So, I vacuum, a lot.
Which means if I don't clean or change my filter regularly the vacuum gets that NASTY smell it throws out when using a dirty filter. Filters are expensive. The filter for my vacuum is $27 (which is 1/5 of the cots of my vacuum! Crazy).
I had heard years ago that you could wash your filter in the dishwasher. I have to say I've been a total skeptic. Which is probably why after owning this vacuum for 7 years, purchasing a number of new filters, and it taking ONE HOUR to vacuum two rooms last week, I finally tried this.
Fed up with this stinky filter, I dumped the dust/trash out and tapped my filter a few times to get the extra dust and allergens out (sick, I know). then I tossed it all in the dishwasher with one of my dishwasher soap pods. Actually, the little mesh divider thing I washed by hand, I didn't want it to rust.
Here is how it came out! I was pretty surprised by how clean it got. And, it wasn't until I compared both pictures that I noticed just how clean everything came out.
I put the filter in the window sill to dry for a day or two. Then I ran my dishwasher empty to clean it once or twice - just in case, because I'm paranoid like that.
The filter seems to be working fine. My vacuum doesn't smell and....it finally SUCKS again!