trigun7469 UltraDork
3/23/22 2:37 p.m.

I am interested in purchasing a Wet dry vacuum recommendation, application is cleaning our cars, the Dyson handheld and the shark vacuum just does not do the job (3 kids). I previously had a cheap-o Harbor Freight, no power and I got maybe a month before it broke. This would be used for a monthly cleaning of the car, not really much of anything else.


Here is one that I am considering

Slippery GRM+ Memberand UberDork
3/23/22 2:40 p.m.

I got this one the other day and the amount of work it has go e through is insane. Would definitely recommend Ridgid. 

ProDarwin MegaDork
3/23/22 2:42 p.m.

That looks like a good choice.  I have a slightly larger Ridgid box vacuum.  The form factor is so nice.

I've had it more than 10 years at this point and its solid quality.  My only complaint is the filter size isn't standard so they are harder to find/more expensive.


As a side note, they are excellent carpet spot cleaners if there is an accident.  We the spot, vacuum up.  Wet again, scrub in soap/shampoo/whatever, rinse and vacuum.  I've thought about keeping a bucket-sized version in my house upstairs just for this purpose.

MTechnically (Forum Supporter)
MTechnically (Forum Supporter) Reader
3/23/22 2:45 p.m.

In reply to trigun7469 :

I would step up to the larger Rigid or something like this, which is what I use as a professional detailer.

http://Vacmaster Professional - Professional Wet/Dry Vac, 5 Gallon, Beast Series, 5.5 HP 1-7/8" Hose Jobsite Vac (VFB511B0201), Black

I'd rather have more suction than you need than not enough, and that is what I would worry about with the machine you linked.

tuna55 MegaDork
3/23/22 3:10 p.m.
Brett_Murphy (Agent of Chaos)
Brett_Murphy (Agent of Chaos) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
3/24/22 3:02 p.m.

In reply to trigun7469 :

My wife and I were just talking about getting a battery powered wet/dry. Thanks for starting the thread!


WillG80 GRM+ Memberand Reader
3/25/22 6:53 p.m.

I recently bought this vacuum after a lot of research.


I was looking for something small that won't take up a ton of room in the garage, but still has a powerful motor. Price was also a consideration, so was attachments. Small vacuums are generally weak and that's pretty annoying. In my research most people were universally disappointed with the suction of various vacuums, this one being the exception. It also includes a pretty good selection of attachments at a decent price. 

I do know there's quite a selection of micro vacuums available but they're generally too weak for anything in the garage so I passed on those. Another tip, anything from HF uses a non-standard size attachment and they don't sell attachments separately, so you're stuck with the one or two that's included. 

EDIT: pay attention to the hose length. The micro vacuums (including the one you linked) have short hoses so you can't have the vacuum on the floor while vacuuming the interior of the car. 

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
3/26/22 2:40 p.m.

If it's just primarily for car detailing, I might suggest the highest-suction small-hose vacuum.  I have the big monster Ridgid with the fat hose, and it sure does suck (in a good way) but negotiating behind and under seats with the fat hose is a little rough sometimes.  It also has SO much suction that you have to be careful with the angle you put it down on the carpet or it just adheres itself to the rug and you can't move it very easily.  Rare situation where too much suction can be a downside.

That video posted above is a great resource.  It's a bit long, but worth watching.

wae PowerDork
3/26/22 2:51 p.m.

Another vote for Rigid.  Mine has been going strong for about 10 or so years, no complaints.  I sometimes wish it was a little smaller because it'd be easier going up and down stairs.

MyMiatas New Reader
3/26/22 10:51 p.m.

I have this one for vacuuming my car and tiled floor.  I has great suction for getting dry dirt out of carpet and fits under seats. The only drawback is don't use it for water. I filled it with water (over flow) during a garage floor painting and now it screams like a banshee.   I purchased it a Lowes.

mad_machine GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
3/27/22 11:15 a.m.

to be fair, the best small and portable shop vac I ever owned was a cheapie I got from Home Depot. the  Bucket Head which uses a standard 5 gallon bucket as the collection unit.

Kramer Dork
3/27/22 12:40 p.m.

Ridgid is the best.  I bought mine from the recommendation of a woodworking magazine.  Relatively quiet, compared to others.  Great vac.

Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter)
Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
8/1/23 9:52 a.m.

I did a bunch of research and ended up with a Ridgid about 5 years ago. The thing's a tank. Though, having said that, I've mostly ended up using my little 3-gallon Ryobi 18V for cleaning the cars because it's cordless, easier to deal with, and powerful enough for everything but the worst messes.

RevRico GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
8/1/23 9:57 a.m.

After about 20 years, maybe longer, my Rigid lit itself on fire earlier this year during my bathroom renovation. I replaced it with a stainless bodied Shopvac brand. Aside from the smaller hose making all my current tools and accessories useless, it's been pretty great. 

ddavidv UltimaDork
8/2/23 6:58 a.m.

I recently bought a DeWalt after watching the Project Farm video. It's excellent. Lots of power while being way quieter than the B&D it replaced.

mtn MegaDork
8/2/23 1:47 p.m.

Rigid, 4.5 gallons or less. 

spitfirebill MegaDork
8/2/23 4:05 p.m.

FYI Costco has an 8 gallon wet and dry vacuum for $59 one sale right now.   It uses a filter and/or a bag.   It is for sale at other stores for 2-3x that.  I may go buy one myself.  

NY Nick
NY Nick GRM+ Memberand Dork
10/27/23 9:42 a.m.

I have a Craftsman that I use at the house when I absolutely have to but these days my car gets vacuumed with my new wet dry vac:

It's the blue one on the right. They are free, have great suction and I don't have to empty the bags. I used to feel bad about using it if I didn't wash my vehicle but I wash my vehicle regularly so I figure it's a wash. No home shop vac I have every tried has as much suction as these.

TR7 Reader
10/27/23 9:47 a.m.
ddavidv said:

I recently bought a DeWalt after watching the Project Farm video. It's excellent. Lots of power while being way quieter than the B&D it replaced.

Is it the "stealth quiet" model that has come out? Im really curious to hear actual peoples opinions if the quiet vac is worth getting into. 

Tony Sestito
Tony Sestito UltimaDork
10/27/23 1:13 p.m.

While I don't know which one to buy, I do know of one NOT to buy:

I picked up this Stanley a few years ago, probably around 2019. The "Rust-Resistant Stainless Steel" tub somehow rotted and I found out it had a hole in it the hard way recently when I had to pick up some wet stuff with it and it started going back onto the floor. Not what you want in a wet/dry vac. 

Toyman! GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
10/27/23 1:39 p.m.

This. Available in 18v and 12v. No cords to deal with. 

I have the 18v in my shop for general duty and car cleaning. The 12v stays in the RV for cleanup around it. 

Both of them do outstanding jobs. 

1-Stage Wet and Dry Vacuum Cleaners | Milwaukee Tool

93gsxturbo UltraDork
10/28/23 9:09 a.m.

Agree on the battery operated versions.  Unless you are doing pool liners or something else, get whatever vacuum you have in your ecosystem and be happy.  I have the Milwaukee M18 vacuum and love it.  Gave away my shop vac, hated it.  

Noddaz GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
10/28/23 11:23 a.m.

No help here from me.  I have a 5 gallon Craftsman that is about 25 years old and will still suck the chrome off of a golf ball.


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