Cordless shop vacs are the most practical vacuum cleaners for garages, basements, and other spaces that need a thorough cleaning.

They’re easier to carry around than your average vacuum, and no, you don’t need an electrical outlet to run them.

It’s highly recommended that you invest in a shop vac for your garage. Not all messes can be cleaned up with a domestic vacuum.

There is a wide selection of sizes and types of shop vacs to suit your needs. The necessity for a portable model may arise. Or perhaps you require one that excels in tackling particularly difficult tasks.

Which wet/dry vacuum is ideal for you depends on a number of factors, including the type of cleaning you do most often, the size of your home, and the availability of outlets.

Top 11 Best Cordless Shop Vacs To Make Your Cleaning Easier

In this section, I am going to show you some reliable options when it comes to cordless shop vacuums as well as talk to you about the main features that come with each item.

1. Makita XCV11Z Brushless Cordless Wet/Dry Vacuum

Makita XCV11Z Brushless Cordless Wet/Dry Vacuum

One of the most potent cordless shop vacs is the Makita XCV11Z. The 18-volt shop vacuum is lightweight and portable despite its tremendous suction. The machine has big capacity dust containers that can hold up to 2 gallons of material.

When we measured the noise level, we found that it only produced 76 dB, which is satisfactory. This edition of the Makita cordless shop vac has a HEPA filter for superior filtration. This tool has a 60-minute run time when powered by the 18V LXT Lithium-Ion 5Ah battery.

With their high-quality products, Makita has quickly become a household name in the vacuum cleaner industry. The Makita XCV11Z is a high-performance vacuum with an impressive airflow rate of 57 cubic feet per minute (CFM) and a water lift of 27 inches thanks to its robust motor.

This unit also has a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter to eliminate any traces of pollution from your working space.

An 18V lithium-ion battery operates this shop vacuum. After being fully charged, it can be used for up to an hour before dying and needing another charge.

Also, a built-in LED light will flash red when the battery is low and needs to be recharged. This vacuum is lightweight at about 10 pounds and has several ergonomic grips, making it easy to transport.

The fact that the battery is sold separately from the unit by the manufacturer may be a dealbreaker for you.

However, the Makita is unquestionably the greatest cordless shop vac on the market right now because of its power, efficiency, and user-friendliness.

ProsCons
Can handle both wet and dry cleaningBatteries are not included in the purchase price
Lightweight
Motor with no brushes
The convenience of carrying handles and a shoulder strap
Competitive Costs

2. DeWalt DCV517B Cordless Wet/Dry Portable Vacuum

DeWalt DCV517B Cordless Wet/Dry Portable Vacuum

DeWalt has created yet another user-friendly wet/dry vacuum with their model DCV517B. The first thing you need to know about this battery-operated shop vac is that it’s compact enough to be a handheld device.

And because it weighs only six pounds, you can take it places regular shop vacuums can’t go.

You can use the rubber hose or the front utility nozzle to clean up debris with this model, which is another fantastic feature. You’ll also appreciate how quiet it is when in use.

With a 99.97% efficiency rating, the DCV517B’s HEPA filter is washable and reusable. The portability of this shop vac is unfortunately offset by its extremely limited storage capacity (half a gallon).

Since the DCV517B’s tank empties quickly, it is not a good choice for demanding tasks.

ProsCons
Easily transportable (handheld)Small tank
Dual clean-upFast battery depletion
Noiseless
Strong suction power

3. Milwaukee 0880-20 Cordless Wet/Dry Vacuum

Milwaukee 0880-20 Cordless Wet/Dry Vacuum

If you need a cordless shop vac, the Milwaukee 0880-20 is a good option. It has such strong suction that it quickly and easily removes all the dust and dirt from your workspace.

In addition, it can never lose suction because to the fact that its design allows for continuous circulation.

In addition to its many uses, the Milwaukee 0880-20 is highly adaptable. There’s a blower attachment that converts the appliance into a fan. Powering this device is a lithium-ion battery with an 18V capacity that slides inside the device.

You can use any 18V Milwaukee or Ni-Cad battery with it, though. 60 minutes of use time is possible on a single charge.

The Milwaukee 0880 has a reusable filter, which is a great feature. Simply remove it from the shop vac, wash it, and put it back in when it gets dusty. The toolbox form factor makes transporting this item a breeze.

And to make it even more transportable, it has handy carry handles. The 0880-20 has a rather short hose as compared to other vacuums. In addition, that battery is available for purchase independently from the manufacturer.

Despite its flaws, the Milwaukee 0880-20 is a top pick among cordless shop vacs due to its affordable price and good quality wet/dry vacuum.

