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Best Shop Vac for 2023

Bynewsmagzines

Feb 3, 2023
Best Shop Vac for 2023


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Keeping your car interior clean is important, and often you can get the job done with a traditional car vacuum, but some messes need a little something extra. Dirt, dust, crumbs and more can overwhelm an interior faster than you might think, and the worse the problem gets, the harder to correct. Shop vacs usually have a little extra oomph to them and can handle dry and wet messes alike. If you’re in the market for the best shop vac for car detailing or just to keep your interior, garage, or home as nice as it can be, we’ve pulled together this list of great options for small dry clean-ups or big wet spills.

Key Features

  • Features a 2.5 gallon polypropylene tank
  • Plugs into standard outlet via a 10 foot cord
  • Wet/dry suction
  • Built-in accessory/hose storage
  • Can be easily converted into a blower
  • Also includes a reusable cloth filter, a foam wet filter, a 2-in-1 utility nozzle with a brush, a crevice tool, a deluxe car nozzle, a blower nozzle with adapter and a detail brush

This Armor All vacuum is a traditional wet/dry utility vac with a 2.5 gallon polypropylene tank. It has a 10-foot cord with a cord wrap that plugs into a standard electrical outlet. In addition to being a vacuum, it also has a blower function. The vac includes a 6-foot x 1¼-inch hose, a reusable cloth filter, a foam wet filter, a 2-in-1 utility nozzle with brush, a crevice tool, a deluxe car nozzle, a blower nozzle with adapter, and a detail brush.


Key Features

  • 2.5 gallon tank
  • 2.0 peak HP motor
  • Portable w/ a handle on top
  • Features a wall-mounted design for easy storage
  • Wet/dry suction
  • Can be converted to be used as a blower
  • 6-foot long power cord
  • 4-foot x 1 1/4-inch diameter hose
  • Includes a gulper nozzle, crevice tool, standard cartridge filter, filter bag and foam sleeve

This Shop-Vac brand vacuum is another great choice if you’re looking for something on the smaller side. It has a 2.5-gallon tank and has a built-in handle on top for easy portability. It can be even mounted to your wall for storage. Like most shop vacs, it has both wet and dry suction and it can be converted to be used as a blower. This option has a 6-foot power cord with a 4-foot hose, giving the user around 10 feet of maneuverability. It comes with a gulper nozzle, crevice tool, standard cartridge filter, filter bag and foam sleeve.


Key Features

  • 2.5 gallon tank
  • 2.0 peak HP motor
  • Built-in foldable top handle
  • 8 foot long cord
  • 4 foot long hose
  • Wet/dry suction
  • Built-in accessory storage
  • Can be converted into a blower
  • Includes a crevice tool, 2-in-1 utility nozzle, a reusable cloth filter and a foam sleeve filter

The last of our 2.5-gallon options, this one is a lesser-known brand but comes in at a much better price point. Like the others, it has a 2.0 peak HP motor and a carrying handle, but this one is foldable. It has an 8-foot power cord with a 4-foot hose for about 12 feet of maneuverability, built-in accessory storage and of course can be converted into a blower. It comes with a crevice tool, 2-in-1 utility nozzle, reusable cloth filter and a foam sleeve filter.


Key Features

  • 4-gallon tank
  • 4 peak HP motor
  • Wet/dry cleaning capability
  • Includes swiveling casters for easier movement
  • 10-foot cord
  • Stainless steel base to help prevent tipping
  • Also includes a floor nozzle, 3 extension wands, a gulper nozzle, a foam filter, a reusable dry filter and clamp ring, a disposable filter bag and a crevice nozzle
  • Can be converted into a blower 

This Porter-Cable option is a bit larger with a 4-gallon tank and a bit more powerful with a 4 peak HP motor. Like the others, it has wet/dry capability. This one has swiveling casters on the bottom to make it a bit easier to move around as well as a 10-foot power cord to help with ease of movement. It features a stainless steel base and includes a floor nozzle, 3 extension wands, a gulper nozzle, a foam filter, a reusable dry filter and clamp ring, a disposable filter bag and a crevice nozzle with your purchase.


Key Features

  • 6-gallon tank
  • 4 peak HP motor
  • Wet/dry cleaning capacity
  • 10 foot power cord
  • 6-foot hose
  • Can be converted to a blower
  • Includes an extension wand, 3 gulper nozzles, a floor nozzle, a crevice nozzle, a foam filter, a dust bag, and a reusable dry filter
  • Also includes a 12 month warranty

This Stanley shop vacuum is another step larger than the previous selections, with a 6-gallon tank. It has a 4 peak HP motor and, of course, wet/dry cleaning capacity. With a 10-foot power cord and 6-foot hose this vac will give users about 16 feet total of maneuverability. Like most others, it can be converted into a blower. This one comes with an extension wand, 3 gulper nozzles, a floor nozzle, a crevice nozzle, a foam filter, a dust bag, and a reusable dry filter, but better yet, it also includes a 12 month warranty.


Key Features

  • 9-gallon tank
  • 4.25 peak HP motor
  • Wet/dry cleaning capacity
  • Can be converted into a blower
  • Features a built-in oversized drain that allows for an easier emptying of liquids
  • A Qwik Lock Filter Fastening System makes switching out filters easier
  • Includes 2 locking extension wands, a utility nozzle, a car nozzle, a wet nozzle, and a qwik lock filter and dust collection bag
  • A 3-year limited warranty is included with purchase

This Craftsman vac is the largest and most powerful on our list with a 9-gallon tank and a 4.25 peak HP motor. Of course, it has wet/dry capability and can be converted into a blower. This one, though, features an oversized drain which makes it much easier to empty liquids than it would be for the other options on our list. Your purchase will include 2 locking extension wands, a utility nozzle, a car nozzle, a wet nozzle, and a qwik lock filter, a dust collection bag and a whopping 3 year limited warranty.


What is a shop vacuum?

A shop vacuum is a certain type of vacuum that’s often used, well, “in the shop.” It’s a bit more industrial than your average vac, but many people keep these powerful tools in their homes or garages for big messes.

Why do you need a shop vacuum? 

Shop vacs include a very maneuverable hose that can often be appended with many different accessories, making it ideal for cleaning a variety of messes in your car, garage, or home. They can also clean up both dry and wet messes, unlike most traditional vacuums.

How do you use a shop vacuum? 

Just like a normal vacuum, though with a shop vac you won’t have to worry about accidentally sucking up some liquid. You may also want to swap out nozzle attachments depending on your needs as well, but most shop vacs come with separate nozzle attachments so you don’t have to buy them separately, and they’re as easy to attach and remove as simply screwing them on or off. 

How to use a shop vac for water?

This one is pretty easy. Just make sure you remove any filters in the vac meant for dry usage, have a good nozzle attached to your hose and start sucking it up just like any other dirt or debris. You’ll want to pay attention to how full your tank is getting, and drain or dump the water frequently so as to not let it get overfilled with liquid. After all, although shop vacs can handle water, keep in mind that it’s still an electronic device, and that comes with all the same risks as using any other electronic device near water. 

How much does a shop vacuum cost? 

Depending on the model, size, and power of the motor you’re probably looking at anywhere from $50 to over $250, though some great models are listed above at many different price points to help find the right vacuum for you.

Pros and cons of using a shop vac

The biggest pro is the ability to clean up messes that might be too wet or too hard-to-reach for a traditional vacuum to clean. The biggest con is that it is one more appliance for you to purchase, and as far as we know, shop vacs don’t come in a cordless variety, so you’ll be tethered to a power cord.

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