Skip to content

6 Best Shop Vacs in 2024

    You’re in the market for a reliable shop vac that can tackle messy jobs with ease. You’ve got a lot of options to choose from, but which ones are truly up to the task? From quiet and powerful to portable and convenient, the best shop vacs offer a range of benefits that can make all the difference in your cleaning routine. But what sets them apart, and how do you know which one is right for you? Let’s take a closer look at the top contenders and explore what makes them stand out from the rest.

    Fein Turbo I Wet/Dry Vacuum Cleaner

    Fein Turbo I Wet/Dry Vacuum Cleaner

    If you’re a woodworker, contractor, or DIY enthusiast seeking a powerful and quiet wet/dry vacuum cleaner for your workshop, the Fein Turbo I Wet/Dry Vacuum Cleaner is an excellent choice, boasting an impressive 151 CFM suction capacity and 98 PSI static water lift.

    You’ll appreciate its exceptional suction power, comparable to Milwaukee and Festool counterparts, and its super quiet operation at just 66 dB(A).

    The compact design features a convenient integrated bin on top for small accessories or tools, and storage spots for easy access.

    With its high-performance turbine delivering 151 CFM flow rate, you can tackle tough cleaning tasks with ease.

    Best For: Woodworkers, contractors, and DIY enthusiasts seeking a powerful and quiet wet/dry vacuum cleaner for their workshop.

    Pros:

    • Super quiet operation at just 66 dB(A)
    • High suction power with 98.4 PSI static water lift, comparable to Milwaukee and Festool counterparts
    • Compact design with convenient storage spots for small accessories or tools

    Cons:

    • Heavier than similar vacuums
    • Pricy
    • Awkward to move and difficult to change attachments

    Please set a valid Amazon tracking ID in the plugin settings.

    Vacmaster 12-Gallon Wet/Dry Shop Vacuum

    Vacmaster 12-Gallon Wet/Dry Shop Vacuum

    With its powerful 1350-watt motor and 5-peak horsepower, this Vacmaster 12-Gallon Wet/Dry Shop Vacuum is the best choice for homeowners and DIY enthusiasts who need a reliable and efficient cleaning solution for their garage or home.

    You’ll appreciate the strong suction power that makes quick work of dirt, dust, and debris.

    The detachable blower feature adds versatility, allowing you to switch from vacuum to blower mode with ease.

    Plus, the large 12-gallon capacity means you can clean for longer without needing to empty the tank.

    With a 19-foot cleaning reach and included accessories like extension wands and nozzles, you’ll be well-equipped to tackle any cleaning task.

    Best For: Homeowners and DIY enthusiasts who need a reliable and efficient cleaning solution for their garage or home.

    Pros:

    • Strong suction power for efficient cleaning
    • Detachable blower feature adds versatility and allows for easy conversion from vacuum to blower
    • Large 12-gallon capacity means you can clean for longer without needing to empty the tank

    Cons:

    • No specific drawbacks mentioned in the product details
    • May be heavy for some users at 23.7 pounds
    • Corded design may limit portability

    Please set a valid Amazon tracking ID in the plugin settings.

    CRAFTSMAN 16 Gallon Wet/Dry Vac

    CRAFTSMAN 16 Gallon Wet/Dry Vac

    The CRAFTSMAN 16 Gallon Wet/Dry Vac is ideal for tackling large cleanup projects in your garage or jobsite, thanks to its 6.5 Peak HP motor.

    This powerful machine comes equipped with a range of accessories, including a car nozzle, utility nozzle, and wet nozzle, as well as a 2-1/2 in. diameter hose with Dual-Flex technology.

    The vac also features on-board hose storage, accessory organizers, and an extra-large drain, making cleanup a breeze.

    With its lightweight design and impressive 60 inches of maximum suction, this vac is perfect for heavy-duty cleaning tasks.

    The purchase is backed by a 3-year limited warranty and 30-day return guarantee, providing peace of mind.

    Best For: Those who need a powerful and versatile wet/dry vacuum for large cleanup projects in their garage or jobsite.