ProsCons
Small and compact sizeThe power cord is too short
Adaptable; can also be used as a blower
A Reusable Filter
Good strength
It is inexpensive and well worthwhile
A warranty that lasts five years

4. Ryobi 18-Volt ONE+ 6 Gal. Cordless Wet/Dry Vacuum

Ryobi 18-Volt ONE+ 6 Gal. Cordless Wet/Dry Vacuum

If you’re in the market for a cordless wet/dry vacuum, go no further than the Ryobi 18V ONE+. The 18V battery guarantees superior performance.

This shop vacuum’s 40 CFM air volume or suction power means it can easily transport both wet and dry debris, despite its cordless design.

The collapsible carrying handle on this kind of Ryobi cordless shop vac makes it convenient to travel and store. We liked that the floor nozzle, crevice tool, and extension wand could all be stored conveniently on board.

The shop vac has four wheels that can rotate in any direction, allowing for balanced mobility and easy rolling over any surface. The design is also implemented in a way that provides maximum usability.

The compact shape, for instance, makes it easy to store away when not in use, and the removable top makes for quick and simple emptying.

A 5-foot, 1-inch diameter hose that twists into place firmly extends the product’s reach. This wet/dry vacuum weighs a mere 14.02 pounds, making it extremely portable.

The attachments you’ll need for cleaning up are kept in a compartment on this shop vac. Moreover, the Ryobi’s small profile means it won’t hog valuable shelf real estate while not in use.

The Ryobi may get pretty noisy when in use, which is a major downside. Aside from that, it’s a fantastic appliance for industrial tasks.

ProsCons
A 6-gallon capacity storage tankThe operation is noisy
Storage space for accessories
Small and convenient dimensions
Strong and reliable engine

5. DeWalt DCV581H Max Vacuum

DeWalt DCV581H Max Vacuum

The reputation for the quality of DeWalt products extends to this cordless shop vac as well. The DeWalt DCV581H is a cordless impact driver built for industrial settings.

To begin with, it has a hose that is resistant to crushing, so it won’t get damaged by any of the many workplace mishaps that could happen.

In the addition, batteries from the DeWalt 20V battery family can be used in this device. This means that you can use the batteries from any tool in that line in this shop vac.

This vacuum has a replaceable HEPA filter, so you can stop worrying about allergies in the workplace. The need to replace it on a regular basis is eliminated.

The unit’s 2-gallon tank means you can clean up a lot of space before having to refill it. This shop vac is lightweight and easy to carry thanks to its ergonomic layout. The DCV581H is backed by DeWalt’s 3-year warranty.

However, the vacuum cleaner’s battery does not charge while using the AC adapter. The DeWalt DCV581H is still a top-tier cordless shop vacuum. It is highly useful, as it allows you to switch between corded and cordless use.

Additionally, it is long-lasting, user-friendly, and backed by a solid guarantee.

ProsCons
DurablePricey
Strong and reliable engine
Convenient and simple to clean and use
Reusable filter with a high-efficiency

6. CRAFTSMAN CMCV002B Cordless Shop Vac

CRAFTSMAN CMCV002B Cordless Shop Vac

This Craftsman shop vac is a good option if you’re searching for a durable machine that won’t break the bank.

The motor, which is powered by a 20V lithium-ion battery, can generate up to 35 CFM of suction force. CRAFTSMAN, like many other brands, offers the battery as a separate purchase option.

Nonetheless, you can save on battery costs if you already own another CRAFTSMAN power tool that operates on a 20V battery.

The 2-gallon tank on the CMCV002B is substantial enough to allow you to work for a decent duration before you have to empty it.

It also features a High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter to help you keep allergens at bay while you work. This product is covered by CRAFTSMAN’s 3-year limited warranty. Batteries for this shop vac might be pricey.

ProsCons
Built to lastBattery costs can be high
Simple to use
A hose that is reasonably lengthy
Adaptable for use in both wet and dry cleaning environments
Portable
Includes a built-in storage space

7. DeWalt Cordless Wet/Dry Vacuum Kit

DeWalt Cordless Wet/Dry Vacuum Kit

After extensive testing, we propose the DeWalt DCV517B 20V Max as the best cordless portable shop vacuum in terms of size and weight, this is one of the most portable and efficient cordless workshop vacuums available today.

It measures 8.44 x 6.38 x 17 inches in inches. This style of shop vac features an ergonomic design and high-capacity 20V batteries, making it both convenient and powerful to use.

This type of DeWalt cordless shop vac has a wet/dry filter that has been certified as HEPA-level, meaning that it can capture dust as small as 0.3 microns.

The shop vacuum has a filter that can be reused and cleaned, making it much more practical. The machine’s half-gallon tank capacity means that users may gather all the significant dirt at once, cutting down on their dumpster visits.

Both a long, heavy-duty hose and a utility nozzle give you access to the cordless vacuum’s two different cleaning options.

