8 creative ways to use your wet dry vacuum

A wet dry vacuum cleaner sits on a floor.
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A wet dry vacuum can be a useful tool for DIY projects around the house because it can tackle both wet and dry messes.

Rather than a traditional vacuum bag, a wet dry vac typically uses two canister-type devices that separate liquids from solids into two different compartments, although some varieties have only one mixed-use tank. Capacity size variety greatly as do hose lengths. These powerful devices come with a plethora of accessories that include interchangeable brushes and nozzles that come in both corded and cordless styles.

The best wet dry vac will be versatile enough to handle cleanup from a bathroom remodel and also suck up kitchen spills. Here are 8 creative ways to make the most out of your wet dry vac.

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Unclog The Sink

Forget the Drano and reach for your wet dry vac instead. Free clogged sinks and bathtubs by setting your device to the blower setting — not suction — and let the powerful air it forces out unclog your drain.

Clear Away Snow

Keep the shovel in the garage and use your wet dry vac to clear your doorstep after a snowstorm. Take the backache out of this job and use your powerful vacuum to blow away snow. This is also helpful in the backyard if you have small dogs who can get buried in high piles of snow. Simply create a narrow path for them by blowing away some snow so they can do their business on the lawn.

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Clean Up Food And Beverage Spills

Whether you knock over your coffee cup or your child drops their bowl of cereal, the best wet dry vac can suck up an otherwise pesky mess like that in no time flat.

Reset After A Lego Session

Playtime with your kids shouldn’t end in a headache. By using a wet vac with a clean compartment, you can suck up every last Lego piece before dumping them into your storage bin.

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Empty Your Waterbed

If you have a water mattress, you know that you have to empty it whenever you move. Rather than lugging it to the bathroom and letting its contents wash down the drain, use your wet dry vac to tackle the job. Insert the nozzle into the access cover and let it suck out the water. Any of the best wet dry vacs will automatically stop when the reservoir is full.

Deal With Flooded Areas

Prevent prolonged water damage by cleaning up flooded areas quickly. This might be next to your basement after a major storm or simply sucking out water lingering in the dishwasher after a malfunction that prevented it from draining. If you find yourself tackling a plumbing mess under your sink, your wet dry vac can make cleaning up a breeze.

Clean Your Hot Tub

Hot tubs only drain to a certain point and then you’re left with a small amount of water at the bottom. Your wet dry vac will suck up the remaining amount pretty quickly. (This same tactic goes for fish tanks that are too large to tip into the sink.)

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Refresh Your Deck

Power washing can breathe new life into an old deck. Blow old leaves, dirt and debris off your deck using the wet dry vac’s blower function and then give it a good wash. Afterward, suction up excess water so you don’t cause unnecessary wear while waiting for it to evaporate.

Some of the best wet dry vacs have the added bonus feature of cleaning floors. If you’re shopping around for model and want to take advantage of this feature, look for ones labeled vacuum mops.

About the Author

Emily O'Brien

Emily is a freelance writer who loves connecting the dots among facts and finding obscure little details to weave in throughout her work. Whether she's interviewing Olympic athletes, small business owners, dessert cookbook writers, or world-renowned architects, she's passionate about shining the spotlight on good people doing remarkable work. Learn More.