Monday, June 5th, 2023

7 Best Shop Vacs For Dust Collection in 2023

Best Shop Vacs For Dust Collection in 2021

Gone are those days when you were drowned in the curses of cleaning up the massive sawdust, wood shavings, or other kinds of large debris in your workshop.

In this day and age, portable and compact shop vacuums have replaced traditional cleaning methods. Heck, it has become an indispensable tool in large industrial workshops as well as households.

Professionals are always in search of their dream shop vacuum that can be an antidote to their everyday bane. But, most of us often tend to invest in a mediocre product, only to realize that it’s an absolute waste of our investment.

We do get that you lack time to scour the internet for the best options that can meet your standards. Hence, to help you save precious time, we have highlighted some of the best shop vacs along with a breakdown of their premium features as well as their improvement areas. Also, do not forget to cast a glance at the comprehensive guide that we have attached to take your pick from the best.

So. let’s get into the deets, shall we?

Best Shop Vacs For Dust Collection

10 Best Shop Vacs For Dust Collection in 2020 2

Here’s a list of the top 7 shop vacuums for dust collection in 2023 to assist you in maintaining a clean and debris-free workshop or home.

1. Shop-Vac 5989300 5-Gallon Stainless Steel Wet Dry Vacuum – Best for Heavy-Duty Cleanup

If you are on the lookout for the coolest shop vacuum that can be the remedy to your heavy-duty cleanup stress, then there isn’t a better tool to use than this highly durable machine. One of the most affordable options on this list, this two-in-one easy portable unit can be classified as one of the best small shop vacs on the market.

Shop-Vac 5989300 5-Gallon 4.5 Peak HP Stainless Steel Wet...
  • Powerful & Portable: This Wet/Dry Vacuum Has A 5-Gallon...
  • Accessories Included: This Wet/Dry Vac Includes 1.25 "...

Why Did We Like It?

Wondering why this specific vac tops our list among hundreds of products out there? Well, let us tell you, we were hugely impressed by the raving reviews on the web and thought of giving it a try.

Being a versatile vacuum cleaner, it is no biggie for this machine (sporting a strong 4.5 HP motor) to clean wet and dry messes of diverse areas like garages, retail center stores, and basements.

Apart from that, with a stainless steel tank capacity of 5 gallons, it does not require emptying every minute. Hence, kudos to Shop VAC for getting that right!

What’s more, the tank of this unit is highly durable and long-lasting; it can undoubtedly take a beating. And within this affordable price range, we honestly couldn’t have asked for more.

What Could Have Been Better?

After giving it a try, we have noticed some minor downsides of this otherwise remarkable vacuum cleaner. Its fairly short power cord creates a recurring struggle to use it efficiently. So, we recommend using an extension box to connect it.

  • Affordable
  • Strong 4.5 PHP for maximum performance and efficiency
  • 5 gallons stainless steel tank
  • Short power cord
Filter Type: Cartridge | Dimensions: ‎14 x 14 x 21 inches | Weight: ‎12 pounds | Capacity: ‎‎5 Gallons | Decibels: ‎‎78 dB | Cordless: ‎‎No

2. Ridgid WD1450 14-Gallon 6-Horsepower Wet/Dry Vacuum – Best for Versatile Jobsite Cleaning

Ridgid is one of those brands that we cannot have enough of when it comes to versatile and high-performance dust-cleaning shop vacs. Likewise, the WD1450 has impressed us with its 6 peak HP motor and fine dust filters which appear to be ideal for tough jobsite cleaning purposes. Let’s dive deep into its core functionality and see what it brings to the table.

Ridgid WD1450 14-Gallon 6-Horsepower Wet/Dry Vacuum
  • 6 peak HP motor with noise-reduction technology offers...
  • Fine-dust filter for picking up dry materials and small...

Why Did We Like It?

For those searching for a low-noise vacuum cleaner, this can be one of your best options. Despite the high power rating, this unit has a fairly low noise output compared to other similarly performing shop vacuum available in the market.

Before we talk about anything else, we want to take a moment to appreciate it’s 20-foot long power cord. What’s more, it also comes with multiple foot accessories that definitely play a significant role in contributing to its versatile usage.

