Best Wet-Dry Vacuums to Remove Dirt and Liquid Spills

Review & Comparison, Last Update November 23, 2017
Everybody wants to live in a clean house but a conventional vacuum cleaner might be unable to remove tough messes. However, there is a way out! We recommend using wet-dry vacuums that can easily pick up dirt and even liquid spills. Look through our shortlist of 5 best wet-dry vacuums and take your best pick! ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2017
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
Capacity
Flexibility
Usability
Performance
 
PROS

Powerful electric motor creates the best suction so this vac can remove all kinds of dirt and liquid spills. Goes with a detachable leaf blower.

CONS

Tool holder is quite poor in terms of quality so you might need to buy another one.

OUR VERDICT

It is an extremely useful and powerful Shop-Vac vacuum cleaner that can cope with cleaning anything: home, yard, garage, etc.

detailed parameters
Capacity
12-gallon tank
Flexibility
18-foot power cord, 8-foot hose
Usability
2 extension wands, reusable filter, floor nozzle, 120-degree elbow, handy crevice tool, utility nozzle, concentrator nozzle, blower nozzle
Performance
6.5 HP, for versatile cleaning
PROS
The long power cord and hose allow you to make a thorough clean-up without a need to plug into a different outlet. You can place the accessories of this wet-dry vacuum cleaner right on the casing.
CONS
The leaf blower can't be detached from the casing, which means it isn't portable.
OUR VERDICT
Craftsman XSP 16 is designed for the most difficult cleaning tasks. It's a reliable tool that will help clean not only a house or a garage, but also a workshop or a construction site.
detailed parameters
Capacity
16-gallon tank
Flexibility
20-foot power cord, 7-foot hose, weighs 31.6 lbs
Usability
2 extension wands, cartridge filter, wet pickup foam filter, crevice tool, utility nozzle and floor/squeegee combo
Performance
6.5 HP, for thorough cleaning
PROS

Awesome suction despite a small size. You can use this vac as a handheld or car vacuum cleaner.

CONS

Limited tank capacity makes it difficult to remove large liquid spills.

OUR VERDICT
Perfect wet-dry vacuum for those who need a compact appliance powerful enough to cope with any home dirt.
detailed parameters
Capacity
1-gallon tank
Flexibility
Portable, compact, one-hand use, weighs 8 lbs
Usability
Special wall mountable storage, filter, hose, gulper nozzle, crevice tool, tool bag
Performance
1 HP, for minor cleaning
PROS
Large drain at the bottom of this wet-dry vacuum allows you to dispose of dirty water quickly. Detachable blower removes leaves from the lanes around your house.
CONS
RIDGID wet dry vacuum is quite noisy when it's running.
OUR VERDICT
This is a great 2-in-1 appliance that is both a powerful professional-grade wet-dry vacuum and a leaf blower.
detailed parameters
Capacity
12-gallon tank
Flexibility
20-foot power cord, 8-foot hose, weighs 22 lbs
Usability
Detachable leaf blower, Qwik Lock filter, pleated paper filter, utility nozzle, car/blower nozzle, 2 extension wands
Performance
5 HP, for versatile cleaning
PROS
The on-board storage of all accessories means all of them are always at hand. A dust-sealed On/Off switch is quite large and, therefore, convenient in use - it's right under your thumb.
CONS
A long-term use of this wet-dry vacuum heats the motor pretty much.
OUR VERDICT
If you need to struggle with fairly large debris, frequent liquid spills, and dust - this wet/dry vacuum with a detachable blower will be an indispensable helper. Win-win choice!
detailed parameters
Capacity
12-gallon tank
Flexibility
12-foot power cord, 7-foot hose, weighs 24.4 lbs
Usability
2 extension wands, cartridge filter, reusable foam sleeve filter, car nozzle, crevice nozzle, blower nozzle, air/noise diffuser, blower adapter
Performance
5 HP, for versatile cleaning

What is a Wet Dry Vac

A wet-dry vacuum cleaner is a versatile device that can remove not only dry but also wet dirt and liquids. That is the reason wet-dry vacs are used for a variety of tasks we face every day. For example, these appliances are very helpful in removing construction debris, cleaning the area around your house, and so on. Keep in mind that many wet-dry vacuums can easily be turned into leaf blowers, so such tools are truly multifunctional.

However, if you need a vac for cleaning furniture or a car interior, you might prefer buying a handheld vacuum cleaner.