    Pros:

    • Powerful 6.5 Peak HP motor for tackling heavy-duty cleaning tasks
    • Comes with a range of accessories, including car nozzle, utility nozzle, and wet nozzle
    • Lightweight design and impressive 60 inches of maximum suction for easy cleaning

    Cons:

    • Some reviewers mention issues with missing screws and broken teeth on the lid
    • Poor customer service has been reported by some reviewers
    • Some users may find the 26-pound weight to be a drawback

    Please set a valid Amazon tracking ID in the plugin settings.

    Armor All 2.5 Gallon Wet/Dry Utility Shop Vacuum

    Armor All 2.5 Gallon Wet/Dry Utility Shop Vacuum

    This lightweight and portable Armor All 2.5 Gallon Wet/Dry Utility Shop Vacuum is an ideal choice for those who need a reliable and versatile cleaning companion for their garage, shop, or car.

    You’ll appreciate its 2.5-gallon polypropylene tank, 2-peak HP motor, and 10-foot cord with cord wrap, which make it perfect for tackling small to medium-sized messes.

    The blower function is easily convertible, and the on-board accessory and hose storage keep everything within reach.

    Plus, the auto shut-off feature detects the fill limit and prevents overflow, giving you peace of mind.

    With its top handle and onboard storage, you can easily carry it around, and the built-in air and noise diffuser minimizes volume.

    Best For: Those who need a reliable and versatile cleaning companion for their garage, shop, or car, particularly for small to medium-sized messes.

    Pros:

    • Lightweight and portable design makes it easy to carry around
    • Auto shut-off feature detects the fill limit and prevents overflow, giving users peace of mind
    • Comes with a variety of accessories, including a 2-in-1 utility nozzle, crevice tool, and detail brush, making it a versatile cleaning tool

    Cons:

    • The 2.5-gallon tank may not be large enough for bigger messes or heavy-duty cleaning
    • The 120-watt motor may not provide enough suction power for heavier cleaning tasks
    • Weighs 7 pounds, which may be heavy for some users to carry around

    Please set a valid Amazon tracking ID in the plugin settings.

    DEWALT 9 Gallon Poly Wet/Dry Vac

    DEWALT 9 Gallon Poly Wet/Dry Vac

    If you’re tackling large-scale cleaning projects that require heavy-duty suction power, the DEWALT 9 Gallon Poly Wet/Dry Vac is an ideal choice, thanks to its 5-peak horsepower motor that can handle even the toughest messes.

    You’ll appreciate the ultra-durable rubberized casters that allow for smooth swiveling, making it easy to maneuver around obstacles.

    The 10-foot power cord with cord wrap allows you to have plenty of reach without the hassle of cords getting in the way.

    Additionally, the built-in blower port is perfect for blowing sawdust and debris, and the built-in accessory storage bag keeps all your attachments within easy reach.

    With its impressive specs and convenient features, this shop vac is a reliable partner for all your heavy-duty cleaning needs.

    Best For: Heavy-duty cleaning professionals, contractors, and DIYers who need a powerful and reliable wet/dry vacuum for large-scale cleaning projects.

    Pros:

    • Powerful 5-peak horsepower motor for heavy-duty cleaning
    • Ultra-durable rubberized casters for smooth swiveling and maneuverability
    • Convenient features like built-in blower port, accessory storage bag, and large tank drain for easy liquid removal

    Cons:

    • Heavy item weight of 24.91 pounds may make it difficult to transport
    • Noise level of 80 dB may be loud for some users
    • No specific mention of HEPA filter or advanced filtration system

    Please set a valid Amazon tracking ID in the plugin settings.

    DEWALT Cordless Portable Wet/Dry Vac Kit

    DEWALT Cordless Portable Wet/Dry Vac Kit

    The DEWALT Cordless Portable Wet/Dry Vac Kit is an ideal choice for those seeking a reliable and efficient cleaning solution for hard floors.

