Best Water Vacuum Cleaner 2018 – Comprehensive Buying Guide

Best Water Vacuum Cleaner

When it comes to cleaning your house, having a trusted vacuum by your side makes it easy to remove messes from your carpets and floors. But what do you do if you spill water or some other liquid? Most vacuums are not equipped for those kinds of situations, which means that you’re out of luck.

Or are you?

With the best water vacuum cleaner, you can handle any mess in your home, whether it’s made of dirt, dust, or liquid. We’re going to showcase some of the top models for you, and we’re going to outline the particular features that you want to have built into your vacuum.

Water Vacuum Cleaners - Comparison Chart

Name

Size 

Weight

Warranty

Price

Kalorik Pure Air-Water Filtration Vacuum Cleaner

4 Gallon

14.3 lbs

1-Year

Vacmaster 5 Peak HP Wet/Dry Vacuum

12 Gallon

20 lbs

2-Year

WORKSHOP Wet/Dry Vacs WS1600SS Stainless 

(Editor's Choice)

16 Gallon

37 lbs

5-Year

Shop-Vac 5989400 8 gallon 6.0 Peak HP Stainless Wet Dry

8 Gallon

19 lbs

3-Year

Vacmaster 5 Peak HP with 2-Stage Industrial

4 Gallon

17.2 lbs

2-Year

Recommended Best Water Vacuum Cleaner Reviews

1. Kalorik Pure Air-Water Filtration Vacuum Cleaner

If you suffer from allergies, then you know how valuable a high-quality filtration system is for your home. With most high-end vacuums, you get a dry filter that traps allergens and dust so that they don’t get spewed back out into the air.

However, with this model from Kalorik, all of those materials are swept into a water filtration system, which holds them in better and doesn’t require expensive refills.

Unlike other vacuums, this model is unique because of how it traps dirt and dust. By filling the bottom with water, everything from

dust to pollen to pet dander is caught effectively by the cyclonic action that happens when you turn it on. Thus, you can depend on this model to be better at keeping your air cleaner. Best of all, to change the filter, all you have to do is drain the water and refill it.

One great thing about this model is that it's built to move. It has a lightweight design (less than 15 pounds), an easy carry handle, and four caster wheels. Thus, you can run it to any room of your house without having to hold it or lift it up. Nonetheless, it can be heavy when full, so be careful if you have to move it up or down stairs at all.

Because this vacuum picks up both dirt and liquid spills, you may think that it’s easy to get carried away and overfill the container, causing it to burst. Fortunately, it includes a built-in sensor that shuts the whole thing off, ensuring that that never happens. Also, it has an indicator light so that you can empty the container before it becomes a problem.

Pros

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    Durable ABS plastic construction
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    Large container for spills
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    Uses water filtration to remove dust and allergens
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    Four caster wheels for easier moving
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    Dust-sealed on/off switch
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    Fill indicator to prevent overfilling
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    Auto-stop sensor and switch
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    Bagless design
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    Works on wet or dry materials
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    Extra motor gasket reduces noise
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    Lightweight design

Cons

  • Size and angle of the extension wand can be awkward at times
  • Carrying the vacuum up and down stairs can be challenging with the water inside

2. Vacmaster 5 Peak HP Wet/Dry Vacuum Cleaner

When trying to pick out the top water vacuum, it helps to have a powerful suction system so that you can pick up more water in less time. With that in mind, this model from Vacmaster is an ideal choice for most households. With a five-horsepower motor, you can handle almost any mess, both wet and dry.

Picking up water and other spills is a snap with this vacuum, thanks to its massive size. With a 12-gallon tank, you can clean your property from top to bottom in a single pass, if you were feeling so industrious, of course. What makes it even better is that there is a drain valve on the bottom, making the process even more comfortable.

Secondly, we like that this model comes with a built-in blower. All you have to do is push a button, and it comes loose, making it a convenient addition to the cleaning experience. Fortunately, it comes with the same amount of power as the vacuum; it can blow at up to 240 mph at full blast.

We really appreciate that this vacuum is built from durable ABS plastic, as well as the fact that it comes with four caster wheels. Moving the whole thing around is a snap as a result. This model comes with two extension wands, a crevice tool, and other detail accessories that help you get the most out of your cleaning experience.