What Features to Compare

When you are choosing a wet-dry vacuum cleaner, you need to clearly realize what you need it for. The first and a really important feature to consider is the Capacity of the wet-dry vacuum cleaner. It tells you how big a garbage collection tank is and, therefore, how much waste you can remove using a certain wet-dry vacuum cleaner. It is usually measured in gallons though some manufacturers prefer other units of measurement depending on the country. The larger the capacity is, the more garbage you can remove at a time.

Also, you need to pay attention to the Flexibility of every wet/dry vacuum cleaner. This feature tells you how flexible a vac is, how easy it is to carry or transport it, how long its power cord is, etc. To make the right decision, you need to know what kind of area a wet-dry vac is applicable in - home, garage, workshop, etc.

Next, you should consider the Usability of every wet and dry vacuum cleaner and that is where the number of attachments is important. Every wet-dry vac comes with its individual set of attachments and the more of them it has, the more versatile the tool is. The best wet-dry vacuum allows you to clean up floors and carpets, remove liquid spills, small stones or wooden cuttings, etc. Also, you need to consider the durability of a vac as these appliances are not cheap, so you need to be sure your wet-dry vacuum will serve you for many years.

Finally, the last feature to take into account is the Performance. First of all, you should find out the power of every wet/dry vacuum cleaner as the suction depends on it. The power is measured in horsepower (HP). For example, if you wish to make a home clean-up, a small and portable 1-horsepower vac is sufficient, while if you need to clean a garage, a yard or a workshop, you need a more powerful model.

Everything depends on what you need, so go ahead and check out the advantages of every wet-dry vacuum cleaner in our review.

...Read more ...Read less

Shop-Vac 9633400 Ultra Pro

Capacity

The wet and dry vac has a large 12-gallon container tank - one of the biggest in our review which is, no doubt, an advantage. The container tank is made of anti-shock plastic for the sake of durability. Therefore, you can use this vac several times before you need to empty it. Or you can remove puddles on the lanes in your yard or garden without any troubles.

Review of Shop-Vac 9633400 Ultra Pro Wet or Dry Vacuum with Detachable Blower

Flexibility

The electric motor is in the upper part of the Shop-Vac vacuum cleaner which you can easily remove and use as a portable blower (to remove leaves, dust, etc.). It is easy to move the wet and dry vac thanks to 4 casters it has. The power cord is 18 feet long and if it is not enough you can get an extension cable (for using the vac outdoors, for example).

Shop-Vac 9633400 Ultra Pro Wet or Dry Vacuum with Detachable Blower in the use

Usability

This is one of the best wet-dry vacuum cleaners in terms of usability. The package comes with the following: 2 extension wands, a reusable filter, a floor nozzle, a 120-degree elbow, a handy crevice tool, a utility nozzle, an ergonomic elbow grip, a blower nozzle, a concentrator nozzle, etc. A blower nozzle allows you to get rid of leaves and dirt on the paths around your house. As you can see, the package is truly rich, so you don't need to buy any additional attachments.

Detailed review of Shop-Vac 9633400 Ultra Pro Wet or Dry Vacuum with Detachable Blower

Performance

Shop-Vac vacuum cleaner has a powerful electric motor (6.5-horsepower) - the best result in our review. It is enough to handle the surface with any pollution, so this wet and dry vac can remove minor and major dirt problems. The cleaner can suck in the liquids, garbage, dust, and even wooden pieces and batteries (so see how powerful it is).

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


VIDEO
Shop-Vac Wet & Dry Pump Vac From Canadian Tire
Shop-Vac 9633400 Ultra Pro
Shop-Vac 9633400 Ultra Pro
 

Craftsman XSP

Capacity

Craftsman XSP wet-dry vacuum cleaner has a truly large gargabe tank - 16 gallons. That's enough to pick up lots of sawdust, metal chips, nails, pieces of gypsum (they are abundant at any construction site), broken glass, and so on. It is self-evident that picking up some dust in your house would be a piece of cake for this amazing tool. Also, it's a wet-dry vacuum cleaner, so it can remove liquid spills - you can remove water from a flooded cellar or get rid of nasty puddles on the driveway by your house. It's possible to remove fallen leaves and even make a thorough clean-up of the rainwater drain system on your house (the accessory kit for this is sold separately, though).
Review of Craftsman XSP Wet / Dry Vacuum

Flexibility

This wet-dry vacuum cleaner can reach as far as 27 feet from the power outlet thanks to a long 20-foot power cord and a secure fit hose (7 feet long and 2.5 inches in diameter). Also, there are 2 extension wands. The hose won't slip from the unit itself during the operation thanks to a special fitting system. Finally, this wet/dry vacuum cleaner has heavy duty 360° swivel casters so the tool is rather maneuverable. No matter what kind of surface you are using this vac on, it will move easily enough.
Craftsman XSP Wet / Dry Vacuum in the use