It is undeniably one of the best battery-powered shop vacs for automobiles due to its small size, long runtime, and lengthy warranty (3 years). The battery for this shop vac model is sold separately, which is a minor inconvenience.

Batteries with a maximum voltage of 20V can power the DeWalt DCV580H. This means you can save money by reusing the batteries from any other DeWalt equipment that takes 20V Max batteries.

You can use either the retractable rubber hose or the front utility nozzle to clean with this machine, as it features a dual clean-up mode. The HEPA filter is washable, so there’s no need to buy new ones when they get dirty.

Still, this shop vac’s little half-gallon tank limits its usefulness for serious cleaning tasks. This wet/dry cordless vacuum cleaner, on the other hand, is a solid option for light-duty cleaning.

ProsCons
Easy to transport and storeBatteries not included; available for purchase separately
Robust design
Dual mode for cleaning

8. RIDGID 62718 Red 14-gallon RT1400 Wet/Dry Vacuum

RIDGID 62718 Red 14-gallon RT1400 Wet/Dry Vacuum

Although a portable shop vac is convenient, many homeowners find they want a more robust model for use in their garage or workshop.

The Ridgid’s two-stage, six-horsepower motor makes quick work of tough messes and also allows it to function as a leaf blower when used in reverse.

With the big/small wheel arrangement and the higher handle, the design has evolved into something resembling a power washer, which we find both convenient and attractive.

With its powerful 6.0 peak HP motor, the Ridgid RT1400 can make short work of vacuuming up any debris, including drywall grit.

A 14.0 gallon container. A wet/dry shop vac can be used for both on-site heavy duty cleaning and at-home auto detailing.

The Ridgid 14-Gallon NXT Wet/Dry Vac HD1400 is a great alternative to our top recommendation if you can’t find it or need something more powerful.

The vacuum can hold more debris and has a stronger motor than the HD1200, but both models use the same hose.

The HD1400 isn’t our top selection because it’s bigger and bulkier than the HD1200 (21 vs. 17 pounds), especially on stairs (and that’s just the weight of the vacuum without any trash inside).

The HD1400 also has a higher price tag. Like our top recommendation, this one has received nothing but wonderful feedback from customers.

ProsCons
Two-stage engine producing six horsepowerManeuverability is hindered by the small front wheels
The capacity of 14 gallonsOther variants can be stored in more compact areas
A hose that is 7.8 feet in length

9. Greenworks 40V 3-Gallon Wet/Dry Cordless Vac

Greenworks 40V 3-Gallon Wet/Dry Cordless Vac

The Greenworks 40V 3-Gallon Wet/Dry Cordless Vac is another great cordless alternative. The Greenworks vac has a greater capacity (3 gallons vs. 2 gallons) and stronger suction than the DeWalt vac.

Because it is cordless, you can only use it for a maximum of 15 minutes before needing a recharge. This is a little vacuum cleaner that is best used for quick cleanups, so we didn’t feel rushed by the 15-minute time limit.

There are two interchangeable nozzles for use with the Greenworks vac: a standard one and a crevice tool.

We particularly enjoy how the hose becomes transparent when extended, making it simple to locate a clog.

Although it occasionally makes a high-pitched whine, after testing and using the vacuums around the house during a minor renovation, this one quickly became our favorite.

We think the Greenworks vac’s price tag is fair, considering that it includes both a battery and a charger.

ProsCons
Incredible effectiveness in cleansingThe construction is a little shaky in places
Benefit from the space-saving, compact design

10. CRAFTSMAN CMXEVBE17595 16 Gallon 6.5 Peak HP Wet/Dry Vac

CRAFTSMAN CMXEVBE17595 16 Gallon 6.5 Peak HP Wet/Dry Vac

This electric corded Craftsman shop vac has a 6.5 horsepower motor and a 16-gallon tank, making short work of even the most demanding cleaning jobs.

Good Housekeeping Institute Chief Technologist and Executive Technical Director Rachel Rothman say the machine saved her during a flood that would have caused catastrophic damage to her basement if it hadn’t been installed. Rothman tested the device in her home for six months.

The 2-1/2-inch-wide by 7-foot-long flexible hose helps it perform admirably in both dry and wet vacuuming.

It has a blower port, so you can also use it to blow away a few leaves or grass clippings that have accumulated in the corner of the garage or the driveway.

The larger drain plug is especially helpful when cleaning up heavy spills, and there are also onboard holders for the hose, accessories, and power cord.

ProsCons
A very huge storage tankA lot of space is needed to store it
Extensive, pliable hose
Can be used as a blower as well

11. Ridgid 12-Gallon NXT Wet/Dry Vac HD1200

Ridgid 12-Gallon NXT Wet/Dry Vac HD1200

A lot of trash may be sucked up by this wet/dry vac’s robust motor. This model is not too cumbersome to lug around the basement or up the stairs, thanks to its four wheels, conveniently placed handle, and moderate weight.

