In some cases, vacuuming up spills can make stains worse or damage your machine.
Here are five things you should never vacuum
Used coffee grounds
Used, wet coffee grounds are annoying to clean but they should never be disposed of in a vacuum. They can clog the pipe, not to mention cause mould to grow inside.
Soil and plant debris
Leaves and soil can easily wind up inside thanks to the family puppy or someone forgetting to clean their shoes. Not only can reaching for the vacuum push the stains deeper into the carpet, the particles can also clog the vacuum's motor.
The best way to collect hair off the ground is to sweep it up. Hair has a tendency to wrap itself around the brush roll, which will need to be removed at a later stage.
A quick vacuum over a cord might seem harmless but it can actually damage the exterior and cause it to fray.
If you’ve recently completed some home renovations, it’s likely you’ll have piles of sawdust and other debris. While using a vacuum is tempting, it’s best to clean these up with a broom.
This article originally appeared on Better Homes and Gardens.