Usability

You can store all the accessories inside Craftsman XSP and in special cavities on top of each caster wheel. Thus, all of them will always be at hand. Unlike many of its rivals on the market, this wet-dry vac comes with a squeegee attachment, thanks to which washing windows will be easy as never before: you just need to apply a washing liquid and then use the squeegee. One pass - and the window is clean! If you are a construction worker who needs some tools for work, the body of this wet-dry vacuum cleaner might serve as a perfect surface for storing them. Very often construction workers do some drilling or sawing and then they need to remove the dust, so the wet-dry vac should always be nearby. The ON/OFF button is placed on top of this vac's handle; it's quite large and fully dust-proof, so you can turn the tool on even if you are wearing your working gloves. No need to mention, draining of liquid is easy - there's a special hole in a lower part of Craftsman's body.
Detailed review of Craftsman XSP Wet / Dry Vacuum

Performance

This canister wet-dry vacuum cleaner can cope with rather big and lumpy garbage thanks to a high-performance electric motor, yielding 6.5 HP. Stones, nails, and pieces of glass - this wet-dry vacuum cleaner can easily handle them! That's, actually, the reason why this fantastic tool is extremely popular with construction workers - building a house takes long and creates lots of debris, so a wet-dry vacuum cleaner is truly indispensable. Of course, if you have a big house, Craftsman XSP will be a handy device, too. Don't forget there's a built-in blower, so you can roll the tool outside, turn it on and remove all leaves from the lanes in your front or backyard.

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


VIDEO
CRAFTSMAN XSP 16 GALLON WET DRY VAC REVIEW
Craftsman XSP
Craftsman XSP
 

Shop-Vac 2021000

Capacity

Shop-vac vacuum cleaner can remove liquid spills, though the collection tank has the capacity of just 1 gallon and you need to empty it every time you use it, especially if you need to remove water or some other liquid. However, the capacity is sufficient to remove dust and dirt, clean up the furniture and so on.

Review of Shop-Vac 2021000 Micro Wet/Dry Vac

Flexibility

This is a small wet-dry vacuum cleaner - it is just 10 inches high and weighs 8 lbs. which makes it very comfortable in use. No need to say, women and elderly people like it for portability. You can also carry it without any problems and use as a car vacuum cleaner or a handheld vacuum cleaner. Of course, a wet/dry vacuum is always more powerful than any conventional handheld device.

Shop-Vac 2021000 Micro Wet/Dry Vac in the use

Usability

This wet dry vac goes with a special wall mountable out-of-the-way storage bag. You can place it somewhere in your house and take the wet/dry vacuum when you need it. This way all the hoses and attachments won't be lost. The power cord is just 6 ft. so you will surely need an extension cable. The vac has a filter, a hose, a gulper nozzle, a crevice tool, a tool bag, etc.

Detailed review of Shop-Vac 2021000 Micro Wet/Dry Vac

Performance

This compact Shop-Vac vacuum has a 1-horsepower electric motor that requires a cable connection. However, the suction is really powerful and we have received a lot of positive feedback on this issue. The appliance is good enough for all kinds of minor cleaning - furniture, walls, floors, etc.

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


VIDEO
RV Stuff - Micro Shop VAC Follow-up - w/reusable DRY Filter
Shop-Vac 2021000
Shop-Vac 2021000
 

Ridgid VAC1200

Capacity

RIDGID wet-dry vacuum has a large tank (12 gallons) that allows removing quite a lot of dirt and liquids. And if you need to empty the tank, there's a large drain at the bottom of the unit, so you can always get rid of waste water and use the vac again. RIDGID wet and dry vacuum cleaner is strong enough to pick even the large and heavy garbage (gobs of dirt, metal debris, etc). Therefore, this is a versatile wet-dry vacuum that will be really suitable for professional use. This professional wet-dry vac is a truly indispensable tool in any workshop, car service stations, stores, warehouses, etc.).