Two wand extensions and three nozzles are included with the Ridgid 12-Gallon NXT Wet/Dry Vac HD1200 (one for general use, another for wet spills, and a small one for detail work).

As opposed to the bulky, inconvenient designs of many rivals’ accessory caddies, this one just rests on top of the vacuum.

If you want to buy a Ridgid vacuum cleaner, you can get one on Amazon (where it has thousands of mostly five-star online reviews). And if you ever need them, spare parts like filters, hoses, and nozzles are not hard to come by.

Throughout my decade-long work in construction, the Ridgid 12-gallon is the vacuum I saw and used most often on job sites and the one I’ve kept at home for years.

Although Ridgid periodically refreshes and improves the vac with new models, the vac’s fundamental strengths have stayed unchanged.

ProsCons
Affordable initial costThere are not any wheels
You can choose from a wide range of sizes at reasonable pricesThe use of a short hose
Functionality in both directions

How To Pick The Ideal Cordless Shop Vacuum? (Buying Guide)

Best Cordless Shop Vac

Here are a few things to think about when purchasing a cordless shop vac. When the time comes to make a purchase, they’ll help you do so knowledgeably:

The Battery Capacity

One of the primary draws of a cordless shop vac is its portability, so you should look at the battery life before making your final decision.

Because of their high capacity, 18-volt and 20-volt batteries typically have the greatest run times.

The charging period of the vacuum’s battery is also a significant consideration. Battery life for most cordless vacuum cleaners is four hours or more.

The Power

Power in cordless shop vacs is typically referred to in terms of the suction pressure it can generate.

Calculated in cubic feet per minute (CFM), this metric represents the volume of air that is sucked through a vacuum cleaner’s nozzle in a certain time period.

Greater cubic feet per minute (CFM) in a vacuum means quicker material pickup. Water lift, often known as suction power, is another measure of efficiency in cordless vacuums.

The greater a vacuum’s water lift capacity, the greater the weight it can raise.

The Cost

Shop vacs range in price from as little as $50 to as much as $500. While capacity is a major influence on price (most models under $100 have 5-gallon tanks or smaller ones), quality and convenience are also important considerations.

Our experts believe it’s worth investing more in a shop vac with casters for easy movement throughout the room.

You may extend its reach and clean up any remaining moisture with the included extension shaft and squeegee nozzle.

Holding Capacity

Depending on your needs, a smaller or larger cordless vacuum tank may be more suitable.

A vacuum with a small or medium-sized tank, for instance, would be sufficient for the needs of a person who rarely uses their workshop or who does not engage in very demanding undertakings.

Due to the high volume of trash generated in busy workshops, bigger-capacity vacuums are recommended.

The Size

The size of your ideal workshop vac will also depend on how much room you have in your workshop.

You should restrict your search to vacuum cleaners with a small footprint if storage space is at a premium.

To alleviate this problem, more and more vacuums today include accessories that allow you to mount the machine on a wall.

The Noise

Shop vacs are noticeably noisier than domestic vacuums, which is the first thing most people notice about them.

Because they are so much stronger, this is to be expected. However, if you want to use the vacuum frequently, its noise level may become a major distraction.

Thankfully, some companies that produce cordless vacuum cleaners attempt to reduce the noise. Check the decibel level of a shop vac before buying it, unless you want to carry around a pair of earplugs all the time.

Size of a Hose

Although cordless vacuums are more convenient to move around, because of their lack of a cord, they cannot clean every surface.

And this is where the hose’s length really comes in handy. Longer-hosed vacuums can reach farther inside cabinets and under beds.

Accessory Storage

Working with the vacuum requires that you have your tools close at hand.

Therefore, a cordless machine that also features a storage box for your equipment is invaluable.

The Filter

It’s vital that the device you purchase has a filter if you’re allergic to dust or a dust allergy. HEPA filters are the most efficient available, so be sure to invest in one of those.

The Construction

The shop vac you pick should be built to last, as accidents happen all too often in the workshop.

Good quality cordless vacuums typically feature a plastic outer shell and a stainless steel inner tank.

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The Bottom Line

You can easily clean up the clutter in the garage or workshop with the help of a cordless shop vac. Doing your research will help you find a machine that is tailor-made for your needs.

However, the quality and usefulness of various cordless shop vac models vary widely. As a result, before making a purchase, it is essential to learn as much as possible about the available options.

In light of our research into the various cordless shop vac models now available, we have settled on the Makita XCV11Z as the best buy. However, your requirements are what will ultimately determine which shop vac is best for you.

I found the Milwaukee 0880-20 to be the finest cordless shop vac due to its powerful performance and reasonable price. It has one of the longest battery lives available.

Thanks for taking the time to read.

Cheers!