Furthermore, with a 6 HP motor, this model can deliver an extremely powerful suction capacity on both dry and wet areas. This feature ensures that the unit is able to pick up large pieces of mulch in a single pass and suck up 2 gallons of water in 3.8 seconds, the best time among all the shop vacs on this list.

To cut a long story short, if you are on the lookout for a shop vacuum that can handle your dirtiest tasks around the yard within a pocket-friendly range, you can consider giving this a try.

What Could Have Been Better?

The only gripe we had with this Ridgid Vac was its large dimension. While testing it, we felt awkward carrying this Vac, even more so, due its small carry handles. But this is far from a deal-breaker.

  • LowSNR noise levels
  • Strong and heavy-duty 6 HP motor
  • Value for money
  • Large dimension
  • Small carry handles
Filter Type: 3-layer Fine Dust | Dimensions: ‎22.5 x 26 x 19.5 inches | Weight: ‎26 pounds | Capacity: ‎‎‎14 Gallons | Decibels: ‎80 dB | Cordless: Yes

3. BOSCH VAC090A 9-Gallon Dust Extractor Shop VAC – Best for Professional Performance

Now that we have covered some of the top pocket-friendly options, it is time to look at a vac that is a tad bit expensive. This professional-grade shop vacuum comes adorned with a diverse range of rich features that make it superior to other models in terms of performance. Let’s delve deep to understand what makes it one of the strongest performers on our list.

Bosch VAC090A 9-Gallon Dust Extractor with Auto Filter...
  • Automatic Filter Cleaning: Cleans filter every 15 seconds to...
  • L-BOXX Integration: Instantly creates a mobile workstation

Why Did We Like It?

Honestly, we were a tad bit skeptical about purchasing it due to its mixed reviews and expensive range. But, when we received it, we couldn’t have been more satisfied.

Those were the old days when you had to worry over being inhibited during the operation of your shop vacuum. With a powerful 9.5 Amps motor, this appliance can be powerful when it comes to sucking air or blowing it out efficiently.

Apart from that, Bosch designed this device with a unique automatic cleaning system that helps you to clean air filters every 15 seconds. This prevents any obstructions and ensures the unit delivers the best performance its motor can provide.

Oh! And did we mention that it is backed up by a power broker dial? This feature helped us to prevent blowing up the shop vacuum when we were using it for heavy-duty tasks. Hence, it is definitely worth giving a try.

What Could Have Been Better?

Undoubtedly, this is one of the top woodworking shop vacuum that exists out there. But, if some reviews are to be believed, this device reverts back to default mode whenever it is unplugged. This means that every time you switch on this device, you have to reset the functions manually again.

  • Powerful 9.5 Amps motor
  • Automatic filter cleaning
  • Strong motor with power broker and power switching dial
  • Reverts back to default whenever it is unplugged
Filter Type: Canister, HEPA | Dimensions: ‎‎23.25 x 15.75 x 28.75 inches | Weight: ‎12 pounds | Capacity: ‎9 Gallons | Decibels: ‎69 dB | Cordless: ‎‎No

4. Armor All 2.5 Gallon, 2 Peak HP

The Armor All 2.5 Gallon is worth a look if you are in search of a compact shop vac that comes within an affordable price range. This 2.5 wet dry vac is one of the cheapest options on the market and can be an absolute delight for every bargain hunter out there. So, if you are on the search for good value products, you can consider giving this shop vac a try.

Why Did We Like It?

Straight off the bat, we were impressed by the highly positive customer reviews for this shop vac, so we decided to give it a try. And we weren’t disappointed one bit! With a mere weight of 7 pounds, we found this model to be extremely compact, making it an ideal option for cleaning even the interiors of your cars.

This is a tiny powerhouse that can hold up to 2.5 gallon of debris. Hence, you can stop worrying about dumping midway while cleaning out your mess. Besides that, this utility vacuum also comes with a cloth filter that can help you to get rid of hair, dirt and other dry particles. If you need to remove liquid messes, just replace the cloth filter with the included foam sleeve. It’s as simple as that!

Furthermore, this shop vac also comes with six tools – a utility nozzle, detailing brush, crevice wand, a blow-conversion nozzle, and a nozzle made just for automobiles. All of this combined makes it an excellent shop vac that boasts of durability and versatility.

What Could Have Been Better?

