In this review of the Ridgid brand wet dry vacuum, model number VAC3000, we will look at the pros and cons of this vacuum cleaner. We’ll also address information about this wet/dry portable vacuum that aren’t clear pros or cons but may affect someone’s decision to buy it.
Pros of the RIGID VAC3000
One of the biggest points in favor of this portable wet dry vacuum is price. It costs around $80 at full price and is often found for less on sale.
Its small, compact body allows you to use it to tackle small spills in the house or clean up in the car. The three gallon capacity lets it run much longer than a handheld vacuum, the default option when you’re cleaning up debris in the car.
The light on the vacuum nozzle lets you see what you are picking up, useful for making sure you got all traces of where the baby threw up before you say the job is done.
The hose and accessories collapse down into a small package that is easy to stow away in storage.
The hose can expand, so there is no need to put coils in it when you’re picking up larger debris. The built in dust pan feature lets you pour out the lighter dust and debris without a cloud of dust.
Changing the air filter is a snap.
Cons of the RIGID VAC3000
While sold as a wet/dry vacuum, this vacuum should not be used for liquid messes. At best, it can tackle semi-liquid messes like when a child or pet throws up. It shouldn’t be used to clean up after a water leak.
The narrow base relative to the tall body gives it a tendency to fall over if you are pulling on the hose or pulling along the vacuum.
The bags sold as a fit for this vacuum are often too long, so while they fit inside the vacuum, they have a tendency to wrap around the filter. When this happens, it impedes your ability to close the vacuum properly. Then it may not seal properly when latched and could blow out the dust you just sucked in. If it wraps around the filter, it will also impede the air flow inside the vacuum, killing suction. The solution is to either buy a shorter bag than what comes with the vacuum cleaner or try to position the bag so this does not happen.
This officially 3 gallon wet / dry vacuum doesn’t quite have that much space inside. When you use a bag to allow you to remove all the solid debris without creating a dust cloud, it has even less space than when the bag isn’t used. If you use the bag to contain solid debris, the dust also has a tendency to clog around the suction intake.
The manufacturer sells a separate auto-detailing kit that fits this vacuum cleaner; that kit costs around $40.
Replacement filters costs around $20 while replacement bags cost around $8. To avoid problems with the bag that comes with this vacuum, buy the 3-gallon to 4-1/2-Gallon size for this wet / dry vacuum. You do not have to use a vacuum bag with the wet / dry vacuum, but you’ll prefer it, especially if dealing with a moist, biological mess that would otherwise stink up the inside of the vacuum cleaner.
The 3.5 peak horsepower is more like 3 HP of power; this vacuum will pick up dust, food crumbs, sand or pebbles. It won’t pull up dried on vomit on a single pass or heavier wood chips.
This portable wet/dry vacuum works well for smaller dry and semi-liquid messes. Its greatest benefits are low cost, versatility and compact size.