    With its powerful 20V MAX* battery and HEPA wet/dry filter trapping 99.97% of dust at 0.3 microns, this kit provides a powerful cleaning experience.

    You’ll appreciate the versatility of this kit, which comes with a 4 Ah battery and runs off all 20V MAX* battery packs for long runtime.

    The dual clean-up modes allow for debris removal with either the front utility nozzle or extendable rubber hose, making it easy to tackle various cleaning tasks.

    The portable vacuum is also easy to use, with a heavy-duty tank latch for emptying and cleaning, and a large on/off switch for one-hand access.

    Best For: Hard floor owners and those seeking a reliable and efficient cleaning solution for their homes.

    Pros:

    • Portable and cordless, making it easy to maneuver and use
    • HEPA wet/dry filter traps 99.97% of dust at 0.3 microns, making it a great option for those with allergies or asthma
    • Dual clean-up modes allow for debris removal with either the front utility nozzle or extendable rubber hose

    Cons:

    • Relatively small capacity of 0.5 gallons, requiring more frequent emptying
    • Weighs 7.04 pounds, which may be heavy for some users
    • Noise level of 80 dB may be loud for some users

    Please set a valid Amazon tracking ID in the plugin settings.

    Factors to Consider When Choosing Shop Vacs

    When you’re in the market for a shop vac, you’ll want to ponder a few key factors to guarantee you find the right one for your needs.

    You’ll need to think about the power and performance you require, as well as the type of filter and filtration system that’ll work best for your workspace.

    Power and Performance

    When evaluating a shop vac, consider the power and performance as they directly impact its ability to efficiently clean your workspace.

    A shop vac’s power is typically measured in horsepower (HP) or amps, with higher numbers indicating greater suction power. Look for a shop vac with a high HP or amp rating if you need to tackle heavy-duty cleaning tasks, such as large debris or heavy dust.

    However, more power doesn’t always mean better. Consider the types of tasks you’ll be using the shop vac for and choose a model that suits your needs. For lighter cleaning tasks, a lower-powered shop vac might be sufficient.

    Additionally, consider the type of motor used, as some shop vacs feature more efficient and quieter induction motors, while others may have more powerful but noisier universal motors.

    When evaluating performance, also consider the air watts (AW) rating, which measures the vacuum’s airflow and suction power. A higher AW rating typically indicates better performance.

    Filter and Filtration

    Two key factors to weigh when choosing a shop vac are the type and quality of filter used, as they directly impact the machine’s performance and your cleaning results.

    You’ll want to ponder the type of filter that suits your cleaning needs.

    If you’re dealing with fine debris and allergens, a HEPA filter is your best bet, as it can trap 99.97% of particles as small as 0.3 microns.

    On the other hand, cartridge filters like those used in the DEWALT 9 Gallon Poly Wet/Dry Vac can be washed and reused, making them a cost-effective option.

    Foam filters, like those used in the Armor All 2.5 Gallon Wet/Dry Utility Shop Vacuum, can also be washed and reused, but may not capture particles as small as those trapped by HEPA filters.

    Remember, the type of filter used can affect the suction power and airflow of a shop vac, so choose wisely.

    Regular cleaning and maintenance of filters are also vital to maintain peak performance and longevity of the shop vac.

    Noise and Operation

    As you’re choosing the right shop vac for your cleaning tasks, considering the noise level and operational features becomes essential, as they can substantially impact your overall cleaning experience.

    You’ll want to opt for a model that won’t disrupt your work or disturb others around you. Look for shop vacs with low noise levels, such as the Fein Turbo I Wet/Dry Vacuum Cleaner, which boasts a quiet 66 dB(A) operation.

    When it comes to operation, the suction power of your shop vac is vital. A more powerful motor will tackle heavy-duty cleaning tasks more efficiently.

    Consider the motor’s horsepower, as it directly affects the machine’s suction power and overall performance. Higher horsepower motors generally provide better cleaning results.

    Additionally, look for models with variable suction control, which allows you to adjust the suction power according to the task at hand, reducing energy consumption and wear on the motor.

