Small Shop Vac: The Best Vacuum Product of 2019

small shop vac the best vacuum product this coming 2019

Cleaning the house can be one of the most frustrating chores. By the end of it, it can leave your body sore and sweaty.

That’s why you need a good partner in crime. Getting the perfect vacuum can make cleaning so easy.


Things to Look for in a Vacuum Before Buying

There are things to think about before buying a vacuum. If you just pick out any old one, you will probably get one that won’t help you.

The Types of Cleaning You Do

The first thing to consider is the type of cleaning you want to do. If you want to heavy duty cleaning in a garage or workshop, then you will be in need of a large vacuum with heavy suction power.

If you are looking for a machine to clean a carpeted floors or rugs, a bagged vacuum would be best.

Canister vacuums are good if you have many stairs. For tile floors, laminate, or hardwood floors, a canister is also a good fit.

A shop vacuum tends to be a jack of all trades. It’s a powerful vacuum that can be used in homes, outside, or in flooded areas.  

Different Types of Vacuums

There are upright vacuums. These are the stereotypical vacuums that you think of when you think of a vacuum. This means that the motor and suction head are both contained within one vacuum.

upright vacuum

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Handheld vacuums are small ones that can be held in your hand. These are usually for small messes like dry food or sand.

hand held vacuum

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The third type is canister vacuums. These are when the motor and suction head are separated. These make them versatile, you can use them like a handheld or carry it around to get in small or high places.

cannister vacuum

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Robotic vacuums are the most modern types. These little guys can be programmed to go around your house without you pushing them. You can sit back and watch them scoot around.

robotic vacuum

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Product Specs

There are certain specifications you should keep in mind to make sure you are able to use it with ease.

Weight is one of the key thing to think about. How much can you carry without straining yourself? Will you need to carry it around? Or can you handle a heavier vacuum because you will only roll it around?

How We Reviewed

How we found these vacuums through a variety of research methods. We looked through what experts in housecleaning thought was the best. Then we went to a variety of purchasing sites to see what people thought of them.

The importance of reviews by average people is that they will be always be honest. They don’t have any affiliation with the companies like experts might. They will also be able to explain why or why not they liked the vacuum.

7 Best Small Shop Vac

Here are some of the best small shop vacs around. 

RIDGID 50323 1200RV Wet Dry Vacuum, 12-Gallon Shop Vacuum with 5.0...
  • The powerful 5.0 Peak Horsepower motor and 360-degree mobility make this wet dry vacuum a professional-grade cleaner for...
  • The caster feet storage keeps attachments accessible, and the large cord-wrap handle makes it easy to transport with the...
  • The ultra-flexible, 8-foot hose locks in place, is four times more durable than our standard hose, fits 2-1/2-inch...

It has a 5 Peak HP motor, this means it’s not the most powerful, but it will be able to get the job done. The collection tank, 12 gallons, is thick and you can take it anywhere and trust that it will hold up. It can also turned be turned in a blower for outside.

It has a large drain port that will get rid of liquid messes quickly. It has a 20-foot power cord, so you can take it anywhere and not have to constantly unplug and replug it. The hose is 8 feet long and locks into place. It comes with 2 extension wands, a blower nozzle, and a utility nozzle.

People don’t like how the flexible hose seems to gets clogged often, that it doesn’t have as many attachments, and that the power cord doesn’t retract.

Shop-Vac 5989300 5-Gallon 4.5 Peak HP Stainless Steel Wet Dry Vacuum
  • POWERFUL & PORTABLE: This wet/dry vacuum has a 5-gallon stainless steel tank & a 4.5 peak horsepower...
  • ACCESSORIES INCLUDED: This wet/dry vac includes 1.25 " diameter accessories: 7-foot hose, 3 extension wands, crevice...
  • GOT DIRT? Shop-Vac's full line of products includes cordless, rechargeable wet dry vacuums, automotive vacuum systems,...

This is a good vacuum if you are on a budget. It has a 5-gallon tank and a 4.5 Peak HP motor. It can even be used as a blower, if you have a messy yard.

It has a stainless-steel drum and a tool storage system. It also has a secure latch system for the tank, a top handle, and 3 extension poles.

It has a 7-foot hose, this may be too short for some people. It was made in the USA, which seems to be a rare thing.

Cons are that the cord and accessories leave something to be desired, some people don’t like that it came with paper bags that will need to be replaced, and that the power switch is a bit small.