What troubled us about this otherwise powerful vac is when it is in blow mode, the hose fails to stay in place. Also, the cloth filter clogs easily, which makes it difficult to use it for nasty jobs like cleaning up baby spit, etc. This shop vac also doesn’t come with wheels; however, it is light enough, so most of you won’t be inconvenienced by that.

  • Decent power
  • Compact
  • Great attachments
  • Easily portable
  • Reasonable price range
  • Lack of wheels
  • Easy clogging of the cloth filter
Filter Type: Foam, Cloth | Dimensions: 10.6 x 14.2 x 14.4 inches | Weight: ‎7 pounds | Capacity: 2.5 Gallons | Decibels: ‎‎82 dB | Cordless: ‎‎No

5. Craftsman 12004 6 Gallon

Honestly speaking, this is one of the most compact shop vacs we have ever reviewed, and that’s what captivated our attention in the first place. But once we gave it a try, we wanted to incorporate it into our list for more than one reason. And the very first is, Craftsman is a reliable brand with a diverse range of shop vacs that have impressed many for quite some time.

Why Did We Like It?

It’s only after intense amounts of scrutiny that we have decided on this product. Packed with a 6-gallon tank, this device made cleaning all the dirt, grime, and gunk as well as the wet messes around our house seem a complete cakewalk.

We believe that vacuuming your space should not be a tiring process, and very few understand this as well as Craftsman. That’s because they engineered this unit with a sealed on and off switch for easy controls, a 360-degree swivel that caters to maneuverability, and a conveniently placed carry handle to maximize portability.

Furthermore, this vac also comes equipped with a 10 ft chord as well as two extension wand pieces. On combining these extension wands and all other accessories, you can quickly remove cobwebs from a 17-foot high ceiling height without unplugging the unit. The manufacturers have honestly put a lot of thought into the little details and these make a massive difference in the consumer’s hands.

What Could Have Been Better?

We’re a little disappointed that this product comes equipped with a 3HP motor. Though its strong performance capacity seems to be compensating a little bit; however, most of its competitors are setting the bar high by introducing products with a higher motor capacity. This becomes quite a bummer, as most consumers are always looking for the best value under the lowest price.

  • 6 gallon tank
  • Sealed on and off switch
  • 360-degree swivels
  • 10ft chord
  • 2 extension wand pieces
  • 3 HP motor
Filter Type: Cartridge | Dimensions: ‎‎16.61 x 18.42 x 24.28 inches | Weight: ‎‎15.5 pounds | Capacity: ‎‎9 Gallons | Decibels: ‎‎82 dB | Cordless: ‎‎No

6. Shop- Vac 1.5 Gallon All-In- One Wet And Dry Vac

We enjoy the silence in our homes, and if you are like us, this shop vac can be one of the best choices for you. Shop-Vac is known to be technologically a step ahead at all times with its innovative products, and this one isn’t an exception. Not only does this model assures you of professional-level efficiency, but it also comes with an advanced sound diffusion technology we have come across till now.  

Shop-Vac 1.5 Gallon 2.0 Peak HP All Around EZ Wet/Dry...
  • Portable & Easy to Store: Shop-vac vacuum cleaners have...
  • Multi-Functional: The Shop-Vac 1.5 Gallon 2.0 Peak HP All...

Why Did We Like It?

If you are one of those who want to make the kids responsible by letting them contribute to the household vacuuming, then you can consider giving this product a try. Not that it is specially designed for children, but it is just so easy to operate that even your child can use it without any difficulties.

Not only that, it comes with an attached dolly that makes sure you can roll it instead of carrying it around. Want your kids to vacuum the stairs mess? No worries, this shop vac comes with a carry handle that will help them to clean the mess they created.

Undoubtedly, this vac is small in size; it still packs a punch, offering a 2 HP motor no less. Whether your aim is to clean the dust on the carpet, or pet hair from your sofas, the motor can surely help you raise your cleaning game by a few notches.

Now, what separates this product from the rest of our recommendations is that this vacuum is equipped with an 18-foot cord that facilitates more movement over a wide radius. This feature allows you to vacuum the stairs even with the unit placed on the ground.

What Could Have Been Better?

