Home & Garden

Shop Vac vs. Regular Vaccum

  • Last Updated:
  • Feb 23rd, 2009 4:06 pm
Tags:
None
Member
Oct 10, 2005
303 posts
9 upvotes

Shop Vac vs. Regular Vaccum

Just looking for a quick advice in here...

I was about to go out to purchase new vacuum (probably Miele). My uncle in law suggested that I just buy Shop Vac to pick up dust since I only have bare floor.

Even if I get a small area rug, he mentioned that shop vac would still pick up the dust/stuff in there as well.

My original budget for Miele was about 400-500 and shop vac is about 60-100.

If shp vac can be really good at sucking everything up, why do people need vaccum?
12 replies
Deal Addict
Jan 5, 2003
2925 posts
2304 upvotes
Toronto
Vaccums have agitators/brushes to stir up dust/dirt in carpets, rather just suction, but if you REALLY don't think you need this (IMHO, ground-in dirt in an area rug will still benefit from this), here are some other reasons:

- vaccums are generally quieter, shop vacs generally don't bother with any sound insulation
- shop vacs don't come with small tools for drapes, bookcases, top of cabinets, etc.
- shop vac hoses are generally thicker, so more difficult to fit under sofas, nooks and crannies, etc.
- better filters (eg. HEPA) on vaccums, shop vacs just want to keep drywall dust and nails from coming back out, but not as thorough as vaccum filters.
- are you going to use your shop vac in the garage, outside, or for renovation debris? It'll get dirty and dusty and you won't want to bring it inside.
- emptying a normal bag or bagless vaccum is a less messier job than shop vacs, which are usually just one big compartment (you're essentially lifting the entire machine, minus the motor).

I know there are some small shop vacs that are smaller and quieter than average, but it won't do so well with the big debris, so it's like comparing a dustbuster with a full size vaccum.

If you have only bare floors, I would suggest you consider just using a Swiffer dry cloth with one of those Swiffer poles. I find it's faster and quieter, easy to fit under sofas, etc. For my hardwood and tile floors on my first floor, I go over them regularly with a Swiffer and only use my vaccum for the carpeted 2nd floor.

Or consider ONLY a normal vaccum. If you don't do a lot of renovations or garage/handy work, you might not need a shop vac. A normal vaccum is fine with cleaning the car interior.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Jan 28, 2008
1177 posts
29 upvotes
Sarnia
With no carpeting you don't need a power nozzle.. something like this from Sears would suffice. ShopVacs are noisy, tip over, hard to use, they're made for using in a workshop not a house or apartment.

http://www.sears.ca/gp/product/B000TV8C ... Brand=core
Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding. Proverbs 17;28
[OP]
Member
Oct 10, 2005
303 posts
9 upvotes
Thanks for quick replies...

Like I mentioned before, we only have bare floor and Swiffer doesn't pick up all the dust.

I find that sometimes, it just moves the small particles around but it doesn't really pick them up.

My uncle said that some shop vac would come with the HEPA filter and that I should get a small one that comes with the small attachments.

Noise is a big factor to consider for us though...my husband wants a vacuum that is quiet enough that he can hear TV which is why we are leaning towards Miele.

I didn't know that shop vacs are loud.
[OP]
Member
Oct 10, 2005
303 posts
9 upvotes
pkguy wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 11:09 am
With no carpeting you don't need a power nozzle.. something like this from Sears would suffice. ShopVacs are noisy, tip over, hard to use, they're made for using in a workshop not a house or apartment.

http://www.sears.ca/gp/product/B000TV8C ... Brand=core
Thanks for the recommendation. That's way cheaper than original Miele we were thinking of.

Since we are going to spend couple of hundred dollars, we want to make sure we get a reliable one that will last at least 5-7 years.

We were originally thinking of Hoover S3675-050 ($250) based on high recommendations but some reviewers mentioned that vacuum breaks down after one year and we decided to spend more money for 5 year warranty of the Miele.
Deal Guru
Oct 6, 2005
14818 posts
1495 upvotes
jasira wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 10:38 am
If shp vac can be really good at sucking everything up, why do people need vaccum?
If you want a cheap vacuum, a shopvac is fine.

But it does have a couple drawbacks:

1. Hard to use in a large area (tips too easily)
2. Noisy
3. Hard to clean
4. Cords are too short (it's for shop use)
5. Seems to spew out a lot of exhaust dust.

So in general, a miele is nicer to use than shopvac.