Review of Ridgid VAC1200 Wet Dry Vacuum

Flexibility

This model of RIDGID wet-dry vacuum is quite big - it weighs 22 pounds, but a high-capacity and powerful vac can't be small. RIDGID has a long 8-foot hose that facilitates cleaning a lot. Also, the power cord is 20 feet long, so if if the area you need to clean isn't too big - you can use this vac even without an extension cable. Next, you can easily move a wet-dry vac around due to 4 caster wheels that even have a 'stop' mode if you are using a wet-dry vac on inclined surfaces. Keep in mind that there are special cavities on top of the caster stands where you can put the attachment wands for convenient storage.
Ridgid VAC1200 Wet Dry Vacuum in the use

Usability

RIDGID wet-dry vacuum cleaner is quite an easy-to-use tool that you can quickly assemble and disassemble - you just need to follow the instructions from user's manual. This is a professional-grade vac that shows excellent usability thanks to lots of attachments it goes with. You can adjust 2 extension wands to an 8-foot hose so that you can comfortably clean the floor without a need to lean down. A wide utility nozzle is used for cleaning large areas, while a blower nozzle is designed for cleaning carpets, upholstery, etc. Furthermore, this blower nozzle is suitable for cleaning cars - it allows you to remove any dirt from the seats and car interior in general. And another advantage of this wet dry vac is a filtration system: the appliance has a patented Qwik-Lock filter that works along with a pleated paper filter. So, the air will be as clean as possible during the use of this vac.
Detailed review of Ridgid VAC1200 Wet Dry Vacuum

Performance

This is one of the most powerful wet-dry vacuum cleaners available - the electric motor yields 5 HP, so the suction is very strong. You can be sure that no task will be too difficult for RIDGID wet-dry vac. And you can always detach a blower and use it independently to remove leaves from decks and driveways near your house.

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


Ridgid VAC1200
Ridgid VAC1200
 

Vacmaster VBV1210

Capacity

This powerful wet-dry vacuum cleaner has a fairly large polypropylene dust tank - 12 gallons. That's enough to do a thorough cleanup at home, in the garage, and even around the house without a need of emptying the tank too frequently. You can pick up lots of dust and debris, let alone the liquid spills. After using this wet-dry vac, just dispose the liquid and dirt inside the tank through a special handy extra-large drain (in the lower part of the unit's body). The hose of this appliance is pretty wide (2.5 inches), so you can imagine how much debris it can cope with! Top-notch efficiency, for sure!
Review of Vacmaster VBV1210 Wet / Dry Vacuum with Detachable Blower

Flexibility

Vacmaster wet-dry vacuum cleaner with a detachable blower has quite a long hose (7 feet) and heavy-duty casters, so you can reach every corner in your house and roll the appliance on the ground outside. The power cord is 12 feet long, which isn't exactly the best result on our shortlist but more than enough for decent maneuverability of the appliance. Of course, you can always use an extension cord if the power cord can't reach a particular area. This unit boasts the on-board storage of all the accessories it comes with. Thus, you can install the attachment you need very quickly.
Vacmaster VBV1210 Wet / Dry Vacuum with Detachable Blower in the use

Usability

Very quickly you can convert this wet/dry vacuum cleaner to a high-performance blower with the help of which you will remove the fallen leaves and grass off the lanes in your front/back yard. What you need to do is just remove a motor part from the vacuum with a single push of a button. Thus, Vacmaster VBV1210 is a versatile 2-in-1 cleaning appliance. And if you want to clean your car - nothing can be simpler! Just attach a crevice tool and proceed with cleaning the seats. Then, add water and some detergent to wash car carpets and floors. It's a wet-dry vacuum, so it will remove moisture and water (along with dirt) within a few minutes.
Detailed review of Vacmaster VBV1210 Wet / Dry Vacuum with Detachable Blower

Performance

The power of the electric motor this wet/dry vacuum has is extremely high for appliances of this kind - 5 HP. That's enough to perform high-quality cleanups and that's the reason this unit is very often purchased for industrial use (car washing services, workshops, stores, etc.). If you need to use a blower, it will move the air at the speed of up to 240 MPH and this very number tells you how efficient this appliance can be!
Vacmaster VBV1210 Wet / Dry Vacuum with Detachable Blower application

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


VIDEO
12 Gallon Vacmaster Wet/Dry Vacuum Unboxing
Vacmaster VBV1210
Vacmaster VBV1210
 

Infographics

Comparison of Wet-Dry Vacuums to Remove Dirt and Liquid Spills

Sources:

1. How to Choose a Wet Dry VacuumDoItYourself.

2. John Kelsey Choosing and Using Wet/Dry VacsThis Old House.

3. Wet/Dry VacuumConsumer Reports. September 2016.

4. Wet-Dry Vacuum Cleaners: A Buying GuideeBay. June 4, 2015.

5Seven Advantages of a Handheld Wet Dry Vacuum CleanerDoItYourself.

Other reviews