Pros

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    Large 12-gallon container
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    Powerful five-horsepower motor
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    Durable ABS plastic construction
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    Four caster wheels for more natural movement
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    Wet/Dry capable
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    Built-in blower removes with a single push
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    Seven-foot flexible hose
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    12-foot power cord
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    Cartridge filter for better cleanup
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    Bottom drain valve for faster emptying
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    Dust-sealed on/off switch
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    Automatic shutoff valve
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    Balanced design won’t tip over
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    Six attachments included
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    Two-year limited warranty

Cons

  • You have to change filters between wet and dry messes
  • In rare cases, the vacuum may overheat and shut off unexpectedly

3. WORKSHOP Wet/Dry Vacs WS1600SS Stainless

Since we're looking for the best water vacuum cleaner, it makes sense that we would want a machine that's built for sucking up liquids. For the most part, wet/dry vacuums are created for dust and dirt, not water. Thankfully, this device from Workshop is built with water in mind, ensuring that you can work on any liquid spill with ease.

Unlike most other wet/dry units, the Workshop Vacuum comes with a suction performance rating. This classification relates to how well the vacuum can remove water from surfaces. Incredibly, the WS1600SS can suck up one gallon of liquid per minute.

Coupled with a massive 16-gallon container, you can handle almost any spills. Also, it could work for flooded areas of your house if necessary, thanks to its robust design and stainless steel construction.

One primary reason that this vacuum is so powerful is thanks to its motor. With 6.5 horsepower, you can clean your house faster and more efficiently than other vacuums, even if you don’t have to pick up any liquids. Although the motor is a bit louder than other units, it’s worth it to get better results every time.

We also like this vacuum because it includes six different attachments, including floor cleaners, extension wands, and crevice tools. Best of all, there is a storage caddy on the back so that you can keep it all together. The caddy also acts as a handle for dragging the vacuum upstairs. It even comes with large rear wheels to make the whole process even easier.

Finally, this vacuum comes with an incredible five-year limited warranty. Thus, you don’t have to worry about whether or not it will last.

Pros

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    Durable stainless steel construction
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    Powerful 6.5-horsepower motor
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    Extra large 16-gallon capacity
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    Two large rear wheels for more comfortable movement
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    Onboard storage caddy for convenience
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    Suction power of one gallon per second
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    Seven-foot flex hose
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    High-quality filtration system
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    Six attachments included
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    Integrated blower system
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    Remarkable five-year limited warranty

Cons

  • Heavier and more cumbersome than other models (especially when full)
  • Can create static electricity at times

4. Shop-Vac 5989400 6.0 Peak HP Stainless

Many times, when people are looking for vacuums with wet/dry capabilities, they call them “shop vacs.” Although this may seem like an innocuous phrase, considering that the term is actually shop vacuums, the fact is that it can be a little bit confusing since there is a brand named Shop-Vac. As such, it’s imperative that you understand the difference so that you can make the right decision when picking out the water vacuum.

In this case, this model from Shop-Vac is another unit that was built for dry materials, although it can pick up water and other liquids quickly as well. If you’re looking for something a bit less hardcore for your cleaning needs, then this vacuum can be an excellent choice.

Performance-wise, this model comes with a powerful six-horsepower motor and an eight-gallon capacity. This allows you to clean up a variety of messes in a short period, while also allowing you to move the whole thing much more easily when it’s full. With larger vacuums, carrying them can be a struggle because they can get so heavy when they’re filled with water and debris.

What we like about this unit is that it’s made for long-term use. The canister is built out of stainless steel, and the other components are made of durable ABS plastic. The hose is extra flexible and adjustable so that you can reach into nooks and crannies if necessary, or you can attach the floor cleaner head and use it as a regular vacuum.

This Shop-Vac comes with six different attachments, including extension wands, crevice tools, and other detail units so that you can get the best clean possible. Best of all, it offers onboard storage so that you can keep everything together.

Other features that come with this model include a built-in blower, a drain port on the bottom so that you can empty the container without having to turn the whole thing over, and a three-year limited warranty on the motor.

Pros

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    Durable stainless steel construction
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    Powerful six-horsepower motor
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    Large eight-gallon capacity
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    Four caster wheels for easier movement
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    Easy carry handle for convenience
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    Rear blower port built-in
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    Onboard storage for attachments
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    Locking mechanism for safety
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    Six accessories included
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    Seven-foot flexible hose
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    Large drain port for easy emptying
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    Three-year limited warranty on motor

Cons

  • In some cases, the tube can clog relatively easily
  • In rare instances, the locking mechanisms may not work correctly, causing the vacuum to lose suction

5. Vacmaster 5 Peak HP with 2-Stage Industrial

Our final stop is with this compact wet/dry vacuum from Vacmaster. Although the other models that we’ve seen have been designed for more significant spills and messes, this one works best for smaller households or spot cleaning. If you want to keep your garage or car spic and span, then this could be an excellent vacuum for you.

