Shop-Vac® FAQ's

Q: Why does my Shop-Vac® wet dry vac blow dust back into my room?

A: You need to use a filter capable of catching the dust and dirt you are cleaning up. When you are picking up fine dust you need a HEPA or high efficiency cartridge filter, a cartridge filter with a HEPA collection bag or a cartridge filter with a high efficiency disposable filter bag. These filters are not available for all vacs. Click here to go to our online filter guide, which will quickly help you determine the exact filters you need for the job. And you can order them from us immediately if you wish!

Q: Which filter should I use for wet pickup?

A: The best filter to use for wet pick up is a foam sleeve. When picking up water containing debris; such as, glass, stone, etc., you may want to consider adding a tear resistant wet dry collection bag. These filters are not available for all models. Click here to go to our online filter guide.

Q: Which filter should I use for dry pickup?

A: The filter you need is based on the type of debris you are picking up. For large debris (wood chips, gravel, etc.) use a filter with a general household filtration level or better. For medium size debris (sand, sawdust, etc.) use a filter with a medium filtration level or better. For fine debris (drywall dust, cold ashes, etc) use a filter with a fine filtration level. It is important to use the correct filter for your pickup needs. Using the wrong filter could cause the dust to blow back into the room. Click here to go to our online filter guide.

Q: Where can I get service for my Shop-Vac® wet dry vac?

A: Contact Shop-Vac® Customer Service.


Web:  Send email
Phone:
  • 570-326-0502
  • 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (in the U.S.)
Fax:
  570-326-7185
Write:
  • Shop-Vac® Customer Service
  • Attention: Service Center
  • 2323 Reach Road
  • Williamsport, PA 17701

Q: Can I replace motor parts?

A: Contact Shop-Vac® Customer Service.


Web:  Send email
Phone:
  • 570-326-0502
  • 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (in the U.S.)
Fax:
  570-326-7185
Write:
  • Shop-Vac® Customer Service
  • Attention: Service Center
  • 2323 Reach Road
  • Williamsport, PA 17701

Q: Where can I buy accessories and filters for my Shop-Vac® wet dry vac?

A: At many local department, discount, or hardware stores. Click here for the store list or click here for hundreds of filters and accessories!

Q: Which vac do I need (performance, capacity, features)?

A: There are many items to consider when buying a Shop-Vac® wet dry vac.

*Capacity:

If you have a large mess to pick up, consider getting a vac with a large capacity. You won’t have to empty the tank as often during your pick up job. If you have a limited amount of space to store the vacuum, consider getting a smaller vac that will take up less space in your garage or basement.

Performance:

Vacuum performance is a function of suction (sealed lift) and airflow (in cubic feet per minute) at a particular location in the vacuum "flow". Three readings can give you a good understanding of a utility vacuum cleaner power and performance.

  • Sealed Pressure (SP) – Suction pressure measured in inches of water if you were to pick up a solid column of water straight up vertically.  The number represents how many inches the water can be pulled by the pressure. Numbers >75 are considered the high end of utility vacuum cleaners.
  • Cubic Feet per Min (CFM) – Maximum airflow the utility vacuum can achieve at the largest orifice possible. This is best for picking up lighter materials such as wood chips and dust.
  • Air-watts or Air Power (AP) – The amount of power that is converted into airflow at the inlet for the dirt can be expressed in air watts.

Filters:

The filter you need is based on the type of debris you are picking up. For large debris (wood chips, gravel, etc.) you need a filter with a general household filtration level or better. For medium size debris (sand, sawdust, etc.) you need a filter with a medium filtration level or better. For fine debris (drywall dust, cold ashes, etc) you need a filter with a fine filtration level. For wet pick up, the ideal filter is a foam sleeve. It is important to use the correct filter for your pickup needs. Using the wrong filter could cause the dust or water to blow back into the room. If the vac you are looking to purchase doesn’t come with the filter you need, look at the additional filters available for purchase to see if one fits the vac.

Hose size:

If you are planning on picking up large debris, you should look for a vac with a 2.5" diameter hose. If you try to pick up large debris with a small diameter hose, the debris will clog the hose and the vac will lose suction. Also consider the hose length to make sure you are able to reach all the places you want to clean.

Blower Port / Detachable Blower:

If you have a lot of fall clean up to do, you may want to consider a vac with a detachable blower. If you don’t need a blower vac, but have hard to clean places a vac with a blower port will be a help. You can use the port to blow the dust to a place that is easier to vacuum up.

Tank Drain:

Are you planning on picking up a lot of water? If you are, you will want a tank drain. It allows you to easily empty the tank into a drain.

Accessories:

Make sure you have the right tools for the job. Floor cleaning, you will want extension wands and a floor nozzle. Car cleaning, a gulper/utility nozzle or claw nozzle and a crevice tool will come in handy. Cleaning your workshop, a gulper nozzle / utility nozzle or claw nozzle will clean up your workbench. A universal tool adaptor is perfect for when you want to attach your vacuum to your saw, to suck up the dust while you’re cutting. Additional accessories are available for purchase.

Q: Which size of accessories fit my vac?

A: To determine what accessories fit your vac, you need to determine the diameter of your hose. To do this, measure the opening of the accessory end of the hose. Shop-Vac® brand hoses will measure roughly 1.25", 1.5" or 2.5".

  • 1.25" accessories fit vacs with a 1.25" hose diameter. The hose opening is roughly the size of a golf ball.
  • 1.5" accessories fit vacs with a 1.5" hose diameter.
  • 2.5" accessories fit vacs with a 2.5" hose diameter. The hose opening is roughly the size of a baseball.
  • There are also adaptors available to allow you to use different size tools with your hose.

To determine what hoses fit your vac, you need to determine the diameter of your vacuum inlet. If you inlet measures roughly, 2.5" in diameter you can use 1.25", 1.5" or 2.5" hoses with standard hose ends. If you have a inlet other than 2.5" in diameter, look for hoses that fit your model number or vac type (All Around EZ®, Micro®, etc.).

Q: What is the best way to measure and compare vacuum performance?

A: Vacuum performance is a function of suction (sealed lift) and airflow (in cubic feet per minute) at a particular location in the vacuum "flow". Three readings can give you a good understanding of a utility vacuum cleaner power and performance.

  • Sealed Pressure (SP) – Suction pressure measured in inches of water if you were to pick up a solid column of water straight up vertically. The number represents how many inches the water can be pulled by the pressure. Numbers >75 are considered the high end of utility vacuum cleaners.
  • Cubic Feet per Min (CFM) – Maximum airflow the utility vacuum can achieve at the largest orifice possible. This is best for picking up lighter materials such as wood chips and dust.
  • Air-watts or Air Power (AP) – The amount of power that is converted into airflow at the inlet for the dirt can be expressed in air watts.

Q: Can a Shop-Vac® wet dry vac be used for vacuuming hazardous materials?

A: Do not vacuum toxic, carcinogenic, combustible or other hazardous materials such as asbestos, arsenic, barium, beryllium, lead, pesticides or other health endangering materials. Specially designed units are available for these purposes.