Update: oops guess i'm just repeating what everyone else has said.
jasira wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 11:38 am
Thanks for the recommendation. That's way cheaper than original Miele we were thinking of.
Miele is the gold standard/benz of vacuums ;)
Deal Expert
Mar 23, 2004
19880 posts
1518 upvotes
coolspot wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 12:48 pm
If you want a cheap vacuum, a shopvac is fine.

But it does have a couple drawbacks:

1. Hard to use in a large area (tips too easily)
Yeah I agree with the tipping but not with the large area. If anything they are harder to use in small areas, but you can buy small shop vacs that are mainly designed to use in the home and can do garage-type double duty for lighter-duty application. They're in the "All-Around" category of Shop Vacs. I have an All-Around I use in a carpet-less house and it works great for me.

It's less prone to tipping being a smaller vacuum but it still does tip at times do to the canister design and the top-heavyness (pretty much all shop vacs have a light bottom bucket with the heavy motor up top). It has more power than some of the lower end larger full Shop Vac models too, though obviously it can't hold nearly as much nor pickup debris that's as large (smaller hose).

One other drawback v. full sized shop vacs is that the bags are similarly priced but much much smaller, meaning you're paying $15 for a 3pk of very small bags. Still it's much more "civilised" than hauling out a huge Shop Vac to vacuum your floors, furniture, etc. in your home.

Being a Shop Vac, you still get full wet pickup and bagless operation if you choose, which means it's great to use for the car, van, etc... You also never have to worry about "dirtying" your "good vacuum" picking up dust from doing any interior work--sanding, painting, patching drywall, etc. Very versatile.
coolspot wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 12:48 pm
2. Noisy
Though they can be louder than some vacuums, vacuuming in general isn't exactly a quiet excercise (well other than central vac), so not sure this is a huge concern anyway.
coolspot wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 12:48 pm
. Hard to clean
Are you kidding? Shop-vacs are the easiest to clean vacuums out there. You can hose them down or put the "bucket" part in a sink to clean them out. You can certainly use bags in them too so not any more difficult there either. Try submerging parts of your Miele or what have you, or hitting them on the driveway with the hose--see how well that works out for you, LOL.
coolspot wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 12:48 pm
4. Cords are too short (it's for shop use)
Called an extention cord ;) Though my All-Around, the cord doesn't seem any shorter than a "regular" home vacuum.
coolspot wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 12:48 pm
5. Seems to spew out a lot of exhaust dust.
Buy the right type of bags and this is less of a problem. The fine particulate bags are much better than the regular bags. (Going bagless indoors is just asking for trouble). All All-Around bags, incidentally, are fine particulate.
coolspot wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 12:48 pm
So in general, a miele is nicer to use than shopvac.
Perhaps, but not on those points it isn't. And $400 nicer? I dunno.
coolspot wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 12:48 pm
Miele is the gold standard/benz of vacuums ;)
And someone else might say it's Kirby, or Hoover, or Filter Queen (a $500 Miele is more like a Hyundai compared to a $2k Kirby, lol); heck people nowadays will even tell you it's Dyson.

If you don't have carpet though, I can't imagine why you would want a "designer" vacuum, it's totally unnecessary. Also, what happens when the Miele meets water? :P
[OP]
Member
Oct 10, 2005
303 posts
9 upvotes
ES_Revenge wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 1:36 pm
I have an All-Around I use in a carpet-less house and it works great for me.
Is that all the vacuum you use or do you have any other kind?

Also, how loud does it get? Can you still hear the phone ring? TV sound?(reasonable loudness)

Would you recommend shop vac for another carpet less house?
Deal Expert
Mar 23, 2004
19880 posts
1518 upvotes
jasira wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 2:30 pm
Is that all the vacuum you use or do you have any other kind?
Well it's the only vacuum that really gets used anymore since moving into a house with no carpet (and only a few rugs).
jasira wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 2:30 pm
Also, how loud does it get? Can you still hear the phone ring? TV sound?(reasonable loudness)
The All-Around is no louder than any other vacuum I've used. There may be vacuums designed to be quiet which are probalby more quiet than it, but it's not any more loud than your average vacuum. The larger full-sized Shop-Vacs are probably what people are talking about when they're talking about more noise.
jasira wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 2:30 pm
Would you recommend shop vac for another carpet less house?
Yeah I definitely recommend the All-Around, particularly if you don't really want to spend huge bucks on a vacuum. Most high priced, high end vacuums are designed for carpet and interior use only. While they are usually excellent for carpet, that really doesn't benefit you if you don't have any!

