Lights on Shark Vacuums

What Do the Lights on Shark Vacuums Mean? [Green, Red, Off]

Shark vacuum cleaners come equipped with a handy feature – floorheads that sport an indicator light to notify users whether the brush is functioning correctly. However, it may be unclear what the various indicator lights signify, and how to rectify any errors.

Although Shark vacuum cleaners are renowned for their durability and reliability, they too can encounter errors or malfunctions like any other machine. In this article, we will delve into the most frequent causes for the different indicator lights that appear on Shark vacuums. While our primary focus will be on the brush roll indicator, we will also touch upon the potential implications of flashing headlights.

It’s important to note that Shark offers a diverse selection of vacuum cleaners, and while the indicator light colours are typically consistent across their range, the interpretation and solutions for these lights may differ depending on the model you own. Therefore, we highly recommend referring to your Shark vacuum manual for detailed instructions that are specific to your particular model.

What Do Shark Vacuum Lights Mean?

It’s highly recommended to consult your Shark vacuum cleaner’s manual to determine the specific meaning of the indicator lights for your model. However, for most Shark vacuums, the following is typically applicable: • A green light signifies that the brush roll is functioning correctly and is turned on. • A solid red light indicates that the brush roll is not functioning correctly, which is usually caused by a blockage in the floorhead or tangled brush roll. • A flashing red light usually indicates that the motor has overheated, leading to a shut-off in suction. • No light suggests that the brush roll is not turning as the vacuum is switched off, or it could indicate an unknown error.

Green Light: The Brush is Working Correctly

If the brush roll of your Shark vacuum is operating smoothly, you will observe a solid green indicator light. This indicates that the vacuum has not detected any issues and that the brush is functioning correctly.

Solid Red Light: There is a Blockage

If you notice a solid red light on your Shark vacuum, it’s typically an indication that there’s a blockage within the floorhead, impeding the brush roll’s free movement. To address this issue, switch off the vacuum and unplug it from the electrical outlet. Then, tilt the vacuum backwards and inspect the floorhead for any tangles or obstructions.

If the brush roll is entangled with hair or string, you can remove it using scissors. For more substantial blockages near the air inlet, you may need to remove the baseplate. Refer to your manual for specific instructions on how to do this.

It’s important to reassemble the floorhead correctly before using the vacuum again, as improper assembly may lead to further errors.

Note: It’s worth mentioning that a broken vacuum belt may also trigger a red light. The belt powers the brush roll, and a broken belt will impede its movement. However, replacing a vacuum belt is usually a straightforward process.

Flashing Red Light: Motor Overheating

Several Shark vacuum cleaners come with an automatic shut-off system to prevent motor overheating. When the vacuum detects overheating, the brush roll indicator light will flash red, and the suction motor will turn off.

To resolve this issue, follow these steps:

  1. Turn off and unplug the vacuum (if it’s a corded model).
  2. To address overheating in your Shark vacuum, make sure to empty the dust cup and check all the inlets and outlets for any blockages that may be causing the issue. Clumps of hair are a common culprit!
  3. Check the filters for clogging and clean/replace them if necessary. Ensure the filters are entirely dry before reinstalling them inside the vacuum.
  4. Allow the vacuum to cool for approximately an hour before using it again.

To prevent overheating, avoid overfilling your vacuum cleaner and refrain from using it for extended periods without allowing time for cooling. Additionally, clean your Shark’s filters at least once a month to prevent clogging.

It’s worth noting that Shark vacuums may shut off automatically if the hose isn’t correctly connected. Make sure that the hose, wand, and other vacuum parts are securely clicked into place to avoid this issue.

No Light: No Power or Other Error

If your Shark vacuum’s indicator light is blank, it may simply mean that the vacuum is switched off. However, it could also be an indication of an error when the vacuum has power and is turned on. If you’re experiencing this issue, we recommend taking the following steps:

  • Empty the dust cup.
  • Clean the filters.
  • Check the floorhead and brush roll for blockages.
  • Check the entrance and exit of the dust cup for clogs. If these steps don’t resolve the issue, you may need to contact Shark’s support team for further assistance.

Flashing Headlights

Shark vacuum cleaners often come equipped with headlights to help illuminate dirt and dust. However, sometimes the headlights may flash due to an issue with the brush roll. In most cases, this flashing is caused by the brush roll not being properly reassembled after cleaning. To fix this error, ensure that both sides of the floorhead lid are correctly locked into position.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does a Shark vacuum cleaner typically get blocked?

Blockages in a Shark vacuum can be caused by various factors. For instance, vacuuming large objects, overfilling the dust cup, or neglecting to clean the filters can all contribute to blockages. In addition, vacuuming damp materials can lead to clogs and can be dangerous if water reaches the motor. It’s essential to avoid vacuuming wet or damp materials with a vacuum cleaner that is not specifically designed for this type of cleaning.

What is the recommended frequency for cleaning the filters of a Shark vacuum?

Shark recommends cleaning the pre-motor filters around once a month as they tend to accumulate more dirt compared to the post-motor filters. For further details, you can refer to Shark’s guide on how to clean their vacuum filters.


Shark vacuum cleaners usually come with a brush roll indicator light that serves to show whether the brush roll is operating correctly or if there’s an error. When the brush roll is working as it should, the indicator light will display a solid green light. On the other hand, a solid red light indicates a blockage that’s causing the brush roll to stop spinning. If the indicator light is flashing red, the error is typically related to the vacuum overheating.

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