After using it for two months in our workshop, we are yet to find a significant flaw in this vac. But if we had to nitpick, the only thing we would say is that it lacks a large capacity tank compared to other recommended models on this list. But, this doesn’t affect its performance, so it cannot be considered as a deal-breaker.

  • Long hose and chord
  • User-friendly
  • 3-year warranty
  • Lack of a large capacity tank
Filter Type: Foam | Dimensions: ‎17.5 x 12.4 x 9.6 inches | Weight: ‎10.93 pounds | Capacity: 1.‎‎5 Gallons | Decibels: ‎‎78 dB | Cordless: ‎‎No

7. 16 Gallon Shop Vac Emerson WS1600VA

Although Emerson is considerably a new entrant in the shop vac market, this brand has been creating waves with its trailblazing innovations. The Emerson WS1600VA comes with an exemplary durable copolymer drum, making it one of the best value-for-money shop vacs in the market recently. Let’s check out its core features.

WORKSHOP Wet/Dry Vacs Vacuum WS1600VA High Capacity Wet/Dry...
  • Backed by a 5-Year Limited Warranty, this shop vacuum...
  • Qwik Lock Filter Fastening System allows quick and easy wet...

Why Did We Like It?

To begin with, this shop vac comes equipped with a 16-gallon tank that maximizes the amount of cleaning you can do in a single session. Also, the WS1600VA can be one of the most logical choices if your needs go beyond a typical home use. Apart from that, a large storage capacity means you won’t have to empty the tank very frequently, in between your cleaning spree.

The cherry on the cake is its durable copolymer drum. This ensures that this model can withstand any kind of heavy duty cleaning and successfully prevents cracking or dents from impacts.

As a bonus, the on-board filter system of the unit sports an Emerson’s Qwik Lock fastening design. This makes switching filters quick and simple, like never before.

Apart from that, it also provides five years of limited warranty that will help you live peacefully, knowing that you are in safe hands.

What Could Have Been Better?

We couldn’t help but notice a couple of drawbacks of an otherwise exceptional shop vac. First, the wand extensions lack some supporting clips to hold them in place. Second, the top doesn’t seal as well to the bucket as we expected. Hence, we recommend you to be cautious and avoid bumping for perfect usage.

  • Enormous tank capacity
  • Quickest suction vacuum
  • Provision of Qwik Lock Filtering system
  • Lack of dust collection bags
  • Absence of clips to hold the wand extensions
Filter Type: Cartridge | Dimensions: ‎20.38 x 20.25 x 34.5 inches | Weight: ‎‎23.4 pounds | Capacity: ‎‎16 Gallons | Decibels: ‎‎N/A | Cordless: ‎‎No

Best Shop Vac Comparison Table

ProductFilter TypeDimensionsWeightCapacityDecibelsCordless
Shop-Vac 5989300 5-GallonCartridge14 x 14 x 21 inches‎12 pounds5 Gallons78 dBNo
Ridgid WD1450 14-Gallon 6-Horsepower Wet/Dry Vacuum3-layer Fine Dust22.5 x 26 x 19.5 inches26 pounds14 Gallons80 dBYes
BOSCH VAC090A 9-GallonCanister, HEPA23.25 x 15.75 x 28.75 inches12 pounds9 Gallons69 dBNo
Armor All 2.5 Gallon, 2 Peak HPFoam, Cloth10.6 x 14.2 x 14.4 inches7 pounds2.5 Gallons82 dBNo
Craftsman 12004 6 GallonCartridge‎‎16.61 x 18.42 x 24.28 inches15.5 pounds‎‎9 Gallons‎‎82 dBNo
Shop- Vac 1.5 Gallon All-In- One Wet And Dry VacFoam17.5 x 12.4 x 9.6 inches10.93 pounds1.‎‎5 Gallons‎‎78 dBNo
16 Gallon Shop Vac Emerson WS1600VACartridge20.38 x 20.25 x 34.5 inches23.4 pounds16 Gallons‎‎N/ANo

Buying Guide For The Best Shop Vac

Knowing the best 10 shop vacs that are available in the market today is only half the battle won! You still need to figure out which product suits you the best according to your needs. And, that can be a bit daunting as you are dealing with all excellent products with premium features. That’s when our comprehensive buyer’s guide can come handy.

Here are a few specifics you should keep in mind before shelling out your cold cash. So, grab your pen and paper. Let’s get started.


