Where I live in Northern Illinois, it seems like we have flooding rains at least one weekend a year, sometimes two or more. Worse, my house has a water problem. We've spent a lot of money trying to correct it, between overhead sewers, a sump pump with two deep cycle marine batteries connected to it, new window wells and some other minor corrections.
So, when the flooding rains hit in the spring of 2008, we prepared for the worst. We hadn't done the window wells then. The water collecting under the house would be ok as long as we had power but the water coming in through the basement windows could be a problem.
It was Saturday morning and raining hard, with lots more coming. My wife and I decided to scout around for wet/dry vacs as our last line of defense. Most of the local vendors, such as Home Depot, Menards, Lowes and Crafty Beaver were stocked out. I decided to check out the Sears web site. They had plenty of stock in their local store of their wet/dry 12 gallon vac, model 17765. It was showing on sale for $60 and I was able to use an online coupon for $10 to reduce the price.
The vacuum is on rollers, like most similar wet/dry vacs. The large 12 gallon capacity was nice, as was the drain hose, which is positioned near the bottom. The hose locks in place by twisting it. The fairly long cord, 20" can wrap around the unit. The hose is 7 feet. The unit has two 2-1/2 in. extension wands, utility nozzle, car nozzle, and wet nozzle. Those attachment tools fit on the unit as well. The unit weighs 23 pounds and rolls. It also comes with a filter unit attached to the inside top. The filter can be removed for wet vacuuming. The unit has a 1 year warranty from Sears.
In use that Saturday, it was great. It has strong suction. The 12 gallon tank holds a lot of water and is easily emptied. The casters also roll easily, so positioning the unit and rolling it to the drain worked smoothly. I was able to stay ahead of the water coming in. That beat the heck out of trying to mop the water or sweep it to the drain as it came in. I used it fairly continuously for a couple of hours. It was running great and not hot at all.
Since then, we have kept it in the basement and used it for standard vacuuming there as the window and window well replacements seem to have fixed the water problem. The unit is fine for standard vacuuming in a basement, although a standard upright vacuum would be easier to use in living areas because of the handle and because this unit is fairly short, although it rolls well. It picks up fairly well and the drum inside and filter are easy to clean. The unit can be used with a dust bag, although I haven't. Also, the exhaust outlet can be hooked to the hose and used as a blower, although I have not done so with that either.
About a month ago, the rains were coming. I pulled out the vacuum and got it ready, hoping we wouldn't need it and also hoping that the lights would stay on if we did need it. Well, we didn't need it and the lights went out but not long enough to deplete the marine batteries.
This unit does well for wet vacuuming and ok for dry, although I think an upright vacuum would be more suited to heavily trafficked living areas.
This unit did what I needed and so it gets 5 stars.
Thanks for reading. God bless!
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