How to Use a Shop Vac as a Water Pump in 2023?

A shop vac is a powerful tool that can be used for a variety of tasks, including wet and dry vacuum cleaning, as well as inflating and deflating air mattresses, pool floats, and more. But did you know that a shop vac can also be used as a water pump?

If you find yourself in a situation where you need to remove water from an area but don’t have a traditional pump on hand, a shop vac can get the job done.

How to Use a Shop Vac as a Water Pump

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to use a shop vac as a water pump.

Step 1: Choose the right size shop vac for the job.

You’ll want to make sure you have a powerful enough shop vac to handle the amount of water you need to remove. A larger shop vac will also be able to hold more water, so keep that in mind when making your selection.

Step 2: Place the shop vac near the area of water you need to remove.

Position the outlet hose over the area you want the water to go. If you’re trying to pump water out of a pool, for example, position the hose so that it hangs over the edge of the pool.

Step 3: Turn on the shop vac and let it run until all of the water has been removed from the area.

This may take some time, so be patient. Once all of the water has been vacuumed up, turn off the shop vac and unplug it from the outlet.

Step 4: Empty out the shop vac’s tank.

Be careful when doing this, as there will likely be some residual water left in the tank. Pour it out into a drainage area or sink so that it doesn’t cause any damage.

Advantages of a Shop Vac as a Water Pump

Here are some of the advantages of using a shop vac as a water pump:

1. Powerful

A regular vacuum is not going to be able to handle the amount of water that needs to be removed after a flood. A shop vac, on the other hand, is designed for heavy-duty cleaning tasks. It will have no problem sucking up all the water and getting your home back to normal in no time.

2. Durable

Another advantage of using a shop vac as a water pump is that they are very durable. Most regular vacuums are not made to handle wet messes, so they will quickly break down if you try to use them on flooding cleanup. Shop vacs, however, are built to withstand being used on wet surfaces. This means that they will last much longer and will be able to handle any future flooding events that may occur.

3. Easy to Use

Another great advantage of shop vacs is that they are very easy to use. You don’t need any special training or skills to operate one. Just plug it in and start sucking up the water. Most models come with clear instructions on how to use them, so you can’t go wrong.

A shop vac is a powerful little machine that can help you remove water quickly and efficiently after a flood. They are much more durable than regular vacuums and can handle wet and dry messes. Most importantly, they can be used as a water pump to remove standing water from your home. Keep one on hand in case of emergencies and you will be glad you did!

Use a Shop Vac as a Water Pump

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Disadvantages of Using a Shop Vacuum as a Water Pump

While it’s true that a shop vac can move water, there are several disadvantages to using one as a water pump that you should be aware of before you try.

1. Shop vacs are not designed to pump water.

While shop vacuums are powerful enough to move water, they are not designed for this purpose. This means that using a shop vac as a water pump can put undue strain on the motor, potentially causing it to overheat or even catch fire. Additionally, the filter on a shop vac is not designed to filter out water, so any debris in the water will quickly clog the filter and reduce the vacuum’s suction power.

2. Shop vacs are not self-priming.

This means that you’ll need to manually prime the pump before each use, which can be time-consuming and difficult if you’re not familiar with how to do it. Additionally, if the shop vac is not positioned correctly, it may not be able to draw water from the source properly and could end up sucking air into the vacuum instead of liquid.

3. Shop vacs are not always reliable.

Even when you do everything right, there’s always a possibility that something could go wrong when you’re using a shop vac as a pump. The hose could become detached or kinked, preventing the water from flowing through properly. Alternatively, the seal around the hose connection could break, allowing water to leak into the vacuum and damaging it beyond repair. For these reasons, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and use a proper water pump for any job that requires one.

So, should you use a shop vacuum as a water pump? While it’s technically possible, there are several disadvantages that make it less than ideal for most applications. If you need to move water, it’s best to stick with a proper water pump; your shop vacuum will thank you in the long run!


Can you use a shop vac like a water pump?

Yes, you can use a shop vac like a water pump. You will need to connect the shop vac to a water source—either a hose or a faucet—and then place the end of the hose or the faucet into the container that you want to fill with water. Turn on the shop vac and wait for the water to start flowing.

Keep in mind that most shop vacs are not designed to be used as water pumps, so there may be some drawbacks to using them in this way. For example, they may not be able to generate enough pressure or flow rate to move large amounts of water quickly. Additionally, if you use your shop vac as a water pump for an extended period of time,

How do I convert my shop vac to water?

There are a few ways to convert a shop vac to water. One way is to use an adapter that allows you to attach the hose of the shop vac to your garden hose. Another way is to buy a conversion kit that includes a pump and attachments.

Can you use a shop vac as a water extractor?

You can use a shop vac as a water extractor, but you’ll need to make some modifications to the vacuum in order to do so. You’ll need to add a float shut-off switch and a water pump in order to get the vacuum to suction up water. You can find more information on how to do this online.

If you’re not comfortable modifying the vacuum yourself, you can also purchase a water extractor that is specifically designed for this purpose. These extractors are typically small and portable, making them easy to use in tight spaces.

Can you use a shop vac for water without a filter?

It’s not recommended to use a shop vac for water without a filter because it can cause damage to the motor.

A shop vac is not meant to be used for sucking up water, and doing so can damage the motor. The filters are designed to keep the dirt and dust out of the motor, and if you try to use the shop vac without a filter, you’re putting the motor at risk. Not only could it potentially damage the motor, but you could also end up with water inside the unit, which could cause electrical problems.


A shop vac is a handy tool to have around because it can be used for more than just cleaning up dust and debris. It’s also great for removing water from an area, which can come in handy if you don’t have access to a traditional pump. Just follow these simple steps and you’ll have no problem using your shop vac as a water pump when needed.