Know that the tank capacity and the size is central to finding the perfect shop vac of your choice. If you simply want a vac to only clean your backyard, then getting an industrial-sized model might not be precisely a logical decision to make.

Hence, if you require a shop vac to clean up areas around your home like the garage, we would recommend using an 8 to 14-gallon capacity vacuum. On the other hand, tanks that are larger than 14-gallon would be an ideal choice for performing heavy-duty tasks like the clean up of large commercial houses.


For those of you who don’t have a clear idea, a shop vac works primarily by suctioning any wet dry dirt and debris into the collection tanks. Therefore, suctioning capacity and power are the pivotal points to consider while exploring a million shop vacuums that exist in recent times.

If you are in need of a vacuum with a high performance-suction, then aiming for high horsepower and CFM vac would be your best bet. Some models sport CFM of over 100, while some as high as 175. For light-duty vacuuming purposes, purchasing a low-CFM vac would be adequate.


While buying your vac, it is essential to remember that the motor can make or break the vacuum. Keep in mind to have a look at the amount of horsepower the motor sports. We always suggest purchasing high-performance motor shop vac for optimum performance.


Shop vacs are not only limited to cleaning just the shop. Hence, it is always prudent to find something versatile to meet all your cleaning needs. All the more, it can be handy, both for financial and storage reasons, to use only a product that can clean up your yard, home as well as shops.


Price! The final and ultimate consideration. One of the excellent aspects of purchasing a shop vac is that you can even get a knock-off without splurging considerably. But, remember it is always wise to purchase a quality product rather than relying on cheap and mediocre ones. A good shop vac will stick around for a while, and therefore we would advise you to always purchase a quality product, than continuously replacing the cheap ones.

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Shop Vac For Dust Collection FAQs

  • How do I choose the right size of shop vac for dust collection?

    Choosing the right size of shop vac depends on the scale of your cleaning tasks. If you mainly need to clean small areas like your garage or backyard, an 8 to 14-gallon capacity vacuum should suffice. For heavier-duty tasks or cleaning large commercial spaces, opt for a shop vac with a tank larger than 14 gallons.

  • How important is the motor when choosing a shop vac?

    The motor plays a vital role in a shop vac’s performance. Opt for a shop vac with a high-performance motor, preferably one with sufficient horsepower to provide strong suction. A powerful motor ensures efficient cleaning and improves the overall performance of the vacuum.

  • Can a shop vac be used for purposes other than cleaning the shop?

    Yes, shop vacs are not limited to cleaning shops only. They are versatile cleaning tools that can be used for various purposes. You can use a shop vac to clean your home, garage, car, outdoor spaces, and more. Look for a shop vac with versatile attachments and accessories to make it suitable for a wide range of cleaning tasks.

  • Should I prioritize affordability or quality when buying a shop vac?

    While affordability is important, it is generally recommended to prioritize quality when purchasing a shop vac. Investing in a high-quality shop vac ensures durability, performance, and longevity. Cheap and mediocre shop vacs may not provide the desired suction power, durability, and efficiency, leading to frequent replacements. It’s better to choose a quality product that will last and provide reliable dust collection performance.

  • Conclusion

    When it comes to dust collection, having the right shop vac can make all the difference. Whether you’re tackling heavy-duty cleanup, handling versatile job site cleaning, or seeking professional-grade performance, choosing the best shop vac for your specific needs is crucial. After thorough consideration, we present to you the top three expert recommendations that excel in different areas, ensuring you find the perfect solution for your dust collection requirements.

    The Shop-Vac 5989300 5-Gallon Stainless Steel Wet Dry Vacuum is an ideal option for heavy-duty cleanup with its strong 4.5 PHP motor and 5-gallon stainless steel tank. The Ridgid WD1450 14-Gallon 6-Horsepower Wet/Dry Vacuum is a good option for versatile job site cleaning, offering low noise levels and powerful suction capacity. For professional performance, the BOSCH VAC090A 9-Gallon Dust Extractor Shop VAC is the right choice with its powerful motor and automatic filter cleaning system.

    It’s now time for you to make a sound decision. We will see you soon with more info about the best products that can take your experience to a completely new level.

    Stay Tuned. Here’s wishing you all the luck

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