    Some shop vacs even come with extra features like a detachable blower function, which can be useful for tasks like blowing sawdust or debris out of tight spaces.

    Portability and Design

    When choosing a shop vac, portability and design are essential factors to weigh, as they profoundly impact the convenience and ease of use of your cleaning tool.

    You want a shop vac that’s easy to carry around, store, and maneuver in your workspace. A compact design and lightweight construction, typically between 7 and 26 pounds, will make it easier to transport.

    Look for a top-mounted carry handle and integrated accessory storage to enhance portability and convenience.

    The size and weight of the tank also matter, with smaller tanks (2.5-5 gallons) being more portable than larger ones (9-16 gallons).

    If you need to move your shop vac around frequently, consider one with wheels or casters, especially for larger units.

    Additionally, a cordless or battery-powered shop vac can provide greater portability and versatility than a corded model.

    Capacity and Storage

    You’ll want to weigh the capacity and storage of a shop vac, as these factors substantially impact its overall performance and convenience in your workspace.

    A larger capacity shop vac can hold more debris and liquids, reducing the need for frequent emptying and making cleanup more efficient.

    For small to medium-sized workshops, a minimum capacity of 5 gallons is recommended, while larger workshops may require capacities of 10 gallons or more.

    When considering storage, think about the size and shape of the tank, as well as the availability of onboard storage for accessories and hoses.

    A compact design with a smaller footprint can be beneficial for smaller workshops or those with limited storage space.

    Some shop vacs offer detachable blower ports or other features that can affect the overall size and storage requirements of the unit.

    Additional Features

    Beyond capacity and storage, several additional features can substantially enhance your shop vac’s performance and convenience, so ponder what extras will make a meaningful difference in your workflow.

    When choosing a shop vac, consider the type of filter it comes with. A HEPA filter, for instance, can capture 99.97% of dust at 0.3 microns, making it ideal for those who work with fine particles.

    Some shop vacs come with a detachable blower, which can be super handy for blowing sawdust and debris out of tight spaces. On-board accessory storage and cord wrap can also keep your workspace organized and clutter-free.

    If you plan to use your shop vac for liquids, look for one with a built-in drain port, which makes emptying the tank a breeze. Some models even have an auto shut-off feature to prevent overflow.

    Additionally, if you work in noise-sensitive environments, consider a shop vac with a quiet operation feature, which can reduce noise levels to around 66 decibels.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Can I Use a Shop Vac to Clean up Water Damage in My Home?

    You can definitely use a shop vac to clean up water damage in your home, but make sure to act fast, as standing water can lead to mold and further damage, so get to work quickly!

    Are All Shop Vacs Suitable for Heavy-Duty Industrial Use?

    Like a titanic vessel traversing treacherous waters, you’re searching for a shop vac that can withstand the behemoth of industrial demands. But, not all shop vacs are built for heavy-duty use, and you’ll need one with industrial-grade motors and robust construction to tackle the task.

    How Often Should I Replace the Filter in My Shop Vac?

    You should replace your shop vac’s filter every 1-3 months, depending on usage and debris type, to maintain maximum suction power and prevent motor damage.

    Can I Use a Shop Vac to Vacuum up Flammable Liquids?

    You shouldn’t use a standard shop vac to vacuum up flammable liquids, as it can ignite and cause a fire; instead, you’ll need a specialized vacuum designed for hazardous materials or explosive atmospheres.

    Are Shop Vacs Safe to Use in Explosive Environments?

    When working in explosive environments, you need to exercise extreme caution. You shouldn’t use a standard shop vac, as it can ignite flammable materials. Instead, you’ll need an explosion-proof vacuum designed for hazardous locations.

    Conclusion

    You’ve got the dirt on the best shop vacs! Now, it’s time to suck up the perfect one for your messiest moments.

    A high-quality shop vac is like a reliable sidekick – it’s got your back (and floors) covered.

    So, don’t let messes get the best of you; get the best shop vac for the job and breathe easy knowing your space is spotless!