DEWALT 18/20V Max Vacuum, Wet/Dry (DCV581H)
  • Can operate corded with an AC outlet, or cordless by an 18v or 20v MAX battery
  • HEPA Rated filter traps up to 99.97 percent efficiency
  • Washable/reusable filter;2 Gallon tank capacity. 31 CFM

This is a great little portable 2-gallon vacuum, you can carry it around with ease. It’s similar to a household canister vacuum, but more powerful. You can use this in your house or car. It can also double as a leaf blower.

It has a 5-foot hose and it wraps around the back when it’s not being used. It can run on the company’s 18 and 20V batteries, but you can also use a power cord if you prefer that.

It has a HEPA filter that’s rated at 99.97% effective. The filter is also reusable and washable.

Takeaways are that some people feel that it doesn’t have enough suction power and that the batteries don’t last that long.

Milwaukee 0880-20 18-Volt Cordless Wet/Dry Vacuum, Red
  • Included Components: Shop Wet Dry Vacuums
  • Power Source Type: Battery Powered
  • Works on all Milwaukee 18V slide-on batteries, Li-ion or NiCd

This small shop vac kind of looks like a lunch box. We don’t mean this as a bad thing. Good things come in small packages.

This is a cordless vac that functions as a blower and can handle liquids as well.

It has a HEPA filter that can capture dust and fine particulates. It has a 2-gallon tank to hold everything. There’s a 2-foot hose to use to reach tough places. This lunch box vacuum has a handful of accessories. It has a flexible hose, crevice tool, and a utility nozzle.

Cons are that the battery life doesn’t last long, to some people it was loud, and some people didn’t like the shape.

This vacuum has a 6-gallon tank and a 3 Peak HP motor. This is a great for small projects. It has a 7-foot hose and a 10 foot power cord. Together it will give you a 17-foot reach while using it. It also doubles as a blower for your yard.

It comes with a hose bracket set, cartridge filter, wet pickup foam filter, utility nozzle, and floor/squeegee nozzle combo. There is also an on-board organizer to help store all these accessories.

People have complained about the instructions not being helpful, people wish it came with more attachments, and the power cord can be a little short.

Vacmaster, VQ607SFD, 6 Gallon 3 Peak HP Stainless Steel Wet/Dry Shop...
  • 6 Gallon Stainless Steel Tank
  • 3 Peak HP Motor
  • On-Board Accessory Storage

This vacuum has a stainless steel 6-gallon tank that’s the perfect size for small or medium messes. It’s easy to use and store in small apartments, offices, and the garage.

Because it’s stainless steel, it’s weather-resistant. The lid is reinforced with heavy duty tank clips to prevent air from leaking. It has a 3 Peak HP motor that will give you enough power for wet or dry messes.

It has a 12-foot power cord, 7-foot hose, on board storage for accessories, and a balance top handle. Accessories include an air control nozzle, crevice tool, round dust brush, standard cartridge filter, dust bag, and reusable foam sleeve.

Takeaways are that the hose doesn’t seem to fit well with the accessories, some people complained of it jamming often, and that the cord is short.

Armor All, AA255 , 2.5 Gallon 2 Peak HP Wet/Dry Utility Shop Vacuum
  • 2.5 Gallon Polypropylene Tank
  • 2 Peak HP Motor
  • 10 Ft. Cord With Cord Wrap

This vacuum has a 2.5-gallon tank and a 2 Peak HP motor. It can pick up wet and dry messes. It has a 6-foot hose and a 10 foot power cord. It’s lightweight and has a sturdy top handle so you can carry it around.

It has an on-board organizer. You will get accessories including a crevice tool, different nozzles, car nozzle, and a filter that’s reusable.

People don’t like it because the larger brush slides out of its holder sometimes, people feel that the cord is too short, and some feel that the suction can be stronger.

The Verdict

We think that these are all great vacuums and that it’s ultimately up to your cleaning situation. If you need a portable vacuum, the Armor All will be good for you. If you need something sturdier, the Vacmaster Stainless Steel Vacuum is perfect for you.

Think about what you are using it for. Are you looking for a more powerful vacuum for your home? Do you need a small shop vac for your shop or garage? What you use it for is what will really be the deciding factor.

Don’t forget to consider your budget before you pick a good small shop vac.


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