Guide to Wet and Dry Vacuums

A wet and dry vacuum cleaner is one of the handiest tools that you can have in your home and workshop. Basically, it is a vacuum at heart. Still, it offers a lot more functionality and capacity that can be used in different environments, both indoors and outdoors. Whether you’re looking for a wet and dry vacuum for your workspace or home, choosing the right one will depend on your cleaning needs. Which is why we are here to give you a guide to wet and dry vacuum cleaners.

What is Wet and Dry Vacuum Cleaner?

As we mentioned, a wet and dry vacuum cleaner just like a regular vacuum, but can to clean both dry and liquid mess, whether it’s inside or outside of your home. Instead of having a vacuum bag to catch all the dirt and debris, a wet and dry vacuum cleaner usually uses a two bucket system, which enables them to separate the solids from the liquids. These two separate compartments are also there to make sure that the vacuum is safe to use without the worry of getting electrocuted or breaking the machine. Aside from that, a wet and dry vacuum uses a foam filter, especially for the liquid spills and a paper cartridge filter, which is for the dry elements.

Why buy a wet & dry vacuum?

While wet and dry vacuum cleaners are commonly used in cleaning places such as commercial properties, they can also be used for your everyday cleaning tasks in your house. Most wet and dry vacuum cleaners come with long power cords, and they are also equipped with several types of brushes that can be used for different tasks like cleaning car seats, mats, and even cleaning out grout on your tiles. Some other uses of wet and dry vacuums are:

  • Clearing debris such as wood shavings or leaves because it comes with a blower function.
  • Wet and dry vacuums can clean up different kinds of spills from a bath overflow to a burst pipe, or even a spill from a bottle of wine.
  • Wet and dry vacuums can remove water on a blocked sink.
  • A wet and dry vacuum can tackle hardwood floors and several other materials, such as curtains.
  • It can also empty water in mattresses, and some brands can also automatically stop when the tank is full.

What Size of Vacuum Do You Need?

The job that needs to be done and the size of the mess that needs to be cleaned are one of the most important things that you should consider when buying a wet and dry vacuum. This is because these aspects will ultimately affect the hose, filter, and tank capacity size that you need. If you are using your vacuum to clear out large-sized debris from day to day, then we suggest that you opt for a vacuum cleaner with more capacity. However, if you are just going to clean fine debris and make it a part of your everyday cleaning process at your house, then you should settle with a small-sized wet-dry vacuum. Here is a little guide into the different capacity size of wet and dry vacuums:

  • Large size – This size is advisable for people who are going to use the vacuum for the industrial wet and dry jobs because they often have more power as well as most capacity level. However, take note that big damp and dry vacuums are more substantial and bulkier.
  • Medium size – This vacuum size gives you a compact machine which, at the same time, gives you a variety of cleaning situations.
  • Small size – This vacuum size is lighter to carry compared to the two previous ones, and they are easy to store. However, be aware that having a small-sized vacuum can come with a sacrifice on performance and capacity.

This to Look For a Wet and Dry Vacuum Cleaner

Power and Size

There are two essential features that you should consider when it comes to choosing a wet and dry vacuum, and it is the horsepower and its tank capacity. Knowing its strength before purchasing it can make you aware of its suctioning power while understanding the vacuum’s tank capacity measures can help you calculate how much waste the vacuum’s tank can hold before it needs to be emptied.


  • Vacuums with 1 to 4.5 HP – This type of wet and dry vacuums are perfect for light cleaning such as sucking out small debris and small spills.
  • Vacuums with 5 to 6 HP – Vacuums that have a medium horsepower is perfect for indoor and outdoor cleaning,
  • Vacuums with 6HP or higher: Vacuums with higher horsepower are made for heavy-duty indoor and outdoor cleanings such as cleaning commercial spaces offices and warehouses.

Tank Capacity

  • Vacuums that carry 2-6 gallons – This kind of small wet and dry vacuums is perfect if you don’t have enough space to store it. You can also handle small jobs around your home with ease. 
  • Vacuums that can carry 8 to 14 gallons – Wet and dry vacuums are perfect if you are looking for a vacuum that can clean basements, garage spills, and basically keeping your workshop clean. It is a great deal between having an excellent performance along with decent capacity, and as well as relative portability.
  • Large (14-18 Gallons): Large wet/dry vacuums are ideal for heavy-duty and commercial use. While these units tend to be very heavy and awkward to move, they have the highest performance capabilities.

Portability and Storage

Think of the different ways that you’re going to be using your wet and dry vacuum. If you’ll regularly need to carry it up and down in your home, then you might want to consider its size and weight in case the tank gets it’s full. If you’re going to have a portable option, then we suggest that you look for a model that has a small container that comes with an on-body place for all its accessories so you can move all the pieces at all at once with ease. Aside from that, you should also have to make sure that you will consider the storage space you have available in your house because it is a significant factor when it comes to choosing the size of your wet and dry vacuums.