. UNITS THAT EMPTY FROM THE TOP: The motors are on the bottom of the vacuum unit. Remove the unit from the wall, turn it upside down, and open the bottom or bottom section to reveal the motor.
  4. Each motor has two or three wires that may run to other wires, relay, or mini-breaker. Disconnect the motor wires from these components. The new motor may not have the same connection as the old motor. If that is the case it may be easier to leave the motor connected to the component and to cut the wire off the motor. Then you can use a wire nut to tie the old wire to the new wire from the new motor.
  5. Next, remove the motor by taking off the nuts or screws holding it down along the wide horizontal section of the motor.
  6. Every motor sits on some kind of gasket. If the gasket is thick and detaches from the motor then reuse it, a replacement is probably not available. If the gasket is thin then we suggest buying our gasket.
  7. If the motor has a horn for the exhaust and something is attached to it, remove the attached piece. If the part is not salvageable then buy another motor coupling.


  1. Your new motor must sit on a gasket or there will not be a seal and your suction will be weak. Place the gasket on the motor and put the motor in place.
  2. Carefully tighten the new motor into place without over doing it. The motor shell can move up causing the motor fan to scrape on the bottom of the lower shell.
  3. All vacuum motors have neutral polarity, meaning either white or black or which ever of the two blacks (depending on the old and new motor) can be connected to either white or black. Basically, you cant mess the motor or components up if the motor wires are switched. Reconnect the motor wires. As stated before, if you dont have the proper ends then use a wire nut to splice the new wires to the old ones. Some motors have a green ground wire that will connect any where on the metal of the vacuum tank.
  4. TEST THE MOTOR. Before putting everything back together, plug the motor into power and test it using the on/off switch on the vacuum unit tank, or by shorting across the two low voltage connections on the outside of the tank, or by plugging the hose into a valve in the home.
  5. Put the vacuum back together and be sure it is properly and securely in place on the wall. Be sure the low voltage wire is connected properly, it doesnt matter which wire is connect to which connection.

Need assistance? Call Central Vacuum Online at 1-800-971-7172.