There's no shortage of suction power either, the little All-Arounds are quite powerful for their size (as I said some of the cheaper full-size Shop Vacs aren't as powerful) and they use standard size vacuum hoses, meaning all sorts of attachments will fit--so you'll definitely be able to get the attachments/tools you need for the house to work with it. (It comes with a large head, a small head, a crevice tool and a squeege for the large head for wet pickups, but if you need other attachments you can get pretty much any home vacuum ones and they should fit fine.)

As I said it's also great to use in the garage, for the car(s), and if you ever need to do wet pickup (useful for the car in the winter when you get all the snow-melt water in the mats/carpet!).

Of course it isn't a perfect vacuum either but at less than $100, I think you'll be laughing.

The only real complaint I have about it is the cost of the bags compared to their small size as I was saying above. Other than that it's "small" for a Shop Vac. Say you wanted to pick up a lot of water, it probalby wouldn't fit due to being much smaller than a full Shop Vac. It also doesn't have pumping and blower functions you get with some of the larger Shop Vacs either. But, those SVs are much more expensive as well.

Because it's a canister design, as the bag gets full, you start to lose suction power--this is certainly no Dyson!

But if you don't have any real specific vacuuming needs but need a strong vacuum that can do many different jobs in/around the house, it's a really good llttle guy to have. Rather than being a purpose-built machine, it's more of a Jack-of-all-trades vacuum that's ready to take most of what the regular person will throw at it ;)

Even if you choose to buy a more expensive vacuum, you will still find probably find the All-Around quite useful.

There are three All-Around models BTW. I think there's a 6 Amp (rated 2hp) 1.5-gallon that Wal-Mart sells which is green; a 7A (3hp) 2.0-gallon that Cdn Tire has which is red (this is the one I have incidentally); and an 8A (4.5hp) 3-gallon one that HD might have (?), that is blue. There's also a 4.5 gal model that I've never seen before on the website. You can have a look here:

http://www.shopvac.com/vacs/list.asp?hd ... rowse=1gal
Deal Guru
Oct 6, 2005
14818 posts
1495 upvotes
ES_Revenge wrote:
Feb 9th, 2009 1:36 pm
Are you kidding? Shop-vacs are the easiest to clean vacuums out there. You can hose them down or put the "bucket" part in a sink to clean them out. You can certainly use bags in them too so not any more difficult there either. Try submerging parts of your Miele or what have you, or hitting them on the driveway with the hose--see how well that works out for you, LOL.
A shopvac is more like a garbage tub; when you open it up, dust is everywhere.

I personally prefer a central vac... since I find most convenient - I only need to change the bag once a year (if even!).
Member
Jan 1, 2009
349 posts
35 upvotes
Sorry to hi-jack this thread but I wasn't able to find an existing thread on the topic :D .....I'm interested in picking up a handheld steamer (i.e. as opposed to a floor steamer). The idea is to have a small, portable but yet powerful steamer to clean places like sinks, shower crevices, vertical blinds, etc. Does anyone have any general recommendations? Many thanks in advance!
Deal Addict
Jan 11, 2007
1148 posts
73 upvotes
Brampton
circus_boi wrote:
Feb 11th, 2009 2:42 pm
Sorry to hi-jack this thread but I wasn't able to find an existing thread on the topic :D .....I'm interested in picking up a handheld steamer (i.e. as opposed to a floor steamer). The idea is to have a small, portable but yet powerful steamer to clean places like sinks, shower crevices, vertical blinds, etc. Does anyone have any general recommendations? Many thanks in advance!
I picked up a Shark Steamer yesterday that a CT in Brampton (bovaird/Mclauglin) had on a "blowout" price of $69 instead of $169. Basically it appears to have a strap to hang it off your shoulder and there are several attachments, one of which is the floor steamer. I haven't used it yet so I can't comment on how it works, but it seems like a good price for the attachments it has.
Member
Jan 1, 2009
349 posts
35 upvotes
venice_it wrote:
Feb 11th, 2009 5:19 pm
I picked up a Shark Steamer yesterday that a CT in Brampton (bovaird/Mclauglin) had on a "blowout" price of $69 instead of $169. Basically it appears to have a strap to hang it off your shoulder and there are several attachments, one of which is the floor steamer. I haven't used it yet so I can't comment on how it works, but it seems like a good price for the attachments it has.
How has this worked out for you thus far, may I inquire?
× < >

Top