When compared to other models, you can see that this unit is not as powerful or robust. Nonetheless, having a five horse-power motor is ideal for most cleaning situations, and four gallons of storage capacity is more than enough to clean up any particular spill that you may encounter.

What we like most about this vacuum is the filtration system. For dry materials, you get a HEPA-style filter that traps almost all dust particles and allergens from the air, ensuring that they don’t come back out to cause a reaction. For liquids, this vacuum comes with a washable and reusable foam filter that keeps everything contained inside. Since there is no bag to worry about, having these filters installed makes this vacuum an ideal choice for any household.

We also appreciate how many attachments come with this unit. You get three extension wands, a floor cleaning head, and several detail accessories so that you can clean almost anywhere. With a long, flexible hose, you can vacuum the floor or the ceiling with ease. Best of all, there is a storage caddy in the back for keeping everything contained and in place.

One exciting feature that you don’t find on a lot of vacuums like this is a retractable power cord. If you’re like us, then you hate having to rewind the cord after every use. This capability makes the whole process so much easier and less hassle, making cleaning a breeze overall.

Finally, this vacuum comes with Vacmaster’s remarkable two-year limited warranty.

Pros

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    Durable ABS plastic construction
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    Powerful five-horsepower motor
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    Large four-gallon capacity
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    Locking hose mechanism
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    Dust-sealed on/off switch
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    Long 18-foot power cord
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    Automatic rewind for easy storage
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    Easy carry handle for convenience
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    Large rear wheels for comfort
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    Onboard storage caddy in the back
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    Seven attachments included
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    Washable cartridge filter
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    HEPA filtration system
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    Two-year limited warranty

Cons

  • In rare cases, the vacuum may lose suction unexpectedly
  • Some accessories can affect performance

How to Choose the Right Water Vacuum Cleaner

Seeing all of these water vacuums listed can help you make a comparison, but how do you know what features and abilities to look for the most? If you’re not familiar with these kinds of machines, then it can be challenging to understand what makes a particular water vacuum better than the competition.

Gallon Size

If you’re like most people, then you don’t want to have to stop what you’re doing and empty the vacuum every few minutes. When picking up dirt and dust, a few gallons can take a while to fill, which is why so many dry vacuums are smaller and more compact.

However, when it comes to liquid messes, they can fill up remarkably fast. As such, it’s critical that you find a model that has a sufficient container size so that you can clean more of the surface without having to stop and reload the system.

For most households, we recommend at least four or five gallons, but if you’re planning on soaking up a lot of water at once, then you want to get at least 10 or 12 if possible.

One thing to remember, though, is that water is also really heavy. This means that once the vacuum gets full, it can be extremely tough to carry the tank, especially if you have to go up or down a flight of stairs. As such, we highly recommend that you do your cleaning floor by floor, emptying the tank before you tackle another staircase.

Suction Rating

This is a classification that is unique to water vacuums. Because liquids require a different kind of suction than dirt, it’s essential that you have a system that can pick it up as easily as it could dust and other debris.

As we've seen, most wet/dry vacuums don't list this kind of rating. As you can imagine, not having this classification implies that the machine is not as adept at suctioning water from surfaces. Thus, if you need something for large spills or draining purposes, you want to find a model with this rating listed on it.

Usually, when looking at the suction power (SP), you’ll see it listed as gallons per second or gallons per minute. As you can imagine, the higher the number, the more powerful the vacuum is overall.

Motor

Finally, because water can be challenging to remove from any surface, you want a motor that is capable of handling the additional load. With smaller vacuums, they can burn out easily after a few spills, so you need something a bit more robust.

We highly suggest that you find a vacuum with at least five horsepower if possible. Having this kind of reliability behind your cleaning power is going to make your life much more efficient.

Final Verdict

After comparing all of the best water vacuum cleaners, we decided that our top pick had to be the Workshop model. Since this is the only unit that comes with a suction rating, as well as having the most powerful motor and largest capacity, we think that it outclasses and outshines the competition.

John C.
 

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